J&J 4Q Sales Rise Despite Pandemic, but Charges Cut Profits | Business News

A big jump in prescription drug sales boosted fourth-quarter revenue at Johnson & Johnson, despite the coronavirus pandemic cutting into sales of products from contact lenses to surgical equipment and other medical devices used in procedures at hospitals swamped with COVID-19 patients. Profits dove 57% due to higher research spending, plus litigation and other one-time … Read more

EU Demands That Vaccine Makers Honor Their Commitments | Business News

By RAF CASERT, Associated Press BRUSSELS (AP) — The European Union on Tuesday warned pharmaceutical giants that have developed coronavirus vaccines with EU aid that it must get its shots on schedule, a day after the bloc threatened to impose export controls on vaccines produced within its borders. The EU made it very clear that … Read more

EU Pressures AstraZeneca to Deliver Vaccines as Promised | Business News

By RAF CASERT, Associated Press BRUSSELS (AP) — The European Union is pressuring the pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca to deliver more coronavirus vaccine doses to its 27 nations and to stick to its initial promises once the jab gets EU approval, especially since the bloc has already invested in enhancing production capacity. EU Commission President Ursula … Read more

UK Retailing Shifts Further Online as Boohoo Buys Debenhams | Business News

By PAN PYLAS, Associated Press LONDON (AP) — Around 25,000 U.K. retailing jobs remain under threat even as it emerged Monday that online fashion firm Boohoo has bought Debenhams, one of the country’s oldest department store chains, and rival ASOS confirmed it wants to pick up parts of Arcadia Group. The developments illustrate the huge … Read more

The Latest: N.Y. Seniors, Churches to Get Vaccine Prep Kits | Business News

NEW YORK — New York will be sending more vaccination preparation kits to senior housing complexes and churches in an effort to ensure fairness in vaccine distributions, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Saturday. The kits include syringes, vials, room dividers, privacy curtains, cleaning supplies, personal protective gear and other items. They also include instructions on how … Read more

MyPillow Guy Among the Trump Acolytes Picking up the Torch | Virginia News

By STEVE KARNOWSKI, Associated Press MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — When Mike Lindell, better known to TV viewers as the MyPillow Guy, went to the White House last week to try to persuade President Donald Trump to keep pushing bogus theories about the election, he came away disappointed. Unexpectedly, Trump passed him — and his claims about … Read more

Biden Ordering Stopgap Help as Talks Start on Big Aid Plan | Business News

By JOSH BOAK, Associated Press BALTIMORE (AP) — President Joe Biden plans to take executive action Friday to provide a stopgap measure of financial relief to millions of Americans while Congress begins to consider his much larger $1.9 trillion package to help those affected by the coronavirus pandemic. The two executive orders that Biden is … Read more

Biden Puts Forth Virus Strategy, Requires Mask Use to Travel | Business News

By RICARDO ALONSO-ZALDIVAR, Associated Press WASHINGTON (AP) — As the U.S. enters “what may well be the toughest and deadliest period of the virus,” President Joe Biden is putting forth a national COVID-19 strategy to ramp up vaccinations and testing, reopen schools and businesses and increase the use of masks — including a requirement that … Read more

Music Stars Slam UK’s ‘Shameful’ Failure on EU Touring Rules | Business News

By JILL LAWLESS, Associated Press LONDON (AP) — Dozens of U.K. music stars including Elton John, Ed Sheeran and conductor Simon Rattle say musicians have been “shamefully failed” by the British government, which has left them facing post-Brexit restrictions on touring in the European Union. In a letter published Wednesday in the Times of London, … Read more

Goldman Sachs’ Profits More Than Double, Despite Pandemic | Business News

By KEN SWEET, AP Business Writer NEW YORK (AP) — Goldman Sachs said its profits more than doubled from a year earlier thanks to a surge in both trading and advising revenue. The New York-based investment bank said it earned a profit of $4.36 billion, or $12.08 per share, up from a profit of $1.72 … Read more

