Google employees leave work to protest treatment of women
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Thousands of Google employees around the world walk off the job to protest what they say is the tech giant's mishandling of sexual misconduct allegations against executives. From Tokyo and Singapore to London and San Francisco, highly paid engineers and other workers staged walkouts Thursday of around an hour. The demonstrations reflect rising #MeToo-era frustration among women over frat-house behavior and other misconduct in heavily male Silicon Valley.
Apple's fiscal 4Q results disappoint amid tech jitters
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Apple's faithful customers aren't snapping up iPhones quite as enthusiastically as anticipated heading into the crucial holiday shopping season. But the latest models costing $1,000 and higher are popular enough to keep propelling profits ever for the world's most prosperous company. The mixed bag emerged in quarterly results that Apple released Thursday amid jitters about how the company and the rest of the technology industry will fare while facing several threats to future growth.
Malaysian financier charged in multibillion-dollar scheme
WASHINGTON (AP) — The Justice Department has charged a fugitive Malaysian financier in a money laundering and bribery scheme that pilfered billions of dollars from a Malaysian investment fund created to promote economic development in that country. An indictment issued Thursday charges Jho Low with misappropriating money from the fund and using it for bribes and kickbacks, to pay for luxury real estate, art and jewelry, and to help finance movies including "The Wolf of Wall Street."
US charges China-controlled company in trade secrets theft
LOS ANGELES (AP) — The U.S. has charged a government-controlled company in China with stealing trade secrets from an American semiconductor company. That word comes from the Justice Department as it outlines an initiative focused on what officials say is the growing threat of Chinese economic espionage. The prosecution comes amid heightened trade tensions, and as the Trump administration raises alarms that Beijing remains intent on stealing technology and inventions to gain an economic upper hand.
With employers eager to fill jobs, hiring could stay strong
WASHINGTON (AP) — Against the backdrop of next week's midterm elections, the U.S. job market is the healthiest it's been in at least two decades. And with another strong hiring report expected Friday, some barometers of the job market suggest that it has room to strengthen further. Businesses, hungry for workers, are advertising a record number of openings. Companies in October added the most jobs in eight months, a private survey found. Pay has been picking up.
As stock prices go on discount, their biggest buyers return
NEW YORK (AP) — More than any other group, companies themselves are the largest purchasers of their own shares. But they were notably absent from the market the last few weeks, just as stock prices were tumbling. Businesses were holding back because they were in one of their "blackout" periods for buybacks leading up to the release of quarterly results. Now that most companies have given their third-quarter reports, blackouts are lifting, and analysts say the return of those buyers should help support stocks.
Starbucks beats fiscal 4Q forecasts on higher sales
SEATTLE (AP) — A jump in U.S. sales helped Starbucks end its fiscal year on a high note. Starbucks Corp. said same-store sales — a critical measure for retailers — rose 4 percent in the U.S. in its fiscal fourth quarter. That helped global same-store sales rise 3 percent, ahead of analysts' expectations, according to FactSet.
CEO: BlackRock to continue doing business in Saudi Arabia
NEW YORK (AP) — Blackrock Chairman and CEO Laurence Fink says he believes his company will continue to do business in Saudi Arabia for many years, despite the asset manager's decision to withdraw from an investment conference amid international outrage over the slaying of journalist Jamal Khashoggi last month in the Saudi consulate in Istanbul.
IRS increases contribution limits for retirement accounts
WASHINGTON (AP) — The IRS has increased the contribution limits for various retirement accounts for 2019. The Internal Revenue Service said Thursday that the contribution limit for employees who participate in a 401(k), 403(b) and most 457 plans, as well as the federal government's Thrift Savings Plan, is increased from $18,500 to $19,000.
The S&P 500 index added 28.63 points, or 1.1 percent, to 2,740.37. The Dow Jones Industrial Average picked up 264.98 points, or 1.1 percent, to 25,380.74. The Nasdaq composite climbed 128.16 points, or 1.8 percent, to 7,434.06. The Russell 2000 index jumped 33.57 points, or 2.2 percent, to 1,544.98.
Benchmark U.S. crude slumped 2.5 percent to $63.69 a barrel in New York. Brent crude, used to price international oils, shed 2.9 percent to $72.89 a barrel in London. Wholesale gasoline fell 2 percent to $1.72 a gallon and heating oil skidded 2.2 percent to $2.20 a gallon. Natural gas fell 0.7 percent to $3.24 per 1,000 cubic feet.