FINANCIAL MARKETS

Stocks recover from earlier losses

NEW YORK (AP) — Stocks have rebounded at midday after opening broadly lower. The major indexes were all higher in early afternoon trading.

The morning’s declines came amid fears that new waves of coronavirus infections could derail the swift economic recovery that Wall Street was sure was on the way.

China is reporting a new outbreak, and New York's governor is upset groups of people are congregating outside bars without face masks, raising the risk of more infections.

VIRUS OUTBREAK-BRITAIN-SHOPS REOPEN

Long lines form outside shops in England

LONDON (AP) — Long lines formed along streets and snaked around blocks across England as shops selling fashion, toys and other nonessential items welcomed customers back for the first time since the U.K. was put into lockdown in late March.

Starved of the retail experience for the best part of three months, shoppers appeared to be taking the social distancing requirements of staying more than six feet apart in stride as they awaited their moment to enter the stores.

For many, the experience is anything but normal. Hand sanitizers must be used, plastic screens will protect workers at payment counters and some shops will only take cards. 

VIRUS OUTBREAK-GERMANY

Germany to take stake in company working on virus vaccine

BERLIN (AP) — The German government says it is taking a 23% stake in CureVac, a German company working on a potential vaccine for the coronavirus, underlining its determination to keep key industries in the country.

Economy Minister Peter Altmaier said Monday that the state-owned KfW development bank will buy $337 million in CureVac shares. He said the aim is to give CureVac “financial security.”

Altmaier said the government won’t exert influence on CureVac’s business decisions.

The main shareholder in CureVac is Dietmar Hopp, the co-founder of German-based business software company SAP.

BRITAIN-BP

BP takes $17.5B hit as pandemic accelerates emissions cuts

LONDON (AP) — Energy company BP says it is writing off up to $17.5 billion from its oil and gas assets. It will also review its plans to develop oil wells as the COVID-19 pandemic hits demands.

BP says the crisis is accelerating its goal of decreasing its reliance on fossil fuels, something that analysts say will become more common across the industry.

The CEO said Monday that the pandemic is forcing the company to face the long-term impact on the economy and the likelihood of weaker demand for a longer period of time.

The company pledged in February to become a net-zero company by 2050.

SUPREME COURT-ATLANTIC COAST PIPELINE

Justices revive permit for pipeline under Appalachian Trail

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Supreme Court is siding with energy companies and the Trump administration in reinstating a permit for a proposed natural gas pipeline that would cross under the Appalachian Trail.

The justices threw out a lower court ruling that had canceled the permit for the Atlantic Coast Pipeline. It would bring natural gas from West Virginia to growing markets in Virginia and North Carolina. Its supporters say the pipeline would bring economic development, thousands of jobs and reduced energy costs for consumers.

Other legal issues remain before construction of the pipeline could begin.

AUTO WORKERS-CORRUPTION PROBE

Auto workers chief, prosecutor to discuss reforming union

DETROIT (AP) — The head of the United Auto Workers will meet this month with the U.S. attorney in Detroit to discuss potential changes for the union following a wide-ranging corruption probe.  

U.S. Attorney Matthew Schneider has floated the idea of the government taking control of the union and has pushed for letting each member vote on its leadership.

The government’s corruption probe has been embarrassing for the UAW. Ten union officials and a late official’s spouse have pleaded guilty since 2017, including former President Gary Jones.

In a joint statement Monday, the two sides said current UAW President Rory Gamble will meet with Schneider June 30 in Detroit to start negotiations on changes for the union. 

NISSAN-KEY SUV

Nissan is revamping the Rogue small SUV

DETROIT (AP) — Nissan is revamping the Rogue small SUV. It hopes a new version will help with a U.S. comeback.

The company's U.S. sales were down nearly 10% due to an aging model lineup and a tarnished reputation from the 2018 arrest of its former CEO on financial misconduct allegations.

Rogue sales were off 15% last year, largely because it hadn’t been redesigned since 2013. Nissan is banking on updated looks, standard safety features, better handling and a smoother ride to lure customers back to it's top-selling U.S. vehicle. But the competition is tough from big sellers like the Toyota RAV4 and Honda CR-V.  

Nissan has been battered by falling sales and mounting losses globally.