Stocks slide...Shutdown meeting...Pipeline settlement
BEIJING (AP) — Global stock markets tumbled Wednesday as 2019 trading began with news of weaker Chinese manufacturing. Futures point to a lower Wall Street opening. The dollar declined against the yen and advanced against the euro. Benchmark U.S. crude oil fell to just above $46.50 per barrel.
WASHINGTON (AP) — Congressional leaders have a White House invitation today for a briefing on border security as the partial government shutdown dragged on over funding for a border wall. In his invitation yesterday, Trump tweeted, “Let’s make a deal?” The briefing will happen at 3 p.m. today the day before the Democrats take control of the House, but the exact agenda wasn’t immediately clear.
BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — The developer of the Dakota Access oil pipeline missed a year-end deadline to plant thousands of trees along the pipeline corridor in North Dakota, but the company said it was still complying with a settlement of allegations it violated state rules during construction. Texas-based Energy Transfer Partners, which built the $3.8 billion pipeline that’s now moving North Dakota oil to Illinois, is falling back on a provision of the September 2017 agreement that provides more time should the company run into problems.
BERLIN (AP) — Germans hoping to do some New Year’s shopping may find themselves without the cash to do so amid a strike by security van drivers. The ver.di union said Tuesday it’s urging 12,000 employees of firms that distribute cash to banks and stores to walk out on Jan. 2, the first regular day of business in Germany in 2019. Cash remains the preferred method to buy many items in Germany and cards are often rejected in smaller stores and restaurants.
BAGHDAD (AP) — The latest plunge in oil prices has dealt a heavy blow to Iraq’s stagnating economy, threatening the new government’s ability to rebuild after the war with the Islamic State group and provide basic services to areas roiled by recent protests. Brent crude oil, used to price international purchases, briefly rose above $85 a barrel in October but has since plummeted to less than $55 — a nightmare for a country like Iraq that derives 95 percent of its revenue from oil exports.