Business Highlights


Tired of travel fees? Here’s a charge you may be unaware of

NEW YORK — Ever feel like the taxi ride from the airport costs more than the trip there? It’s not your imagination.

Airports across the country add surcharges of up to $5 a ride — typically passed directly on to travellers — for trips originating at their curbs. There are similar charges for limousine, Uber and Lyft drivers as well as shuttle buses for hotels, car rental companies and off-airport parking lots.

Those fees quickly add up, costing travellers more than $183 million last year at the 50 largest airports in the U.S., according to Associated Press calculations based on data obtained through dozens of public records requests.


Asia laments Trump rejection of Pacific trade pact

TOKYO (AP) — President-elect Donald Trump says he wants to pull out of the Trans-Pacific Partnership but other Pacific Rim leaders are vowing to push market-opening efforts they say are vital for growth.

The possible decline of the 12-nation TPP could give a boost to alternative initiatives including one promoted by China in which the United States is not taking part.

Trump’s message was issued after President Barack Obama and other leaders of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation group, meeting in Peru, called Sunday for fighting the backlash against trade highlighted by Trump’s victory and Britain’s vote to leave the European Union.


Dow surpasses 19,000 as a record-setting drive continues

NEW YORK (AP) — The Dow Jones industrial average surpassed 19,000 for the first time Tuesday as a post-election rally drove indexes further into record territory. Discount store chains made large gains, but health care companies tumbled.

Stocks opened solidly higher after setting records on Monday. They gave up some of their gains around midday but reached new highs late in the afternoon. Health care stocks slumped after weak results from medical device company Medtronic. Retailers soared after strong earnings from Dollar Tree and Burlington Stores.


US home sales reach strongest pace in nearly a decade

WASHINGTON (AP) — Americans bought homes in October at the fastest pace in nearly decade, helped out by low mortgage rates that have since started to climb following the presidential election of Donald Trump.

The National Association of Realtors said Tuesday that sales of existing homes rose 2 per cent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.6 million. Sales reached their strongest pace since February 2007, a sign that the market is still healing from the collapsing prices and foreclosures that ignited the 2008 financial crisis.


World Bank: Europeans still worried about job security

BUCHAREST, Romania (AP) — The World Bank says people in Europe and Central Asia remain worried about job security despite modest economic growth.

The bank’s chief economist for Europe and Central Asia, Hans Timmer, said Tuesday that the region’s economies are expected to grow 1.6 per cent this year, with similar growth levels in 2017 and 2018.

However, the bank says people are worried that many of the new jobs are temporary and part-time and the skills required are “driven by new digital technologies.”


Dr Pepper buys Bai for $1.7B, ups low-calorie game

NEW YORK (AP) — Dr Pepper Snapple Group will pay $1.7 billion for Bai Brands, a fruity drink maker that counts pop star Justin Timberlake as an investor.

It said Tuesday that Bai will help the company expand into the low-calorie beverage market. Bai markets its drinks as having 5 calories, antioxidants and no artificial sweeteners. Dr Pepper Snapple’s brands include its namesake Dr Pepper soda, A&W root beer and Canada Dry ginger ale.


Lufthansa group hit by strikes, cancels 100s of flights

BERLIN (AP) — Cabin crew at Lufthansa’s budget unit Eurowings launched a 15-hour strike Tuesday, causing dozens of flight cancellations, as the German carrier warned customers to prepare for a larger walk-out by pilots Wednesday.

The Cockpit union announced Monday that pilots of all short- and long-haul flights out of Germany will go on strike in a dispute over pay.

The airline said Tuesday that due to tomorrow’s strike 876 of 3,000 LH Group flights had to be cancelled. It said about 100,000 passengers would be affected, including on 51 intercontinental connections.


Hong Kong Disney gets $1.4B expansion with Frozen theme area

HONG KONG (AP) — The Walt Disney Co. and Hong Kong are launching a $1.4 billion expansion of the southern Chinese city’s Disneyland resort that includes the company’s first themed areas based on the movie “Frozen” and Marvel superhero characters.

The Hong Kong government, which owns a controlling stake in the resort, said Tuesday it signed an agreement with Disney for the expansion, which also calls for renovating the park’s castle and adding an attraction based on Disney’s new animated film “Moana.”

Work on the 10.9 billion Hong Kong dollar ($1.4 billion) expansion is scheduled to run from 2018 to 2023.


Toyota recalling 834,000 Sienna minivans in North America

PLANO, Texas (AP) — Toyota Motor Corp. is recalling 834,000 Toyota Sienna minivans in North America because the sliding doors could open while the vehicle is moving.

The recall involves Sienna minivans from the 2011-2016 model years. A majority of the minivans — 744,000 — were sold in the U.S.

Toyota says the problem happens when the door’s opening is impeded and the motor’s circuit gets overloaded. If the door is unlatched, it could open while the minivan is driving.


US allows GM to delay recall to prove safety of air bags

DETROIT (AP) — U.S. auto safety regulators are allowing General Motors to delay a large recall of potentially defective air bags, giving the company time to prove that the devices are safe and to possibly avoid a huge financial hit.

The unusual move by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration buys time for GM to do long-term tests of Takata air bag inflators in older trucks and SUVs including its top-selling vehicle, the Chevrolet Silverado pickup.


Medtronic 2Q profit surges, revenue misses expectations

NEW YORK (AP) — Medtronic PLC’s fiscal second-quarter profit more than doubled on higher sales of its heart and surgical devices. But revenue fell short of Wall Street expectations, helping to drag shares lower.

The medical device company earned $1.12 billion, or 80 cents per share. Earnings, adjusted for unusual costs, came to $1.12 per share. The results topped Wall Street expectations, analyst surveyed by Zacks Investment Research were anticipating earnings of $1.11 per share.


The Dow climbed 67.18 points, or 0.4 per cent, to 19,023.87. The Standard & Poor’s 500 index rose 4.76 points, or 0.2 per cent, to 2,202.94. The Nasdaq composite jumped 17.49 points, or 0.3 per cent, to 5,386.35.

Benchmark U.S. crude lost 21 cents to $48.03 a barrel in New York. Brent crude, the international standard, rose 22 cents to $49.12 a barrel in London. In other energy trading, wholesale gasoline picked up 1 cent to $1.41 a gallon. Heating oil remained at $1.53 a gallon. Natural gas rose 3 cents to $2.98 per 1,000 cubic feet.