Business Highlights

By The Associated Press Markets Associated Press

____

Continue Reading Below

US stocks slide on final trading day of 2017

Wall Street capped its final day of trading for 2017 in the red, weighed down by a broad slide in light trading ahead of the New Year's holiday.

Technology companies, banks and health care stocks accounted for much of the market's decline. Energy stocks also fell, even as the price of U.S. crude oil surged to its highest level in more than two years.

Despite the downbeat end to the week, the U.S. stock market finished 2017 with its strongest year since 2013.

____

Continue Reading Below

Trump trains crosshairs on favorite target, again: Amazon

NEW YORK (AP) — President Donald Trump is returning to a favorite target of his, saying that Amazon.com should be charged more by the U.S. Postal Service for the packages it sends around the world. Amazon has been a consistent recipient of Trump's ire. In a tweet Friday, Trump said Amazon should be charged "MUCH MORE" because the post office loses money each year while making "Amazon richer."

____

Year's box office drops, still 3rd highest gross in history

LOS ANGELES (AP) — After two consecutive record-breaking years at the domestic box office, 2017 was the year the momentum slowed — even with the late adrenaline boost of a new "Star Wars" film. When all is said and done on Jan. 1, the domestic box office is estimated to net out with $11.1 billion in grosses, down around 2.6 percent from 2016's $11.4 billion, according to projections from box office tracker comScore.

____

Officials: Nearly half of Puerto Rico clients without power

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (AP) — Puerto Rico authorities say nearly half of power customers in the U.S. territory still lack electricity more than three months after Hurricane Maria. Officials say that just 55 percent of the nearly 1.5 million customers have power.

____

Trump administration aims to trim rules on offshore drilling

DALLAS (AP) — The Interior Department is proposing to reverse offshore-drilling safety rules imposed after the 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill. Trump administration calls them an unnecessary burden on the oil and gas industry. The Obama administration imposed tougher rules after the Deepwater Horizon explosion, which killed 11 workers and triggered a massive oil spill.

____

Goldman Sachs expects $5 billion hit from tax overhaul in 4Q

NEW YORK (AP) — Goldman Sachs expects to take a $5 billion hit to profits for the fourth quarter and year because of the tax overhaul signed into law last week. The New York bank said Friday that two thirds of the $5 billion are due to changes in repatriation taxes, when funds are returned from overseas. But eventually Goldman, and other banks, will benefit from the changes to the tax code.

____

China offers tax break to keep investors after US changes

BEIJING (AP) — China is offering foreign companies a break on their taxes in a bid to retain investment in response to changes in tax laws by the United States and other governments. The Finance Ministry says those who re-invest in industries specified by Beijing will be exempt from withholding taxes on profits.

____

Will we get a sad poop emoji? Well, there's a process

NEW YORK (AP) — Dozens of new emojis appear on your phone and computer each the year. But it can take years from inspiration — Hey, why isn't there a dumpling? — to a new symbol entering the roster of cartoonish glyphs. The Unicode Consortium is tasked with setting the global standard for the icons. It's a heady responsibility with actual consequences for modern communications. And now more people are getting in on the act.

____

2017 winners and losers: Amazon, Boeing soared; GE plunged

NEW YORK (AP) — In a strong year for stocks overall, Amazon posted more outsize gains while and Boeing nearly doubled. Oil companies fell as the price of crude bounced around. General Electric slumped after making big changes at the top, cutting its dividend and saying it will slim down over the next few years.

____

The Standard & Poor's 500 index fell 13.93 points, or 0.5 percent, to 2,673.61. The Dow Jones industrial average gave up 118.29 points, or 0.5 percent, to 24,719.22. The Nasdaq composite shed 46.77 points, or 0.7 percent, to 6,903.39. The Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks skidded 13.42 points, or 0.9 percent, to 1,535.51.

Benchmark U.S. crude advanced 58 cents, or 1 percent, to settle at $60.42 per barrel in New York. That's the first time U.S. crude has finished above $60 a barrel since June 2015. Brent crude, which is used to price international oils, climbed 71 cents, or 1.1 percent, to $66.87 per barrel in London.

The price of natural gas continued to rise in response to the harsh winter weather gripping a large swath of the U.S. It gained 4 cents, or 1.3 percent, to $2.95 per 1,000 cubic feet. Wholesale gasoline added 1 cent to $1.80 a gallon. Heating oil rise 2 cents to $2.08 a gallon.