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Mounting tensions with Iran, China leave oil prices in flux

NEW YORK — A rare mix of geopolitical tensions in the Middle East and China is tugging oil prices in opposite directions and creating uncertainty over where they might land. Deteriorating trade talks between the United States and China have threatened to drive down the cost of oil and gasoline. But escalating tensions in the Middle East and elsewhere could threaten oil supply, which could push the price of oil and gasoline higher.

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Trump lifts tariffs on Mexico, Canada, delays auto tariffs

WASHINGTON — Caught in a sprawling trade dispute with U.S. rival China, President Donald Trump has decided against declaring commercial war on America’s friends. The White House says that he is delaying for six months any decision to slap import taxes on foreign cars, a move that would hit Europe and Japan especially hard. Trump is hoping to use the threat of auto tariffs to pressure Japan and the European Union into making concessions in ongoing trade talks.

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S. Korea allows businesspeople to visit North factory park

SEOUL, South Korea — South Korea will allow its businesspeople to visit their factories at an industrial park in North Korea that was shut down by Seoul’s conservative government in 2016 following a North Korean nuclear test. The Unification Ministry says it plans to discuss with North Korea details for the visits to the North Korean border town of Kaesong. The announcement comes amid a slowdown in inter-Korean engagement following the collapse of a high-stakes nuclear summit between North Korea and the U.S.

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Trade war, heavy rains weigh on Deere & Co.

NEW YORK — Deere cut its expectations for the year as a trade war between the U.S. and China escalates at the same time that farmers are attempting to recover from a planting season besieged by heavy rains. Prices of soybeans targeted by Chinese tariffs last year fell to a 10-year low this week as the countries traded jabs. Deere says farmers have grown more cautious when buying equipment.

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Amazon takes top stake in UK food delivery firm Deliveroo

LONDON — Amazon is investing in British meal delivery company Deliveroo, giving the online shopping behemoth a larger stake in the fast-growing restaurant delivery business. Deliveroo says that it raised $575 million from a number of investors led by Amazon.

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Luckin, a Starbucks rival in China, jolts higher in US debut

NEW YORK — Shares of Luckin Coffee, a fast-growing rival to Starbucks in China, rose 20% in their U.S. stock market debut. The Chinese company, which opened its first store in Beijing less than two years ago, has 2,370 locations and plans to surpass the 3,700 stores Starbucks has in China by the end of the year. Luckin raised $561 million in its initial public offering by selling 33 million American depositary shares at $17 apiece. The ADS, trading on the Nasdaq under the symbol “LK,” closed at $20.38.

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Pelosi to meet Mnuchin in hopes of deals on debt, spending

WASHINGTON — House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and other congressional leaders have arranged to meet with Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and acting White House chief of staff Mick Mulvaney next week. They want to explore an agreement to increase the government’s borrowing cap, as well as legislation to stave off a severe round of cuts to agency budgets and the Pentagon. A spokesman for Pelosi says the two politically nettlesome items won’t necessarily be paired together. Both are considered a must-do by Pelosi.

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Countertops and rubber bands: US pursues obscure trade cases

WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump’s high-profile trade offensives have grabbed headlines and rattled financial markets around the world. He’s battling China over the industries of the future, strong-arming Canada and Mexico into reshaping North American trade and threatening to tax cars from Europe and Japan.

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Wynn and MGM in talks about sale of Encore Boston casino

BOSTON — Two major casino operators are in preliminary talks about the possible sale of one of the largest casinos in the Northeast. Wynn Resorts and MGM Resorts may reach a deal to sell Wynn’s Boston Harbor casino complex to MGM. This comes as Wynn is about to open another casino. Gambling regulators last month levied a $35 million fine on Wynn Resorts but let Wynn keep its casino license after finding executives failed to disclose sexual misconduct allegations against company founder Steve Wynn.

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Wobbly week for US stocks; 2nd weekly drop for S&P 500

NEW YORK — Stocks fell broadly on Wall Street Friday as investor jitters over the heated trade war between the world’s two biggest economies overshadowed encouraging developments. The sell-off handed the benchmark S&P 500 index its second straight weekly loss. Technology and industrial stocks took some of the heaviest losses. Utilities eked out a gain. Small company stocks fell more than the rest of the market.

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The S&P 500 fell 16.79 points, or 0.6%, to 2,859.53. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 98.68 points, or 0.4%, to 25,764. The Nasdaq composite dropped 81.76, or 1%, to 7,816.28. The Russell 2000 index of small company stocks gave up 21.48 points, or 1.4%, to 1,535.76.

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