Update on the latest in business:


Asian shares advance, India’s Sensex up 5.4% on tax cut news

BANGKOK (AP) — Asian shares advanced today and India’s benchmark jumped 5.4% after the government announced plans to cut corporate taxes.

Japan’s Nikkei 225 index gained 0.2% and the Shanghai Composite index rose 0.2%. The Kospi in South Korea climbed 0.5% and Australia’s S&P ASX 200 picked up 0.2%. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng edged 0.1% lower.


Yesterday on Wall Street, The S&P 500 index rose 0.06 points, or less than 0.1%, to 3,006.79. The Dow Jones Industrial Average gave up an early gain, sliding 0.2% to 27,094.79. The Russell 2000 index of smaller company stocks also relinquished an early gain, ceding 0.4% to 1,561.47.

The Nasdaq squeaked out a gain of 5.49 points, or 0.1%, to 8,182.88.


AP Source: GM’s offer to UAW would add lower-paying jobs

DETROIT (AP) — According to a person briefed on the matter, a General Motors offer to invest $7 billion in U.S. facilities includes $2 billion from joint ventures and suppliers for new plants that would pay workers less than the top union wage.

The offer is a major issue that could get in the way of a deal between the United Auto Workers and the company to end a nationwide strike, now in its fourth day. About 49,000 UAW workers have been on picket lines since Monday in a contract dispute about wages, health care costs, profit sharing, job security and other issues.

The $2 billion investment from entities other than GM is important because those factories would not be run as typical GM plants. Although workers at those facilities would be represented by the UAW, they would be paid far less than the full UAW wage of about $30 per hour.


FAA chief meets Boeing officials, tries out Max simulator

DALLAS (AP) — The nation’s top aviation regulator has tested new software for the Boeing 737 Max in a flight simulator and is tentatively giving a favorable review to the updates to a plane that remains grounded after two deadly crashes.

The new chief of the Federal Aviation Administration, Stephen Dickson, also toured the Max assembly line near Seattle and met with senior Boeing officials on Thursday.

Boeing aims to have the plane flying again in the next couple months, but Dickson says that his agency has no timetable for its review of changes Boeing is making after the accidents, which together killed 346 people.

Boeing has not yet submitted its safety analysis of the changes. Dickson said he has seen draft materials that still need more work. He did not provide details.


Who are the Sacklers, the family behind maker of OxyContin?

UNDATED (AP) _ The Sackler family has all but disappeared from public life during the opioid crisis.

Sackler family members have rarely spoken in recent years, even as their company, drug maker Purdue Pharma, has been accused of helping spark the epidemic blamed for more than 400,000 deaths in the U.S.

The company filed for bankruptcy this week as part of an effort to settle some 2,600 lawsuits linked to the epidemic. No one from the family showed up for the first bankruptcy hearing in White Plains, New York.

The family involvement in the drug business dates back to the 1950s. The brothers Mortimer, Raymond and Arthur Sackler were all physicians. They bought the drug company known as Purdue Frederick in 1952.


Colt suspends production of AR-15 for civilian market

WEST HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — Gunmaker Colt says it is suspending its production of rifles for the civilian market including the popular AR-15.

Colt’s chief executive officer, Dennis Veilleux, says it is not permanently ending production but believes there is already an adequate supply of sporting rifles on the market. He said in a statement Thursday the company will concentrate on fulfilling military and law enforcement contracts with its rifle manufacturing.

The West Hartford, Connecticut-based company has received some criticism from gun rights advocates for moving away from the civilian market. A national gun control debate has focused on access to AR-15s and other assault-style rifles because of their use in mass shootings.


Senate tech critic to Facebook CEO: Sell WhatsApp, Instagram

WASHINGTON (AP) — As Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg met Thursday with President Donald Trump and other critics of the tech industry, the Senate’s most vocal detractor challenged Zuckerberg to sell WhatsApp and Instagram properties to prove he is serious about protecting data privacy.

It may have been more than Zuckerberg expected from his private meeting with Sen. Josh Hawley, a conservative Republican from Missouri, in his Capitol Hill office. Zuckerberg left the hourlong meeting — one of several with lawmakers on Capitol Hill — without answering questions from a throng of reporters and photographers pursuing him down a hallway.

Hawley contends that instead of moving users’ personal data from properties such as WhatsApp and Instagram to the core Facebook platform, the company should put a wall around the services or, better yet, sell them off.


Groups threaten to sue over nuclear weapons work at US labs

LOS ALAMOS, N.M. (AP) — Nuclear watchdog groups say they will sue if the U.S. government doesn’t conduct a nationwide programmatic environmental review of its plans to expand production of key components for the nation’s nuclear arsenal.

Federal officials have set a deadline of 2030 for ramped-up production of plutonium pits. The work will be split between Los Alamos National Laboratory in northern New Mexico and the Savannah River Site in South Carolina.

Lawyers for the Natural Resources Defense Council, Nuclear Watch New Mexico, Savannah River Site Watch and Tri-Valley Communities Against a Radioactive Environment threatened legal action in a letter sent this week to officials.

In June, the National Nuclear Security Administration said it would prepare an environmental impact statement on pit-making at Savannah River. A less extensive review was planned for Los Alamos.


Mechanic due to enter plea in airliner sabotage case

MIAMI (AP) — A former American Airlines mechanic who prosecutors say may have some links to terrorists is due to enter a plea to charges that he sabotaged an aircraft with 150 people aboard.

An arraignment hearing is scheduled today for 60-year-old Abdul-Majeed Marouf Ahmed Alani in Miami federal court. He’s charged with deliberately disabling the Boeing 737 at Miami International Airport in July because, he told investigators, he was upset an ongoing labor dispute was denying him overtime work.

Prosecutors unveiled evidence earlier this week indicating that Alani, an Iraqi-American, may be sympathetic to terrorist groups such as the Islamic State. Alani purportedly told co-workers his brother is a member of the extremist group, and the FBI reported finding violent Islamic State videos on his cellphone.

Alani faces 20 years if convicted.

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