US stocks broadly higher …Optimism among builders slides for 4th straight month… Starbucks Philly CEO hopes to meet with 2 men arrested
NEW YORK (AP) – U.S. stocks were broadly higher in early trading today, with technology and health care companies posting solid gains. Energy companies also rose, but lagged the rest of the market as the price crude oil headed lower. Investors are weighing the latest company earnings and deal news. At 10:30 a.m. Eastern Time, the S&P 500 was up 20 points, to 2,676. The Dow was up 221 points, to 24,580. And the Nasdaq was up 42 points, to 7,149.
NEW YORK (AP) – Homebuilder confidence is sliding for the fourth straight month as steadily rising mortgage rates and sky-high home prices put ownership out of reach for more and more Americans. The National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo builder sentiment index for April fell one point to 69. Any reading above 50 indicates more builders see sales conditions as good rather than poor, but cost pressures are mounting.
PHILADELPHIA (AP) – The CEO of Starbucks is in Philadelphia, hoping to meet with the two black men who were arrested after employees of one of his stores called 911 to say the men were trespassing. Kevin Johnson told ABC’s “Good Morning America” today that he’ll meet with the mayor, police and possibly the men who were arrested Thursday and later released. About two dozen protesters gathered at the coffee shop this morning.
ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. (AP) – Carl Icahn’s company has struck an approximately $1.85 billion deal that would fuse the gambling and hotel operations of Tropicana Entertainment to Eldorado Resorts Inc. The agreement includes the sale of Tropicana Entertainment Inc.’s real estate to Gaming and Leisure Properties Inc. It doesn’t include Tropicana’s Aruba assets, which will be disposed of as a condition to closing.
LAS VEGAS (AP) – Allegiant Air is under fire following a “60 Minutes” investigation that is raising significant safety concerns. Data from federal regulators showed that Allegiant was on average nearly three and a half times more likely to have a midair breakdown than Delta, United, American, Spirit, or JetBlue. Shares of parent company Allegiant Travel Co. tumbled before the opening bell.