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Stocks rise slightly ... Workplace discrimination ... Privatizing air traffic control

June 7, 2017

NEW YORK (AP) — U.S. stocks inched higher during midday trading. Gains in banks were partially outweighed by a slide in energy companies following a steep slump in crude oil prices. Oil futures fell sharply after a report showed that U.S. crude stockpiles grew 3.3 million barrels last week. Experts had expected stockpiles to shrink by 3.5 million barrels.

WASHINGTON (AP) — Labor Secretary Alexander Acosta has told Congress that cutting and merging two agencies that investigate workplace discrimination won’t reduce the government’s enforcement power. But Democrats say the result will be rampant discrimination. President Donald Trump’s budget recommends merging the office that enforces civil rights among federal contractors with the independent Equal Employee Opportunity Commission.

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump’s plan to privatize the nation’s air traffic control system is running into bipartisan opposition in Congress. Republicans fret that it could raise costs for air travelers and hurt small airports. Democrats are warning that airline interests would dominate a proposed board that would oversee an estimated 300 air traffic facilities and around 30,000 employees.

WASHINGTON (AP) — House Speaker Paul Ryan says he won’t commit to holding a vote to increase the government’s borrowing authority this summer. The Wisconsin Republicans instead says the House will vote on such debt legislation before the government defaults — but not necessarily by an August deadline requested last month by Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin.

DETROIT (AP) — Ford Motor Co. will operate its Kentucky SUV plant for an extra week this summer to meet demand for the Ford Escape and Lincoln MKC. Ford’s North American plants normally have a two-week shutdown in July, but the Louisville Assembly Plant will take only one week. It will build more than 8,500 vehicles during that extra week.

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