Global stocks slide … Trump prepares a $4.8 trilling budget … More companies pull out of European tech show over coronavirus concerns
BEIJING (AP) – Global stock markets slid today after China reported an uptick in new virus cases and analysts warned optimism the disease is under control might be premature. In early trading, London and Frankfurt opened lower. Tokyo, Hong Kong and Seoul closed lower. Shanghai closed higher after spending most of the day in negative territory. On Wall Street, S&P futures are down under 0.1% while Dow futures are up less than 0.1%.
WASHINGTON (AP) – President Donald Trump is expected today to release a $4.8 trillion budget plan that rehashes previously rejected spending cuts while leaving Social Security and Medicare benefits untouched. The fiscal 2021 budget plan seeks to wrestle trillion-dollar-plus deficits into balance after 15 years. It isn’t likely to generate a serious Washington dialogue about what to do, if anything this election year. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi says thatá”once again the president is showing just how little he values the good health, financial security and well-being of hard-working American families.”
LONDON (AP) – Sony and Amazon are the latest companies to pull out of a major European technology show over coronavirus fears. Sony says it is scrapping its appearance at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain, later this month. Instead, the company will launch its latest devices through its YouTube channel on Feb. 24, the first day of the show. Amazon, Ericsson, LG and Nvidia (en-VIH’-dee-uh) have also pulled out of the show. The show organizers say they’re “moving ahead as planned” with the event but have outlined safety measures.
CAMARILLO, Calif. (AP) – The average U.S. price of regular-grade gasoline dropped 7 cents per gallon to $2.53 over the past two weeks. Industry analyst Trilby Lundberg of the Lundberg Survey said Sunday that gas prices responded to falling crude oil costs. The price at the pump is 19 cents higher than it was a year ago. The highest average price in the nation for regular-grade gas is $3.54 per gallon in the San Francisco Bay Area. The lowest average is $2.04 in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. The average price of diesel is $3, down a nickel.
UNDATED (AP) – A growing number of traditional retailers are joining the clothing rental business. Bloomingdale’s, Banana Republic and Urban Outfitters are the latest to offer customers the option to rent clothing for a monthly fee instead of buying them. The clothing rental sector is a booming $1 billion business, and research firm GlobalData says it’s expected to reach $2.5 billion by 2023.