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Stocks edge higher...Producer prices rise...Trump declares oil prices too high

June 13, 2018

NEW YORK (AP) — Stocks are edging higher in early trading on Wall Street ahead of this afternoon’s Federal Reserve statement. With the Fed expected to announce a slight rate increase, attention will focus more on how many additional rate hikes the central bank may do this year. AT&T is falling and Time Warner rising after a judge cleared the way for the $85 billion takeover of Time Warner. The ruling also brought deals involving Comcast, Twenty-First Century Fox and Disney into investors’ sights.

WASHINGTON (AP) — Wholesale prices have posted the biggest 12-month gain since January 2012, a sign that the strong economy is beginning to rouse inflation. The Labor Department said its producer price index— which measures inflation before it reaches consumers — rose 3.1 percent last month from May of 2017. The index rose half a percent from April, biggest one-month increase since January. Energy prices surged 4.6 percent last month from April, the biggest jump in three years.

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump is declaring that oil prices are too high. He’s blaming OPEC, the coalition of 14 oil-producing nations that control a significant portion of the world’s supply of crude petroleum. Since early last year, OPEC and other oil-producing countries have agreed to reduce supply in a bid to bolster oil prices. That move took U.S. crude from about $50 a barrel in late 2016 to more than $70 in 2018.

LONDON (AP) — The price of bitcoin has fallen to a four-month low of $6,370, days after South Korean virtual currency exchange Coinrail said hackers had stolen over $37 million, or almost a third of the virtual currency it had stored. After Coinrail announced the theft, the price of bitcoin dropped $500 in an hour and it has continued to slide.

NEW YORK (AP) — Bill Clinton’s debut as a novelist is already one of the year’s biggest hits. The thriller he co-wrote with James Patterson, “The President is Missing,” sold 250,000 copies its first week. Co-publishers Alfred A. Knopf and Little, Brown and Co. say the number includes hardcover, e-book and audio sales. The book spent much of last week at No. 1 on Amazon.com and elsewhere.

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