Asian shares rise after Wall Street rally on China reports
TOKYO (AP) — Asian shares rose today following a rally on Wall Street that sent the major indexes to record highs, cheered by surprisingly strong economic reports out of China.
Japan’s benchmark Nikkei 225 added 0.5% today. South Korea’s Kospi gained 1.1%. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng added 1.1%, while the Shanghai Composite was 1.0% higher. Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 was little changed.
Yesterday on Wall Street, the S&P 500 and Nasdaq notched all-time highs for the third straight trading day. The Dow Jones Industrial Average bested its last record high set in late November.
At issue are five labor attaches the United States intends to send to Mexico to oversee the Mexican government’s labor reforms. Those plans were revealed Friday when the U.S. published the implementing legislation for the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement — the legal text of the pact that the U.S. Congress will vote on.
Over the weekend, Mexico’s top trade negotiator, Jesús Seade, complained that Mexico had been blindsided by the provision on the attaches.
Mexico raises minimum wage by 20%, to $6.50 per day
MEXICO CITY (AP) — Mexico raised its national minimum wage 20% Monday, but it still doesn’t amount to even $1 an hour.
The Labor Department said the lowest legal wage will be 123.22 pesos a day starting Jan. 1, or about $6.50 per day at current exchange rates.
That is a boost from the 120.68-peso minimum wage prevailing this year.
Boeing to halt production of 737 Max airliner in January
UNDATED (AP) — Boeing said Monday that it will temporarily stop producing its grounded 737 Max jet starting in January as it struggles to get approval from regulators to put the plane back in the air.
The Chicago-based company said production would halt at its plant with 12,000 employees in Renton, Washington, near Seattle. But it said it didn’t expect to lay off any workers “at this time.”
The move amounts to an acknowledgement that it will take much longer than Boeing expected to win approval from the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration and other global regulators to fly the planes again.
The Max is Boeing’s most important jet, but it has been grounded since March after crashes in Indonesia and Ethiopia that killed a total of 346 people. The FAA told the company last week that it had unrealistic expectations for getting the plane back into service. Boeing has missed several estimates of a return date for the plane, and the company didn’t give a date on Monday.
Oklahoma appeals judge’s $465 million order in opioid case
NORMAN, Okla. (AP) — A judge didn’t order Johnson & Johnson to pay enough when he said the company must pay $465 million to address Oklahoma’s opioid crisis, the state said in an appeal filed Monday.
Attorney General Mike Hunter’s office argues the award is only enough to pay for one year of the state’s abatement plan. During last summer’s trial, state experts testified it would cost about $17.5 billion over 30 years to abate the state’s opioid crisis. Attorneys for Johnson & Johnson have said that figure is wildly inflated.
The state also filed an application with the court for reimbursement of litigation expenses.
Amazon bans sellers from using FedEx for some deliveries
NEW YORK (AP) — Amazon is banning its third-party merchants from using FedEx’s ground service to deliver to Prime members, suggesting that it thinks the service is too slow to get packages to their destinations in time for Christmas.
The temporary ban will block those companies from using FedEx Ground service, although they can still use pricier FedEx Express shipping for Prime shipments.
More than half of the items sold on Amazon.com come from third-party sellers, who post their goods for sale on Amazon’s online marketplace.
News of the ban was first reported by The Wall Street Journal.
FedEx Corp. said in a statement that the decision affects “a very small number of shippers” and said it “limits the options for those small businesses on some of the highest demand shipping days in history and may compromise their ability to meet customer demands and manage their businesses.”
PG&E, California governor face off in bankruptcy dispute
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Pacific Gas & Electric Co. will have to quickly overhaul a complex plan addressing more than $50 billion in wildfire claims to gain California Gov. Gavin Newsom’s support in time to meet a make-or-break deadline for getting out of bankruptcy.
That sobering reality hit PG&E late Friday when Newsom rejected the company’s overhauled restructuring plan, including a $13.5 billion deal between the nation’s largest utility and attorneys representing people who lost their homes, businesses and relatives in a series of catastrophic fires blamed on the utility in 2017 and 2018.
The $13.5 billion settlement was supposed to resolve more than $36 billion in claims from those victims. It came after PG&E struck a separate $11 billion deal with insurers who already paid out billions in losses to their policyholders for the same fires.