Concern in Arkansas town highlights trade fears in US states

ARKADELPHIA, Ark. (AP) — State and local officials worried about President Donald Trump's trade dispute with China are trying to reassure a Chinese company that has delayed building a major paper mill outside a rural Arkansas college town. The Sun Paper project was expected to be one of the largest economic deals in Arkansas history, employing 2,000 people during its construction and creating an additional 1,000 jobs in the local timber industry. Company officials cite the trade friction as the reason for their delay.


China exports accelerated in July despite rise in US tariffs

BEIJING (AP) — China's exports to the United States surged last month as its merchants rushed to fill orders ahead of a jump in U.S. tariffs on Chinese goods. Its shipments to the United States climbed 13 percent in July from a year earlier, to $41.5 billion, after a roughly similar rise in June, customs data show.


Who's in, out in small business tax break? It's complicated

WASHINGTON (AP) — Architects and engineers are still in; accountants, doctors and lawyers remain out — mostly. New rules floated by the Trump administration lay out what kinds of businesses can take a 20 percent deduction against income taxes under the new tax law. With the proposed rules issued Wednesday, the Treasury Department and the IRS had worked for six months to bring clarity to Congress' blueprint. But the requirements for "pass-through" businesses to score generous tax breaks are stunningly complex.


Robots are getting more social. Are humans ready?

BOSTON (AP) — Personal home robots that can socialize with people are finally getting ready to roll out of the laboratory and into our living rooms and kitchens. But are humans ready to be their friends? A growing number of tech companies — from tiny robotics startups to Amazon — are counting on it, despite some early setbacks.


GOP congressman from New York charged with insider trading

NEW YORK (AP) — Republican U.S. Rep. Christopher Collins of western New York state has been arrested on charges he fed inside information he gleaned from sitting on the board of a biotechnology company to his son, helping themselves and others dodge hundreds of thousands of dollars in losses. Collins is a staunch supporter of President Donald Trump who was among the first two sitting members of Congress to endorse his candidacy for the White House. Collins was arrested Wednesday and has denied any wrongdoing.


CVS Health tops 2Q forecasts, downplays help from rebates

CVS Health detailed a better-than-expected second quarter Wednesday and then reassured investors that it doesn't depend heavily on much-criticized prescription drug rebates that regulators may eliminate. Shares of the drugstore chain and pharmacy benefit manager climbed after CEO Larry Merlo told analysts that rebates from drugmakers will amount to only about 3 percent of the company's adjusted earnings this year.


Tesla CEO's buyout bid raises eyebrows, legal concerns

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Tesla CEO Elon Musk is seeking relief from the pressures of running a publicly held company with a $72 billion buyout of the electric car maker, but he may be acquiring new headaches with his peculiar handling of the proposed deal. If he can pull it off, Musk will burnish his reputation as an eccentric visionary. But if the buyout flops, Musk and Tesla will likely face class-action lawsuits from shareholders claiming they were duped. Government regulators are reportedly looking into things.


Retailers raise game on back-to-school supplies

NEW YORK (AP) — The microwave ate my homework? Reusable notebooks where writing disappears with heat are among the basic school supplies raising their game against gadgets like iPads. Also hot in the paper aisle this year: Decorative tape, creative journals and scented pencils in smells like bacon and pickle. Analyst Marshal Cohen says companies that make school supplies have figured out how to get parents to spend more by offering innovations on the basics.


US stock indexes dip as oil prices sink energy companies

A late gain for U.S. stocks slipped away Wednesday as a four-day winning streak ended. Energy companies sank along with the price of oil. The price of crude oil fell more than 3 percent Wednesday and big dividend payers and industrial companies slipped. Gains for Microsoft, Facebook and Alphabet helped technology companies finish higher. Banks and health care companies also rose.


The S&P 500 index dipped 0.75 points to 2,857.70. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 45.16 points, or 0.2 percent, to 25,583.75. The Nasdaq composite rose 4.66 points, or 0.1 percent, to 7,888.33. The Russell 2000 index of smaller stocks lost 1.42 points, or 0.1 percent, to 1,686.88.

U.S. crude oil lost 3.2 percent to $66.94 a barrel in New York. Brent crude, the standard for international oil prices, fell 3.2 percent to $72.28 a barrel in London. Wholesale gasoline fell 4 percent to $2.02 gallon. Heating oil lost 2.5 percent to $2.12 a gallon. Natural gas rose 1.8 percent to $2.95 per 1,000 cubic feet.