Fed set to impose another big rate hike to fight inflation
WASHINGTON (AP) — Conflicting signs about the health of the U.S. economy have thrust the Federal Reserve into a difficult spot. With inflation raging at a four-decade high, the job market strong and consumer spending still solid, the Fed is under pressure to raise interest rates aggressively. But other signs suggest the economy is slowing and might even have shrunk in the first half...
Fed set to impose another big rate hike to fight inflation
WASHINGTON (AP) — Conflicting signs about the health of the U.S. economy have thrust the Federal Reserve into a difficult spot. With inflation raging at a four-decade high, the job market strong and consumer spending still solid, the Fed is under pressure to raise interest rates aggressively. But other signs suggest the economy is slowing and might even have shrunk in the first half of the year. Such evidence would typically lead the Fed to stop raising rates — or even cut them. For now, though, the Fed is focused squarely on its inflation fight, and this week it’s set to announce another hefty hike in its benchmark interest rate.
To preserve jobs, UAW head says battery plants must be union
SOUTHFIELD, Mich. (AP) — If the United Auto Workers union can’t organize workers at new electric-vehicle battery factories that will supply Detroit’s three automakers, the union’s future would be in serious doubt. Ray Curry, president of the 372,000-member UAW, says union representation at the battery plants is critical, given that the major automakers are staking their futures on the widespread adoption of electric vehicles. “It’s going to be key to lock down that type of new technology,” Curry said in an interview with The Associated Press on the eve of the union’s convention in Detroit this week. “Everybody is dependent upon what happens out of that bargaining.”
Ex-US congressman among 9 charged in insider trading cases
NEW YORK (AP) — In one of the most significant attacks by law enforcement on insider trading in a decade, nine people have been charged in four separate and unrelated insider trading schemes They include a former U.S. congressman from Indiana, technology company executives, an investment banker, and a man training to be an FBI agent. The charges were announced Monday in Manhattan. One indictment identified Stephen Buyer as someone who misappropriated secrets he learned as a consultant to make about $350,000 illegally. Buyer was a Republican congressman from 1993 through 2011. He was arrested Monday in Indiana. His lawyer said he is innocent and his stock trades were lawful.
Rents spike as big-pocketed investors buy mobile home parks
LOCKPORT, N.Y. (AP) — Investors are buying up mobile home parks across the country, leading to significant rent increases and complaints of neglect from residents. The parks, which for decades were mostly owned and operated like small businesses, have proven an attractive investment for private equity firms and large real estate companies. They offer some of the best returns in the property sector, money that is made by raising rent and saddling tenants with a myriad of fees. The industry argues these investments are making parks more livable, but residents, many on fixed incomes, say they can’t afford the rent increases and improvements often don’t come.
Asian stocks higher ahead of possible US rate hike
BEIJING (AP) — Asian stock markets are higher as investors brace for another sharp interest rate hike by the Federal Reserve to cool inflation. Shanghai, Hong Kong and Seoul advanced. Tokyo edged lower. Oil prices rose more than $1 per barrel. Wall Street’s benchmark S&P 500 index gained 0.1% ahead of this week’s Fed meeting at which officials are expected to announce a rate hike of up to three-quarters of a percentage point, triple the usual margin. Investors worry that aggressive rate hikes by the Fed and other central banks to contain surging inflation might derail global economic growth.
Alibaba to seek primary listing in Hong Kong, adding to NYSE
HONG KONG (AP) — Alibaba, China’s biggest e-commerce company, plans to apply for a primary listing in Hong Kong. The move would make Alibaba a dual-primary listed company on the New York Stock Exchange and the Hong Kong Stock Exchange. CEO Daniel Zhang said the company was pursuing another primary listing venue to foster a wider, diverse investor base. Alibaba went public in New York in 2014 and completed a secondary listing in Hong Kong in 2019. Its stock price has plummeted more recently following Beijing’s regulatory crackdown on China’s technology industry. The company said Tuesday it expects to complete the Hong Kong listing this year.
Biden presses computer chips case in advance of Senate vote
WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden is asking Congress to move quickly to send to him a bipartisan bill designed to boost the computer chips industry and high-tech research in the United States. Biden calls semiconductors “the building blocks for the modern economy.” The Senate is expected to take a critical vote to advance the legislation on Tuesday, placing it on a glidepath to final passage later this week. If the bill goes to Biden, his administration will score a victory on legislation it says is necessary to protect national security and help the U.S. better compete with China.
Walmart cuts profit outlook as shoppers adapt to inflation
NEW YORK (AP) — Walmart is lowering its profit outlook for its fiscal second quarter and for the full year. The nation’s largest retail cites surging inflation on basics like food that is making shoppers cut back on discretionary items, particularly clothing, that carry higher profit margins. That consumer behavior is forcing the company based in Bentonville, Arkansas, to step up discounts on general merchandise items to move inventory. As a result, Walmart said its adjusted earnings per share for the second quarter and full year are expected to decline around 8% to 9% and 11% to 13%, respectively.
Budget airline Allegiant cuts profit outlook on rising costs
LAS VEGAS (AP) — Shares of Allegiant Air’s parent company are falling after the company cut its prediction for second-quarter profit. Allegiant Travel Co. said after the market closed Monday that it expects to report earnings of 62 cents per share. That’s far below the $1.36 per share that analysts were expecting. Allegiant is hitting the same headwinds facing bigger airlines — costs have jumped for jet fuel and other expenses. The travel rebound is even making Allegiant planes guzzle more jet fuel. The airline is blaming full flights, which make planes heavier, for some of the increase in its fuel spending.
Hollywood producer’s new nonprofit to boost diverse creators
Hollywood film producer Dan Lin — known for movies such as Disney’s live action “Aladdin” and “The Two Popes” — is launching a nonprofit with more than $1 million from the Ford and MacArthur foundations as well as several other philanthropies. His goal is to help more people of color create and produce film, television, digital, and audio projects. Rideback Rise, the company’s nonprofit arm, which hopes to raise $2 million in total this year, will oversee a fellowship program for writers, directors, podcast creators, and other artists of color selected each year who want to launch a project.