Techs nudge stocks higher … Microsoft settles corruption charges … British Airways pilot strike?
NEW YORK (AP) – The main stock indexes have pushed into positive territory in afternoon trading, though gains are modest. Technology companies have been the big gainers in an otherwise sluggish trading day, led by Apple and Microsoft. Many other sectors have been down, especially makers of consumer products like Philip Morris International and J.M. Smucker.
NEW YORK (AP) – Microsoft is paying more than $25 million to settle federal corruption charges involving a bribery scheme in its Hungary office and three other foreign subsidiaries. The Securities and Exchange Commission says Microsoft will pay about $16.6 million to settle charges that it violated the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act involving its operations in Hungary, Saudi Arabia, Thailand and Turkey. The Justice Department says Microsoft will also pay an $8.75 million criminal fine stemming from the Hungarian bid-rigging and bribery scheme.
WASHINGTON (AP) – The Trump administration is penalizing a Chinese company and its top executive for violating U.S. restrictions on dealing with Iran’s oil industry. Oil exports are Iran’s largest source of foreign income and the U.S. sanctions campaign has raised tensions between the two countries. China has continued to import Iranian oil as other countries have stopped out of fear of U.S. penalties.
CAIRO (AP) – As tensions in the Persian Gulf push crude prices higher, Libya’s national oil company says it has resumed production at the country’s largest oil field. The National Oil Corporation had closed a pipeline valve over the weekend that links the Sharara oil field to a port on the Mediterranean coast. The oil field produces around 290,000 barrels a day. It’s controlled by forces loyal to commander Khalifa Hifter, whose self-styled Libyan National Army launched an offensive on the capital, Tripoli, in April.
LONDON (AP) – British Airways pilots have voted overwhelmingly to strike amid a long-running dispute over pay. The British Airlines Pilots Association says the pilots don’t want to inconvenience the public and accuses the airline of dragging negotiations into the summer. No potential dates have been set for strike action.