Business Highlights

August 27, 2018


US and Mexico tentatively set to replace NAFTA with new deal

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Trump administration and Mexico have reached a preliminary accord to replace the North American Free Trade Agreement with a new deal that would be intended to encourage more manufacturing in the United States. At the same time, President Donald Trump threatened to keep Canada, the third member country in NAFTA, out of any new trade agreement.


APNewsBreak: Nation’s top student loan official resigns

NEW YORK (AP) — The nation’s top government official overseeing the $1.5 trillion student loan market is resigning, citing what he says is the White House’s open hostility toward protecting student loan borrowers. Seth Frotman will be stepping down from his position as student loan ombudsman at the end of the week, according to his resignation letter which was obtained by The Associated Press.


Hotel security in Vegas, elsewhere hasn’t earned US backing

LAS VEGAS (AP) — Hotels in Las Vegas and across the U.S. have beefed up security to prevent a terror attack but their systems haven’t received federal protections from lawsuits if one still happens. That’s despite other crowded places like stadiums and concert venues getting those safeguards. An expert says the constant flow of people at hotels may pose a challenge. It comes as MGM Resorts International is trying to avoid paying out for lawsuits over the deadliest shooting in modern U.S. history.


‘We are totally happy,’ says paid Amazon workers on Twitter

NEW YORK (AP) — Amazon is paying workers to defend the company on Twitter, reassuring critics that they make enough money to live and are allowed to take bathroom breaks. The tweets are part of Amazon’s plan to fight back against negative headlines and online chatter about poor working conditions at its warehouses.


Kushner Cos. fined $210K by New York for false documents

NEW YORK (AP) — The Kushner real estate company has been fined $210,000 by New York City following an Associated Press investigation that showed it routinely filed false documents with the city claiming it had no rent-regulated tenants in its buildings when it had hundreds. The city buildings department on Monday fined the Kushner Cos. for filing 42 false applications for construction work when presidential adviser Jared Kushner was CEO. That allowed the company to escape scrutiny during construction.


JetBlue is raising fees on baggage and ticket changes

DALLAS (AP) — JetBlue breaks with larger US airlines by pushing checked-bag fee to $30, also raises charge for changing a ticket. Travelers will be watching to see if American, Delta and United match the increases. Airline fees have taken off since 2008, when American Airlines introduced a $15 checked-bag fee to offset high fuel prices. Last year, US carriers raised $7.4 billion from checked bags and ticket changes or cancellations.


Disney offers 46 percent raises, could use more part-timers

ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — Walt Disney World would be able to use more part-time workers, and it would take longer for new workers to transfer jobs under a proposed contract that also would increase starting minimum wage by at least 46 percent over three years, to $15 an hour. New details emerged Monday about the contract proposal Disney World’s unionized workers will vote on next week. The proposed deal covers more than half the Florida resort’s 70,000 workers.


AP Source: Toyota to invest $500 million in Uber

DETROIT (AP) — Toyota will sink a half-billion dollars into Uber and work jointly with the ride-hailing giant to develop self-driving vehicles, a person briefed on the matter said Monday. The deal is a sign that Uber no longer wants to go it alone in creating an autonomous driving system since one of its test vehicles struck and killed a pedestrian on a darkened street in Tempe, Arizona, last March.


Stocks rise as US, Mexico announce preliminary trade deal

NEW YORK (AP) — Stocks add to their record highs from last week, sending the Nasdaq composite index above 8,000 for the first time, as the White House says it has reached a preliminary agreement with Mexico on replacing NAFTA. The deal is far from final and the U.S. still needs to reach an understanding with Canada, the third party in the accord and the second-largest trading partner of the U.S. Automakers rose sharply. Banks, technology and industrial companies also made big gains.


The S&P 500 index climbed 22.05 points, or 0.8 percent, to 2,896.74. The Dow Jones Industrial Average jumped 259.29 points, or 1 percent, to 26,049.64. The Nasdaq composite gained 71.92 points, or 0.9 percent, to 8,017.90. The Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks added 2.73 points, or 0.2 percent, to 1,728.41.

Benchmark U.S. crude edged up 0.2 percent to $68.87 a barrel in the New York. Brent crude, which is used to price international oils, gained 0.5 percent to $76.21 a barrel in London. Wholesale gasoline rose 0.6 percent to $2.09 a gallon. Heating oil added 0.6 percent to $2.21 a gallon. Natural gas fell 1.4 percent to $2.88 per 1,000 cubic feet.

Update hourly