Japan’s Nikkei at 30-year high after Trump OKs stimulus
UNDATED (AP) — Stocks have climbed in Asia, with Japan’s Nikkei 225 index surging 2.7% to its highest close in more than 30 years today.
The rally followed President Donald Trump’s signing of a $900 billion economic aid package. The support for families and businesses is helping to staunch uncertainty as governments reimpose pandemic restrictions threatening to slow economic activity.
Trading is thinning as tumultuous 2020 draws to a close. But after nosediving in March as the pandemic took hold, share prices have more than recovered, and investors are gaining confidence with the rollouts of coronavirus vaccinations they hope will pave the way for a return to normal activity in coming months.
Fate of Trump’s $2,000 checks now rests with GOP-led Senate
WASHINGTON (AP) — Whether most Americans will receive $2,000 COVID-19 relief checks is now in the hands of the Senate.
President Donald Trump has been pushing to more than triple the $600 payments approved by Congress, reluctantly signing into law the massive relief bill that authorized the smaller checks.
On Monday the House voted overwhelmingly to meet the president’s demand, but Republican senators have resisted increasing spending. The Senate is scheduled to meet today, and Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has declined to publicly address how he plans to handle the issue.
FAA outlines new rules for drones and their operators
WASHINGTON (AP) — Federal officials say they will allow operators to fly small drones over people and at night, potentially giving a boost to commercial use of the machines.
Most drones will need to be equipped so they can be identified remotely by law enforcement officials.
FAA Administrator Stephen Dickson says the final rules announced Monday are a step closer to the day when drone operations such as package delivery will be routine.
The Transportation Department says drones are the fastest-growing segment in all of transportation, with more than 1.7 million under registration.
Arbitrator rules that FAA chief aided retaliation case
WASHINGTON (AP) — A U.S. Labor Department judge says the head of the Federal Aviation Administration helped Delta Air Lines retaliate against a pilot who raised safety concerns while he was an executive with the airline.
An administrative law judge for the department ruled that Stephen Dickson and other Delta executives steered a human-resources procedure so that the pilot would undergo a psychiatric evaluation that independent doctors deemed unwarranted.
Delta says it will appeal the ruling. The FAA declined to comment on the ruling, instead pointing to Dickson’s past comments on the case, including that he wasn’t deeply involved in it.
Pipeline opponents sue to shut down Minnesota construction
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Opponents of a pipeline project that crosses three states have asked a federal court to halt construction in Minnesota on allegations that U.S. Army Corps of Engineers failed to address several environmental issues when it approved a water quality permit.
Two Minnesota Ojibwe bands and two environmental groups filed a lawsuit Thursday that asks for a preliminary injunction to stop work on the Enbridge Energy Line 3 pipeline that began early this month across northern Minnesota. Line 3 starts in Alberta and clips a corner of North Dakota before crossing northern Minnesota en route to Enbridge’s terminal in Superior, Wisconsin. The 337-mile line in Minnesota is the last step in replacing the deteriorating pipeline that was built in the 1960s.
CHINA-GAME TYCOON DIES
Shanghai police say suspect detained in games tycoon’s death
BEIJING (AP) — Police in Shanghai say a suspect has been detained in the death by possible poisoning of the billionaire founder of a Chinese video game company.
Yoozoo Games said Lin Qi died on Christmas Day after being hospitalized. Police say a 39-year-old suspect — a coworker — has been detained. Police say Lin was hospitalized Dec. 17 and diagnosed with possible poisoning but have given no other details.
Yoozoo Games is producing films based on popular science fiction novel “The Three-Body Problem” and is known for its game “Game of Thrones: Winter Is Coming,” based on the TV series.