Wednesday Evening Business Brief
September 4, 2013, 5:19 PM
- Stocks are closing higher on Wall Street after automakers reported strong sales gains. The Dow Jones industrial average rose nearly 97 points to close at 14,930 today. The S&P 500 index climbed 13 points to 1,653 and the Nasdaq composite rose 36 points to 3,649. General Motors and Ford both rose sharply after reporting big sales increases last month.
- The Nasdaq says one of its trading systems experienced a brief outage today, but the problem was resolved and trading wasn't affected. Nasdaq OMX says the six-minute outage occurred in one of its quote-dissemination channels, which are used to provide real-time price quotes on stocks. A three-hour trading outage on Aug. 22 was also blamed on the quote-disseminating system.
- The price of oil is down today amid uncertainty over U.S. plans to launch a punitive strike against Syria. Benchmark oil for October delivery fell $1.31, or 1.2 percent, to close at $107.23 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The average price for a gallon of gas held steady at $3.59. That's 2 cents less than a week ago and 23 cents cheaper than at this time last year.
- Safeway will pay a fine of $600,000 and has agreed to a nationwide reduction of greenhouse gas emissions from refrigeration equipment at its 659 U.S. stores. The government says the grocery chain violated clear air laws by not promptly fixing leaks of a heat-trapping gas that contributes to climate change, from its refrigerators. The government says Safeway also failed to keep proper maintenance records.
- Travelers could soon be able to keep their shoes on while going through security at more airports. The government says it'll expand faster screening lanes to 100 airports by year-end. Under the Pre-Check program, qualified passengers don't have to remove their shoes, light jackets and belts. They can keep laptops in cases, and liquids and gels in their carry-on bags.
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