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US stocks slightly lower...Claims for US jobless aid fall as hurricane impact recedes...Amazon reviewing its site after bomb-making materials report

September 21, 2017

NEW YORK (AP) — U.S. stock indexes are veering slightly lower in early trading today as investors size up the latest batch of company earnings and deal news. Technology stocks are down the most. Consumer focused-companies also dropped, while energy stocks are losing points as the price of crude oil heads lower. At 10:49 a.m. Eastern Time, the Dow was down 11 points at 22,402. The S&P 500 dropped 6 points, to 2,503. And the Nasdaq was down 43 points, to 6,413.

WASHINGTON (AP) — The number of Americans applying for unemployment benefits dropped by 23,000 last week to 259,000 as the economic impact of Hurricane Harvey began to fade. In early September, jobless claims shot up by the most in five years as Harvey battered Texas. The Labor Department says last week claims in Texas fell 45 percent as more people returned to work. Hurricane Irma continued to have an impact on the job market in Florida, where claims more than doubled from the previous week.

NEW YORK (AP) — Allstate expects insurance losses of about $593 million in August after Hurricane Harvey left a path of destruction along the Gulf Coast. Allstate says the losses are more than three times $181 million in the previous month. Harvey made landfall in Texas on August 25. More than half the losses from that storm are related to vehicle damage. Allstate says that because of widespread damage and the inability of people to get to their homes or cars, its estimated losses may grow.

GENEVA (AP) — The World Trade Organization has revised sharply upward its forecast for world trade growth this year to 3.6 percent, citing “resurgence in Asian trade flows” and a rebound in North American import demand. WTO had previously forecast a growth of 2.4 percent. The upturn compares to what the Geneva-based trade body called a “lackluster” performance of 1.3 percent growth last year. Director-General Roberto Azevedo hails what he calls “welcome news,” but warns the world economy still faces “substantial risks” that could undermine recovery.

NEW YORK (AP) — Amazon says it’s reviewing its website after a British TV report said that the online retailer recommended purchasing ingredients together that could make a bomb. Channel 4 News in London said that when it tried to buy certain chemicals on Amazon, the website’s “frequently bought together” section suggested products that could help build a bomb. Amazon says it only sells products that comply with U.K. laws.

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