Update on the latest in business:
Jun. 26, 2017
Asian markets higher after Wall Street rebound
BEIJING (AP) — Asian markets rose today after Wall Street rebounded from losses to end the week higher on stronger oil and natural gas prices.
The Standard & Poor's 500 index rose 0.2 percent to 2,438.30 Friday. The Dow Jones industrial average slipped less than 0.1 percent to 21,394.76 and the Nasdaq composite gained 0.5 percent to 6,265.25. Energy stocks led the way, and those in the S&P 500 climbed 0.8 percent for the largest gain of the 11 sectors that make up the index. Health care stocks climbed as the Senate unveiled its proposal to revamp how Americans get medical care. Technology companies are forecast to report strong earnings growth.
Japanese air bag maker Takata Corp. filed for protection from its creditors in Tokyo and the United States, overwhelmed by lawsuits and recall costs related to its production of defective air bag inflators linked to deaths and injuries.
Global oil prices have rebounded but are about 15 percent below where they were a year ago. Benchmark U.S. crude rose to just under $43.50 per barrel.
The dollar edged up against the yen and declined against the euro.
Debt, protectionism could drag down improving global economy
FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) — The global economy has picked up and prospects for the next few months are the best in a long time.
But the recovery is maturing and faces risks from populist rejection of free trade and from high debt that could burden consumers and companies as interest rates rise.
Those were key takeaways from a review of the global economy released Sunday by the Bank for International Settlements, an international organization for central banks based in Basel, Switzerland.
The report said that "the global economy's performance has improved considerably and that its near-term prospects appear the best in a long time." Global growth should reach 3.5 percent this year, according to a summary of forecasts, not quite what it was before the Great Recession but in line with long-term averages. Meanwhile, financial markets for stocks and bonds have been unusually buoyant and steady.
On top of that, forecasts by governments and international organizations as well as by private analysts point to "further gradual improvement" in coming months.
Key risks include a possible weakening of consumer spending across different economies. So far, the recovery has been largely fueled by people being willing and able to spend more. But that trend could fall victim to higher levels of debt as interest rates rise in some countries and as the amount people need to spend to service their debts takes a bigger chunk of income.
'Pharma Bro' defies advice to keep quiet before fraud trial
NEW YORK (AP) — Even with his federal securities fraud trial set to begin today, Martin Shkreli has blatantly defied his attorneys' advice to lay low.
The former pharmaceutical CEO, who became a pariah after raising the cost of a life-saving drug 5,000 percent, has been preening for cameras and trolling on social media, potentially complicating his defense.
"I'm excited," Shkreli said of the trial in a brief phone call last week to The Associated Press. "I can't wait."
Since his high-profile arrest in late 2015 when he was led into court in a gray hoodie, Shkreli has been free on bail and free to speak his mind. He went on Twitter to label members of Congress "imbeciles" for demanding to know why his company, Turing Pharmaceuticals, raised the price of Daraprim, a drug used to treat toxoplasmosis and HIV, from $13.50 to $750 per pill.
He took to YouTube for a series of lessons on chemistry and stock market analysis. His Twitter posts mocking a freelance journalist turned so creepy — one showed a fake photo of him canoodling with her — that his account was shut down. And on Facebook, he mused about the possibility of being "unjustly imprisoned."
Legal experts say there are obvious reasons lawyers want clients facing serious criminal charges to keep quiet. They include not antagonizing the judge or getting unwanted attention of the jury.
'Transformers: The Last Knight' debuts to a franchise low
NEW YORK (AP) — The hulking machines of "Transformers" are no longer box-office behemoths in North America. But they're still big in China.
Michael Bay's "Transformers: The Last Knight," the fifth installment in the Hasbro series, scored a franchise-low domestic debut with an estimated $43.5 million in ticket sales over the weekend and a five-day total of $69.1 million since opening Wednesday. All previous "Transformers" sequels opened with $97 million-plus.
But Paramount Pictures' "The Last Knight," the second "Transformers" movie to star Mark Wahlberg, still showed its might overseas. It took in $196.2 million internationally, including an impressive $123.4 million in China.
Future business will tell whether those grosses are enough to cover a hugely expensive movie: $217 million to make, plus nearly as much to market. Studios reap a smaller percentage of ticket sales from Chinese theaters. And reviews — though never much of a factor in "Transformers" land — were worse for "The Last Knight" than the earlier films. Audiences gave this one a B-plus CinemaScore.
"Wonder Woman" and "Cars 3" tied for second place, both with $25.2 million. Nearly a month after opening, Patty Jenkins' "Wonder Woman" continues to be a major draw.
In limited release Kumail Nanjiani's acclaimed romantic comedy "The Big Sick" landed the best per-screen average of the year. It opened in five theaters, grossing an average of $87,000 from each.
Sofia Coppola's "The Beguiled" wasn't far behind. In four theaters, it earned a per-screen average of $60,136.
THE DAY AHEAD
Report on durable goods due
WASHINGTON (AP) — The Commerce Department is set to release its report on durable goods for May.
