Global share prices mostly higher … Trump to sign US-Mexico-Canada trade deal Wednesday … Coalition of states sue over 3D-printed gun rules
BANGKOK (AP) – Global share prices were mostly higher today as China began a week-long Lunar New Year festival that is being overshadowed by the outbreak of a new virus that has killed 25 people and sickened more than 800. In early trading, Germany’s DAX jumped 1.3% while the CAC 40 in Paris surged 1.4%. In Britain, the FTSE 100 also gained 1.4%. In Asia, Japan’s Nikkei 225 index rose 0.1% and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng gained 0.2%. Wall Street likewise looks set for an upbeat open, with the Dow and S&P futures both up 0.3%.
MIAMI (AP) – The White House says President Donald Trump will hold a signing ceremony for the U.S.-Mexico-Canada trade agreement on Wednesday. The deal to modernize the North American Free Trade Agreement passed on bipartisan votes in Congress, scoring the president a significant political victory amid his Senate impeachment trial. Mexico has already ratified the agreement. Canada must act next for it to fully enter into force.
WASHINGTON (AP) – Attorneys general in 20 states and the District of Columbia have filed a lawsuit challenging a federal regulation that could allow blueprints for making guns on 3D printers to be posted on the internet. New York Attorney General Tish James is helping to lead the coalition. She says posting the blueprints would allow anyone to go online and use the downloadable files to create unregistered and untraceable assault-style weapons that could be difficult to detect. The lawsuit is likely to reignite a fierce debate over the use of 3D-printed firearms and is the latest in a series of attempts by state law enforcement officials to block the Trump administration from easing the accessibility of the blueprints.
PAIRS (AP) – The Eiffel Tower is closed because of a strike and unions are holding new protests against changes to France’s retirement system. The government is unveiling the new pension bill in a Cabinet meeting today. It would streamline France’s 42 retirement systems. But the government backed down on a plan to raise the full retirement age from 62 to 64. The country has seen 50 days of strikes over President Emmanuel Macron’s pension reform.
LONDON (AP) – British regulators have opened an initial investigation into a merger between U.K.-based food delivery company Just Eat and its Dutch rival Takeaway.com over worries that it might stifle competition. The Competition and Markets Authority says it’s looking into whether the 6 billion-pound ($8 billion) deal will “result in a substantial lessening of competition” in the U.K. market. Just Eat shareholders accepted Takeaway.com’s bid this month, in a deal to form one of the biggest players in the fiercely competitive food delivery market.