Company Highlights: Biden’s Inflation Fight, Consumer Pulse
Biden plots inflation fight with Fed chairman as nation worries
WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden met with Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell to discuss the fight against inflation. Biden hoped Tuesday’s meeting would demonstrate his concern to voters, although he again insisted the White House will not interfere with the work of the independent central bank. The president largely entrusts the fate of the economy and his own political fortunes to the Fed. The very sensitive task of the central bank: to raise benchmark interest rates in the hope of slowing inflation while avoiding an economic slowdown. Biden’s appeal to the Fed also reflects his lack of options to fight inflation. Its past attempts, including releases of oil from the strategic reserve, improved port operations and calls to investigate price gouging, have failed.
US consumer confidence drops in May amid stubborn inflation
SILVER SPRING, Md. (AP) — U.S. consumer confidence dipped slightly in May as Americans’ opinions of their current and future prospects faded amid persistent inflation. The Conference Board said on Tuesday that its consumer confidence index fell to 106.4 in May – still a good reading – from 108.6 in April. The business research group’s Current Situation Index, which measures consumers’ assessment of current business and working conditions, also fell in May to 149.6 from 152.9 in April. President Joe Biden will meet with Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell on Tuesday as soaring inflation continues to eat away at Americans’ incomes.
Canceled flights mark first weekend of summer for travelers
NEW YORK (AP) — The unofficial start of summer offers an unsettling look at what awaits travelers during the peak holiday season. US airlines canceled more than 2,800 flights over a five-day period, including Memorial Day weekend, as bad weather, crews called in sick and other factors hampered their operations. Delta Air Lines, which is generally among the best performers, had the worst record among major carriers with more than 800 flights canceled Thursday through Monday. The Transportation Security Administration reported screening more than 11 million people at airport checkpoints during that time.
Stocks slide on Wall Street as messy May comes to an end
NEW YORK (AP) — Stocks ended lower after another wobbly day on Wall Street on Tuesday, capping a tough month. The S&P 500 fell 0.6%, having recouped about half of its earlier loss. The index managed to pull off a small gain in May, but only after several sharp swings. Last week, the S&P 500 posted its biggest weekly gain since the end of 2020, snapping a seven-week losing streak that nearly took it into a bear market. Trading has been turbulent in recent weeks due to worries about a possible recession, inflation and rising interest rates. The Dow Jones fell 0.7% and the tech-heavy Nasdaq lost 0.4%.
Supreme Court blocks Texas social media censorship law
WASHINGTON (AP) — A divided Supreme Court has blocked a Texas law, championed by conservatives, that sought to prevent social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter from censoring users based on their views. The court voted in an unusual 5-4 alignment on Tuesday to suspend Texas law while a trial unfolds in the lower courts. Chief Justice John Roberts and Justices Stephen Breyer, Sonia Sotomayor, Brett Kavanaugh and Amy Coney Barrett voted to grant the emergency request of two tech industry groups who challenged the law in federal court. The majority provided no explanation for their decision.
High prices and Asian markets could blunt EU ban on Russian oil
BRUSSELS (AP) — Energy experts say the European Union’s decision to ban almost all oil from Russia to punish the country for its invasion of Ukraine could be blunted by rising oil prices. energy and other countries willing to buy some of the excess oil. European Union leaders agreed late Monday to cut all Russian oil imports by around 90% over the next six months – a dramatic move that was considered unthinkable just a few months ago. Analysts said the move was a blow to the Kremlin. But they noted that Russia still retained some European markets and could sell some of the oil previously tied to Europe to China, India and other customers in Asia.
Eurozone inflation hits a record 8.1% amid rising energy costs
LONDON (AP) — Inflation in the 19 countries that use the euro hit a record 8.1% amid soaring energy costs caused in part by Russia’s war in Ukraine. The latest data from the European Union statistics agency Eurostat showed on Tuesday that annual inflation in May exceeded the previous record of 7.4% reached in the previous two months. Energy prices jumped 39.2%, underscoring how the war and the accompanying global energy crisis are making life more expensive for the eurozone’s 343 million people. Inflation in the euro zone is now at its highest level since the start of euro accounting in 1997. Food prices have also increased by 7.5%, while the prices of goods have increased by 4 .2% and the cost of services 3.5%.
Deutsche Bank and its subsidiary raided over ‘green money laundering’ allegations
BERLIN (AP) — German authorities raided the offices of Deutsche Bank and its subsidiary DWS after claims it exaggerated the durable credentials of some of the products it sold. Frankfurt prosecutors said the investigation focused on allegations of investment fraud, but no specific suspects had yet been identified. A former sustainability manager at DWS has claimed the asset management firm has exaggerated the environmental and climate credentials of some funds. Deutsche Bank said in a statement that Tuesday’s raids were “directed against unknown individuals in connection with greenwashing allegations against DWS.” He said the DWD was cooperating with “all relevant regulators and authorities on this matter”.
The S&P 500 fell 26.09 points, or 0.6%, to 4,132.15. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 222.84 points, or 0.7%, to 32,990.12. The Nasdaq lost 49.74 points, or 0.4%, to 12,081.39. The Russell 2000 Small Business Index fell 23.85 points, or 1.3%, to 1,864.04.