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Stocks slump...Household debt hits record high...Google showcases new features

May 17, 2017

NEW YORK (AP) — Banks and other financial companies are leading stocks lower as bond yields fall. Technology and industrial stocks are also posting big declines. Real estate companies are rising. Target gained more than 2 percent after the retailer posted surprisingly strong earnings for the first quarter.

NEW YORK (AP) — U.S. household debt has reached a record high. The Federal Reserve Bank of New York says household debt hit $12.73 trillion in the first three months of this year. That tops the previous peak reached in 2008. But the New York Fed says Americans are more likely to be paying down their debts than before the downturn. Household debt includes mortgages, credit cards, auto loans and home equity lines of credit.

UNDATED (AP) — U.S. health agencies are warning that certain tests for lead poisoning may not be accurate. The Food and Drug Administration and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention say all four tests made by Magellan Diagnostics may give results that are too low when used to measure lead levels in blood drawn from a vein. The FDA and CDC say women and parents should ask their doctor whether they need to be tested again.

MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif. (AP) — Google’s latest tool lets you point your phone’s camera at places and objects to get information about them. You can find out the type of flower by pointing at it, or get reviews for a restaurant you’re walking by. The tool can also extract a Wi-Fi login and password when you point to a sheet with that information. Google is also announcing additional features for its internet-connected Home speaker, and it’s releasing its voice-controlled assistant on a free app designed for iPhone’s operating system.

ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — When Universal Orlando Resort opens its new water park later this month, it will debut a new wristband that eliminates lines and the need for wallets. Universal officials say visitors will receive the wristbands upon entering the Volcano Bay water park. The wristbands send alerts to visitors when it’s their turn for a ride, and they trigger special effects like shooting water cannons. Visitors can also use them to pay for food and items in the gift shops.

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