Last month, Commerce reported that U.S. orders for long-lasting manufactured goods dropped in April for the first time in five months.
The report is due out at 8:30 a.m. Eastern time.
Air bag maker Takata files for bankruptcy in Japan, US
UNDATED (AP) — Japanese air bag maker Takata Corp. has filed for bankruptcy protection at home and in the U.S.
Takata has been overwhelmed by lawsuits and recall costs related to its production of faulty air bag inflators that are linked to the death of at least 16 people.
The company announced the expected action Monday morning Tokyo time. Takata confirmed that most of its assets will be bought by rival Key Safety Systems, based in suburban Detroit. Key will pay about $1.6 billion, according to an announcement by the two companies.
Takata's defective inflators can explode with too much force when they fill up an air bag, spewing out shrapnel. Besides the fatalities, they're also responsible for at least 180 injuries.
Italy giving 5.2B euros in resources to keep 2 banks open
ROME (AP) — The Italian government has made 5.2 billion euros — that's $5.8 billion — of resources immediately available to keep operative two banks.
Premier Paolo Gentiloni defended the swift action as vital for ensuring Italy's slow economic recovery isn't derailed by a "disorderly" failure of Veneto Banca (VEHN'-eh-toh BAHN'-kah) and Banca Popolare di Vicenza (BAHN'-kah POH'-poh-LAH'-ray dee VEE'-chen-zah).
The European Central Bank has deemed the banks "failing or about to fail," sending them into insolvency procedures.
The two banks are based in the northeast Veneto region, one of Italy's most economically productive. They serve many of the small and medium-sized businesses that are the backbone of the nation's economy.
Debt, protectionism could drag down improving global economy
FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) — A global financial organization says the world economy has picked up and prospects for the next few months are the best in a long time.
However, the Bank for International Settlements, an organization for central banks, said the recovery is maturing and faces risks from populist rejection of free trade and from high debt that could burden consumers and companies as interest rates rise.
Those were key takeaways from a report released Sunday by the organization based in Basel, Switzerland.
The report said "the global economy's performance has improved considerably and that its near-term prospects appear the best in a long time." Growth should reach 3.5 percent this year, according to a summary of forecasts, not quite what it was before the Great Recession but in line with long-term averages.
Dakota Access review to re-examine impact on tribe
BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — A federal judge has ordered another review of whether the already-operating Dakota Access pipeline might unfairly affect the Standing Rock Sioux.
It's uncertain how the process will unfold, but there are two main possibilities. Federal officials who permitted the project to move North Dakota oil to Illinois could revise their analysis, or they could conduct a full environmental study.
The tribe says it will fight in court if there isn't a full study. Texas-based pipeline developer Energy Transfer Partners expects a "limited" process with federal officials reaffirming prior conclusions.
The big question is whether the pipeline will be shut down while the case plays out. U.S. District Judge James Boasberg isn't likely to decide until the fall, after lawyers on both sides have had a chance to make their arguments.
Average US gas price drops 7 cents, as crude cost falls
CAMARILLO, Calif. (AP) — The average price of a gallon of regular-grade gasoline dropped 7 cents nationally over the past two weeks, to $2.32.
Industry analyst Trilby Lundberg of the Lundberg Survey said Sunday that the drop reflects lower costs for crude oil.
She says the national average is 4 cents a gallon below the price a year ago.
Gas in San Francisco was the highest in the contiguous United States at an average of $3.06 a gallon. The lowest was in Charleston, South Carolina, at $1.91 a gallon.
The U.S. average diesel price is $2.53, down 3 cents from two weeks ago.
SpaceX launches 10 satellites from California air base
LOS ANGELES (AP) — A SpaceX rocket carried 10 communications satellites into orbit from California on Sunday, two days after the company successfully launched a satellite from Florida.
The Falcon 9 rocket blasted off through low-lying fog at 1:25 p.m. Pacific time from Vandenberg Air Force Base northwest of Los Angeles. It carried a second batch of new satellites for Iridium Communications, which is replacing its orbiting fleet with a next-generation constellation of satellites.
About 7 minutes after liftoff, the rocket's first-stage booster returned to earth and landed on a floating platform on a ship in the Pacific Ocean, while the rocket's second stage continued to carry the satellites toward orbit.
A SpaceX Falcon 9 on Friday launched from Cape Canaveral, Florida and boosted a communications satellite for Bulgaria into orbit. Its first stage was recovered after landing on a drone ship in the Atlantic.
Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg visits Nebraska and Iowa
NORTH PLATTE, Neb. (AP) — Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg paid a visit to Nebraska and Iowa and toured Union Pacific's railyard in central Nebraska.
Zuckerberg also attended part of the Heartland Pride Festival in Omaha on Saturday and stopped in several Iowa towns as part of a tour of the area.
After touring the railyard, Zuckerberg posted pictures on Facebook and commented about how important railroads are to the economy because of everything they haul.
Zuckerberg spent about an hour at the Omaha event Saturday meeting with community leaders.
Previously, Zuckerberg had said he planned to tour the country this year as part of an effort to meet people in every state.