AP NEWS

Business Highlights

November 8, 2019

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Trump pushes back on reports US will remove China tariffs

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump said Friday that he hasn’t agreed to remove any of the tariffs that he has placed on imports from China as the world’s biggest economies struggle to negotiate an end to their ongoing trade war. The pushback by the president suggested that negotiations haven’t progressed as far as hoped.

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Tech companies rush to fight misinformation ahead of UK vote

LONDON (AP) — Internet companies say they will fight misinformation ahead of next month’s general election in the United Kingdom, but bogus online claims and deceptive political ads remain a threat due to government inaction. Facebook, Google and Twitter say they’re taking steps to prevent the spread of content that could mislead voters. Misinformation played a role in Britain’s 2016 vote to leave the European Union, as well as the 2016 election in the U.S.

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$800 million in disaster aid to farmers hit by hurricanes

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) — The federal government is sending $800 million in aid to farmers in three southern states that were devastated by last year’s hurricanes. Nearly half that money will go to Florida, where timber farmers suffered catastrophic losses when Hurricane Michael came ashore in October 2018 and destroyed 2.8 million acres of commercially grown trees. The U.S. Department of Agriculture said the funding also will help Alabama and Georgia cover hurricane losses in the timber, cattle and poultry industries.

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Trump to pursue higher sales age for e-cigarettes

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump said Friday his administration will pursue raising the minimum age to purchase electronic cigarettes from 18 to 21 in upcoming plans to combat youth vaping. Trump said US health officials will release their plans for restricting e-cigarettes next week. The administration was widely expected to unveil a ban on most flavored e-cigarettes this week. That approach was intended to combat underage vaping. But no details have yet been released.

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Facebook is deleting the name of the potential whistleblower

Facebook says it is deleting the name of the person who has been identified in conservative circles as the whistleblower who triggered a congressional impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump’s actions. The company said Friday that mention of the potential whistleblower’s name violates Facebook’s “coordinating harm policy,” which prohibits material that could out a “witness, informant, or activist.”

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AP Interview: Huawei founder says US woes not hardest crisis

SHENZHEN, China (AP) — The 75-year-old founder of Chinese tech giant Huawei says its troubles with President Donald Trump are hardly the biggest crisis he has faced while working his way from rural poverty to the helm of China’s first global tech brand. Ren Zhengfei says building Huawei into a leading maker of smartphones and network equipment was 30 years of “suffering and no joy.” Ren is a veteran of the generation of entrepreneurs who founded communist-era China’s first private companies in the 1980s.

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Friends, family support Twitter employee charged in spy case

SEATTLE (AP) — Family and friends of a former Twitter employee accused of spying for Saudi Arabia say he is a dedicated husband and father who has overcome recent mental health struggles. Authorities say Ahmad Abouammo acted as an agent of Saudi Arabia without registering with the U.S. government. Abouammo is due in Seattle federal court Friday for a detention hearing. Two other suspects are believed to be in Saudi Arabia and are wanted by the FBI.

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Twitter accounts push propaganda photos of Turkish soldiers

As Turkish forces launched assault in northern Syria, social media users propagated images of Turkey’s soldiers hugging, cradling or feeding children. But none of those images actually reflected the ongoing offensive in northern Syria. The online campaign follows a pattern of social media propaganda that seeks to sway global opinion when controversial, international events erupt.

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World Bank warns of grave risks to Lebanon’s stability

BEIRUT (AP) — The World Bank’s regional director says Lebanon needs to form a new Cabinet “within a week” to prevent further degradation and loss of confidence in its economy. Saroj Kumar Jha said told The Associated Press Friday that the World Bank observed in recent weeks increasing risks to Lebanon’s economic and financial stability.

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Stocks push past latest trade-war confusion to more records

NEW YORK (AP) — Stocks wobbled between small gains and losses through Friday amid conflicting signals about the progress being made by U.S. and Chinese negotiators in their trade war. The S&P 500 and Treasury yields fell after President Donald Trump said he had not agreed to roll back any tariffs, but a late push in the afternoon returned indexes to record heights. The S&P 500 closed out a fifth straight week of gains, which matches its longest winning streak in the last two years.

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The S&P 500 rose 7.90 points, or 0.3%, to 3,093.08. The Dow Jones Industrial Average edged up 6.44 points, or less than 0.1%, to 27,681.24, and the Nasdaq composite gained 40.80, or 0.5%, to 8,475.31. The Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks rose 4.87, or 0.3%, to 1,598.86.