Business Highlights

AP News
Posted: Apr 20, 2017 6:19 PM


AP Exclusive: Pesticide maker tries to kill risk study

WASHINGTON (AP) — Dow Chemical is pushing the government, which is newly open to scrapping regulations under President Donald Trump, to ignore the findings of federal scientists who point to a family of widely used pesticides as harmful to about 1,800 critically threatened or endangered species.


GM faces hard road getting compensated for Venezuela factory

DETROIT (AP) — General Motors became the latest corporation to have a factory or other asset seized by the government of Venezuela, and the Detroit automaker faces an uphill battle to recover any damages. GM said Thursday that its only factory in Venezuela was confiscated a day earlier, as anti-government protesters clashed with authorities in a country that is roiled by economic troubles.


EPA chief delays methane rule at behest of oil and gas firms

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Environmental Protection Agency is again moving to derail Obama-era regulations aimed at reducing pollution from the fossil fuel industry. EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt has issued a 90-day delay for oil and gas companies to follow a new rule requiring them to monitor and reduce methane leaks from their facilities.


Once critical of global deals, Trump slow to pull out of any

WASHINGTON (AP) — He has called the Iran nuclear deal the "worst" ever, and claimed that climate change was a hoax, but President Donald Trump hasn't moved to scrap the Iran agreement or pull out of the Paris climate accord. With one exception, a Pacific trade deal, Trump has laid groundwork to mostly honor the agreements he inherited. And so far, there's been no major revolt from Trump supporters, despite their expectation that he would be an agent of disruption.


Trump orders probe into whether steel imports harming US

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump is telling the Commerce Department to expedite an investigation into whether steel imports are jeopardizing U.S. national security. Trump says it's "not an area where we can afford to become dependent on other countries." Executives from U.S. steelmakers, who support the review, stood behind Trump as he signed a memo directing Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross to return recommendations in the "very, very near" future.


Regulators sue Ocwen Financial, say it mishandled mortgages

NEW YORK (AP) — State and federal authorities are suing Ocwen Financial Corp., saying the mortgage servicing company botched the handling of millions of mortgage accounts. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau says Ocwen generated errors in borrowers' accounts, failed to credit payments, illegally foreclosed on homeowners, and charged borrowers for add-on products without their consent. Ocwen called the lawsuit "politically motivated" and disputes the CFPB's allegations.


Leaders of IMF and World Bank defend globalization

WASHINGTON (AP) — Global finance leaders are defending globalization against an assault from President Donald Trump and European populists. They argue that blocking free trade would hobble economic growth instead of saving jobs from foreign competition. World Bank President Jim Yong Kim told journalists that freer trade and more openness were "critical for the future of the world."


Without O'Reilly, Fox News faces its toughest test

NEW YORK (AP) — The firing of Fox's lead personality, Bill O'Reilly, will test whether the top-rated cable network's appeal is due to its overall strength more than a personality or two. Fox News is also facing pressure to change management in the wake of O'Reilly's case and last summer's ouster of top Fox executive Roger Ailes


Charge me up: Rural electric drivers face 'range anxiety'

SARANAC LAKE, N.Y. (AP) — Electric car charging stations are still few and far between in rural areas, leaving many backcountry drivers with "range anxiety." Some carbon-free motorists carefully strategize by knowing the locations of charging stations and bringing things to do to keep themselves entertained during three-hour charges. Data show that charging stations in the U.S. have increased to 18,000 but are still unevenly distributed, with most concentrated in California and populous portions of the East Coast.


Coca-Cola in North Korea? It's (usually not) the Real Thing

PYONGYANG, North Korea (AP) — North Korea is developing quite a taste for Coke — even though the red-and-white labels, the distinctive red caps and the sweet soda taste are not exactly the Real Thing. The soft drink brand that represents the global appeal of American-style consumer culture doesn't operate in North Korea, but a cola with fizzy, refreshing similarities can be found.


The Standard & Poor's 500 index climbed 17.67 points, or 0.8 percent, to 2,355.84.

The Dow Jones industrial average picked up 174.22 points, or 0.9 percent, to 20,578.81.

The Nasdaq composite surged 53.74 points, or 0.9 percent, to 5,916.78.

Benchmark U.S. crude slipped 17 cents to $50.27 a barrel in New York while Brent crude, the international standard, rose 6 cents to $52.99 a barrel.

In other energy trading, wholesale gasoline rose 1 cent to $1.67 a gallon. Heating oil was flat at $1.58 a gallon. Natural gas fell 3 cents to $3.16 per 1,000 cubic feet.