Global markets lower … El Paso Walmart to reopen today after mass shooting … China presses for US rollback of punitive tariffs
BEIJING (AP) – Global stock markets were lower today amid doubts about the status of a U.S.-Chinese trade deal after the U.S. Federal Reserve chairman said it is likely to leave its benchmark interest rate unchanged. London and Frankfurt opened lower while Tokyo and Hong Kong declined. Shanghai edged higher. Wall Street is expected to open lower, with Dow and S&P futures both down 0.2%.
EL PASO, Texas (AP) – The El Paso, Texas, Walmart where 22 people were killed in a mass shooting in August is reopening today. The reopening is happening without ceremony and will follow a brief meeting with employees. After the shooting, Walmart quietly started hiring off-duty officers at their stores across El Paso, from Supercenters to “neighborhood markets.” El Paso police union president Ron Martin says it’s unclear how long Walmart will continue to staff every city location with off-duty police.
BEIJING (AP) – China pressed Washington today to roll back punitive tariffs in a tentative trade deal. Commerce Ministry spokesman Gao Feng says a tariff cut is an “important condition” for the agreement that is part of talks on ending a costly trade war. Beijing said last week that American negotiators agreed to roll back penalties imposed in September on $112 billion of Chinese imports if an agreement goes ahead. President Donald Trump dismissed that a day later, jolting global financial markets.
JOHANNESBURG (AP) – South Africa’s troubled state-owned airline has begun canceling flights after two unions announced their workers would go on strike to protest nearly 1,000 expected job cuts. South African Airways has warned that the strike that begins Friday morning “endangers the future of the airline.” The South African Cabin Crew Association and the National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa said they’d strike after the airline said it is launching a restructuring process that could affect nearly 950 employees.
VATICAN CITY (AP) – Pope Francis is demanding that Facebook, Apple, Google and other tech companies urgently take measures to remove child porn from the web and to prevent children from accessing pornography online. Francis told a Vatican conference of religious leaders and high-tech representatives today that it’s no longer acceptable to merely follow the law in monitoring online content, since technology is fast outpacing regulation.