Business Highlights

By: The Associated Press, Associated Press
September 27, 2016 Updated: September 27, 2016 at 4:50 pm
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Unhappy Target customers send strong message on pill bottles

Target's pharmacy customers are finding a change in pill bottle design hard to swallow.

After CVS began operating Target's drugstores earlier this year, distraught customers have been asking — in some cases begging — the drugstore chain to bring back the retailer's red prescription bottles, which came with color-coded rings, labeling on the top and prescription information that was easier to read.

CVS says it is working on designing a new system for dispensing prescriptions and helping people stay on their medications, but declined to share details or say whether that might involve an updated bottle design.

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Tech and consumer companies lead US stocks higher

NEW YORK (AP) — U.S. stocks rebounded Tuesday and climbed after a survey showed consumer confidence is at a nine-year high, a sign Americans will keep spending in the months to come. Technology and consumer stocks made the largest gains.

The market opened lower after two days of losses but quickly recovered. The consumer confidence report gave major indexes a boost and they locked in a big gain by early afternoon.

Technology companies jumped, and solid results from cruise line operator Carnival sent travel-related companies higher. Energy companies slumped with oil prices as hopes for an international cut in fuel production faded.

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US home prices climbed again in July

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. home prices rose again in July, pulled up by strong gains in Portland, Seattle and Denver.

The Standard & Poor's CoreLogic Case-Shiller 20-city home price index, released Tuesday, rose 5 percent in July from a year earlier after increasing 5.1 percent in June.

The latest report is further evidence that prices are being pushed higher by the limited inventory of homes on the market. That is hurting sales of both new and existing homes, despite buyer enthusiasm and historically low mortgage rates.

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US consumer confidence jumps in September

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. consumer confidence in September rose to the highest level in nine years, a hopeful sign that economic growth will accelerate in coming months.

The Conference Board said Tuesday that its consumer confidence index rose to 104.1, up from 101.8 in August. It was the strongest reading since the index stood at 105.6 in August 2007, four months before the beginning of the Great Recession of 2007-2009.

Private economists had been forecasting the index would drop in September after a strong August reading.

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'Dramatic slowing' seen in global trade, as rhetoric rises

GENEVA (AP) — The World Trade Organization dramatically slashed its forecast for trade growth this year by about a third to its lowest rate since 2009, when the global economy was mired in recession in the wake of the financial crisis.

In an update to its forecasts Tuesday, the world's leading trade body said the groundswell in anti-globalization sentiment could make matters worse, especially if policymakers respond to that in a "misguided" manner.

The Geneva-based WTO, perhaps best known for dealing with trade disputes, predicted that global trade will rise only 1.7 percent this year, way down from its April prediction for 2.8 percent.

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US probing possible worker abuse by Wells Fargo

WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. Labor Department is investigating possible abuses of employees by Wells Fargo in connection with the bank's alleged efforts to open millions of unauthorized accounts to meet sales goals.

A group of Democratic senators last week asked the department to investigate whether Wells Fargo tellers, branch managers and customer service reps were harassed and threatened with termination in the aggressive sales push. A complete review of cases and complaints is needed to determine if the second-largest U.S. bank violated the Fair Labor Standards Act, the senators said. About 5,300 employees have been fired since 2011.

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Pilots, air traffic controllers shifting to text messaging

CHANTILLY, Va. (AP) — Airline pilots and air traffic controllers are on schedule to switch to text communications at most of the nation's busiest airports by the end of the year, a milestone that holds the potential to reduce delays, prevent errors and save billions of dollars in fuel cost, says the Federal Aviation Administration.

Controllers and pilots will still use their radios for quick exchanges like clearance for takeoff and in emergencies and situations where time is critical. But the nation's air traffic system is gradually shifting to text messages for a majority of flying instructions.

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Reports of plastic prompt recall of Tyson chicken nuggets

SPRINGDALE, Ark. (AP) — Tyson Foods Inc. says it's voluntarily recalling more than 132,000 pounds of chicken nuggets after receiving reports that "hard, white plastic" was found in some nuggets.

The Springdale, Arkansas-based company said Tuesday that the 5-pound bags of fully cooked panko chicken nuggets were sold at Costco stores nationwide. A small number of 20-pound cases of chicken patties, sold under the Spare Time brand, were sold to a single wholesaler in Pennsylvania.

No injuries have been reported.

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Air France workers on trial over ripping off bosses' shirts

BOBIGNY, France (AP) — Fifteen current and former Air France workers went on trial Tuesday for alleged violence during a union protest last year at the airline's headquarters that saw two company executives flee over a fence with their shirts ripped off.

The incident, caught on camera, was an extreme example of the often strained relations between French workers and their employers. Five Air France union members, who have since been fired, are charged with aggravated assault, and face up to three years in prison and a 45,000-euro ($51,000) fine if convicted. Ten Air France workers, who retained their jobs, face charges of property damage.

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The Dow Jones industrial average jumped 133.47 points, or 0.7 percent, to 18,228.30. The Standard & Poor's 500 index picked up 13.83 points, or 0.6 percent, to 2,159.93. The Nasdaq composite gained 48.22 points, or 0.9 percent, to 5,305.71.

U.S. crude fell $1.26, or 2.7 percent, to $44.67 a barrel in New York. The international standard, Brent crude, lost $1.38, or 2.9 percent, to $45.97 a barrel in London. In other energy trading, heating oil declined 4 cents, or 2.7 percent, to $1.41 a gallon. Wholesale gasoline fell 1 cent to $1.39 a gallon and natural gas remained at $3 per 1,000 cubic feet.

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