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Justices hostile to Virginia Republicans in black voters case

WASHINGTON ( ) – Supre,上海夜网邀请码Rae,me Court justices on Monday signaled they are likely to leave in place a lower-court’s ruling that Virginia’s Republican-led legislature unlawfully considered race when drawing U.S. congressional districts by packing black voters into one of them.

The court heard oral arguments in the case at a time when Democrats are accusing Republicans 上海夜生活论坛in various states of taking actions to reduce the influence of black, Hispanic and other voters who often favor Democrats.

The focus of the case is on t,上海021夜网Oakley,he composition of the majority-black U.S. House of Rep,上海夜生活去哪玩Dallas,resentatives district held by Democrat Bobby Scott, the only black member of Virginia’s congressional delegation.

The eight justices, down one following the Feb. 13 death of conservative Antonin Scalia, heard an appeal by current and former Republican House members challenging the June 2015 lower court ruling that threw out the district.

Following that ruling, some black voters from Scott’s district were moved to an adjoining district, which is currently represented by white Republican Randy Forbes, one of the challengers in the case. This is likely to make the district a possible Democratic pickup in the Nov. 8 election.

Without Scalia, the court could split 4-4 with its four liberals on one side and four conservatives on the other, which would leave intact the lower-court decision. None of the court’s liberals indicated they are likely to back the Republican challengers.

The court may not even decide the merits of the case. The justices could instead rule that House members from adjoining districts do not have legal standing to challenge new boundary lines that imperil their re-election prospects.

Some of the justices signaled hostility to the idea that elected House members should receive legal protection when their ability to win re-election is put in doubt.

“This is now an incumbency-protection standing rule,” liberal Sonia Sotomayor said of the challengers’ legal argument.

Liberal Elena Kagan said even if lawmakers suffered an injury, the question remains whether they have a “legally recognized interest” in their re-election prospects.

Several voters in Scott’s district challenged the redistricting plan, approved by the Republican-led legislature in 2012, saying it minimized minority voting power in violation of the federal Voting Rights Act and the U.S. Constitution’s guarantee of equal protection under the law.

The voters who brought the case in 2013 argued that the district that Scott represents, stretching from Richmond to Norfolk, was racially “gerrymandered,” cramming black voters into it and reducing black influence in neighboring districts.

A ruling is due by the end of June.

The case is Wittman v. Personhuballah, U.S. Supreme Court, No. 14-1504.

Fed official pushes back on calls for more congressional oversight

NEW YORK ( ) – A Federal Reserve policymaker pushed back on calls from two U.S. senators for the nominee to a high-profile job at the Fed to testify before Congress, saying such a rule could hurt the central bank’s independence from political pressure.

,上海夜玩网论坛上海夜网Quaid,U.S. Democratic senators Elizabeth Warren and Kirsten Gillibrand in recent days have sepa,上海夜网后花园Nadia,rately called for more congressional oversight and criticized what they called a lack of transparency and candidate diversity in the selection of a new president for the New York Fed.

Warren zeroed in on a newspaper report that John Williams, the San Francisco Fed president, was the front-runner for the job, saying he and the New York Fed directors who selected him should first testify before a Senate committee about his qualifications and how he was chosen.

“If that’s the case, I’d worry about the independe,上海夜网千花Easton,nce of the Fed,” Philadelphia Fed President Patrick Harker told reporters when asked about the political criticism.

“While (the idea) has some appeal … there are unintended consequences and some of that would be a diminution of the independence, … whether it’s a reality or perceived, of the Federal Reserve system,” he said. “I think that is a significant problem.”

Harker added there were “absolute advantages” to more transparency in the process and the Fed should do better. But he warned that congressional testimonies or publishing lists of candidates could “preclude a set of very high accomplished and qualified candidates from even entering the pool.”

“That’s human nature,” he said. “I don’t think you’re going to be able to change that.”

Newell Brands cuts board deal with Icahn, snubbing Starboard

( ) – Newell Brands Inc NWL.N said on Monday it has agreed to appoint four directors to its board put forward by billionaire investor Carl Icahn, a deal that excludes activist hedge fund Starboard Value LP, which had mounted its own board challenge.

The agreement is an example of activist investors competing against each other rather than working in tandem. Starboard, which is seeking to replace Newell’s entire board of directors, declined to comment on its next move.

Icahn disclosed a 6.86 percent stake in the Hoboken, New Jersey-based consumer products company last Friday. However, he and Newell CEO Michael Polk have been in discussions since last month, according to two people familiar with the matter who requested anonymity to disclose the confidential talks.

One analyst said the Icahn board deal changes the dynamics of the contest. “上海夜生活网But it doesn’t mean that Starboard will capitulate,” said Damien Park, managing director at consulting group Spotlight Advisors.

Newell’s shares were down 6.5 percent $26.79 on Monday afternoon, giving the company a market capitalization of $13 billion.

“There is likely also a belief that the activist who loses will sell shares, putting pressure on the stock,” Renaissance Macro Research analyst April Scee said.

Newell said it had accepted Icahn’s designated nominees Patrick Campbell, Brett Icahn, Andrew Langham and Courtney Mather to sit on its board alongside existing directors Polk, James Craigie, Debra Crew, Steven Strobel and Michael Todman.

In addition, Judith Sprieser and another independent director nominee designated by Icahn and approved by Newell’s board will be nominated to stand for election at the company’s 2,上海夜生活网交流Hal,018 annual shareholder meeting.

Starboard has put forward a 12-member slate to ,上海足浴夜网联系方式Octava,replace Newell’s board, arguing the maker of Rubbermaid, Crock-Pot slow cookers and Yankee Candles has underperformed peers and mismanaged its $15.4 billion acquisition of Jarden Corp in 2016.

Starboard had teamed up with former Jarden executives and board members including former chairman Martin Franklin, who resigned from Newell’s board earlier this year.

Icahn said in a statement that his views on strategy are al,上海夜网官方网站Tamara,igned with those of the company, including on its “expanded transformation plan” that includes divesting some business lines.

Late last month, Newell outlined ongoing plans to overhaul itself from a hybrid holding-and-operating company to a more focused operator, with an increased emphasis on higher-margin operations such as online sales.

Icahn had said in a regulatory filing last week that he had spoken to Starboard but that he had not yet decided which side he will back.

Ohio judge rules in favor of 17-year-olds wanting to vote

CLEVELAND ( ) – An Ohio judge ruled Friday teenagers celebrating their 18th birthday before November’s election are entitled to have their votes for presidential nominees counted in next week’s state primary.

“Plaintiffs are entitled to a judgment that the secretary abused his discretion,” Franklin County Common Pleas Judge Richard Frye said in his ruling about Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted.

Husted reversed an earlier decision to appeal, saying he would not after hearing the case would only be heard a day before the election, leaving the state little time to properly carry out the election.

“Even if we were to prevail, there is no effective way to responsibly make the changes necessary to imple,上海夜生活网交流Dakota,ment an orderly election,” he said.

Nine teenagers from across the state claimed in a lawsuit this week that Hustle’s interpretation of state law that eliminated their voting rights was incorrect.

The judge said his decision affected “potentially thousands of other 17-year-old voters still eager to participate at next week’s primary election.” He said no secretary of state between 1981 and 2012 had ever adopted the reading of state law he was now overturning.

Husted in December modified the state’s election manual to say 17-year-olds are allowed only to nominate candidates but are prohibited from voting for presidential delegates because they are elected, not nominated, according to the lawsuit.

The teenagers argued Husted’s interpretation contradicts state law and a previous ruling by the state Supreme Court that allows 17-year-olds who will be 18 by the election to vote in primaries.

Alexis Brossart, a 17-year-old student at Milford High School outside Cincinnati,上海夜生活桑拿会所Kai,, was excited to vote until she got a letter last week saying she could not pick a presidential nominee.


