Business Highlights


Stocks skid, bond yields hit record lows on British worries

NEW YORK (AP) — U.S. stocks slumped Tuesday as investors grew fearful over the health of the British financial system. Looking for safety, they flocked to Treasury notes and pushed the yields on long-term government bonds to all-time lows.

Investors were jolted after three U.K. financial firms stopped trading in their commercial property funds because large numbers of investors were trying to liquidate their holdings.

Stocks mostly fell, although investors bought shares of companies seen as safe plays. It was an abrupt end to a big four-day rally for stocks.


US factory orders drop in May; military spending plunges

WASHINGTON (AP) — Orders at U.S. factories dipped in May, dragged down by less demand for steel, aluminum, furniture, electrical appliances and military aircraft.

The Commerce Department said Tuesday that factory orders fell 1 per cent in May, after gains in the two prior months. So far this year, orders for manufactured goods have dropped 1.9 per cent to $2.2 trillion compared to the same period in 2015.

The decline suggests that U.S. manufacturers have yet to fully recover from the sting of weaker economic growth worldwide.


New 50-euro note unveiled to combat counterfeiting

FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) — The European Central Bank has unveiled a new 50-euro note as part of a program to make it harder to counterfeit the currency shared by 19 European countries.

The bank said Tuesday that the 50-euro note (worth $55.66) is the most widely used of its banknotes.

New features in the banknote to make it safer include a hologram of Europa, a figure from Greek mythology, a new watermark, as well as a new emerald green reflective paint. The new banknote will come into circulation in April next year.


Hostess, four years after bankruptcy, will go public again

NEW YORK (AP) — Almost four years after seeking bankruptcy protection, the maker of Twinkies and Ding Dongs once again become a publicly traded company.

Hostess Brands has been shuffled between different owners since it sought Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection for a second time in July 2012.

The latest owners, the Apollo Global Management and Metropoulos & Co., will sell the majority of company that is valued at about $2.3 billion. The new owners, Gores Holdings, an acquisition company run by the private equity firm, The Gores Group, will put up $375 million in cash, the companies said Tuesday.


Computers, not humans to scan carry-on bags in TSA test

Federal officials said Tuesday that they are expanding tests to speed up airport lines and improve security.

In a first in the U.S., the Transportation Security Administration said Tuesday that it plans to begin using computed-tomography or CT scanners to inspect carry-on bags at one checkpoint in the Phoenix airport by the end of the year.

CT scanners are already used to screen checked baggage. The process is mostly automated — the scanners generate 3-D images that are analyzed by computers. Security workers only check a bag if something is suspicious. The use of CT technology at airport checkpoints would eliminate the need for screeners to examine X-ray images of every bag. It could also let travellers leave liquids and laptops in their carry-on bags.


You might be overpaying for streaming music

Spotify says it charges a “significant” number of its 30 million paying subscribers $3 more per month because they sign up through Apple, which takes a cut of up to 30 per cent. Spotify says 70 per cent of its revenue already goes to artists, recording labels and music publishers, so turning over another 30 per cent to Apple would leave Spotify with nothing unless it passes along the fee to customers.

The price gap is especially grating to music services like Spotify because Apple’s own Apple Music service doesn’t have to pay the same fee and can charge just $10.

The dispute has intensified in recent weeks as Spotify got more aggressive about offering subscriptions outside Apple’s billing system. It also suspended new subscriptions from iPhone apps completely


Ford Explorers investigated for exhaust gas odour inside SUV

NEW YORK (AP) — The U.S. government is investigating complaints from Ford Explorer owners who say they smelled exhaust gas inside the SUV.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said it received 154 complaints involving Ford Explorers with model years between 2011 and 2015. One driver said the odour caused a low-speed crash. No injuries were reported.

The NHTSA and Ford Motor Co. declined to say how many vehicles are being investigated. Ford sold more than 950,000 of its 2011 to 2015 Explorers, according to Autodata Corp.


Apple urges organ donation via new iPhone software

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Apple wants to encourage millions of iPhone owners to register as organ donors through a software update that will add an easy sign-up button to the health information app that comes installed on every smartphone the company makes.

CEO Tim Cook says he hopes the new software, set for limited release this month, will help ease a critical and longstanding donor shortage. He said the problem hit home when his friend and former boss, Apple co-founder Steve Jobs, endured an “excruciating” wait for a liver transplant in 2009.


Chipotle executive turns himself in to face drug charges

NEW YORK (AP) — The Chipotle executive leading the chain’s efforts to rebound after an E. coli outbreak turned himself in Tuesday to face cocaine-possession charges.

Mark Crumpacker, one of the chain’s top executives, heads marketing as its chief creative and development officer. Police said Crumpacker, 53, was arrested Tuesday on seven counts of possession of a controlled substance. He was released on $4,500 cash bail.

Chipotle Mexican Grill Inc. said late Thursday it placed Crumpacker on leave following a New York Daily News report that he was among 18 customers of a cocaine ring named in an indictment by the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office.


The Dow Jones industrial average gave up 108.75 points, or 0.6 per cent, to 17,840.62. The Standard & Poor’s 500 index shed 14.40 points, or 0.7 per cent, to 2,088.55. The Nasdaq composite declined 39.67 points, or 0.8 per cent, to 4,822.90.

Benchmark U.S. crude sank $2.39, or 4.9 per cent, to close at $46.60 a barrel in New York. Brent crude, used to price international oils, fell $2.14, or 4.3 per cent, to close at $47.96 a barrel in London. In other energy trading, wholesale gasoline fell 8 cents, or 5.6 per cent, to $1.43 a gallon. Heating oil lost 7 cents, or 4.4 per cent, to $1.45 a gallon. Natural gas dropped 22 cents, or 7.5 per cent, to $2.76 per 1,000 cubic feet.