Update on the latest in business:

FINANCIAL MARKETS

Stocks start August higher after posting 6th monthly gain

NEW YORK (AP) — Stocks are rising as investors embrace another strong set of earnings as well as progress in Washington on passing a major infrastructure package.

The S&P 500 was up 0.4%. The benchmark index ended July higher, its sixth straight month of gains.

This week will be busy for investors. Roughly 150 members of the S&P 500 will report their results and the July jobs report comes out on Friday.

Square rose 11.1% after saying it would acquire the “buy now, pay later” company Afterpay for $29 billion. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note fell to 1.16%. Crude oil prices fell 3.9%.

ECONOMY-MANUFACTURING

US manufacturers still rising but in July, at a slower pace

WASHINGTON (AP) — Growth in U.S. manufacturing slowed for a second straight month in July amid ongoing supply-chain problems.

The Institute for Supply Management, a trade group of purchasing managers, says its index of manufacturing activity declined by 1.1 percentage points to a reading of 59.5. Any reading above 50 indicates growth in the manufacturing sector.

July was the 14th consecutive month manufacturing has grown after contracting in April 2020 when the coronavirus triggered nationwide business shutdowns.

CONGRESS-INFRASTRUCTURE

$1 trillion infrastructure bill heads for Senate debate

WASHINGTON (AP) — Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer is looking to speed up consideration of a nearly $1 trillion bipartisan infrastructure package. He promised on Monday that fellow Democrats would work with Republicans to put together a package of amendments for the Senate’s consideration.

The Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act clocked in at some 2,700 pages late Sunday. Republican leader Mitch McConnell is praising those who crafted the bill, but says that senators from both sides of the aisle need a chance to put their states’ imprints on the bill.

The spending is broadly popular among lawmakers, bringing long-delayed capital for big-ticket items that cities and states can rarely afford on their own.

CONGRESS-EVICTION-MORATORIUM

Pelosi, Black Caucus put pressure on Biden to halt evictions

WASHINGTON (AP) — House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said it’s “unfathomable” that Americans will be evicted during the COVID-19 crisis.

Backed by the influential Congressional Black Caucus, the Democratic leadership in Congress intensified pressure on President Joe Biden’s administration to immediately extend the nation’s eviction moratorium to prevent Americans from being put out of their homes.

An estimated 3.6 million Americans are at risk of eviction, some as soon as today. The White House had no direct response to the Democrats’ call for action, but administration officials have urged localities and states to tap aid already approved by Congress.

VIRUS OUTBREAK

US employers ratchet up the pressure on the unvaccinated

UNDATED (AP) — Employers are increasingly losing patience with unvaccinated workers.

A growing number of businesses are requiring their employees to get vaccinated against COVID-19, alarmed by the rise of the more contagious delta variant and frustrated that vaccination rates in the U.S. have plateaued. Others are stopping short of a mandate while taking steps to make it more onerous for workers to remain unvaccinated, requiring them to take regular COVID tests or denying them certain privileges reserved only for the vaccinated.

FOOT LOCKER-ACQUISITION

Foot Locker buying atmos, Eurostar in pair of deals

UNDATED (AP) — Foot Locker is acquiring a pair of companies in deals worth a total of more than $1 billion.

The footwear and clothing company said Monday that it’s buying Text Trading Co., which owns and licenses Japanese retailer atmos, for $360 million. The transaction accelerates Foot Locker’s Asia-Pacific expansion.

Foot Locker also announced that it’s buying athletic footwear and clothing company Eurostar for $750 million. Both deals are expected to close late in the third quarter.

ITALY-EARNS-FERRARI

Ferrari earnings surge back to growth in second quarter

MILAN (AP) — Luxury sportscar maker Ferrari has surged back to second-quarter growth.

The company today posted a $245 million profit after seeing its earnings drop precipitously in the same period a year ago due to the pandemic shutdown. Based in the northern Italian city of Maranello, Ferrari said net profit for the three months ending June 30 compared with $10.6 million last year, when the company was forced to shut production for seven weeks. It was also an improvement over the $218 million profit posted in the same period of 2019, before the pandemic.

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