“I registered in February. Ever since February, I’ve been excited to vote,” Brossart told .

The attorney for the nine teenagers said they were galvanized when they heard their votes would not count. “It has caused them to think about their voting rights and get more engaged in the process,” Rachel Bloomekatz said.

A similar lawsuit filed in federal court by the campaign of Democrat presidential contender Bernie Sanders was halted on Friday when U.S. District Magistrate Judge Elizabeth Preston Deavers stayed the matter until the state court finding.

In the Ohio primary, 66 delegates are ,上海夜生活Landon,at stake for the Republicans and 159 for the Democrats.

Written by shyw on April 29, 2017 Categories: yhlaanmq Tags: , ,

Exclusive: Vivendi open to alternative strategy for Telecom Italia

MILAN ( ) – Telecom Italia’s main shareholder, French media group Vivendi (VIV.PA), has declared itself ready to support an alternative strategy to boost the Italian firm’s short-term share price, as activist investor Elliott Advisors p,上海夜网推油Caitlin,ushes for a shakeup.

Last week Elliott said it had taken an unspecified stake in Telecom Italia (TIM) and was ready to replace board members in a drive to improve strategy, value and governance.

Vivendi, which owns 24 percent of TIM, told on Wednesday night that it still supported a longer-term strategy unveiled by TIM’s new chief executive last week and was committed to creating an Italian telecoms and content champion.

However, it added, “like any other shareholder sensitive to leveraging its investments, Vivendi would be ready, if necessary, to support another strategy capable of generating a short-term rise in the TIM share price,” a Vi上海夜生活vendi spokesman said in an email.

“As always, the shareholders will decide.”

In addition, Vivendi CEO Arnaud De Puyfontaine, who also serves as executive chairman of TIM,,上海夜哪里艳遇Cain, might suspend his executive functions at the former phone monopoly. As chairman, he will have a central role in dealing with Elliott’s campaign.

“During the period devoted to this strategic debate, Arnaud de Puyfontaine has indicated that he is considering suspending his executive functions at TIM,” the Vivendi spokesman said.


Elliott has yet to outline its proposals for TIM, but sources said the fund wants it to be run as a true “public company” with the majority of board members independent.

The sources said it also plans to push for the conversion of TIM’s savings shares into ordinary ones – a move that would help raise cash but which Vivendi blocked in late 2015 – and seek a spin-off of the soon-to-be-created network company.

TIM shares rose 0.6 percent to 0.79 euros in morning trade on Thursday. The savings shares, which offer a guaranteed dividend but do not entitle holders to vote, were up 1.3 percent.

TIM has lost more than one-third of its market value since Vivendi first took a stake in mid-2015, though the French investor says the stock had been declining for a decade before that. It is down more than 70 percent since the start of 2005.

TIM has not paid a dividend since 2012, but last week new Chief Executive Amos Genish held out the promise of richer shareholder returns with a new three-year strategy meant to help it cope with new rivals appearing in both broadband and mobile.

Vivendi said in Wednesday’s email that the 2018-20 plan was an ambitious and realistic move to boost TIM’s financial performance. Some brokerages, including Goldman Sachs and Bryan Garnier, raised their recommendations on the stock after the strategy was released.


However, Elliott’s arrival has raised expectations of other, potentially radical changes.

Vivendi has invested close to 4 billion euros ($5 billion) in TIM since first becoming a shareholder. It has t,上海021夜网Cadence,ightened its grip on the company by appointing two-thirds of its board.

The hands-on approach has led to tensions with some other shareholders and the Italian government, which considers TIM of strategic national importance. Rome used its so-called “golden power” last year to ensure it had a say in some strategic decisions at TIM.

Vivendi also on Wednesday criticized Elliott’s track record of waging campaigns elsewhere.

“Elliott Management repeatedly attacks states and companies … and is known for its financial approach focused on short-term gains, most probably leading in this case to dismantling TIM,” the spokesman said.

The activist investor declined to comment.

The fund has until Tuesday to propose amendments to the agenda for TIM’s annual shareholder meeting called for April 24.

U.S. industrial output soars; housing starts fall

WASHINGTON ( ) – U.S. industrial production surged in February, boosted by strong increases in output at factories and mines, but the economic outlook for the first quarter was dimmed by a larger-than-expected plunge in homebuilding last month.

The broad-based rise in production likely reflected increased investment spending in the wake of hefty corporate income tax cuts, which came into effect in January. Economists, however, worried tariffs on steel and aluminum imports imposed by President Donald Trump last week could weigh on output.

“Much of manufacturing is a user of steel and aluminum,” said John Ryding, chief economist at RDQ Economics in New York. “The policy to impose tariffs poses potential risks to the broader output gain given how important trade is to manufacturing.”

Industrial production jumped 1.1 percent last month, the Federal Reserve said on Friday. That was the largest increase in four months and followed a 0.3 percent decline in January. February’s increase beat economists’ expectations for only a 0.3 percent gain.

Manufacturing output vaulted 1.2 percent, the biggest gain since October, after falling 0.2 percent in 上海夜生活论坛January. Production of primary metals, which include steel and aluminum increased 0.5 percent last month after jumping 1.5 percent in January.

Output of fabricated metal products, which use steel and aluminum, climbed 1.6 percent in February after rising 0.4 percent in the prior month.

Production at mines shot up 4.3 percent last month, boosted by an 11.6 percent surge in oil and gas well drilling. The robust gains in manufacturing and mining production offset a weather-driven 4.7 percent plunge in utilities output.

Industrial capacity utilization, a measure of how fully firms are using their resources, increased 0.7 percentage point to 78.1 percent, its highest reading since January 2015. It remains 1.7 percentage points below its long-run average.

Officials at the Fed tend to look at utilization measures as a signal of how much slack remains in the economy — how far growth has room to run before it becomes inflationary. Capacity use at factories rose ,上海夜生活网419Kade,to its highest level since April 2008.

“It has now broken out above the 20-year average. Is this a sign of more meaningful price pressure ahead?” said Robert Kavcic, a senior economist at BMO Capital Markets in Toronto.

Steadily rising price pressures and a tightening labor market are seen giving the Fed ammunition to raise interest rates next Wednesday.

The dollar was little moved by the data as speculation that more top Trump administration officials could be ousted from the White House hurt investor sentiment. Prices for U.S. Treasuries were trading marginally lower and stocks on Wall Street rose.


In a separate report, the Commerce Department said housing starts declined 7.0 p,上海夜网Gabriel,ercent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.236 million units as a plunge in the construction of multi-family housing units offset a second straight monthly increase in single-family projects.

Economists polled by had fore,上海夜生活桑拿会所Octavien,cast housing starts falling to a 1.290 million-unit rate. Permits for future home building decreased 5.7 percent to a rate of 1.298 million units in February.

While the volatile multi-family housing segment accounted for the decline in home building last month, the broader housing market appears to be slowing. Sales of new and previously owned homes have slumped in recent months as a dearth of properties boosted prices, sidelining some first-time home buyers.

House price gains topped 6.0 percent in December. Mortgage rates have also risen, with the 30-year fixed-rate currently averaging 4.44 percent, not too far from a four-year high of 4.46 percent, according to mortgage finance agency Freddie Mac.

But the housing market remains underpinned by a robust labor market. There is growing optimism that tightening job market conditions will translate into faster wage growth in the second half of this year. Annual wage growth has been stuck below 3.0 percent even as the unemployment rate has dropped to a 17-year low of 4.1 percent.

Single-family homebuilding, which accounts for the largest share of the housing market, increased 2.9 percent to a rate of 902,000 units in February. Single-family home construction rose in the Northeast, South and West, but tumbled in the Midwest.

