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Stocks lose ground...Mortgage rates...Google addresses harassment

November 8, 2018

NEW YORK (AP) — Stocks are closing mostly lower on Wall Street after a big rally the day before. Energy companies fell again as the price of oil entered a bear market with a decline of 20.6 percent from early October. Technology companies were also lower. rates steady. The Dow edged up 10 points The S&P fell 7 points. The Nasdaq fell 39 points.

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Federal Reserve has left its key policy rate unchanged but signaled that it plans to keep responding to the strong U.S. economy with more interest rate hikes. The next rate hike is expected in December. The Fed left its benchmark rate in a range of 2 percent to 2.25 percent. Its statement portrays the economy as robust, with healthy job growth, low unemployment, solid consumer spending and inflation near the Fed’s 2 percent target.

UNDATED (AP) — U.S. mortgage rates jumped this week to the highest level in almost eight years, a trend that is pulling down home sales and slowing home price growth. Mortgage buyer Freddie Mac says the average rate on a 30-year, fixed rate mortgage rose to 4.94 percent, from 4.83 percent last week.

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Google is bowing to some of the demands of an estimated 20,000 employees who temporarily left their jobs last week to protest the company’s past handling of sexual harassment cases and other alleged misconduct involving male workers. The company is dropping its requirement that all sexual misconduct allegations should be settled in arbitration proceedings, giving workers the option to sue in court.

ST. LOUIS (AP) — Uber has instituted a new guideline prohibiting drivers from broadcasting passengers’ images amid privacy concerns after a St. Louis-area driver posted hundreds of videos. An Uber spokesman says the new guideline was put in place at the end of September. It allows drivers to record passengers for safety purposes, but says broadcasting them may result in the loss of account access.

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