Stocks rise…Consumer prices flat…Social Security checks to rise modestly
NEW YORK (AP) – Stocks are moving broadly higher in morning trading on Wall Street as investors wait to see whether the U.S. and China make any progress in negotiations aimed at ending their ongoing trade war. The markets were encouraged by an early tweet from President Donald Trump saying that China wants to make a deal. Envoys from the two nations are starting their 13th round of trade negotiations since the feud began 15 months ago.
WASHINGTON (AP) – Overall consumer prices were unchanged in September as a big decline in energy costs offset small gains in other areas. The Labor Department says the flat reading in its Consumer Price Index for September followed a tiny 0.1% August increase and left prices over the past 12 months rising at a modest annual rate of 1.7%. Core inflation, which excludes volatile energy and food prices, was up a tiny 0.1% in September and 2.4% over the past 12 months.
WASHINGTON (AP) – Social Security says millions of retirees will get a modest 1.6% cost-of-living increase in 2020. That comes to about $24 more a month more the average retired worker. That news could have political consequences in an election year when Democrats are pushing more generous inflation protection, along with better benefits overall. Seniors and advocates complain that the inflation yardstick used to determine the annual adjustment doesn’t adequately reflect their costs, mainly for health care.
ATLANTA (AP) – Delta Air Lines is reporting better-than-expected profits for the third quarter as fuel prices fall. Adjusted fuel expenses fell 10% during the three month reporting period. Net income rose more than 13% to $1.5 billion, or $2.31 per share. Adjusted per-share earnings were $2.32, a nickel better than Wall Street projections, according to a survey by Zacks Investment Research. The airline, based in Atlanta, reported record revenue of $12.56 billion in the quarter, though that was just shy of expectations.
LONDON (AP) – The leaders of Britain and Ireland say they “could see a pathway to a possible deal” on Brexit after meeting to try to find common ground three weeks before the U.K. is set to leave the European Union. British Prime Minister Boris Johnson and Irish counterpart Leo Varadkar issued a joint statement following a private lunch meeting in England today. Britain is due to leave the 28-nation bloc on Oct. 31. Attempts to find a withdrawal deal have foundered over plans for the border between EU member Ireland and the U.K.’s Northern Ireland.