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World Markets retreat ... Liberal lawmakers push to lower drug prices ... Ford cutting jobs in Europe

January 10, 2019

SINGAPORE (AP) — World markets retreated today after U.S. and Chinese officials wrapped up three days of trade talks in Beijing without significant breakthroughs. In Europe, Germany’s DAX dipped 0.6 percent, France’s CAC 40 was 1 percent lower and Britain’s FTSE 100 lost 0.5 percent. Japan’s Nikkei closed down 1.3 percent, South Korea’s Kospi dropped 0.1 percent, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng closed up 0.2 percent. Wall Street is set for early losses, with S&P 500 futures down 0.7 percent and Dow futures down 0.6 percent.

WASHINGTON (AP) — Congressional liberals plan to unveil a package of bills today that are designed to radically reduce what Americans pay for prescription drugs by linking prices to lower costs in other countries. The legislation has little chance of becoming law under a divided government, but it could put Republicans on the defensive by echoing themes and ideas that President Donald Trump has embraced at one time or another.

FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) — Ford Motor Co. says it is cutting jobs in Europe in a wide-ranging restructuring as it focuses on its most profitable models and shifts production toward electric cars. The company says that “structural cost improvements will be supported by a reduction of surplus labor,” both hourly and salaried. Ford hasn’t revealed how many jobs would be cut and says reductions would be achieved as far as possible through voluntary departures negotiated with unions and employee representatives.

BEIJING (AP) — The United States says talks on ending a bruising trade war focused on Chinese promises to buy more American goods. But it gave no indication of progress on resolving disputes over Beijing’s technology ambitions and other thorny issues. China’s Ministry of Commerce said the two sides would “maintain close contact.” But neither side gave any indication of the next step during their 90-day cease-fire in a tariff fight that threatens to chill global economic growth.

THE HAGUE, Netherlands (AP) — European Union regulators have opened an in-depth investigation into whether the Dutch government gave tax breaks to global sneaker giant Nike that might have breached EU rules governing state aid. The EU’s executive Commission says the probe is centered on two Dutch-based companies that are part of the sports goods maker’s global operations.

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