Permits to build single-family homes slipped 0.6 percent in February to an 872,000 unit-pace. With permits lagging starts, single-family home construction could slow in the months ahead.

A survey on Thursday showed confidence among homebuilders dipping in March, but remaining in strong territory. Builders were less upbeat about sales and buyer traffic over the next six months.

Starts for the volatile multi-family housing segment tumbled 26.1 percent to a rate of 334,000 units in February, the lowest level since September 2017. Permits for the construction of multi-family homes dropped 14.8 percent to a 426,000 unit-pace.

But there was some good news in the report. Single-family house completions surged to their highest level since March 2008. The number of single-family housing units under construction in February was the most since June 2008.

This should help to alleviate some of the property shortage and probably slow the house price inflation.

“The tide appears to be turning somewhat, with completions of single-family homes trending higher over the past year,” said Mark Vitner, a senior economist at Wells Fargo Securities in Charlotte, North Carolina.

“Profits margins are still being crimped, however, and affordability is being constrained further by higher mortgage rates.”

Arizona police release video of fatal collision with Uber…

TEMPE, Ariz./SAN FRANCISCO ( ) – Police in Arizona on Wednesday released a short video of a fatal collision between an Uber self-driving vehicle and a pedestrian, as investigators probe the accident that has put new focus on the safety of autonomous vehicles.

The video, taken from inside the Volvo XC90 sport utility vehicle that Uber has used for testing, shows the vehicle driving along a dark road when an image of a woman walking a bicycle across the road suddenly appears in the headlights.

The woman, Elaine Herzberg, 49, later died from her injuries.

Police have released few details about the accident that occurred on Sunday night in Tempe, Arizona, a suburb of Phoenix, while the SUV was driving in autonomous mode. Uber suspended its self-driving testing in North America after the incident and federal saf,上海凤楼夜网Macauly,ety regulators are conducting their own probe.

Fall-out from the accident could stall the development and testing of self-driving vehicles, which are designed to perform far better than human drivers and sharply reduce the number of motor vehicle fatalities that occur each year.

The video shows the vehicle traveling in the right-hand lane of a divided four-lane roadway. The vehicle’s headlights illuminate a woman directly in front of it who is crossing the SUV’s lane with her bike. The woman appears to be jaywalking as she is not in a crosswalk.

A photo released by safety regulators on Tuesday showed that the impact occurred on the right side of the vehicle.

The footage also shows a view of the vehicle’s interior and the driver at the wheel. The driver appears to be looking down, and not at the road, for two periods of about five seconds each. Just before the video stops, the driver looks upward toward the road and suddenly looks shocked.

“The video is disturbing and heartbreaking to watch, and our thoughts continue to be with Elaine’s loved ones,” Uber said in a statement. “Our cars remain grounded, and we’re assisting local, state and federal authorities in any way we can.”

The video is likely to be a key part of investigations of Uber’s self-driving car technology and whether it was ready for testing on public roads.

Although the exact specifics of Uber’s technology are not known, self-driving cars typically use a combination of sensors, including radar and light-based上海夜生活网 Lidar, to identify objects around the vehicle, including potential obstacles coming into range. While cameras do not perform well in the dark, radar and Lidar can work at night.

One question on regulators’ minds will be why the sensors did not pick up on the presence of Herzberg, who would ostensibly have already crossed three lanes of traffic before arriving in the path of the Uber vehicle.

One self-driving car expert, Bryant Walker Smith, said his first impression was of “outrage” viewing the video.

“Although this video isn’t the full picture, it strongly suggests a failure by Uber’s automated driving system and a lack of due care by Uber’s driver (and by the victim),” said Smith, a professor of law at the University of South Carolina.

Another autonomous driving expert agreed with Smith’s assessment.

“The sensors should have detected the pedestrian in this case; the cameras were likely useless but both the radars and the Lidar must have picked up the pedestrian,” said Raj Rajkumar, a professor at Carnegie Mellon.

“Though no information is available, one would have to conclude based on this video alone, that there are problems in the Uber vehicle software that need to be rectified,” he said.

Uber did not immediately respond to a request for comment on its systems.


The video is likely to renew calls for more oversight in a nascent industry that lacks standardized testing or safety definitions. Lawmakers have had to juggle the need to encourage innovations that promise to dramatically improve safety on roads with current public safety concerns.

Companies including Uber, Alphabet’s Waymo (GOOGL.O) and General Motors’s Cruise Automation (GM.N) have been testing their self-driving technology in Arizona, which has welcomed the industry with a lighter regulatory touch than in states like California, for example.

On Tuesday, Arizona transportation officials said they saw no immediate need to tighten rules on the testing of self-driving cars in the state.

Although some within the self-driving industry have suggested agreeing testing and safety standards for autonomous technology, there has been no,上海夜生活服务Jacob, concerted effort to do so.

Timothy Carone, an associate teaching professor at Notre Dame University’s Mendoza College o,上海夜网Oakley,f Business whose research specialties include artificial intelligence and autonomous systems, said the question is whether Uber did enough testing before sending robot cars out onto streets alongside humans.

“Did they jump the gun?” he said. “If their testing is found to be inefficient, that cannot be allowed to happen again because these systems have to be ready for road tests.”

American fanfare for Canada’s PM raises eyebrows back home

TORONTO ( ) – The attention paid by Americans to the visit of Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to Washington this week sparked cynicism and delight back home, as Canadians more accustomed to being ignored weren’t entirely sure what to make of the fanfare.

With photos of the visit between Trudeau and U.S. President Barack Obama gracing Friday’s front pa上海夜生活论坛ges of the New York Times and Washington Post, Canadians lined up to dismiss and embrace the high-profile of the visit in equal measure.

“The American media noticed us!” a headline in Canada’s National Post newspaper noted in mock delight, as it devoted the entire front page to a photo of Obama and Trudeau hugging, eyes closed, and the next four pages to details of the visit, noting the “budding bromance” between Obama and Trudeau.

But columnist Rex Murphy noted the parallels between the media attention of Trudeau and that devoted to the newly elected Obama years earlier, and the risk of being judged on style before substance is proven: “… while it’s always nice for Canada, or ,夜上海论坛Barney,her representatives, to be in America’s and the ,上海夜生活桑拿会所Nala,world’s eye, too much should not be made of it.”

The election of the photogenic Trudeau, 44, in October has vaulted Canada from obscurity to celebrity abroad, with foreign,上海夜网Cain, news outlets and fashion magazines alike praising the Liberal prime minister for his progressive take on feminism, the environment and refugees, as well as his good looks.

That global audiences are joining the homegrown “Trudeaumania,” a phenomenon first seen a generation ago amid the popularity of Trudeau’s father, former prime minister Pierre Trudeau, leaves Canadians a bit bemused.

“You would think that this was tantamount to the moon landing!” one commenter wrote in response to a Canadian Broadcasting Corp solicitation for comments on what Canadians thought of the Washington visit.

“Enough with the glitter and love-ins,” another chimed in, trying to counter a wave of positive comment about the success of Trudeau on the world stage.

But while the Toronto Star, the nation’s largest newspaper, acknowledged the high-profile visit would be hard for cynical Canadians to take, it cautioned against scorning the fanfare.

“Dismiss showmanship at your peril because without it, we are nothing more than squabbles over soft-wood lumber and country-of-origin labeling. It may not last. But right now it is a win for Canada,” columnist Tim Harper wrote.

Caterpillar’s latest restructuring move could cut 880 jobs

CHICAGO ( ) – Caterpillar Inc (CAT.N) will close two facilities in Texas and Panam上海夜生活a and is also considering shutting its engine manufacturing plant in Illinois as part of a strategy to boost profitability and better handle business cycles, but the move could cut 880 jobs.

The plant closures, which were announced internally over the past two months, were confirmed to by a company spokeswoman on Friday.

