Stocks move solidly higher on Wall Street

NEW YORK (AP) — Stocks shook off a rocky start and are solidy higher, led by gains in banks as interest rates move higher.

State Street rose 1.2 percent. Consumer products makers and health care companies also rose. Coca-Cola climbed 1.8 percent and Johnson & Johnson added 2 percent.

Ford and General Motors also climbed.

Media conglomerate Viacom sank 4 percent following reports that sibling company CBS wanted to buy it for below its current market value. CBS rose 2.5 percent.


Trump offers support to embattled EPA head

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump is offering his support to the head of the Environmental Protection Agency who is at the center of swirling ethics questions.

Two administration officials confirmed that the president called Scott Pruitt on Monday and told him that "we've got your back."

Trump urged Pruitt to "keep his head up" and said the White House supported him. The officials said White House chief of staff John Kelly reiterated those sentiments in a call to Pruitt Tuesday morning.

The officials spoke on the condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to publicly discuss private conversations.

Pruitt has come under intense scrutiny for his use of a Capitol Hill condominium linked to a prominent Washington lobbyist whose firm represents fossil fuel companies.


GM to halt monthly sales reports and switch to quarters

DETROIT (AP) — General Motors says it will stop reporting its sales figures every month and instead will post the numbers each quarter.

The move could prompt other automakers to make the same change. Currently nearly all U.S. automakers report sales monthly.

GM says 30 days isn't long enough to separate real trends from short-term fluctuations caused by weather, new product launches or other factors. The company's sales are down 3.2 percent so far this year when the rest of the market is down just under 1 percent. Its sales fell 1.4 percent last year.

The company has been reducing low-profit sales to rental car companies. Many automakers use those sales to boost monthly numbers.

GM says it will report March sales Tuesday with other automakers, then switch to quarters.


Tesla raises production but falls short of Model 3 goals

DETROIT (AP) — Electric car maker Tesla Inc. increased production of its Model 3 mass-market car in the first quarter but still fell far short of the numbers it promised last summer.

The Palo Alto, California, company says it made just under 9,800 Model 3s from January through March. That's four times what it made in the fourth quarter. But it's still only a fraction of the 20,000 per month that CEO Elon Musk promised when the car first went into production.

Tesla's shares rose nearly 5 percent to $264.82 in early trading Tuesday.

Tesla says it made just under 35,000 vehicles in the quarter including the Models S and X. That's a 40 percent increase from last year's fourth quarter.

The company says it addressed Model 3 production and parts supply bottlenecks.


Toshiba CEO promises turnaround in 5 years, beefed up ethics

TOKYO (AP) — An outsider tapped to lead scandal-tarnished Japanese electronics company Toshiba Corp. is promising a turnaround in five years by reshaping its operations.

Nobuaki Kurumatani, the first outsider to be appointed chief executive at Toshiba in more than half a century, acknowledged corporate governance had been weak.

He told reporters Tuesday at Toshiba's Tokyo headquarters that he brought his experience in the financial sector, where compliance controls are tougher.

Toshiba has been embroiled in an accounting scandal involving the massive doctoring of books.

It also racked up heavy losses in its nuclear business and is selling its lucrative computer-chip business to avoid going belly-up.

At the center of the losses is the acquisition of CB&I Stone & Webster by its U.S. nuclear unit Westinghouse, which filed for bankruptcy protection last year.


Facebook asks users if they think it's 'good for the world'

NEW YORK (AP) — Facebook is asking users whether they think it's "good for the world" in a poll sent to an unspecified number of people.

The latest poll appears under the heading, "We'd like to do better," when users log in. Possible responses range from "strongly agree" to "strongly disagree."

Facebook regularly polls users on its service. The latest comes as the company grapples with a privacy scandal and other troubles . Facebook did not immediately respond for comment

CEO Mark Zuckerberg has said he wants to ensure that Facebook is a force for good in the world. Whether it is hasn't been clear amid revelations of bad actors using Facebook to influence elections, spread hatred and pilfer user information. In January, Zuckerberg said his personal goal for 2018 is to fix Facebook.


Gay dating app Grindr to stop sharing HIV status

NEW YORK (AP) — The gay dating app Grindr will stop sharing its users' HIV status with analytics companies.

Chief security officer Bryce Case told BuzzFeed News on Monday it decided to stop sharing information with Localytics to allay people's fears.

Localytics and Apptimize were paid to test and monitor how the app is used. The company says the firms are under "strict contractual terms that provide for the highest level of confidentiality." Grindr says data that may include location or information from HIV status fields are "always transmitted securely with encryption."

Grindr says it's important to remember it is a public forum and users have the option to post information about their HIV status and date when last tested. It says its users should carefully consider what information they list in their profiles.


FDA orders recall of salmonella-tainted herbal supplement

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. health authorities are ordering a Las Vegas company to pull its herbal supplements off the market because some of its products tested positive for salmonella, part of a nationwide outbreak linked to the ingredient kratom.

The Food and Drug Administration said Tuesday it took the rare step of ordering the recall because Triangle Pharmanaturals refused to cooperate with regulators. Companies typically issue their own recalls of tainted products.

Various brands of kratom supplements have been linked to nearly 90 cases of salmonella across 35 states, according to federal figures.

Sold in various capsules and powders, kratom has gained popularity in the U.S. as an alternative treatment for pain, anxiety and drug dependence.

The FDA says the ingredient is dangerous and has no approved medical use.


Agents arrest designer of Kansas water slide that killed boy

DALLAS (AP) — Federal authorities in Dallas have arrested one of the designers of a Kansas water park slide that decapitated a 10-year-old boy.

Trent Touchstone, chief deputy with the U.S. Marshals Service in Dallas, said Tuesday that 72-year-old John Timothy Schooley was met by agents at Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport late Monday.

Schooley will be held in Dallas pending his arraignment and extradition to Kansas on charges that include second-degree murder.

A Kansas grand jury last week indicted Schooley and Jeffrey Henry, a co-owner of Texas-based Schlitterbahn Waterparks and Resorts. The indictment alleges Schooley lacked technical or engineering expertise in amusement park rides.

Caleb Schwab died on the 17-story Verruckt ride in 2016 when the raft he was riding went airborne and hit an overhead loop.


Midlife financial loss may lead to death, study suggests

A new study suggests a big financial loss may shorten your life. Middle-aged Americans who experienced a sudden economic blow are more likely to die during the following years than those who didn't.

About 1 in 4 people in the study faced what researchers called a "wealth shock," or a loss of 75 percent or more in net worth over two years.

Researchers analyzed two decades of data on nearly 9,000 people and tried to control for other health risks. They found suffering a big financial loss was tied with a 50 percent greater risk of dying.

This type of study can't prove cause-and-effect. But the new finding underscores well-known connections between money and well-being.

The study was published Tuesday in the Journal of the American Medical Association.