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Biz/Tech

Tech losses…Pfizer gains…Wage theft…Hyundai recall

NEW YORK (AP) — Stocks have closed lower on Wall Street, dragged down by big technology companies like Apple and Microsoft. The declines marked the sixth straight losing day for technology stocks. Earnings and most economic indicators have been signaling a steady recovery, but investors remain concerned about the lingering threat from COVID-19, inflation and other factors that could crimp progress. The S&P 500 index fell 0.7% and the Nasdaq slipped 1.9%, while the Dow eked out a small gain.

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Los Angeles and San Francisco have met state guidelines to move into the least-restrictive tier for businesses to reopen during the coronavirus pandemic. The two counties on Tuesday become the first major urban areas in the state to reach the final stage of a phased reopening plan before a projected return to business as usual June 15. Because of the low number of COVID-19 infections and high number of vaccines administered, indoor bars can reopen, larger crowds can cheer on the Dodgers and Giants, and capacity can expand at restaurants, movie theaters, amusement parks, gyms and other establishments.

UNDATED (AP) — Selling vaccines during a pandemic has boosted Pfizer’s bottom line and proven that a strategy it embarked upon over a decade ago is now paying off handsomely. The New York-based pharmaceutical giant earned $4.9 billion in the first three months of the year and dramatically raised its profit forecast for all of 2021 thanks to strong demand for its COVID-19 vaccine. The company, along with its German partner BioNTech, anticipate strong revenue from the vaccine and booster shots for the next three years.

UNDATED (AP) — U.S. companies that cheat their workers out of pay are unlikely to be fined or punished even after they’re caught. A Center for Public Integrity analysis of Labor Department data found that in 2019, 8,500 employers were cited for taking about $287 million from workers. Companies that hire child-care workers, gas station clerks and restaurant servers were among the businesses most likely to get caught. The analysis found, however, that the government rarely penalized repeat offenders and often let companies pay workers back less than they owe.

DETROIT (AP) — Hyundai is recalling over 390,000 vehicles in the U.S. and Canada for problems that can cause engine fires. In one recall, owners are being told to park outdoors until repairs are made. That recall covers more than 203,000 Santa Fe Sport SUVs from 2013 through 2015. Some are being recalled a second time. Brake fluid can leak into a brake computer, causing an electrical short that can lead to fires.

Associated Press

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