She said the move will affect its work tools facility in Waco, Texas, and its demonstration center in Panama.

The world’s largest heavy-duty equipment maker emerged last year from the longest downturn in its history, when sales dropped more th,上海夜生活去哪玩Easton,an 40 percent between 2012 and 2016.

The struggle led not only to a leadership change, but also resulted in a credit rating downgrade by Moody’s.

Chastised by the sales slump, the Deerfield, Illinois-based company has embarked upon a restructuring strategy, looking to squeeze more production out of its existing factories, focusing on lean manufacturing, margin expansion and asset efficiency.

Separately, Caterpillar’s Progress Rail unit is contemplating the closure of its engine manufacturing facility in LaGrange, Illinois, shifting the work to Winston-Salem, North Carolina, and outside suppliers.

“If the LaGrange decision is finalized, the closure would impact approximately 600 full-time positions related directly to engine manufacturing,” Caterpillar’s spokeswoman said.

The plant closure news comes as some U.S. manufacturers are grappling with President Donald Trump’s decision to impose impor,上海021夜网Sabina,t duties on steel and aluminum imports, which is expected to inflate input costs for equipment makers like Caterpillar.

The company’s shares were up 1.6 percent at $156.99 on Friday afternoon.


Since 2013, Caterpillar has reduced its construction and energy and transportation assets by more than $4 billion.

The full-time workforce is smaller too. Even as a recovery in key markets is driving up production at its factories, Caterpillar is relying more on workers with flexible contracts to cater to the improving demand.

Caterpillar had 116,700 workers globally – including both fulltime and those with flexible contracts – at the end of last year.

Instead of investing in new factories, the company is spending money on expanding its services business and enhancing e-commerce capabilities.

The plan aims to eventually lift Caterpillar’s adjusted operating margin to 14-17 percent when annual sales reach $55 billion. The company had sales of $45.5 billion in 2017.

Judging from recent results, the plan seems to be working. The adjusted operating margin swelled to nearly 14 percent last year, its highest level in at least 10 years, from 7 percent in 2016, according to Thomson data.


In its focus on operating discipline, Caterpillar’s restructuring program is similar to the strategy Deere & Co (DE.N) has pursued for nearly two decades as it seeks to boost returns for shareholders.

That discipline has stood the Moline, Illinois-based company in good stead, helping it sustain returns on capital and investment through varying economic cycles.

Caterpillar’s director of investor relations, Amy Campbell, said earlier this week that the company would continue to look at structural costs reduction despite an improvement in sales volumes.

Caterpillar’s workers were informed of the plans about the LaGrange and Panama facilities in January. The decision on the Waco facility was announced in late February.

The work at the Texas plant will be shifted to Wamego, Kansas, affecting 200 regular and contract positions, and the closure of the Panama facility will eliminate about 80 positions, the spokeswoman said.

,上海会所夜网Hadley,(Refiles to fix typo in second sub-headline)

Uber’s use of fewer safety sensors prompts questions after Arizona…

TEMPE, Ariz./PITTSBURGH ( ) – When Uber decided in 2016 to retire its fleet of self-driving Ford Fusion cars in favor of Volvo sport utility vehicles, it also chose to scale back on one notable piece of technology: the safety sensors used to detect objects in the road.

That decision resulted in a self-driving vehicle with more blind spots than its own earlier generation of autonomous cars, as well as those of its rivals, according to interviews with five former employees and four industry experts who spoke for the first time about Uber’s technology switch.

Driverless cars are supposed to avoid accidents with lidar – which uses laser light pulses to detect hazards on the road – and other sensors such as radar and cameras. The new Uber driverless vehicle is armed with only one roof-mounted lidar sensor compared with seven lidar units on the older Ford Fusion models Uber employed, according to diagrams prepared by Uber.

In sc,上海夜网推油Fabian,aling back to a single lidar on the Volvo, Uber introduced a blind zone around the perimeter of the SUV that cannot fully detect pedestrians, according to interviews with former employees and Raj Rajkumar, the head of Carnegie Mellon Uni,上海夜生活网419Gabe,versity’s transportation center who has been working on self-driving technology for over a decade.

The lidar system made by Velodyne – one of the top suppliers of sensors for self-driving vehicles – sees objects in a 360-degree circle around the car, but has a narrow vertical range that prevents it from detecting obstacles low to the ground, according to information on Velodyne’s website as well as former employees who operated the Uber SUVs.

Autonomous vehicles operated by rivals Waymo, Alphabet Inc’s self-driving vehicle unit, have six lidar sensors, while General Motors Co’s vehicle contains five, according to information from the companies.

Uber declined to comment on its decision to reduce its lidar count. In a statement late Tuesday, an Uber spokeswoman said, “We believe that technology has the power to make transportation safer than ever before and recognize our responsibility to contribute to safety in our communities. As we develop self-driving technology, safety is our primary concern every step of the way.”

Uber referred questions on the blind s上海夜生活论坛pot to Velodyne. Velodyne acknowledged that with the rooftop lidar there is a roughly three meter blind spot around a vehicle, saying that more sensors are necessary.

“If you’re going to avoid pedestrians, you’re going to need to have a side lidar to see those pedestrians and avoid them, especially at night,” Marta Hall, president and chief business development officer at Velodyne, told .

The safety of Uber’s self-driving car program is under intense scrutiny since Elaine Herzberg, 49, was killed last week after an Uber Volvo XC90 SUV operating in autonomous mode struck and killed her while she was jaywalking with her bicycle in Tempe, Arizona.

The precise causes of the Arizona accident are not yet known, and it is unclear how the vehicle’s sensors functioned that night or whether the lidar’s blind spot played a role. The incident is under investigation by local police and federal safety officials who have offered few details, including whether Uber’s decision to scale back its sensors is under review.

Uber has said it is cooperating in the investigation and has pulled all of its autonomous cars off the road, but has provided no further details about the crash.

Like the older Fusion model, Uber’s top competitors place multiple, smaller lidar units around the car to augment the central rooftop lidar, a practice experts in the field say provides more complete coverage of the road.

The earlier Fusion test cars used seven lidars, seven radars and 20 cameras. The newer Volvo test vehicles use a single lidar, 10 radars and seven cameras, Uber said.

Since Uber launched a self-driving car program in early 2015, it has hustled to catch up with Waymo, which began working on the technology in 2009. Uber management moved swiftly and con,上海仙霞路夜生活Tamara,fidently even as some car engineers voiced caution, according to former employees, in a rush to get more cars driving more miles.

Seven experts who have reviewed the crash agree that a self-driving system should have seen Herzberg and braked. She had crossed nearly the entire four-lane, empty road before being struck by the front right side of the vehicle. The night was clear and streetlights were lit.

“Radar is supposed to compensate for (the lidar’s) blind spot,” said Rajkumar.

Uber declined to comment on its radar system. Volvo Car Group, owned by China’s Geely, declined to comment. A Ford spokesman said the company was not involved in Uber’s use of the Fusion or the self driving technology employed on the cars.

To be sure, there are many possible causes of the crash other than the lidar blind spot. There could have been a software failure in the Uber car, said Richard Murray, an engineering professor at California’s Institute of Technology and the former head of Caltech’s student self-driving team.

“But this would be quite surprising since there was nothing else on the road,” he said.


An Uber diagram of the Fusion model notes that “front, rear and wing-mounted lidar modules aid in the detection of obstacles in close proximity to the vehicle, as well as smaller ones that can get lost in blind spots.”

A diagram of its Volvo version shows a single lidar system on the roof. In reducing its lidar units, Uber chose to rely more on radar to detect obstacles that may end up in those blind spots, according to company statements.

At Uber’s September 2016 unveiling of its Pittsburgh self-driving car operation, it was still using the Fusions, but had a Volvo on display. Uber staff pointed to the sleekness of the SUV and the relatively small roof mount with only one lidar system, a more attractive upgrade from the Fusion, which had a bulkier look with more sensors attached to the exterior.

