BUSINESS

Business Highlights

Staff Writer
Columbus CEO

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Fears over global slowdown hammer US stocks for 2nd day

NEW YORK (AP) — Growing concerns about a slowdown in China shook markets around the world on Friday, driving the U.S. stock market to its biggest drop in nearly four years.

The rout started in Asia and quickly spread to Europe, battering major markets in Germany and France. In the U.S., the selling started early and never let up.

Investors ditched beaten-down oil companies, as well as Netflix, Apple and other technology darlings. Oil plunged below $40 for the first time since the financial crisis, and government bonds rallied as investors raced into hiding spots.

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Barrel of US crude drops below $40

NEW YORK (AP) — A barrel of U.S. crude oil fell below $40 per barrel for the first time since the end of the global economic crisis.

Friday's fall, to $39.86, was just the latest indicator of a vast shift in the energy landscape over the past year. The price of oil has fallen for eight consecutive weeks, the longest streak since 1986. Oil is down 34 percent from its high of $61.43 this year, and 62 percent from its high of $107.26 last year.

A boom in production has outpaced growth in global oil demand. The U.S. is churning out oil at a rate not seen in decades. Meanwhile, even with sharply lower prices, Saudi Arabia and other OPEC nations haven't cut production.

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Sinking currencies point to jitters about emerging economies

WASHINGTON (AP) — In emerging markets worldwide, currencies are plunging over fears that developing economies are on the verge of a crippling fall.

Success stories until recently, emerging economies are seen as casualties now — of slower growth in China, plunging prices for commodities like oil and iron ore, the prospect of higher U.S. interest rates and homegrown threats.

The damage has spilled across oceans, with the turmoil jolting investors in New York, Tokyo and Europe.

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Experts: Deleted online information never actually goes away

NEW YORK (AP) — The Ashley Madison hack is a big reminder to all Web users: If you submit private data online, chances are it will never fully be deleted.

The hackers, who stole the data about a month ago and then posted it online this week, claimed in a statement that part of the reason for the theft was Ashley Madison's fraudulent promise to fully delete users' information if they paid the company a $19 fee.

The website — whose slogan is "Life is short. Have an affair" — is marketed to people looking for extramarital relationships. It purports to have about 39 million members.

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1st US tar sands mine set to open for business in Utah

BOOK CLIFFS, Utah (AP) — On a remote Utah ridge covered in sagebrush, pines and wild grasses, a Canadian company is about to embark on something never before done commercially in the United States: digging sticky, black, tar-soaked sand from the ground and extracting the petroleum.

The impending opening of the nation's first tar sands mine has become another front in the battle across the West between preservationists and the energy industry.

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Deere cuts earnings outlook on weak farm, energy sales

NEW YORK (AP) — Deere & Co. on Friday cut its full-year outlook because it expects the weak agriculture and energy sectors to continue dragging down equipment sales.

The agricultural equipment manufacturer has been facing a downturn in equipment sales as weak commodity prices hold back farmers from buying new equipment.

Meanwhile, a weak energy sector has been dragging down construction equipment sales.

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US safety agency probes Honda Accord air bag failures

DETROIT (AP) — U.S. auto safety regulators are investigating reports that air bags on some older Honda Accords may not inflate in a crash.

The probe by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration covers about 384,000 cars from the 2008 model year.

The agency says in documents posted Friday that it received 19 consumer complaints that the air bag control computer failed in the Accord, which then was Honda's top-selling model.

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Appeals court reinstates wage rules for home care workers

WASHINGTON (AP) — A federal appeals court on Friday revived Obama administration regulations that guarantee overtime and minimum wage protection to nearly 2 million home health care workers.

The ruling was a victory for worker advocacy groups and labor unions that have long sought higher wages for domestic workers who help the elderly and disabled with everyday tasks such as bathing or taking medicine.

It also was a win for the White House, which proposed the rules four years ago as part of an effort to go around an unwilling Congress in a bid to help low-wage workers through executive action.

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AP Poll: No lag on tech use by black, Hispanic millennials

WASHINGTON (AP) — A new poll finds African-American and Hispanic millennials are just as technologically connected and likely to get news through social media as regularly as their white counterparts, further narrowing the risk of people of color being left behind technologically.

Overall, 57 percent of millennials say they get news and information from Facebook at least once a day, and 81 percent say they get it from Facebook at least once a week.

The poll also found that Hispanics and African-Americans are as likely as any millennials to have a paid news subscription.

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Greek election looms as parties struggle to form government

ATHENS, Greece (AP) — Greece's main opposition party launched efforts to form a new government Friday following Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras' resignation, but made no progress in what appears a doomed task — which will pave the way for another potentially destabilizing election.

Tsipras resigned late Thursday and called an early election next month to deal with a rebellion in his radical left Syriza party over the terms of Greece's new bailout deal.

Although no date has been set, outgoing government spokeswoman Olga Gerovassili said Friday she expects Greeks will go to the polls on Sept. 20.

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By The Associated Press=

The Dow Jones industrial average fell 530.94 points, or 3.1 percent, to 16,459.75. The Standard & Poor's 500 index dropped 64.84 points, or 3.2 percent, to close at 1,970.89. The Nasdaq slid 171.45 points, or 3.5 percent, to 4,706.04.

U.S. crude fell 87 cents to close at $40.45 in New York. It fell as low as $39.86 in midday trading. Brent crude, a benchmark for international oils used by many U.S. refineries, fell $1.16 to close at $45.46 in London. Wholesale gasoline rose 1 cent to close at $1.545 a gallon. Heating oil fell 3.3 cents to close at $1.462 a gallon. Natural gas fell 7.9 cents to close at $2.676 per 1,000 cubic feet.