Business Highlights

By The Associated Press Markets Associated Press

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World Bank predicts solid 3.1 percent global growth in 2018

WASHINGTON (AP) — The World Bank is predicting that the global economy will grow 3.1 percent this year, which would be its best showing in seven years. The United States, the world's largest economy, is expected to receive a boost from the $1.5 trillion tax cut package Congress approved last month.

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Trump to attend World Economic Forum in Swiss ski resort

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump is planning to attend the World Economic Forum in the Swiss ski resort of Davos later this month. White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders says the president welcomes the opportunity to promote his "America First" agenda with world leaders. Sanders says Trump wants to promote his policies for strengthening American businesses, industries and workers.

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Coal CEO blasts federal agency's decision on power grid

WASHINGTON (AP) — The head of the nation's largest privately owned coal company is blasting a decision by an independent energy agency to reject the Trump administration's plan to bolster coal-fired power plants. Robert Murray, CEO of Ohio-based Murray Energy Corp., said Tuesday that the action by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission could lead to more closures of coal-fired power plants and the loss of thousands of jobs.

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France investigates Apple for slowing down old iPhones

PARIS (AP) — French authorities have opened an investigation into Apple over revelations it secretly slowed down older versions of its handsets, the Paris prosecutor's office said Tuesday. The preliminary probe was opened last week over alleged "deception and planned obsolescence" of some Apple products, the office said. It is led by the French body in charge of fraud control, which is part of the finance ministry.

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IV bag shortage has hospitals scrambling to treat flu

TRENTON, N.J. (AP) — An ongoing shortage of fluids used to deliver medicine and treat dehydrated patients has hospital workers scrambling in the midst of a nasty flu season. Supplies dwindled after hurricanes pounded Puerto Rico and cut power to manufacturing plants that make much of the U.S. supply of bags. Now an influx of flu patients has hospitals devising alternatives and workarounds to try to treat patients.

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Bannon to exit Breitbart News Network after break with Trump

WASHINGTON (AP) — Former White House strategist Steve Bannon is stepping down as chairman of Breitbart News Network after a public break with President Donald Trump. Breitbart announced Tuesday that Bannon would step down as executive chairman of the conservative news site. Trump has lashed out at Bannon for comments made in an explosive new book that questions the president's fitness for office.

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CBS appoints John Dickerson as Rose's replacement

PASADENA, Calif. (AP) — 'Face the Nation' host John Dickerson will replace Charlie Rose as one of three co-hosts on the 'CBS This Morning' news program. Dickerson replaces Charlie Rose, who was fired in November on sexual misconduct charges. Dickerson will give up his job as host of the Sunday morning political show for his new weekday job

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US employers posted fewer jobs in November for 2nd month

WASHINGTON (AP) — Employers posted fewer open jobs in November, the second straight month of decline after openings reached a record high in September. The Labor Department says the number of available jobs slipped 0.8 percent to 5.88 million, down from 5.93 million in October. With the economy expanding at a solid pace and businesses confident about future demand, hiring is likely to remain solid going forward.

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Eurozone recovery pushes unemployment to lowest since 2009

LONDON (AP) — Unemployment across the 19-country eurozone fell in November to its lowest level in nearly nine years, the latest sign that the bloc's economy picked up further pace at the end of 2017. The European Union's statistics agency said Tuesday that the jobless rate fell to 8.7 percent in November from 8.8 percent the previous month.

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SpaceX says rocket performance OK in secret satellite launch

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (AP) — SpaceX is defending its rocket performance during the weekend launch of a secret U.S. satellite. Company President Gwynne Shotwell responded Tuesday to media reports that the satellite codenamed Zuma was lost Sunday night. Shotwell says the Falcon 9 rocket "did everything correctly" and suggestions otherwise are "categorically false." Northrop Grumman — which provided the satellite for an undisclosed government entity — isn't commenting.

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Intel CEO: Fixes on the way for serious chip security flaws

LAS VEGAS (AP) — Intel has big plans to steer toward new business in self-driving cars, virtual reality and other cutting-edge technologies. But first it has to pull out of a skid caused by a serious security flaw in its processor chips, a problem so bad that CEO Brian Krzanich had to devote part of his keynote at the CES tech show to reiterating Intel's plan for fixing them. Krzanich then launched into a flashy celebration of Intel's plans to harness data for futuristic innovations.

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S&P 500 keeps climbing as calm continues to reign for stocks

NEW YORK (AP) — Stocks pushed further into record territory Tuesday and the Standard & Poor's 500 index's immaculate start to the year extended to a sixth day. Health care stocks and banks led the way, as calm continues to reign over markets around the world. The strong gains overshadowed weakness for dividend-paying stocks and other areas of the market hurt by rising interest rates after the yield on the 10-year Treasury climbed back above 2.50 percent.

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The Standard & Poor's 500 rose 3.58 points, or 0.1 percent, to 2,751.29 to equal its longest winning streak leading off a year since 2010. The Dow Jones industrial average rose 102.80 points, or 0.4 percent, to 25,385.80, the Nasdaq composite gained 6.19 points, or 0.1 percent, to 7,163.58 and the Russell 2000 index of small-cap stocks slipped 1.71, or 0.1 percent, to 1,560.10.

Benchmark U.S. crude oil rose $1.23 to settle at $62.96 per barrel. Brent crude, the international standard, rose $1.04 to settle at $68.82 per barrel. Natural gas gained 9 cents to $2.92 per 1,000 cubic feet, heating oil rose 2 cents to $2.07 per gallon and wholesale gasoline climbed 4 cents to $1.84 per gallon.