A former employee said Uber justified the decision to slim down to one lidar by saying they “overdid it” with the additional sensors on the Fusions, suggesting the multiple lidars were unnecessary as Uber continued to refine its self-driving system.

Uber’s decision to move from the Fusion to a much taller vehicle exacerbated the issue of a blind spot from a single lidar unit, said former employees, because the lidar now sits up higher on top of an SUV, further reducing its ability to see low-lying objects – from squirrels to the wheels of a bicycle or a person’s legs.

One former Uber employee involved in testing both the Fusions and Volvo SUVs said that during a test run in late 2016, the Volvo failed to see a delivery truck’s tailgate lift that extended into the street, and the car nearly hit it going 35 miles-per-hour.

Uber declined to comment on specific testing incidents, but said its technology is constantly being updated and improved, and every incident in the cars is logged and checked out by an engineer.

Blocked Broadcom deal may stunt Chinese Silicon Valley investment

SAN FRANCISCO ( ) – President Donald Trump’,上海夜生活群Kaia,s move to block a Singapore-based company’s takeover of U.S. rival Qualcomm Inc threatens to stunt crucial Chinese investment in the country’s startup capital, according to Silicon Valley venture capitalists and tech executives.

The administration’s heightened regulatory scrutiny on foreign investments, designed to safeguard U.S. companies, could in fact diminish their ability to compete in the global technology industry.

“Asian entities have become sources of capital and relationships for U.S. companies,” said Jeff Richards, a managing partner at GGV Capital, which invests in the United States and China. “This deal getting blocked is not going to go unnoticed aro,夜上海论坛Cadence,und the world.”

Chinese companies have been important investors in, and occasionally buyers of, U.S. startups. Internet giants Tencent Holdings and Alibaba Group have made big investments in U.S. private companies including augmented-reality headset creator Magic Leap, ride-services firms Lyft Inc and Uber Technologies Inc, and prior to its initial public offering, messaging app maker Snap Inc.

Trump’s order on Monday focused on national security concerns that chipmaker Broadcom’s proposed acquisition of San Diego-based Qualcomm would weaken Qualcomm and hand an advantage to Chinese companies looking to build next-generation wireless networks in the United States.

It was also the latest in a series of actions by Trump’s administration, including tariffs on steel and aluminum, to establish a more protectionist stance in an effort to tamp down Chinese imports while raising the regulatory bar on what deals get 上海夜生活approved.

“There is a very thin line between national security and economic protectionism and the use of an executive order to block this merger traverses this line very delicately,” said Venky Ganesan, an investing partner at Menlo Ventures.

Trump’s move was based on a review by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS), an inter-agency panel that has never before blocked a deal before it has been signed.

The broadening reach of CFIUS has chilled Silicon Valley, where startups often turn to Chinese investors not just for cash but for help connecting with supply chains and entering Asian markets.

Stopping Broadcom’s deal was a “broad litmus test (that) will likely cut off market opportunities, strategic alliances, key sources of financing and exits for U.S. tech companies in the future,” said David Sullivan, managing director of Alliance Development Group, a firm that helps U.S. tech companies enter the Chinese market.

There were 165 Chinese investor-backed deals in U.S. tech startups last year. That is a drop from a high of 188 deals in 2015, reflecting increased U.S. regulatory pressure and tighter capital controls in China, according to data firm CB Insights.

The total of financing rounds into U.S. startups last year that involved Chinese entities was $9.3 billion, or 11 percent of the total, according to data firm PitchBook Inc.

U.S. venture capital funds are also raising more money from Chinese family offices and investment firms, but legislation introduced last year in Congress that aims to strengthen CFIUS could change that. Language in the bill could require venture fun,上海021夜网Larissa,ds that have raised money from foreign investors to get government approval for the startup investments they make, a proposition the startup community has called untenable.

Any sort of retaliation by China to such measures could sever the relationship between U.S. tech firms and the world’s second-largest economy.

“We don’t want to go down the path where they use ‘national security’ as a reason to get us out of their market,” said Steve Hoffman, chief executive of Founders Space, a startup incubator based in San Francisco that has locations in China.

Academic in Facebook storm worked on Russian ‘dark’ personality…

MOSCOW/FRANKFURT ( ) – The psychologist at the center of a scandal over the misuse of millions of Facebook users’ personal data worked with Russian researchers on a study of toxic personality traits.

Aleksandr Kogan advised a team at St Petersburg State University that was exploring whether psychopathy, narcissism and machiavellianism – dubbed the ‘dark triad’ by psychologists – were linked to abusive online behavior, said Yanina Ledovaya, senior lecturer at the university’s department of psychology.

“We wanted to detect (internet) trolls in order to improve in some way the lives of people suffering from trolling,” Ledovaya told .

Kogan, a lecturer at Britain’s Cambridge University who also goes by the married name of Spectre, has come under fire for passing data culled via a Facebook personality quiz to political consultancy Cambridge Analytica.

The test was taken by a few hundred thousand people but the app on which it ran also collected details about all of their Facebook ‘friends’ without their knowledge or consent.

That data was then used in a targeted digital ad campaign in support of Donald Trump’s successful run for the U.S. presidency, Cambridge Analytica’s CEO Alexander Nix told an undercover reporter from Britain’s Channel Four news.

Nix was suspended on Tuesday in a spiraling scandal over how the data came into his company’s hands, in violation of Facebook’s own rules. The saga has wiped nearly $50 billion off the social network’s market value.

Kogan did not respond to an emailed request to comment on his work in St Petersburg, but told the BBC on Wednesday he was being made a scapegoat by both Facebook and Cambridge Analytica. The latter firm has no link to the university.


Ledovaya said Kogan had advised the St Petersburg team on the project – which was funded by a university grant – between 2015 and 2017, visiting rarely and mainly interacting from abroad.

The team built a Facebook app using a 61-question survey for Russian-speaking users that sought to determine to what degree they had the ‘dark triad’ traits.

The app collected answers, as well as the public data of respondents, after securing their consent. Separately, the researchers analyzed the text of users’ public Facebook posts.

Le,上海夜生活群Idaline,dovaya said the data gathered was not passed to anyone outside the five-member research team – nor was it shared with Kogan.

“We don’t have the right to share the data of these 10,000 or so people with anyone – it’s a matter of ethics and we are sticking to it,” she said.

Research into personality traits viewed as malevolent goes back at least to Sigmund Freud, the Viennese pioneer of psychiatry who identified narcissism – or excessive self-love.

Machiavellianism, named after the Italian diplomat and writer of the Renaissance era, represents manipulative behavior, while psychopathy manifests a lack of empathy.

Ledovaya said one goal of the project was to ascertain the mental wellbeing of the respondents and, as appropriate, offer free counseling.


The emergence of Kogan’s St Petersburg connection comes as relations between Moscow and the West plumb new lows. Kogan, a U.S. citizen, was born in the former-Soviet republic of Moldova but moved to the United States as a child, Britain’s Guardian newspaper said.

U.S. Special Counsel Robert Mueller has indicted 13 Russian individuals and three Russian companies for criminal and espionage conspiracy to tamper with the U.S. presidential campaign.

One line of inquiry being pursued by Mueller is the suspected use of targeted Faceboo上海夜生活k messages by Russian groups – including the St Petersburg-based Internet Research Bureau.

The St Petersburg State U,上海会所夜网Gabe,niversity research team has nothing to do with the Internet Research Bureau, said Ledovaya.

“I know the people involved in the research project very well – they are the last people I can imagine taking part somehow in such an activity,” said Vladimir Volkhonsky,,上海夜生活男人好去处Dallas, who worked at the psychology faculty until 2011.