European Car Sales Suffer Worst Plunge Ever in Pandemic | Business News

MILAN (AP) — European car sales plunged by nearly a quarter last year as the pandemic provoked the worst crisis ever to hit the capital-intensive industry. New car registrations sank by 23.7%, or 3 million vehicles, to 9.9 million units, according to new figures released Tuesday by the European Automobile Manufacturers Association. It said lockdowns … Read more

Asian Shares Mostly Higher as Biden Inauguration Approaches | Business News

By ELAINE KURTENBACH, AP Business Writer Shares advanced in Asia on Tuesday as the coming changing of the guard in the U.S. raised hopes for more support for the economy and more aggressive measures to fight the pandemic. Benchmarks were higher in Tokyo, Seoul and Hong Kong but slipped in Shanghai. World markets were subdued … Read more

Watchdog: Fossil Fuel Firms Need to Curb Climate Gas Leaks | Business News

BERLIN (AP) — The International Energy Agency says oil and gas companies aren’t doing enough to reduce the release of methane, a potent source of planet-heating emissions, that is seeping out of pipelines and production plants. A report published Monday by the Paris-based organization found the estimated 10% drop in methane emissions from oil and … Read more

Asian Shares Mostly Lower, China Gains on GDP Rebound | Business News

By ELAINE KURTENBACH, AP Business Writer Shares fell Monday across most of Asia following a retreat on Wall Street, but benchmarks in Hong Kong and Shanghai rose after data showed the Chinese economy grew a solid 2.3% in 2020. The stronger than expected performance for the world’s second-largest economy helped counter growing wariness among investors … Read more

Germany Approves Resuming Russia Gas Pipeline Work | Business News

BERLIN (AP) — German authorities gave permission Friday for work to resume on a subsea pipeline bringing natural gas from Russia that’s been the target of U.S. sanctions threats. The decision by the Federal Maritime and Hydrographic Agency can be appealed, meaning there could be another halt to the construction on the Nord Stream 2 … Read more

Stocks Open Higher, Bond Yields Rise Ahead of Biden Speech | Business News

NEW YORK (AP) — Stocks are opening higher on Wall Street as investors look ahead to a speech later Thursday in which President-elect Joe Biden is expected to provide more details on the incoming administration’s plans for more help for the coronavirus-ravaged economy. The S&P 500 index was up 0.3% in the early going, and … Read more

China 2020 Exports up Despite Virus; Surplus Surges to $535B | Business News

BEIJING (AP) — China’s exports rose in 2020 despite pressure from the coronavirus and a tariff war with Washington, boosting its politically volatile trade surplus to $535 billion, one of the highest ever reported. Exports increased 3.6% over 2019 to $2.6 trillion, an improvement over the previous year’s 0.5% gain, customs data showed Thursday. Imports … Read more

Airbnb to Block, Cancel DC Bookings Ahead of Inauguration | U.S. News®

By ANNE D’INNOCENZIO, AP Retail Writer NEW YORK (AP) — Airbnb says it will be blocking and cancelling all reservations in the Washington, D.C. area during the week of the presidential inauguration. The decision, announced Wednesday, was in response to various local, state and federal officials asking people not to travel to Washington, D.C. It … Read more

Volkswagen Sold 9.3 Million Cars in Pandemic Year, Down 15% | Business News

FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) — German automaker Volkswagen said its global sales fell 15.2% during 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic but showed significant recovery toward the end of the year. The company more than tripled its sales of battery-only vehicles. Global sales for all of Volkswagen’s brands amounted to 9.3 million vehicles. The fourth quarter … Read more

Indian Partying Hotspot Goa Counts Losses, Braces for Change | Business News

By VINEETA DEEPAK, Associated Press GOA, India (AP) — The sun’s golden rays fall on Goa’s smooth, sandy beaches every evening, magical as ever but strangely quiet and lonely. This holiday season, few visitors are enjoying the celebrated sunsets in the Indian party hotspot. The unspoken fear of the coronavirus is sapping Goa’s vibrant beach … Read more

