NEW YORK (AP) — Stocks ended with moderate losses as traders waited for the first debate between President Trump and Democratic challenger Joe Biden. Banks, energy companies and stocks that depend on consumer spending had some of the biggest losses. The S&P 500 gave up 0.5%, falling 16 points to 3,335. The Dow dropped 131 and the tech-heavy Nasdaq lost 32 . The price of oil fell 3.2%, dragging much of the energy sector down with it.
ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — The Walt Disney Co. is planning to lay off 28,000 workers in its theme parks division in California and Florida. The company has been squeezed by limits on attendance at its parks and other restrictions due to the pandemic. Disney says two-thirds of the planned layoffs involve part-time workers but they range from salaried employees to nonunion hourly workers. Disney’s parks closed last spring as the pandemic started spreading in the U.S. The Florida parks reopened this summer, but the California parks have yet to reopen as the company awaits guidance from the state of California.
BRUSSELS (AP) — European Union and British negotiators are seeking last-minute compromises on topics from fishing rights to state rules in a belated attempt to broker a rudimentary post-Brexit trade deal. But the atmosphere was soured by U.K. lawmakers voting late Tuesday to let their government wriggle out of commitments it already made to the 27 remaining EU members. A bill that breaches the legally binding divorce agreement between the two sides passed its last major hurdle in the House of Commons on a 340 to 256 vote. Time is short for the two sides to mend fences. A Brexit transition period ends Dec. 31. The EU has threatened legal action over the bill.
NEW YORK (AP) — Microsoft took five hours to resolve a major outage of its workplace applications on Monday, but has not clarified what caused the outage. The company said the outage, which affected users’ ability to log into Office 365 applications, began early evening Monday Eastern time and was resolved roughly five hours later. Microsoft did not reply to questions Tuesday about what caused the outage, but said on its service-status Twitter account that it had identified a “recent change” that appeared to cause problems. It then rolled back the change and said five hours later that the problem was resolved.
ST. LOUIS (AP) — A federal judge has blocked a proposed joint venture between two leading private coal companies. The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports the ruling halts the proposed joint venture of Peabody Energy and Arch Resources, two companies based in the St. Louis area. The judge wrote that the Federal Trade Commission has shown “there is a reasonable probability that the proposed joint venture will substantially impair competition in the market for Southern Powder River Basin coal.” In June 2019, Peabody and Arch proposed combining the country’s two most productive mines, which border each other in Wyoming.