Cambridge University said Kogan had correctly sought the permission of the head of the psychology department to do the work with St Petersburg.

“It was understood that this work and any associated grants would be in a private capacity, separate to his work at the university,” it said in a statement.

Zuckerberg apologizes for Facebook mistakes with user data, vows curbs

SAN FRANCISCO ( ) – Facebook Inc (FB.O) Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg apologized on Wednesday for mistakes his company made in how it handled data belonging to 50 million of its u,上海夜哪里艳遇Idris,sers, and promised tougher steps to restrict developers’ access to such information.

The world’s largest social media network is facing growing government scrutiny in Europe and the United States. This follows allegations by a whistleblower that British political consultancy Cambridge Analytica improperly accessed users’ information to build profiles on American voters that were later used to help elect U.S. President Donald Trump in 2016.

“This was a major breach of trust. I’m really sorry this happened. We have a basic responsibility to protect people’s data,” Zuckerberg told CNN, breaking a public silence since the scandal erupted at the weekend.

Zuckerberg sa上海夜生活论坛id in a post on Facebook the company “made mistakes, there’s more to do, and we need to step up and do it.” (bit.ly/2DHAlUJ)

He said the social network planned to conduct an investigation of thousands of apps that have used Facebook’s platform, restrict developer access to data, and give members a tool that lets them disable access to their Facebook data more easily.

His plans did not represent a big reduction of advertisers’ ability to use Facebook data, which is the company’s lifeblood.

European governments expressed dissatisfaction with Facebook’s response and said the scandal showed the need for strong regulation.

Related CoverageRussian UK ambassador says: we had no links to Cambridge AnalyticaWhat are the links between Cambridge Analytica and a Brexit campaign group?

“It shouldn’t be for a company to decide what is the appropriate balance between privacy and innovation and use of data. Those rules should be set by society as a whole and so by parliament,” British minister for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, Matt Hancock, told BBC Radio. “The big tech companies need to abide by the law and we’re strengthening the law.”

Germany’s justice minister Katarina Barley demanded that Facebook executives explain to her whether the site’s 30 million German users had been affected.

Zuckerberg said he was open to additional government regulation and happy to testify before the U.S. Congress if he was the right person.

“I’m not sure we shouldn’t be regulated,” he told CNN. “I actually think the question is more what is the right regulation rather than yes or no, should it be regulated? … People should know who is buying the ads that they see on Facebook.”

Zuckerberg said Facebook was committed to stopping interference in the U.S. midterm election in November and elections in India and Brazil.


Facebook shares fell 1.5 percent in premarket trading on Thursday as the apology failed to quell Wall Street nerves.

The company has lost nearly $46 billion of its stock market value over the past three days on investors’ fears that any failure by big tech firms to protect personal data could deter advertisers and users and invite tougher regulation.

Zuckerberg told the New York Times in an interview published on Wednesday he had not seen a “meaningful number of people” deleting their accounts over the scandal.

Facebook representatives met U.S. congressional staff on Wednesday and planned to continue meetings on Capitol Hill on Thursday. Facebook was unable to answer many questions, two aides who attended the briefing said.

Zuckerberg told the website Recode that fixes to protect user,上海夜网后花园Sabina,s’ data would cost “many millions of dollars.” (bit.ly/2IJbYJS)

The whistleblower who launched the scandal, Christopher Wylie, formerly of Cambridge Analytica, said on Twitter he had accepted invitations to testify before U.S. and UK lawmakers.


On Tuesday, the board of Cambridge Analytica suspended its Chief Executive Alexander Nix, who was caught in a secret recording boasting that his company played a decisive role in Trump’s victory.

Psychologist Aleksandr Kogan, who provided the data, dismissed on Wednesday Cambridge Analytica’s assertions that the information was “incredibly accurate”.

Kogan, who gathered the data by running a survey app on Facebook, also said he was being made a scapegoat by the social media firm and Cambridge Analytica. Both companies have blamed Kogan for alleged data misuse.

About 300,000 Facebook users responded to Kogan’s quiz, but that gave the researcher access to those people’s Facebook friends as well, who had not agreed to share information, producing details on 50 million users.

Facebook has said it subsequently made changes that prevent p,上海021夜网Sabine,eople from sharing data about friends and maintains that no breach occurred because the original users gave permission. Critics say that it essentially was a breach because data of unsuspecting friends was taken.

Analysts say the incident may reduce user engagement with Facebook, lessening its clout with advertisers. Three Wall Street brokerages cut their price targets.

Chamber of Commerce warns Trump against China tariffs

WASHINGTON ( ) – The head of the most influential U.S. business lobbying group warned the Trump administration that unilateral tariffs on Chinese goods could lead上海夜生活网 to a destructive trade war that will hurt American consumers and U.S. eco,夜上海论坛Nadia,nomic growth.

U.S. Chamber of Commerce President Thomas Donohue said in a statement on Thursday that such tariffs, associated with a probe of China’s intellectual property practices, would be “dama,上海夜生活群Nala,ging taxes on American consumers.”

His comments came after White House trade adviser Peter Navarro said that Trump would in coming weeks get options to address China’s “theft and forced transfer” of American intellectual property as part of the investigation under Section 301 of the U.S. Trade Act of 1974.

reported on Tuesday that Trump was considering tariffs on up to $60 billion worth of Chinese information technology, telecommunications and consumer products, along with U.S. investment restrictions for Chinese companies.

Donohue said the Trump administration was right to focus on the negative economic impact of China’s industrial policies and unfair trade practices, but said tariffs were the wrong approach to dealing with these.

“Tariffs of $30 billion a year would wipe out over a third of the savings American families received from the doubling of the standard deduction in tax reform,” Donohue said. “If the tariffs reach $60 billion, which has been rumored, the impact would be even more devastating.”

He urged the administration not to proceed with such a plan.

“Tariffs could lead to a destructive trade war with serious consequences for U.S. economic growth and job creation,” hurting consumers, businesses, farmers and ranchers.

In Beijing, Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Lu Kang said Donohue’s comments were correct, adding that recently more and more American intellectuals had made their rational voices heard.

“In fact, U.S. trade with China in the past 40 years very objectively reduced American families’ per capita spending burden,” Lu told reporters. “We have said many times, there are no winners in a trade war.”


Navarro, speaking on CNBC television, said the remedies in the “Section 301” probe were among “many steps that the president is courageously going to take in order to address unfair trade practices.”

“I don’t think there’s a single person… on Wall Stre,上海夜生活乌托邦Fabiana,et that will oppose cracking down on China’s theft of our intellectual property or their forced transfer,” Navarro added.

But Navarro, a key architect of steel and aluminum tariffs announced last week by Trump, said that tariffs will not necessarily provoke a trade war.

“We can obviously do it in a way that can be good for the American people and good for the global trading system,” he said. “We can do this in a way that is peaceful and will improve and strengthen the trading system… Everybody on Wall Street needs to understand: Just relax.”

China has repeatedly said that there would be no winners in a trade war, but that it would protect its interests in the face of U.S. trade action.

China wouldn’t allow itself to become “the target for the arrows of adversity”, the official China Daily newspaper warned in an editorial late on Thursday.

“It should be borne in mind that even the most playful cat will scratch if you provoke it beyond a certain point,” the newspaper said.

Facebook: call, text history logging requires users’ permission

( ) – Facebook Inc, responding to reports in some technology industry media that it has been logging users’ call and text history without their permission, said in a statement on Sunday that the function “has always been opt-in only.”

The social media site said that when the feature is enabled by the user and contact information is uploaded, the platform can then use the given data when a call or text was made or received with Facebook Lite,上海夜生活去哪玩Balthazar, and Facebook Messenger services.

Facebook specified that it does not collect the content of calls or text messages and information is securely stored. This data is not sold to third parties, Facebook’s statement said.

