Stocks mostly lower…Home sales down…China reacts to US, Iran oil sanctions plan
NEW YORK (AP) – Stocks opened mostly lower in trading on Wall Street. Energy stocks rose along with crude oil prices after the U.S. said it wouldn’t renew waivers to five countries exempting them from sanctions if they continued to import oil from Iran. Technology stocks and companies that rely on consumer spending posted some of the biggest losses.
BEIJING (AP) – China has criticized Washington’s decision to tell Beijing and other governments to stop buying Iranian oil or face sanctions. China is one of the biggest foreign buyers of Iranian crude. A Chinese foreign ministry spokesman said Beijing’s dealings with Iran are ‘reasonable and legitimate’ and criticized ‘unilateral sanctions.’
NEW YORK (AP) – The stock market has been notably quiet, with no move for the S&P 500 of more than 0.7% in either direction since the start of the month. That follows a torrid first quarter for U.S. markets, and the S&P 500 is back within a good day or two from its record after losing nearly 20% late last year.
WASHINGTON (AP) – Sales of existing U.S. homes slipped 4.9 % in March after a huge gain the previous month, held back partly by a sharp slowdown among the most expensive properties. Realtors expect sales to rebound in the coming months as borrowing costs have fallen back to an average of 4.2% on a 30-year fixed mortgage and the job market remains solid.
PITTSBURGH (AP) – Kraft Heinz says CEO Bernardo Hees will step down from the post and be succeeded by Miguel Patricio in July. In February, Kraft Heinz disclosed an investigation by federal regulators and said that it would slash the value of its Oscar Mayer brands by a $15.4 billion.