FINANCIAL MARKETS

Stocks drop as volatility hits Wall Street; oil drops

NEW YORK (AP) – Stocks fell today as Wall Street experiences a period of volatility, due in part to large swings in tech companies.

The S&P 500 was down 0.8% at midday. The benchmark index has increased or decreased by more than 1% in the past four days. International markets also sold off, with trade in Japan, South Korea, Germany and France all falling by more than 1%.

Energy prices retreat after a strong recovery which has helped rekindle inflationary fears among investors. US oil fell 1.9% and natural gas 7.4%

BIDEN-ENVIRONMENTAL REVIEWS

White House reinstates environmental reviews for major projects

WASHINGTON (AP) – President Joe Biden is restoring federal regulations guiding environmental reviews of large infrastructure projects such as highways and pipelines.

This is the latest reversal of an environmental setback from the Trump era. The White House Council on Environmental Quality said it would restore key provisions of the National Environmental Policy Act, a basic environmental law designed to ensure community guarantees during environmental reviews for a wide range of federal projects and decisions.

Reviews were slashed last year by President Donald Trump in an attempt to speed up projects he said would boost the economy and create jobs.

GENERAL ENGINES

GM to Double Revenue and Dominate Electric Vehicle Sales in the United States

WARREN, Mich. (AP) – General Motors plans to cash in as the world shifts from combustion engines to battery power, promising to double its annual revenue by 2030.

To get there, GM is planning a range of new electric vehicles, cost-effective gasoline cars and trucks, and services such as an electronic driving system that can handle most tasks on the road.

In today’s announcements ahead of a two-day investor event in suburban Detroit, the company also pledged to topple Tesla and become the market leader in electric vehicles in the United States, although ‘no deadline was given.

GM has announced new electric vehicles to come, including a small Chevrolet SUV that will cost around $ 30,000, as well as electric trucks from Chevrolet and GMC.

GENERAL MOTORS-GE

GM and GE seek to develop rare earth materials supply chain

NON DATE (AP) – General Motors and General Electric plan to develop a supply chain of rare earth materials that help manufacture electric vehicles and renewable energy equipment.

The companies say the memorandum of understanding between the automaker and GE Renewable Energy will assess options to improve the supply of heavy and light rare earths as well as magnets, copper and electric steel.

They initially plan to focus on building a magnet manufacturing supply chain based in North America and Europe, as metal alloys and finished magnets made from rare earths are critical components used in the creation of electric motors for the production of automotive and renewable energy.

The United States is trying to increase its production of rare earths, so as not to depend so much on China.

DELAYED RESPONSE TO AN OIL SPILL IN CALIFORNIA

Delay after alarm calls California spill response into question

NO DATE (AP) – Amplify Energy’s emergency response plan for a major oil spill like the one unfolding on the southern California coast was heavily dependent on a quick shutdown of its pipeline if sensors detect sudden loss of pressure.

Federal investigators said on Tuesday that was not what happened. They say the Houston-based company waited more than three hours to shut down the pipeline after receiving a low pressure alarm early on Saturday.

Alarms are also supposed to trigger immediate follow-up actions to quickly determine if something is wrong. It is not known why this process took hours in San Pedro Bay, potentially worsening the spill.

SAUD-ARAMCO

Saudi Aramco closes valuation close to $ 2 billion as oil prices rebound

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) – Saudi oil company Aramco closed just under a $ 2 trillion valuation that the kingdom’s crown prince has long sought.

Aramco’s market capitalization is supported by high oil prices and increasing demand for energy as economies recover from last year’s pandemic lockdowns.

Aramco hit the $ 2 trillion mark during the day, but ultimately closed at $ 1.99 trillion. It hasn’t hit that trading peak since December 2019, days after the company’s debut on the Saudi Stock Exchange.

Aramco now ranks third behind Microsoft and Apple as the world’s most valuable company, far exceeding the combined value of some of the world’s largest oil companies.

VIRUS OUTBREAKS

New HUD rule to prevent evictions from social housing

WASHINGTON (AP) – The Biden administration is trying to prevent evictions from public housing for non-payment of rent. He is seeking to strengthen protections after the end of the national moratorium on evictions that was a response to the coronavirus pandemic.

Under a new rule from the Department of Housing and Urban Development, tenants in HUD-subsidized public housing cannot be evicted for non-payment without providing them with 30 days notice and information about federal assistance. emergency rent available.

The new rule is expected to be published in the Federal Register on Thursday. A senior HUD official said the rule change was due to significant concern about a looming wave of deportations.

VIRUS-SWEDEN OUTBREAK

Sweden suspends Moderna vaccine for those 30 and under

COPENHAGEN, Denmark (AP) – Swedish health authorities have suspended the use of Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine for those 30 and under.

The Swedish Public Health Agency said the move was taken as a precaution. The agency said the reason for the break is “signals of an increased risk of side effects such as inflammation of the heart muscle or pericardium.”

Sweden’s chief epidemiologist said they are “monitoring the situation closely and acting quickly to ensure that COVID-19 vaccinations are still as safe as possible and at the same time offer effective protection” against disease.

The Swedish agency said Pfizer’s vaccine is more recommended for these age groups. His decision to suspend the Moderna vaccine is valid until December 1.

HOME VIRUS OUTBREAK TESTING

United States to increase rapid home coronavirus tests

WASHINGTON (AP) – The United States is on track to have around 200 million home COVID-19 rapid tests available per month starting in December. This is about four times more than at the start of the year.

The White House says the increase in supply is the result of a new federal investment of $ 1 billion, in addition to the $ 2 billion committed to increase the availability of hands-on diagnostic tests in September. The FDA also recently cleared a new test from ACON Laboratories this week.

Although less accurate than PCR tests, home kits are cheaper and faster, allowing serial screening of schoolchildren, long-term care residents and office workers.

The White House says it is working to double the number of local pharmacies offering free coronavirus tests to 20,000 in the coming weeks.

HOLIDAY TOY DELAYS

Toy makers rush to put products on shelves amid supply caps

NEW YORK (AP) – Three months before Christmas, toy companies are rushing to put their toys on store shelves as they face a severe crisis in the supply network.

Toy makers are feverishly trying to find containers to ship their goods to while looking for new alternative routes and ports. Some steal in the toys if they can have room instead of shipping by boat to put the goods on the shelves long before Christmas.

But companies are also resigning themselves to the harsh reality that they can’t make up for the delays and are leaving some of the holiday toys, especially the bulkier ones, behind in factories in China.

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