Global shares up…China blasts US
TOKYO (AP) – Global shares are mostly higher today after Wall Street capped its best quarter since 1998, shrugging off continued signs of damage from the coronavirus pandemic. In early trading, France’s CAC 40 fell 0.2%, while Germany’s DAX gained nearly 0.7%. Britain’s FTSE 100 was a tad higher. In Asia, Japan’s Nikkei 225 closed nearly 0.8% lower. South Korea’s Kospi inched down nearly 0.1%. The Shanghai Composite rose 1.4%. Wall Street is expected to open lower, with Dow and S&P futures both down 0.2%.
BEIJING (AP) – China is demanding that Washington stop “oppressing Chinese companies” after U.S. regulators declared telecom equipment suppliers Huawei and ZTE to be national security threats. The Federal Communications Commission blocked the Chinese vendors from receiving subsidies from a government fund, stepping up efforts to limit their access to the U.S. market. China’s foreign ministry is accusing Washington of “abusing state power” to hurt Chinese companies “without any evidence.” U.S. regulators say Huawei Technologies Ltd., the biggest global maker of telecom switching equipment, and its smaller rival ZTE Corp. may facilitate Chinese spying. The companies deny the accusation.
UNDATED (AP) – A government watchdog says Boeing didn’t give regulators documents about changes it made in a key system blamed in two crashes of its 737 Max jet. The Transportation Department’s inspector general says government experts responsible for approving the plane didn’t know how powerful the flight-control system was. In both crashes, the system, called MCAS, pushed the nose of the plane down and pilots couldn’t regain control. The crashes killed 346 people and led regulators around the world to ground every Boeing 737 Max – nearly 400 of them. This week, Boeing and the FAA are testing changes Boeing has made in the plane.
COPENHAGEN, Denmark (AP) – Volvo Cars says it is recalling nearly 2.1 million vehicles worldwide as a preventive measure after the company discovered that a steel wire connected to the front seat belts can be weakened. The front seat belts are anchored to the car via this steel cable which can be subject to wear and tear. There have been no reports of injuries or accidents linked to the fault. The recall is the biggest ever for the brand. Volvo Cars has been owned by China’s Zhejiang Geely Holding Group since 2010.
BERLIN (AP) – Investigators have searched the headquarters of German payment systems provider Wirecard and four other locations as part of their probe of an accounting scandal that led to the arrest of the company’s longtime CEO and forced the firm to file for bankruptcy protection. Munich prosecutors say 12 prosecutors were supported by 33 police officers as well as police IT experts in today’s raids. Ex-CEO Markus Braun was arrested last week on suspicion of incorrect statements of data and market manipulation, and then released on bail.