European stocks fall ... Trade war, diesel troubles hold back profit at Daimler ... May meets with political parties in NIreland on Brexit
BANGKOK (AP) — Stocks fell in European trading today, after gains in much of Asia, as investors digested President Donald Trump’s State of the Union address to Congress. Germany’s DAX dropped 0.3 percent, Britain’s FTSE 100 lost 0.2 percent and France’s CAC 40 slipped 0.2 percent. In Asian markets, Japan’s Nikkei closed 0.1 percent higher. Wall Street looks likely to get a slow start, with the Dow and S&P futures each down 0.1 percent.
FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) — Automaker Daimler says fourth-quarter net profit fell 49 percent to 1.64 billion euros ($1.87 billion) as its Mercedes-Benz luxury car business was buffeted by trade conflict, diesel woes and costs for developing new models and technologies. Revenue rose 7 percent to 46.6 billion euros and the company says demand for its products remained strong. The luxury car division, the mainstay of its earnings, saw profitability fall as it faced multiple challenges, including the U.S.-China trade war.
LONDON (AP) — British Prime Minister Theresa May is set to meet today with Northern Ireland’s main political parties as she tries to break the impasse over her European Union divorce deal. May is signaling she will push for changes to the deal rather than outright removal of the so-called backstop, designed to preserve the open border between Northern Ireland and EU member state Ireland. The border area was a flashpoint during decades of conflict.
UNDATED (AP) — United Airlines plans to retrofit many planes and add premium seats in a bid to win over high-fare passengers. It’s part of an industry trend to give more space and better service to high-customers who drive revenue. United’s chief commercial officer says the airline decided it didn’t have enough business-class seats on the most lucrative routes, “and this fixed that problem.”
HONOLULU (AP) — Hawaii says a judge should compel Airbnb to hand over 10 years of receipts and other documents from its hosts because the home-sharing platform has acknowledged that hosts aren’t fully complying with state tax laws. Hawaii has asked a judge to allow it to subpoena Airbnb to help it find which hosts haven’t paid the state’s equivalent of hotel and sales taxes.