Afternoon Coffee: Total Buys Maersk Oil for $5 Billion, First Round of NAFTA Talks Conclude

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French energy giant Total SA announced Monday it has agreed to purchase the oil and gas unit of A.P. Moller-Maersk for just under $5 billion, Bloomberg reports. The acquisition will increase Total’s presence in the North Sea, adding to the company’s recent expansions in Uganda and Brazil.

NAFTA Talks

While the opening round of talks to update the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) have concluded, the discussions revealed “deep fissures” between the U.S. position and that of Mexico and Canada, according to the Wall Street Journal. One major point of contention is over rules of origin, with the U.S. negotiator in his opening remarks laying out a proposal for tightening those regulations to favor more U.S. manufacturing.

Suez Canal

Companies using the Suez Canal for logistics can expect a price cut starting in October, according to American Shipper. Beginning Oct. 1 transit rates for container vessels in the northern and southern Suez ports will be reduced from between 3% and 50%.

Consumer Sentiment

And finally, an economic update: The consumer sentiment index rose to 97.6 in August, CNBC reports, hitting its highest level since January.

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