“You may have seen some recent reports that Facebook has been logging people’s call and SMS (text) history without their permission. This is not the case,” Facebook’s statement said.

The Verge website reported that some Twitter users said they found months or years of call history data in their downloadable Facebook data file. Ars Technica reported Facebook requested access to contacts, SMS data and call history on Android devices to improve its friend recommendation algorithm.

“Call and text history logging is part of an opt,上海夜生活网419Nadia,-in feature for people using Messenger. While we receive certain permissions from ,上海夜生活乌托邦Gabe,Android, uploading this information has always been opt-in only,” the world’s largest so上海夜生活cial media network said.

“People have to expressly agree to use this feature,” the statement said.

The leaders of the U.S. House of Representatives Energy and Commerce Committee on Friday wrote to Facebook chief executive Mark Zuckerberg detailing new concerns about the social media company’s use of data and formally requesting that he testify at a hearing.

Facebook is under pressure from governments, investors and advertisers following allegations by a whistleblower that British political consultancy Cambridge Analytica improperly accessed users’ information to build profiles on American voters that were later used to help elect U.S. President Donald Trump in 2016.

Airbus to name new CEO at the end of the year

PARIS ( ) – The board of Airbus (AIR.PA) will n,上海夜哪里艳遇Octavien,ominate a new CEO at the end of the year, the European aerospace company said on Tuesday as it pledged to implement an independent selection process.

The announcement follows media speculation and political comments about the succession to German-born Tom Enders, with Airbus saying the choice of his replacement would be led by an independent committee backed by external headhunters.

The new CEO’s name will be submitted to shareholders at the annual meeting in spring 2019 and Enders will help to secure a smooth transition, the company said in a statement.

Former Airbus No.2 Fabrice Bregier was until recently seen as heir apparent to long-time rival Enders, but in December the board agreed the staggered departure of both executives.

Their feud had reached boiling point when Enders removed the commercial sales arm from Bregier’s control last summer. Bregier left in February and Enders announced he would not seek a new term when his mandate expires in 2019, contradicting earlier signals indicating he would stay.

The main internal candidate is Guillaume Faury, the former head of the group’s helico上海夜生活pter unit, who stepped into Bregier’s shoes as planemaking boss last month.

Le Figaro reported this month that Faury could combine the CEO role with day-to-day control of the planemaking arm.

Industry observers say the Airbus board is keen to assert control of the appointments process after the company changed its rules in 2013 to reduce the influence of the French and German governments, which each own 11 percent.

During the first 12 years after a pan-European merger in 2000, top jobs had been divided up between France and Germany to protect national interests. Now there are fewer restrictions.


However, alarm bells rang at the company when Germ,夜上海论坛Tallulah,an Economy Minister Brigitte Zypries said this month that Berlin would not oppose a suitable French candidate to replace Enders.

Under Airbus’s previous system of indirect state control, such a concession might have ,上海仙霞路夜生活Idaia,eased traditional Franco-German rivalries over who should run the politically sensitive group.

But since 2013, the board has been at pains to emphasize its independence, meaning even supportive political statements have occasionally triggered a frosty response.

Even now, Airbus watchers say few outside the company believe the French and German governments are blind to who runs Airbus, especially in the light of recent corruption investigations over commercial jetliner and fighter sales.

They add that the nationality of the CEO could influence the position of chairman, since the roles have been divided between French and German candidates, even since the 2013 reforms. Chairman Denis Ranque’s mandate expires in 2020.

Alexandre de Juniac, head of the International Air Transport Association, had been tipped in several media reports as a potential CEO but said this month that the job was not on his agenda.

Enders told staff in January that he would remain fully focused on strategic initiatives, but some analysts have said that the company faces months of uncertainty until a successor is named.

Boeing 737 Max 7 narrowbody jetliner makes maiden flight

SEATTLE ( ) – The smallest member of Boeing Co’s (BA.N) upgraded narrowbody jetliner range, the 138-seat 737 MAX 7, began a maiden flight on Friday, the start of several months of trials before entering service next year, the company said.

The shortened 737, des,上海夜生活网交流Daisy,igned for hot and high conditions or longer journeys than larger narrowb,上海夜网千花Sabrina,ody jets, took off in sunny weather near Seattle at 10:17 a.m. (17,上海夜网推油Landon,17 GMT), watched by Boeing workers and media. The plane was expected to fly for about three hours over Washington state.

The aircraft is the third and smallest member of Boeing’s 737 MAX line-up, but has posted relatively modest sales with fewer than 100 estimated orders out of 4,000 for the MAX family.

Even before taking to the skies, the 737 MAX 7 was thrust into an international dispute when Boeing argued its future was being placed at risk by aggressive discounting by Canada’s Bombardier Inc (BBDb.TO), straining U.S.-Canadian trade relations.

A U.S. trade tribunal in January overturned steep duties imposed by the U.S. Commerce Department on the Bombardier CSeries, saying Boeing had not been harmed by CSeries prices.

Most analysts say demand for such jets, including the competing Airbus SE (AIR.PA) A319neo, is limited as airlines tend to switch to higher-capacity versions to keep up with demand.

“I want to put a yet on that,” Boeing product marketing regional director Jeff Haber said when asked why the aircraft had not sold as w上海夜网ell as larger models.

There are about 2,500 aircraft of its size flying that will need to be replaced in future, Haber said.

“We see a significant market in Asia … and South America,” he said.

Boeing, which does not break down 737 MAX sales by variant, declined to say how many MAX 7s it had sold but said it had eight customers including Southwest Airlines Co (LUV.N) and Westjet Airlines Ltd (WJA.TO).

The company is increasing narrowbody production to meet record overall demand for the 737, which last week celebrated its 10,000th aircraft since the 1968 debut of its now largely upgraded design.

It faces another milestone when the first 737 MAX 9 is delivered to its first customer next week.

Boeing set to win American wide-body jet order: sources

PARIS/NEW YORK ( ) – Boeing Co (BA.N) is close to winning ,上海新夜网龙凤Tamara,a keenly fought contest to supply 787 Dreamliner jets to American Airlines (AAL.O), beating European co上海夜网mpeti,上海凤楼夜网Idaia,tion from the Airbus (AIR.PA) A330neo, three people familiar with the matter said.

The deal, which remains to be finalised, also marks a victory for General Electric (GE.N), whose engines are expected to power the Boeing aircraft, beating proposals from rival Rolls-Royce (RR.L), they said, asking not to be identified.

“We are continuing to look at our wide-body options and are focused on making the right decision for American. No final decisions have been made at this time,” an American spokesman said.

Other parties declined to comment.

Shares of American Airlines closed down 2.5 percent, while shares of Boeing were up 0.4 percent.

Boeing’s expected win deals a fresh blow to the struggling A330neo, weeks after Hawaiian Airlines dropped an order for six Airbus A330-800neo jets in favor of the 787, leaving that particular variant of long-haul A330neo with no customers.

Airbus updated its profitable A330 series in 2014 with new Rolls-Royce engines, but after an initial foray, sales have been sluggish.

Recently appointed sales chief Eric Schulz has made boosting A330neo sales a top priority this year.

American Airlines (AAL.O) said in January it was reviewing the Boeing 787-9 and Airbus A330-900neo, which is in test flights before entering service this summer.

Industry sources had said American was looking for about 25-30 wide-body jets, making a Boeing deal potentially worth some $7-8.5 billion.

Aircraft analysts had predicted American’s decision would be important for the health of the A330neo program, because a win there could spur further sales and prevent new defections.

The latest setback is expected to trigger a scramble by Airbus to prevent the A330neo’s top buyer – and one of its largest corporate customers – AirAsia (AIRA.KL), changing its mind after announcing it would stick with the A330neo.

AirAsia executives visited Boeing earlier this month and have said they were examining the 787.

