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September 24, 2018

Among the stories Monday from The Associated Press:

TOP STORIES:

GIG ECONOMY-SIGNS OF SLOWDOWN? — The “gig” economy might not be the new frontier for America’s workforce after all. From Uber to TaskRabbit to YourMechanic, so-called gig work has been widely seen as ideal opportunities for people who prize the flexibility and independence that traditional jobs don’t offer. Yet the evidence is growing that in the long run, these jobs don’t deliver the financial returns many expect. By Christopher Rugaber. SENT: 950 words, photo.

US-CHINA TARIFFS — China and the United States impose new tariff hikes on each other’s goods and Beijing accused Washington of bullying, giving no sign of compromise in an intensifying battle over technology that is weighing on global economic growth. By Joe McDonald. SENT: 850 words, photos.

DRUG PRICES-BUSINESS AS USUAL — President Donald Trump has made reducing drug prices a key promise, but an Associated Press analysis of brand-name prescription drug prices shows it’s mostly been business as usual for drugmakers since he took office. By Linda A. Johnson and Nicky Forster. SENT: 1,280 words, photos.

AP EXPLAINS-QUANTUM COMPUTING — A race by U.S. tech companies to build a new generation of powerful “quantum computers” could get a $1.3 billion boost from Congress, fueled in part by lawmakers’ fear of growing competition from China. It’s a big jump to prominence for an esoteric field of research that is difficult even to describe, but which could lead to ultrafast computers and new applications. By Matt O’Brien. UPCOMING: 800 words, photo by 11 a.m.

MARKETS & ECONOMY:

FEDERAL RESERVE — When the Federal Reserve ends its latest policy meeting Wednesday, it is widely expected to modestly raise short-term interest rates for a third time this year. The question is, given the global economic picture, how much does the Fed expect to tighten credit further in the coming months - the answer to which has consequences for individuals, companies, the economy and the markets. By Martin Crutsinger. UPCOMING, timing uncertain.

FINANCIAL MARKETS — Stocks are opening broadly lower on Wall Street after China reportedly rebuffed a plan for talks with the U.S. on resolving their trade dispute. SENT: 470 words, photo. UPCOMING: 700 words by 5 p.m.

IRAN-OIL — Iran’s oil minister says the United States will not succeed in its plans to halt Iranian crude exports even as he acknowledged that South Korea has stopped buying oil from Tehran. SENT: 260 words, photo.

INDUSTRY:

TRUMP-MILEAGE STANDARDS — Doctors, environmental groups and California officials will weigh in on the Trump administration’s proposal to roll back car-mileage standards at what could be a raucous hearing in a region with some of the nation’s worst air pollution. By Sudhin Thanawala. SENT: 500 words, photos. UPCOMING: Will be updated from hearing scheduled to start at 1 p.m.

BRITAIN-GOLD MERGER — Barrick Gold has agreed to buy Randgold Resources for $6.1 billion in stock to create the world’s largest gold miner. SENT: 170 words, photo.

ITALY-VERSACE SALE — An Italian newspaper reports that the Versace group is on the verge of announcing its sale to an American company for 2 billion euros ($2.4 billion). SENT: 160 words, photos.

TRAFFICKING ACT-SEX WORKERS — Recent crackdowns targeting the sex-for-hire industry have reduced the number of commercial ads on the internet and helped fight online trafficking. But activists and police say the efforts may have had unintended consequences — landing women and girls back on the streets, where dangers also lurk. By Alexandra Villareal. SENT: 900 words, photos.

BUDGET BATTLE — Congress is set to pass a crucial spending bill that averts a government shutdown, but there’s one potential obstacle: President Donald Trump. By Matthew Daly and Kevin Freking. SENT: 700 words, photos.

TECHNOLOGY & MEDIA:

SIRIUSXM-PANDORA — Subscription radio company SiriusXM says it’s buying music streaming service Pandora Media Inc. in a stock deal valued at about $3.5 billion that’ll allow it to expand its service beyond cars and into homes and other mobile areas. SENT: 140 words, photo.

BRITAIN-SKY — Shares in Sky plc are up 8.8 percent after Comcast won a bidding war for the British pay TV giant in a weekend auction that pushed the value of the company to almost 30 billion pounds ($39 billion). SENT: 130 words.

SINGAPORE-UBER — Singapore’s competition watchdog has fined ride-hailing giant Uber and its regional rival Grab 13 million Singapore dollars ($9.5 million) for a merger in Southeast Asia that the agency says has driven up fares and reduced competition in the market. By Annabelle Liang. SENT: 310 words, photo.

PERSONAL FINANCE:

NERDWALLET-LIZ WESTON-ESTATE PLANNING DON’TS — Creating an estate plan is a gift to the people you leave behind. By expressing your wishes, you’re trying to guide your loved ones at a difficult, emotional time. All too often, though, well-meaning people do things destined to create discord, rancor and resentment among their heirs. By Liz Weston, NerdWallet. UPCOMING: 800 words by 11 a.m., photo.

INTERNATIONAL:

VENEZUELA-US SANCTIONS — U.S. Treasury officials in June distributed a list of suspected companies that they believe senior Venezuelan officials have used across the globe to siphon off millions of dollars in foreign food imports amid widespread starvation in the oil-rich nation. By Joshua Goodman. SENT: 1,800 words, photos.

BREXIT — Britain’s main opposition party took a step at its annual conference toward backing a new referendum on Brexit — but stopped short of saying the vote should include an option not to leave the European Union at all. By Jill Lawless. SENT: 470 words, photos.

And:

— BRITAIN-TRADE — Britain’s independent statistics agency says the country’s trade in goods deficit widened almost tenfold over the past two decades largely because of a worsening in the trade balance with the other countries in the European Union. SENT: 130 words.

— EUROPE-BRITAIN-DUTIES — The European Union is taking further legal steps against Britain over its alleged failure to effectively prevent customs duties fraud, which is hurting the EU’s budget. SENT: 110 words.

EUROPE-ECONOMY — Business confidence in Germany fell only slightly in September despite worries about trade disputes that could harm growth. SENT: 130 words, photo.

FRANCE-ECONOMY — The French government plans to cut taxes by 24.8 billion euros ($29.2 billion) next year in an effort to boost the economy and create more jobs. SENT: 130 words, photo.

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