Global shares mostly lower … Epstein associations raise new questions … Judge rules on prescription prices in ads
TOKYO (AP) – Global shares have been mostly lower today in quiet trading as investors await signs of what might be ahead for U.S. interest rates. In early trading, France’s CAC 40 lost 0.6%, Germany’s DAX slipped 1.1% and Britain’s FTSE 100 fell 0.4%. In Asian trading, Japan’s Nikkei closed 0.1% higher, South Korea’s Kospi lost 0.6%, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng fell 0.8% and the Shanghai Composite lost 0.2%. U.S. shares are set for a retreat, with Dow futures down 0.4% and S&P 500 futures down 0.5%.
WASHINGTON (AP) – The arrest of billionaire financier Jeffrey Epstein on child sex trafficking charges is raising new questions about how much high-powered associates knew about his interactions with underage girls and about whether they turned a blind eye to potentially illegal conduct. It’s also putting new scrutiny on Labor Secretary Alexander Acosta, who, as U.S. attorney for the Southern District of Florida, was involved in a secret plea deal that allowed Epstein to avoid federal charges in 2008.
WASHINGTON (AP) – A federal judge says the Trump administration went beyond its legal authority by requiring prescription drug manufacturers to disclose their prices in TV ads, blocking a White House prescription policy aimed at reducing costs. Monday’s ruling by U.S. District Judge Amit Mehta in Washington, D.C., strikes down a requirement that was set to go into effect Tuesday. Drugmakers had argued that requiring them to disclose prices amounted to coercion that violated their free speech rights.
TOKYO (AP) – Japan said it did not plan to retract or negotiate its tightened controls on high-tech exports to South Korea, where the president has urged diplomacy. Approvals were tightened for Japanese shipments of photoresists and other sensitive materials. Japanese officials say those materials can be exported only to the trustworthy, alluding to security risks, while denying Seoul’s view that the measure was retaliation as the countries’ ties deteriorate over historical issues.
FRANKFURT, GERMANY (AP) – Volkswagen is halting production of the last version of its classic Beetle model in July at its plant in Puebla, Mexico. It’s the end of the road for a vehicle that has symbolized many things over a history spanning the eight decades since 1938. The United States became Volkswagen’s most important single foreign market, peaking at 563,522 cars in 1968, or 40% of production.