Asian shares rise as Wall Street gains for 3rd straight day
TOKYO (AP) — Asian shares rose today after Wall Street extended its gains for a third straight day, driven by optimism over economies reopening from shutdowns to stem the coronavirus pandemic.
Japan’s benchmark Nikkei 225 finished 1.3% higher. Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 rose 1.8%. South Korea’s Kospi surged 2.7. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng was up 1.3%, while the Shanghai Composite added 0.2%.
Yesterday on Wall Street, the S&P 500 closed 0.8% higher, at 3,080.82, after wavering throughout the morning. Technology, industrial and health care sector stocks accounted for a big slice of the gains.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 1.1% to 25,742.65. The Nasdaq composite, which is heavily weighted with technology companies, added 0.6%, to 9,608.37 after dipping as much as 0.8%.
Smaller company stocks had some of the biggest gains. The Russell 2000 index picked up 0.9%, to 1,418.21.
Tech-rights group sues Trump to stop social-media order
NEW YORK (AP) — A tech-focused civil liberties group is suing to block President Donald Trump’s executive order that seeks to regulate social media, saying it violates the First Amendment and chills speech.
Trump’s order, signed last week, could allow more lawsuits against internet companies like Twitter and Facebook for what their users post, tweet and stream.
The order was more political than substantive, with many experts questioning whether it was constitutional. The president aimed to rally his supporters after Twitter put fact checks on two of his tweets. Trump, without evidence, has long accused tech companies of being biased against conservatives.
In its suit filed Tuesday, the Center for Democracy and Technology says that Trump’s executive order violates the First Amendment because it attacks Twitter for putting the fact checks on the president’s tweets, which CDT says is Twitter’s right as a private company.
Zuckerberg still under fire over inflammatory Trump posts
OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) — Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg isn’t budging over his refusal to take action on inflammatory posts by President Donald Trump that spread misinformation about voting by mail and, many say, encouraged violence against protesters.
His critics, however, are multiplying. Some employees have publicly quit over the issue and civil-rights leaders who met with him Monday night denounced Zuckerberg’s explanation for choosing to leave Trump’s posts alone as “incomprehensible.”
A day after dozens of Facebook employees staged a virtual walkout over the issue, the Facebook chief met Tuesday with employees for a Q&A session held via online video. During that session, Zuckerberg reportedly doubled down on his stance to leave Trump’s posts alone.
Facebook rival Twitter flagged and demoted a Trump tweet in which he referenced protests over police violence in Minneapolis using the phrase “when the looting starts the shooting starts.” But Facebook let an identical message stand on its service. Zuckerberg explained his reasoning in a Facebook post Friday, a position he has since reiterated several times.
VIRUS OUTBREAK-UN DEBT RELIEF
UN urges help for countries near `debt distress’ from virus
UNITED NATIONS (AP) — The president of the U.N. Economic and Social Council is calling for urgent action to help the growing number of countries already facing or at risk of “debt distress” because of the economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic.
Norway’s U.N. ambassador, Mona Juul, head of the 54-nation U.N. body, said Tuesday that the freeze on debt service payments by the world’s 20 major economic powers for the world’s poorest countries through 2020 isn’t enough.
She said “many countries will have to make difficult choices between servicing their debt, fighting the pandemic, and investing in recovery” without additional debt relief.
Eagles’ Don Henley asks Congress to change copyright law
WASHINGTON (AP) — Eagles songwriter Don Henley urged Congress on Tuesday to “Take It to the Limit” to protect artists against online pirating, wading into a copyright fight pitting Hollywood and the recording industry against big tech platforms like Google’s YouTube.
The blockbuster hitmaker of the 1970s testified online from his home before a Senate Judiciary subcommittee weighing possible changes to a 1998 copyright law. The law allows holders of copyrighted material to formally ask parties they believe have taken their content without permission to remove it. The parties can dispute the claim. If they comply promptly with the request, there are no legal consequences. Otherwise, they may be subject to criminal penalties.
Henley said the law is weak and needs to be changed to make it more effective in stopping online piracy.
He called the copyright law “a relic of a MySpace era in a TikTok world.” Henley said with hundreds of millions of takedown notices sent, for every link taken down, “a dozen more pop up in its place.”
Bell, Telus give 5G contracts to Europeans, Huawei shut out
TORONTO (AP) — Two of Canada’s three major telecommunication companies say they’ve decided not to use Chinese tech giant Huawei for their next-generation 5G wireless network.
Bell Canada said Tuesday that Sweden-based Ericsson will be its supplier and Telus Corp. later announced that it had also selected Ericsson and Nokia.
Canada and its security agencies have been studying whether to use equipment from Huawei as phone carriers prepare to roll out fifth-generation technology. 5G is designed to support a vast expansion of networks to facilitate medical devices, self-driving cars and other technology.
Huawei is the world’s biggest supplier of network gear used by phone and internet companies but has long been seen as a front for spying by China’s military and its highly skilled security services.
The U.S. has urged Canada to exclude Huawei equipment from their next-generation wireless networks as they claim Huawei is legally beholden to the Chinese regime. The United States and Australia have banned Huawei, citing concerns it is an organ of Chinese military intelligence — a charge the company denies.
Zoom booms as pandemic drives millions to its video service
SAN RAMON, Calif. (AP) — Zoom Video Communications is rapidly emerging as the latest internet gold mine as millions of people flock to its conferencing service to see colleagues, friends and family while tethered to their homes during the pandemic.
Tuesday’s release of the once-obscure company’s financial results for the February-April period provided a window into the astronomical growth that has turned it into a Wall Street star.
Zoom’s revenue for its fiscal first-quarter more than doubled from the same time last year to $328 million, resulting a profit of $27 million — up from just $198,000 a year ago.
The numbers exceeded analysts’ already heightened expectations, providing another lift to a rocketing stock that has more than tripled in price so far this year. After a big run-up leading up to Tuesday’s highly anticipated announcement, Zoom’s stock gained nearly 3% in extended trading to $213.60 — more than five times the company’s initial public offering price of $36 less than 14 months ago.
Honda recalls 1.4M vehicles to fix faulty fuel pumps
DETROIT (AP) — Honda is recalling nearly 1.4 million vehicles worldwide because their fuel pumps could fail and cause engines to stall or lose power.
The recall includes 136,000 vehicles in the U.S. It’s part of a larger recall of fuel pumps made by parts supplier Denso.
Honda said in a statement Tuesday that it has no reports of crashes or injuries. Owners will get notification letters in late July. Dealers will replace the fuel pumps at no cost to owners.
The U.S. recall includes the 2018 and 2019 Honda Accord, Civic Hatchback, Civic Type R and HR-V as well as the 2019 Fit and 2019 and 2020 Insight. Also covered are the 2019 Acura.
Safety board asks helicopter makers to install ‘black boxes’
WASHINGTON (AP) — Federal safety investigators bypassed aviation regulators on Tuesday and urged leading helicopter manufacturers to install so-called black boxes that would help determine the cause of crashes such as the one that killed former NBA star Kobe Bryant.
The National Transportation Safety Board appealed directly to six manufacturers after the Federal Aviation Administration failed to act on the board’s recommendations to require the devices on most helicopters. The safety board said turbine-powered helicopters should record data, audio and images during flight.
The NTSB identified seven crash investigations between 2011 and 2017 in which it said the lack of recorder information slowed its ability to find potential safety issues.
Sikorsky manufactured the helicopter that crashed in January near Calabasas, California, killing Bryant, his daughter and seven others. It did not have black boxes.