Social Media Crackdown Continues After Siege of US Capitol | Political News

LONDON (AP) — Social media platforms are continuing to crack down on fringe groups and conspiracy theories following last week’s deadly riot at the U.S. Capitol. Twitter suspended more than 70,000 accounts associated with the far right QAnon conspiracy and Facebook is removing posts and content fraudulently claiming that the U.S. election was stolen as … Read more

Turkey Says Its Ready to Repair Frayed Ties With Europe | Business News

By SUZAN FRASER, Associated Press ANKARA, Turkey (AP) — Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Tuesday his country is ready to put its frayed relationship with the European Union “back on track” and called on the 27-nation bloc to display the same determination. In an address to EU nations’ ambassadors in Ankara, Erdogan also expressed … Read more

EU Regulator Is Considering Oxford-AstraZeneca Vaccine | Business News

LONDON (AP) — The European Medicines Agency said AstraZeneca and Oxford University have submitted an application for their COVID-19 vaccine to be licensed across the European Union. In a statement Tuesday, the EU regulator said it has received a request for the vaccine to be green-lighted under an expedited process and that it could be … Read more

Asian Stocks Mixed as Markets Watch for Biden Stimulus Plan | Business News

By JOE McDONALD, AP Business Writer BEIJING (AP) — Asian stocks advanced Tuesday as investors watched for details of President-elect Joe Biden’s promised economic stimulus plan. Shanghai, Tokyo and Hong Kong, which account for the bulk of the region’s stock value, rose. Seoul, Sydney and Southeast Asian markets retreated. Overnight, Wall Street declined following a … Read more

US Consulate a Turning Point for Disputed Western Sahara | Business News

By MOSA’AB ELSHAMY, Associated Press DAKHLA, Western Sahara (AP) — Trawlers pack the bustling Western Saharan port of Dakhla, where fish scales glisten from workers’ arms as they roll up their nets and buyers shout bids in a sprawling auction warehouse. Nearby, turquoise waters lap wide, nearly empty Atlantic beaches and diners sip tea in … Read more

New Zealand Central Bank Says Data System Hacked | Business News

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) — New Zealand’s central bank said Sunday that one of its data systems has been breached by an unidentified hacker who potentially accessed commercially and personally sensitive information. A third party file sharing service used by the Reserve Bank of New Zealand to share and store sensitive information had been illegally … Read more

Roku Buys Library of the Short-Lived Streaming Service Quibi | Business News

Roku is buying the content library of Quibi, the short-lived streaming service, to bulk up its own free ad-supported channel. Quibi, short for quick bites, raised $1.75 billion from investors including major Hollywood players like Disney, NBCUniversal and Viacom. It produced shows that were released in 10- to 12-minute increments or less, believing that there … Read more

Hiring Likely Weakened in December Amid Resurgent Virus | U.S. News®

By CHRISTOPHER RUGABER, AP Economics Writer WASHINGTON (AP) — America’s employers likely cut back again on hiring last month — and might even have shed jobs — with the economy under pressure from a resurgent virus that has led many consumers to reduce spending and states and cities to reimpose business restrictions. Economists have forecast … Read more

Judge Blocks Strike Over Railroad’s Virus Safety Precautions | Business News

By JOSH FUNK, AP Business Writer OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — A federal judge has blocked one of Union Pacific’s main unions from going on strike over its concerns about the railroad’s efforts to protect employees from the coronavirus. The Brotherhood of Maintenance of Way Employees Division last month threatened to strike because it wants the … Read more

Facebook Bans Trump Through Biden Inauguration, Maybe Longer | Business News

By BARBARA ORTUTAY and DAVID KLEPPER, Associated Press Facebook and Instagram will bar President Donald Trump from posting on its system at least until the inauguration of President-elect Joe Biden, the platform said Thursday. In a post announcing the unprecedented move, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg said the risk of allowing Trump to use the platform … Read more

