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Stocks fall...Airlines higher...Former Southwest CEO dies

January 28, 2019

NEW YORK (AP) — Stocks are broadly lower on Wall Street as traders worry about the impact on U.S. companies of a slowdown in China’s economy. Caterpillar dropped 9.7 percent in midday trading after the heavy equipment maker reported earnings that were far below what analysts were expecting. The company said its sales were slowing in China.

NEW YORK (AP) — Airlines have bucked the downward trend on Wall Street and turned higher after the federal government reopened after a five-week shutdown. The industry had been facing a shortage of TSA workers, making for longer lines at airports. There were also reports of a shortage of air traffic controllers.

DALLAS (AP) — James F. Parker, who succeeded Herb Kelleher as CEO of Southwest Airlines and led the carrier through the aftermath of the September 2001 terror attacks, has died. He was 72. Parker was a lawyer in San Antonio and former state assistant attorney general before joining Southwest in 1986. The terror attacks undermined air travel; other airlines cut thousands of jobs. Southwest remained profitable and avoided layoffs, but Parker’s tenure was also marked by rising tension with the flight attendants’ union.

LONDON (AP) — Facebook says it’s tightening up requirements for political ads in the European Union ahead of bloc-wide elections scheduled for the spring, its latest effort to fight misinformation on its platforms. The social media giant says political ad buyers will need to have their identities confirmed before placing ads, which will also be entered into a public archive.

BRUSSELS (AP) — Germany’s foreign minister says the European Union is on the verge of setting up an alternative channel to send money to Iran that would side-step U.S. sanctions against the Islamic republic. The EU has struggled to keep alive the Iran nuclear deal since President Donald Trump pulled out of it last year.

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