Tepid opening expected for Wall Street … Google fined $166 million in France … Boeing Starliner’s first test flight
TOKYO (AP) – Global shares meandered in a narrow range today despite another session of record highs on Wall Street. In early trading, Britain’s FTSE 100 edged 0.1% lower, while the CAC 40 in Paris added 0.2%. Germany’s DAX was little changed. In Asia, Japan’s Nikkei edged 0.2% lower and the Shanghai Composite index shed 0.4%. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index climbed 0.3%. South Korea’s Kospi picked up 0.4%. Wall Street is expected to get off to a tepid start, with S&P futures down less than 0.1% and Dow futures 0.03% lower.
PARIS (AP) – France’s competition authority has fined Google 150 million euros ($166 million) for “abusing its dominant position” in the online ad market. The agency says the methods used by Google Ads are “opaque and difficult to understand” and that the company applies them in an “unequal and arbitrary way.” It’s the latest of several European fines against Google, which faces very little competition for search engine business in Europe. Google says it will appeal. It says its advertising policies are designed to protect consumers “from exploitative and abusive ads.”
UNDATED (AP) – French telecommunications powerhouse Orange is facing a potentially landmark court ruling today on whether it was responsible for dozens of employee suicides or suicide attempts during a painful restructuring. The decision could set a legal precedent, because Orange is the first of France’s big listed companies to be tried on a charge of “institutionalized moral harassment.” The trial focused on 39 cases between 2006 and 2009, including 19 suicides and 12 suicide attempts.
CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (AP) – Boeing’s new Starliner capsule is rocketing toward the International Space Station on its first test flight. Today’s liftoff from Cape Canaveral, Florida, marks the start of a crucial dress rehearsal for next year’s inaugural launch with astronauts. The Starliner carries Christmas treats and presents for the six station residents and a mannequin named Rosie in the commander’s seat. The test dummy is named after the World War II riveter. The Starliner should reach the space station Saturday morning.
ROME (AP) – Fiat Chrysler says it has sold its cast iron automotive components business operated through Teksid to Brazil’s Tupy for 210 million euros ($233 million).áThe sale includes Teksid’s cast iron production facilities in Brazil, Mexico, Poland and Portugal, in addition to Teksid’s interest in a joint venture in China. FCA notes that its Teksid aluminum business is not included in the transaction and will remain a strategic asset in its portfolio. The deal is expected to close in the second half of 2020.