Update on the latest in business:


Stocks add to last week’s gains

NEW YORK (AP) — Wall Street is pushing higher on Monday and tacking more gains onto last week’s rally, its best in more than three months.

The S&P 500 was 1.8% higher in afternoon trading. The gains were driven mostly by Big Tech stocks, rather than companies that would benefit from a strengthening economy.

Investors are still waiting to see whether Washington can get past its partisan divide to deliver more support for the economy.

This week also marks the start of earnings reporting season for big U.S. companies, where CEOs will show how they fared from July through September.


Stocks are soaring, and most Black people are missing out

NEW YORK (AP) — Nearly half of all U.S. households don’t own any stocks, and a disproportionate number of them are from Black and other minority households. That includes many who could afford to invest in stocks but don’t.

Whether because of fear of losses or never learning about investing while growing up, researchers say Black households are much less likely to own stocks than white households of similar wealth.

That means they’ve missed out on not only the stock market’s snap back to record heights in recent months but also its tripling over the last decade. And it’s helping to further the nation’s wealth divide.


2 Stanford economists win Nobel prize for improving auctions

STOCKHOLM (AP) — Two American economists won the Nobel Prize for improving how auctions work. That research that underlies much of today’s economy — from the way Google sells advertising to the way telecoms companies acquire airwaves from the government.

The Nobel Committee said that the discoveries of Paul R. Milgrom and Robert B. Wilson have benefitted sellers, buyers and taxpayers around the world. Both are based at Stanford University. Monday’s award caps off this year’s Nobel prizes.

The men are not just colleagues — but also neighbors. Milgrom said he learned of the prize when Wilson knocked on his door.


Facebook bans Holocaust denial, distortion posts

UNDATED (AP) — Facebook says it is banning posts that deny or distort the Holocaust and will start directing people to authoritative sources if they search for information about the Nazi genocide.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced the new policy Monday, the latest attempt by the company to take action against conspiracy theories and misinformation ahead of the U.S. presidential election.

The move also follows activism by Holocaust survivors around the world over the summer who lent their voices to a campaign targeting Zuckerberg, urging him to take action to remove Holocaust denial posts from the social media site.


WHO chief warns against ‘herd immunity’ strategy

LONDON (AP) — The head of the World Health Organization warned against the idea that herd immunity might be a realistic strategy to stop the pandemic, calling such proposals “unethical.”

WHO director-general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said at a press briefing on Monday that health officials typically aim to achieve herd immunity — where the entire population is protected from a virus when the majority are immune — by vaccination.

Tedros said that WHO estimates less than 10% of the population has any immunity to the coronavirus, meaning the vast majority of the world remains susceptible.


UK unveils 3-level lockdown plan; Liverpool at highest risk

LONDON (AP) — The British government has carved England into three tiers of risk in a bid to slow the spread of a resurgent coronavirus.

The northern city of Liverpool is in the highest category and will close pubs, gyms and betting shops.

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said the three-tier national system was designed to “simplify and standardize” a confusing patchwork of local rules. But pubs, restaurants and other businesses are pushing back, arguing that they alone are not to blame for rising infections.

Under the new measures, areas of England will be classed as at medium, high or very high risk and placed under restrictions of varying severity.

Britain has Europe’s deadliest outbreak, with over 42,825 virus victims.


British Airways CEO replaced as company fights for survival

LONDON (AP) — British Airways CEO Alex Cruz has been replaced after 4 1/2 years on the job as the COVID-19 pandemic pummels airlines around the world.

International Consolidated Airlines Group, BA’s parent company, says that Cruz had been replaced by Sean Doyle, previously the boss of Aer Lingus, another carrier in the group.

BA has been criticized in recent months for its handling of 12,000 job cuts linked to the pandemic. The airline’s passenger traffic dropped 95% from a year earlier in the second quarter, leading to a first-half operating loss of $4.77 billion.


Microsoft attempts takedown of global criminal botnet

UNDATED (AP) — Microsoft announced Monday that it has taken legal action seeking to disrupt a major cybercrime digital network that uses more than 1 million zombie computers to loot bank accounts and spread ransomware.

Experts consider the botnet a major threat to the U.S. election.

The operation to knock offline command-and-control servers for the criminal infrastructure known as Trickbot was launched with a court order Microsoft obtained in Virginia federal court last week.

It’s difficult to know how effective it will be. A reported attempt by U.S. military cyberwarriors to knock the network offline was ultimately unsuccessful.

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