Notable business headlines include U.S.-Taiwan trade negotiations set to begin this fall, CVS, Walgreens and Walmart having to pay Ohio $650 million for opioid damages, and WWE finding $5 million worth of undisclosed funds went to a Trump charity.
JULIE HYMAN: Here are some other headlines we're watching now. The US and Taiwan have reached an agreement to start trade negotiations with the first round of talks set to take place in the fall. Now previously, President Biden had pledged bilateral talks after Taiwan was excluded from the multilateral Indo-Pacific economic framework. That was meant to strengthen the ties with the region and improve supply chains.
Taiwan was not included, as other countries would be reluctant to join a pact with the country due to the fear of angering Beijing. Still, China has said that it is firm-- that it firmly opposes the initiative and warns the US against doing any deal that could imply Taiwanese sovereignty.
In Ohio, federal judge Dan Polster has ordered three major pharmacy chains, CVS, Walmart, and Walgreens, to pay roughly $650 million to Lake County and Trumbull County over the next 15 years. That's for their roles in fueling the opioid epidemic. The plaintiffs originally sought settlements in the billions, but Polster felt reductions were necessary to account for the opioid addiction and abuse that would have occurred in the absence of the pharmacy chain's wrongful conduct.
In the end, the judge wrote that it was, quote, "equitable and fair" that the companies be responsible for 1/3 of the costs needed to address the damage caused. The combined median income of those two Ohio counties is just over $60,000, according to the US Census Bureau.
And former WWE CEO Vince McMahon paid $5 million of around $20 million in unreported expenses to Donald Trump's charity in 2007 and 2009. That's according to a report from the "Wall Street Journal." In a filing earlier this month, WWE said the undisclosed $20 million spent by McMahon should have been disclosed, as it benefited the company at the time. People close to the matter told the "Journal" the donations led to Trump making appearances on WWE's televised events.