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December 8, 2020
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Global stocks down…China blasts new US sanctions

 

BEIJING (AP) – Global stocks and U.S. futures are down today. In early trading, the FTSE 100 in London shed 0.3% while the DAX in Frankfurt was unchanged. The CAC 40 in Paris shed less than 0.1%. In Asia, the Shanghai Composite Index lost 0.2% and the Nikkei 225 in Tokyo shed 0.3%. The Hang Seng in Hong Kong sank 0.8%. In Seoul, the Kospi tumbled 1.6%.

 

BEIJING (AP) – China is lashing out at the U.S. over new sanctions against Chinese officials and the sale of more military equipment to Taiwan. The U.S. actions are part of what critics see as an effort by the Trump administration to put in place high-pressure tactics toward Beijing that could make it more difficult for President-elect Joe Biden to steady relations. The Cabinet’s office for Hong Kong affairs has expressed “strong outrage and condemnation” over the sanctions leveled against 14 members of China’s legislature that passed a sweeping Hong Kong National Security Law earlier this year.

 

LONDON (AP) – Britain and the European Union say talks on a free-trade deal are teetering on the brink of collapse, with just over three weeks until an economic rupture that will cause upheaval for businesses on both sides of the English Channel. Prime Minister Boris Johnson heads to Brussels in the coming days for face-to-face talks with European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen. But officials downplayed the chances of a breakthrough. German European Affairs Minister Michael Roth said the bloc’s confidence in Britain is hanging in the balance and “political will in London” is needed to get a deal. After months of negotiations, talks are stuck on several key issues, including fishing rights.

 

BOSTON (AP) – Researchers at a cybersecurity firm say they have identified vulnerabilities in software widely used by millions of connected devices – flaws that could be exploited by hackers to penetrate business and home computer networks and disrupt them. There is no evidence of any intrusions that made use of the vulnerabilities. But their existence in data-communications software central to internet-connected devices prompted the U.S. Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency to flag the issue in a bulletin. Potentially affected devices from an estimated 150 manufacturers range from networked thermometers to “smart” plugs and printers to office routers and healthcare appliances to components of industrial control systems.

 

BEIJING (AP) – Shares in China’s biggest online health care platform have risen 50% in their Hong Kong stock market debut, reflecting investor enthusiasm for the fledgling industry as the country emerges from the coronavirus pandemic. JD Health, an arm of JD.Com Inc., China’s biggest online retailer, sells medications, hospital care packages and online consultations with doctors. Chinese internet companies increasingly offer health services in a society where hospitals are crowded and distribution of drugs and medical supplies outside major cities is uneven.

 

 

AP-WF-12-08-20 1135GMT