The man seeking to take become leader of Britain's opposition Labour Party has proposed a wealth tax on the country's highest earners as part of what he cast as a "socialist revolution" to woo Labour supporters, The Times newspaper reported. Owen Smith, who is seeking to replace socialist Jeremy Corbyn as Labour leader, promised a public spending spree funded by 200 billion pounds of extra borrowing and taxes on business and the wealthy that would net 13.5 billion pounds a year, the newspaper said. Labour has been locked in a bitter power struggle since the June 23 vote to leave the European Union, with critics of Corbyn saying he did not work hard enough to persuade the party's voters to back remaining in the bloc.
French bank BNP Paribas managed to avoid a slide in profits in the second quarter, due in large part to a gain from selling its stake in the Visa card operator. The bank said Thursday that in April through June its net profit edged up to 2.6 billion euros ($2.9 billion), much higher than the average of 2.2 billion expected by analysts surveyed by FactSet. Among the exceptional items that boosted BNP Paribas's earnings was the sale of its stake in Visa Europe, which brought it a net gain after taxes of around 565 million euros.