Asian stocks sink ahead of Trump-Xi meeting at G-20
BEIJING (AP) — Asian stocks sank Friday as investors waited for a meeting between Presidents Donald Trump and Xi Jinping that they hope will produce a truce in spiraling U.S.-China trade tensions.
Benchmarks in Shanghai, Tokyo, Hong Kong and Sydney all fell. Crude prices declined.
Investors are hoping for a repeat of Trump and Xi’s December agreement to postpone new tariff hikes and other action while they negotiated over trade and technology. But analysts caution any new truce at the Group of 20 meeting of major economies in Japan is likely to be temporary because negotiators face the same disagreements that caused talks to break down in May.
On Wall Street, Standard & Poor’s 500 index rose 0.4% to 2,924.92. The Dow Jones Industrial Average slipped less than 0.1% to 26,526.58. The Nasdaq composite gained 0.7% to 7,967.76.
This weekend marks the first face-to-face meeting between Trump and Xi since the American president said he was preparing to target the $300 billion in Chinese imports that he hasn’t already hit with tariffs, extending them to everything China ships to the United States.
Benchmark U.S. crude fell to just above $59 per barrel.
The dollar declined against the yen and was little-changed against the euro.
^SOCIAL SECURITY-DELAYED BENEFITS
Study: Retirees lose by taking Social Security at wrong time
UNDATED (AP) _ It’s tough to decide when to start taking Social Security benefits and it appears many people are shorting themselves with their choice.
A new study finds that only 4% of retirees start claiming their Social Security benefits at the most financially optimal time. And current retirees collectively will lose $3.4 trillion in potential income to fund their retirement because they started drawing benefits at a less than ideal time. That’s roughly $111,000 per household, according to the research from United Income, an online investment management and financial planning firm.
Americans typically can start claiming their Social Security benefits as early as age 62 and most adults do so by the time they turn 63. But the size of the monthly benefit grows for each year they wait, maxing out at age 70.
It’s not just a financial equation though. Deciding when to draw benefits depends on a myriad of personal factors such as age, health, other savings, marital status and plans for retirement. But the report’s authors say people aren’t spending enough time sorting through this process and policymakers could do more to encourage it.
The researchers also estimate that elderly poverty could be cut by 50% if all retirees claimed Social Security at the optimal time.
While there is no one optimal age, the researchers found that 92 percent of retirees would be better off waiting to claim Social Security until at least their 65th birthday. The exact timing is tough to pinpoint.
Facebook enlists plain English to clarify how it makes money
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Facebook is updating its terms and services guidelines to clarify how it makes money from the personal information of its users. The changes reflect its ongoing attempts to satisfy regulators in the U.S. and Europe, which have urged the company to make sure users know what they are signing up for.
The guideline changes, announced Thursday, are largely cosmetic. The updates don’t change Facebook’s underlying policies.
Facebook has come under fire with regulators in Europe, and increasingly in the U.S., for how it handles personal information collected on its site — and how transparent it is with users.
The company said it made the updates after working with a European consumer protection group and regulators around the world.
The European Commission noted Facebook’s agreement to make the changes in April, saying the commission requested changes “to clearly inform consumers how the social network gets financed.”
But at nearly 10 pages long in PDF form, Facebook is still facing the most common problem with lengthy terms and services — people rarely read them.
ECONOMY-THE DAY AHEAD
Business and economic reports scheduled for today
WASHINGTON (AP) _ The Commerce Department releases personal income and spending for May today.
FED-BANK STRESS TESTS
Banks announce billions in share buybacks after Fed approval
NEW YORK (AP) — The nation’s largest banks are rewarding shareholders by spending tens of billions raising their dividends and buying back stock after getting the green light from the Federal Reserve.
The Fed on Thursday said it had approved the capital plans the nation’s 18 largest banks submitted as part of this year’s stress tests. That means it determined the banks could raise their dividends and buy back more shares this year and still have enough capital to survive a hypothetical deep recession in the next year.
Immediately after the Fed’s announcement, the major banks started unveiling their plans.
JPMorgan, the nation’s largest bank by assets, said it plans to buy back $29.4 billion in shares this cycle. It would also increase its dividend 12.5% to 90 cents a share.
Wells Fargo announced plans to buy back $23.1 billion in stock the next year and increase its dividend 13.3% to 51 cents a share. Citigroup said it would buy back $17.1 billion in stock next year and also plans to increase its dividend to 13.3% to 51 cents a share.
UN chief urges G20 to make equitable financial reforms
OSAKA, Japan (AP) — The U.N. chief is urging G-20 leaders to take action on equitable and stable reforms to strengthen the global financial safety net and increase the global economy’s resilience.
U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres (goo-TEHR’-esh) said in a letter to leaders gathered in Osaka, Japan, for the two-day summit beginning Friday that while the world has made progress fixing some big problems it’s not happening fast enough or shared by all countries.
Guterres said that while there are good plans and vision, what’s needed are “accelerated actions, not more deliberations.”
He says that fast and equal economic growth should be constructed so that people who live in “the ‘rust belts’ of the world are not left behind.”
Boeing aims to finish software fix to 737 Max in September
UNDATED (AP) _ Boeing says it expects to finish work on updated flight-control software for the 737 Max in September, a sign that the troubled jet likely won’t be flying until late this year.
The latest delay in fixing the Max came a day after the disclosure that government test pilots found a new technology flaw in the plane during a test on a flight simulator.
The plane has been grounded since mid-March after two crashes that killed 346 people. Preliminary accident reports pointed to software that erroneously pointed the planes’ noses down and overpowered pilots’ efforts to regain control.
A Boeing official said Thursday that the company expects to submit the software update to the Federal Aviation Administration for approval “in the September timeframe.”
Once Boeing submits its changes, the FAA is expected to take several weeks to analyze them, and airlines would need additional time to take their grounded Max jets out of storage and prepare them to fly again.
Brazil seeks foreign capital to update transportation
WASHINGTON (AP) — Brazil says it will seek to raise at least $45 billion in investments over the next four years for an ambitious plan to improve transportation in South America’s biggest nation.
Infrastructure minister Tarcísio Gomes de Freitas said Thursday in Washington that he will be outlining details of the proposal in meetings with the Inter-American Development Bank and with U.S. Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao.
The government’s plan calls for auctions of concessions in all areas of transportation, including 44 airports, 24 seaports, 16,000 kilometers (9,900 miles) of highways and 8,700 kilometers (5,400 miles) of train lines.
The push started earlier this year with auctions involving 12 airports, 10 ports and a major rail line, which brought in $3.5 billion, split evenly between grants and investment in the facilities.
APPLE-JONY IVE LEAVING
Jony Ive, the designer behind the iPhone, is leaving Apple
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — The man behind the iconic designs of the iPhone, iMac and iPad is leaving Apple.
The company said Thursday that Chief Design Officer Jony Ive is leaving after more than two decades at Apple to start his own design firm.
But he’s not completely severing ties. Apple said it will be one of Ive’s clients at his new firm.
The Cupertino, California, company did not give an exact date for his departure.
Ive has been a fixture on Apple’s design team since the early 1990s and is known for shaping Apple’s signature rounded, stylish designs.
He won’t be immediately replaced. Two of his deputies will report directly to the company’s chief operating officer, Jeff Williams.