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Stocks mixed...Fed discussed ‘slightly steeper’ future rate hikes...Zuckerberg says his personal data was sold

April 11, 2018

NEW YORK (AP) — Stocks are mixed in afternoon trading on Wall Street as the price of oil rises to a three-year high but banks decline along with interest rates. Facebook stock continues to rise as CEO Mark Zuckerberg testifies to Congress about the company’s data privacy scandal.

WASHINGTON (AP) — Minutes of the Federal Reserve’s March meeting show that officials discussed the possibility that the future course of rate hikes could accelerate, but they decided to stick with a gradual approach. The minutes also show that some Fed officials felt it might eventually become appropriate to revise the Fed’s policy statement to indicate a need to move past an “accommodative” level for rates to one that restrained economic activity slightly to keep inflation under control.

WASHINGTON (AP) — The federal government recorded a budget deficit of $208.7 billion in March, an increase of more than $32 billion from a year ago as revenues slipped and expenditures climbed. The Treasury Department reports that the February deficit was 18.4 percent higher than a year ago. That was largely due to increased expenditures on benefits for the military, veterans and recipients of supplemental security income as well as higher Medicare payments because April expenses were paid in March.

WASHINGTON (AP) — Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg has told a House hearing that his own Facebook data was included in the personal information sold to malicious third parties. Zuckerberg made the disclosure while answering a question from California Democrat Anna Eshoo (EH’-shoo) about the harvesting of users’ private data by Cambridge Analytica, a data-mining company affiliated with Donald Trump’s campaign. Facebook has said that 87 million people’s personal data was scooped up when some 270,000 users took a personality quiz.

LOS ANGELES (AP) — An environmental group says oil and gas companies drilling off Southern California violated state regulations nearly 400 times in the past three years. Records compiled by the Center for Biological Diversity and obtained by The Associated Press show state violations ranging from severe corrosion to failed and missing tests required to gauge the strength of wells. No civil penalties were issued for any of the violations, according to a spokesman for the state agency responsible for overseeing oil operations.

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