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World stocks mixed ... Ex-Obama officials push for ‘Obamacare’ signup ... EU wants Amazon to pay up

October 4, 2017

HONG KONG (AP) — World stock markets are mixed today as momentum from Wall Street’s rally fades. Investors are watching for economic data and remarks from the Fed chief to provide direction. European indexes are mixed in early trading. Markets in Japan and Hong Kong closed higher. Stock markets were closed in mainland China, South Korea and Taiwan for holidays. Dow and S&P futures are down less than 0.1 percent.

WASHINGTON (AP) — Former Obama administration officials say they’re launching a private campaign to encourage people to sign up for coverage next year under the Affordable Care Act. With the start of open enrollment just weeks away on Nov. 1, the Trump administration has slashed “Obamacare’s” ad budget, as well as grants to outside organizations that are supposed to help consumers sign up. Republican attempts to repeal Barack Obama’s law have proven futile so far.

WASHINGTON (AP) — A bill to clear away obstacles to a new era of self-driving cars is facing opposition from safety advocates who say it would give automakers free rein to put unsafe vehicles on the road. A Senate panel is scheduled to take up the measure on Wednesday. It would allow automakers to apply for exemptions to current federal auto safety standards to sell up to 50,000 self-driving cars and light trucks per manufacturer in its first year, 75,000 in the second year and 100,000 each year thereafter.

HONG KONG (AP) —The World Bank has raised its growth for the developing economies of East Asia and the Pacific but warned that risks to the outlook included rising protectionism and geopolitical tensions over North Korea. In a report Wednesday, the bank said it forecast economic growth of 6.4 percent for the region this year.

BRUSSELS (AP) — The European Union is telling member state Luxembourg to get $295 million in back taxes from Amazon in Brussels’ latest regulatory move targeting U.S. high-tech companies accused of tax avoidance. EU Commissioner Margrethe Vestager simultaneously took Ireland to court for failing to collect 13 billion euros ($15.3 billion) in taxes from Apple Inc., arguing that — like in Amazon’s case — the company had profited from a system allowing it to escape most of its taxes the EU felt were due.

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