World Shares Mixed as Investors Watch for US Vote Outcome | U.S. News®

By ELAINE KURTENBACH, AP Business Writer World shares were mixed and U.S. futures declined Wednesday as investors awaited full results of a Senate runoff election that will determine whether Democrats take control of both houses of the U.S. Congress. Benchmarks edged higher in Europe. Shares traded lower for most of the day in Asia, although … Read more

France Launches Service to Make Deadbeat Parents Pay | Business News

By SYLVIE CORBET, Associated Press PARIS (AP) — France is launching a new government service empowered to take money directly from the bank accounts of parents who fail to pay child support, aiming to help many families — the vast majority of whom are headed by single mothers — emerge from precarious financial situations. President … Read more

It’s Lockdown No. 3 for England, at Least Six Weeks at Home | Business News

By DANICA KIRKA, Associated Press LONDON (AP) — England is entering a third national lockdown that will last at least six weeks, as authorities struggle to stem a surge in COVID-19 infections that threatens to overwhelm hospitals around the U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson has announced a tough new stay-at-home order for England that takes … Read more

Where Is Jack Ma, China’s E-Commerce Pioneer? | Business News

By JOE McDONALD, AP Business Writer BEIJING (AP) — China’s best-known entrepreneur, e-commerce billionaire Jack Ma, made his fortune by taking big risks. The former English teacher founded Alibaba Group in 1999, when China had few internet users. Online payments service Alipay launched five years later, before regulators said such businesses would be allowed. Both … Read more

South Korean Tanker Was Boarded by Armed Iran Guard Forces | Business News

By HYUNG-JIN KIM and JON GAMBRELL, Associated Press SEOUL (AP) — Armed Iranian Revolutionary Guard troops stormed a South Korean tanker and forced the ship to change course and travel to Iran, the vessel’s owner said Tuesday, the latest maritime seizure by Tehran amid heightened tensions with the West over its nuclear program. The military … Read more

Germany Set to Extend Hard Lockdown as Daily Deaths Mount | Business News

By KIRSTEN GRIESHABER, Associated Press BERLIN (AP) — Germany’s disease control center on Tuesday reported 944 more COVID-19 deaths, fueling expectations that Chancellor Angela Merkel and the country’s 16 state governors will extend the country’s lockdown until the end of the month. Germany’s latest lockdown took effect Dec. 16 after a partial shutdown starting in … Read more

NYSE Withdraws Plans to Delist 3 Chinese Phone Carriers | Business News

NEW YORK (AP) — The New York Stock Exchange says it is withdrawing plans to remove shares of three Chinese state-owned phone carriers under an order by President Donald Trump. The exchange cited “further consultation” with U.S. regulators but gave no other details of its decision in a notice issued late Monday. The NYSE earlier … Read more

EU Rejects Criticism for Slow Vaccine Rollout Across Bloc | Business News

By SAMUEL PETREQUIN, Associated Press BRUSSELS (AP) — The European Commission defended its coronavirus vaccination strategy Monday amid growing criticism in member states about the slow rollout of COVID-19 shots across the region of 450 million inhabitants. Vaccinations programs in the 27 nation-bloc have gotten off to a slow start and some EU members have … Read more

Stocks Fall as Trading Starts for Year of Great Expectations | Business News

By STAN CHOE, AP Business Writer NEW YORK (AP) — U.S. stocks are falling from their record highs Monday, as trading gets underway in a year where the dominant expectation is for a powerful economic rebound to eventually sweep the world. The S&P 500 was 2.1% lower in afternoon trading, after earlier flipping from small … Read more

UK Ramps up Inoculations With Oxford-AstraZeneca Vaccine | Business News

LONDON (AP) — Britain on Monday took another giant step in the fight against COVID-19, ramping up its immunization program by giving the first shots in the world from the vaccine created by Oxford University and pharmaceutical giant AstraZeneca. Dialysis patient Brian Pinker, 82, was the first to get the new vaccine shot, administered by … Read more