Global stocks mixed…4th day of canceled classes in Chicago
BEIJING (AP) – Global stocks are mixed after Wall Street fell on worries the Federal Reserve will raise interest rates as soon as March. Frankfurt and Shanghai advanced. Seoul declined while London was little-changed. Wall Street futures were higher and oil prices rose. Japanese markets were closed for a holiday. Investors were rattled last week after notes from the latest Fed meeting showed officials thought the U.S. job market is healthy enough to no longer need ultra-low interest rates and other stimulus. That was reinforced by U.S. employment numbers that showed stronger-than-expected wages, though with only about half as much hiring as forecast.
GENEVA (AP) – Senior U.S. and Russian officials have formally launched special talks on strategic stability as part of a flurry of diplomatic activity in Europe this week aimed at defusing tensions over a Russian military buildup on the border with Ukraine. Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov led a delegation arriving by Swiss police escort at the U.S. diplomatic mission in Geneva for the latest round of face-to-face talks with Wendy Sherman, the U.S. deputy secretary of state, and her team. The meeting is part of “Strategic Security Dialogue” talks launched by Presidents Joe Biden and Vladimir Putin during a June summit in the Swiss city.
CHICAGO (AP) – Chicago school leaders canceled classes for a fourth day in the nation’s third-largest school district today, taking the dispute with the teachers union over remote learning and COVID-19 protocols into another week. The announcement Sunday came as individual principals of some schools had already notified some parents that their children could not return to schools today because of staffing shortages. Chicago schools face the same pandemic issues as others nationwide, with a growing number of districts reverting to remote learning as infections explode during the omicron-fueled surge and sideline staff. But the situation in union-friendly Chicago has been amplified in a labor dispute.
CAMARILLO, Calif. (AP) – The average U.S. price of regular-grade gasoline dropped 2 cents over the past three weeks to $3.39 per gallon. Industry analyst Trilby Lundberg of the Lundberg Survey says prices at the pump could start increasing again because crude oil costs are rising. Nationwide, the highest average price for regular-grade gas is in the San Francisco Bay Area, at $4.74 per gallon. The lowest average is in Houston, at $2.79 per gallon. The survey says the average price of diesel is $3.64 a gallon, down a penny.
UNDATED (AP) – This week in business: The Labor Department serves up its December reading of inflation at the consumer level on Wednesday. Americans continue to face higher costs, reflected in sharp annual increases in the consumer price index over the past year. Prices for U.S. consumers jumped 6.8% in November compared with a year earlier, the highest inflation rate in 39 years. Delta Air Lines reports quarterly results Thursday. And the Commerce Department serves up its December tally of U.S. retail sales Friday.