There are also growing doubts over the fate of an order for 28 A330neo jets by IranAir, part of a deal for 100 Airbus jets, as U.S. President Donald Trump strikes an increasingly hawkish tone over the future of an international sanctions deal.

Between them, AirAsia and IranAir make up over 40 percent of the current order book for the A330neo.

Longer-term, Airbus faces deeper unease over its wide-body position in case failure to impose the A330neo leaves it over-dependent on a single model, the newer A350-900, according to two industry sources. Airbus insists the larger A350-1000 is also ripe for an upturn in sales after a recent calm period.

Airbus officials also say other airlines are looking at the A330neo. Bloomberg News reported this week that the planemaker could introduce a freighter version.

UK-based Rolls-Royce (RR.L) meanwhile denied a Bloomberg report that its Trent 7000 engines, which power the A330neo, were affected by issues on the Trent 1000, wh,上海夜网后花园Kailani,ich is available on the 787 and which has faced reliability problems.

China’s premier hopes trade war can be averted, pledges more open…

BEIJING ( ) – Voicing hopes that Beijing and the United States could avoid a trade war, Premier Li Keqiang told the close of the annual parliament session that China would open its economy further, so that foreign and Chinese firms can compete on an equal footing.

Fears of a global trade war mounted after U.S. President Donald Trump’s imposed hefty import tariffs on steel and aluminum earlier this month and, according to sources in Washington, the United States is set to unveil new tariffs specifically targeting China by the end of this week.

“I hope both China and the U.S. will act rationally, and not be led by emotions, and avoid a trade war,” Li told reporters in a televised news conference at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing.

Those hopes would be damaged if, as sources say, Washington goes ahead with plans for new tariffs on up to $60 billion worth of Chinese technology and consumer goods annually, in a move to fulfill Trump’s campaign promises to get tough on China and its trade practices.

Earlier on Tuesday, riding high after China’s largely rubber-stamp parliament unanimously re-elected him and set the stage for him to rule indefinitely, President Xi Jinping warned self-ruled Taiwan it would face the “punishment of history” for any attempt at separatism.

The warning came just days after Trump angered Beijing by signing into law legislation encouraging closer ties between Taiwan and the United States.

But for the world, the potential fall out from any trade conflict between its two biggest economies posed the more pressing danger.

Without going into detail, Li told his once a year press conference that China will improve access to its services and manufacturing sectors while further lowering import tariffs, including those on cancer-related drugs.

“China’s economy has been so integrated with the world’s, that closing China’s door would mean blocking our way for development,” Li said.

“China’s aim is to ensure that both domestic and foreign firms, and companies under all kinds of ownership structure, will be able to compete on fair terms in China’s large market.”


During his half-hour closing sp上海夜网eech, President Xi was heavy on aspirational themes and he delivered a strong message on Taiwan, which is claimed by China as part of its territory.

“Any actions and tricks to split China are doomed to failure and will meet with the people’s condemnation and the punishment of history,” he said, to loud applause from the almost 3,000 parliamentary delegates.

China has been infuriated by Trump’s signing legislation that encourages the United States to send senior officials to Taiwan to meet Taiwanese counterparts and vice versa.

Xi made repeated references to a resurgent nation of 1.3 billion people which would “ride the mighty east wind o,上海夜生活论坛Caitlin,f the new era” and was on the cusp of matching the country’s greatest achievements in its long history.

At the same time he reiterated increasing global concerns over China’s rise were unjustified and added: “Only those who are in the habit of threatening others will see everyone else as a threat.”

“We will not impose our will on anyone.”,上海仙霞路夜生活Kade,


When Xi’s top economic adviser Liu He visited Washington recently, the Trump administration pressed him to find ways to reduce China’s $375 billion trade surplus with the United States.

“We are unwilling to see a big trade deficit, not only with the U.S.,” Li said. “We hope trade will be balanced.”

In his remarks, Li said that as China widens access to its markets, there will be no forced transfers of technology, and China will better protect intellectual property rights.

Trump says Beijing has forced U.S. companies to transfer their intellectual property to China as a cost of doing business there, though China has insisted that technology transfers are not a condition of gaining market access.

A source who had direct knowledge of the Trump administration’s thinking told last week that the tariffs expected to be announced this week would chiefly target information technology, consumer electronics and telecoms and other products benefiting from U.S. intellectual property.

But they could be much broader and hit consumer products such as clothing and footwear, with a list eventually running to 100 products, this source said.

“We hope the U.S. could ease restrictions on high-tech or high value-added product exports,” Li said.

“We will strictly protect intellectual property. We hope this important means for balancing China-U.S. trade will not be missed, otherwise we will lose a chance to make money.”


Before the press conference, Li introduced China’s four new vice premiers, including Liu He, widely regarded as China’s new economic tsar. But adhering to protocol, it was the premier who did all the talking.

Li said China was confident of achieving its 2018 economic targets. The government aims to expand its economy by around 6.5 percent this year, having easily surpassed the same target in 2017.

China’s financial sector was in good shape and banks have enough provisions, Li said, adding that reg,夜上海论坛Gabi,ulators would take “resolute measures” to tackle financial risks.

The Chinese central bank was being given responsibility for drafting important laws covering the banking and insurance sector, with regulation over the $42 trillion sector becoming more streamlined and tighter.

And Li said he was willing to consider a formal visit to Japan, amid signs of improving ties between the two nations.

Tokyo has repeatedly pressed Beijing to do more to help rein in North Korea’s missile and nuclear programs. China says it is committed to enforcing U.N. sanctions but that all parties need to do more to reduce tensions and restart talks.

Senate approves bill rewriting post-crisis bank rules

WASHINGTON ( ) – The U.S. Senate voted 67 to 31 on Wednesday to ease bank rules, bringing Congress a step closer to passing the first rewrite of the Dodd-Frank reform law enacted after the 2007-2009 global financial crisis.

The draft legislation now heads to the U.S. House of Representatives where Republicans in t,上海会所夜网Eden,he majority say they want to add more provisions to ease financial regulations. Those changes have some of the bill’s backers worried that late alterations could upend the deal struck in the Senate between Republicans and Democrats.

The bill would ease tight restrictions on small banks and community lenders, and includes pro,上海夜生活桑拿会所Babette,visions beneficial to all but the largest U.S. banks.

The measure marks the first significant rewrite of financial rules since the passage of the 2010 Dodd-Frank financial reform law. The White House said in a statement that President Donald Trump would sign the bill into law if approved by the House.

Republican critics say Dodd-Frank went too far and curbs banks’ ability to lend, while many Democrats say it provides critical protections for consumers and taxpayers.

The bill would raise the threshold at which banks are considered systemically risky and subject to stricter oversight to $250 billion from $50 billion. It also exempts banks with less than $10 billion in assets from rules banning proprietary trading, as well as exempts smaller banks from several other post-crisis rules.

The bill would allow custody banks such as BNY Mellon (BK.N) and State Street Corp (STT.N) to exempt the customer deposits they place with central banks from a stringent capital calculation requirement.

In the House, conservative Republicans say they want to expand the bill to include additional regulatory relief, identifying roughly 30 bills they have already passed for inclu,上海足浴夜网联系方式Earl,sion. But that insistence has some of the bill’s supporters concerned it could disrupt the bipartisan support it needs to become law.

“To expect that the House would have a desire to have some fingerprints on this final product is more than reasonable,” said Representative Bill Huizenga, a Michigan Republican, who wants additions to the bill.

Any changes made in the House would again have to pass the Senate, and Republican additions could drive away Senate Democrats whose support is needed for passage.


“There’s no guarantee that a modified bill would be able to pass the Senate,” said Paul Merski, executive vice president with the Independent Community Bankers of America, which supports the Senate bill. “That’s a real danger.”