US stocks lower … Existing home sales decline … Fiat Chrysler exec resigns following Marchionne exit
NEW YORK (AP) – Stocks are opening lower on Wall Street, led by declines in technology companies and retailers. At 10:25 a.m. Eastern Time, the S&P 500 was down 4 points, at 2,798. The Dow dropped 46 points, to 25,013. And the Nasdaq was down 17 points to 7,803.
WASHINGTON (AP) – U.S. sales of existing homes fell 0.6 percent in June, the third straight monthly decline as higher prices and a relative lack of inventory has sidelined many would-be buyers. The National Association of Realtors says homes sold last month at a seasonally adjusted annual pace of 5.38 million in May. Over the past year, home sales have tumbled 2.2 percent.
MILAN (AP) – Fiat Chrysler says the executive in charge of its business in Europe and the Middle East has resigned following long-time CEO Sergio Marchionne’s early exit due to his deteriorating health. Alfredo Altavilla resigned today, days after the board named the head of Jeep, Mike Manley, to replace the 66-year-old Marchionne as CEO after 14 years in the role. Altavilla was considered one of the top contenders for the job, and played a key role in the talks for Fiat to acquire Chrysler.
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) – Papa John’s is trying to ward off its disgraced founder by adopting a poison-pill plan. The company is struggling to distance itself from John Schnatter (SHNAH’-tur), who resigned as chairman this month after his use of a racial slur during a media training session was revealed. The plan would effectively prevent Schnatter, who holds 30 percent of all outstanding stock, from gaining a controlling stake in the company.
UNDATED (AP) – Private equity firm Apollo Global Management will spend about $5.6 billion to buy the rural hospital chain LifePoint and combine it with health system operator RCCH HealthCare Partners. The combined, privately held company will operate under the LifePoint name and be led by the hospital chain’s chairman and CEO, William F. Carpenter III, running run 84 hospitals in 30 states as well as physician practices, outpatient centers and regional health systems.