Business Highlights

Taxes? Trade? How Trump could affect key areas of economy

Donald Trump won the presidency by pledging to restore a vanished and golden economic era, when growth roared, factory jobs flourished and America sat unchallenged atop the global economy.

Trump has said he’d slash taxes, strong-arm U.S. trading partners, end commitments to environmental rules and make it easier to drill for oil.

He’d lift federal regulations, void President Barack Obama’s health care law and curb immigration. And, of course, build a wall on the Southern border — and force Mexico to pay for it.

Those steps, Trump says, would turbocharge the economy. Yet many economists warn that his plans could spike the national debt, ignite trade wars and perhaps cause a recession.

Investors flee emerging markets after Trump victory

NEW YORK (AP) — Investing in Mexico, China and other emerging markets has never been for the fainthearted. Big swings have been a hallmark, caused by everything from the 1994 “tequila crisis” where Mexico devalued the peso to Russia’s default on its debt in 1998.

Here’s the latest addition to the list: Donald Trump’s victory on Tuesday, which some analysts are calling an “orange swan” event for emerging markets. Trump’s election was unexpected, and investors were unprepared for it — the kind of event that economists liken to seeing a black swan for the first time — and it has caused stock markets to tumble from Mexico City to Seoul. As investors try to piece together what a Trump presidency will mean for stocks, a growing consensus is that emerging markets will be some of the biggest losers, at least in the short term.

Funds devoted to emerging market-stocks tumbled after the election, even while stocks in the United States were surging.

Applications for US unemployment aid fall from 3-month high

WASHINGTON (AP) — Fewer Americans sought unemployment aid last week, the latest sign that companies are holding onto their workers.

The Labor Department said Thursday that weekly applications for jobless benefits fell 11,000 to a seasonally adjusted 254,000. That’s down from a three-month high in the previous week. The four-week average, a less volatile measure, ticked up 1,750 to 259,750. Just over 2 million people are receiving unemployment aid, up 18,000 from the previous week.

Applications, which are a proxy for layoffs, have remained below 300,000 for 88 straight weeks, the longest streak since 1970.

Macy’s says clothing sales strong, gives better outlook

NEW YORK (AP) — Macy’s raised its sales outlook for the year after it said business improved in the third quarter, and cited stronger clothing sales that spanned the men’s, women’s and children’s sections.

The department store chain also said it struck a deal with a real-estate investor that involves redeveloping some properties. That sent its shares up more than 5 percent Thursday. Still, the company’s third-quarter earnings missed Wall Street expectations and a key revenue measure fell for a seventh straight quarter.

Macy’s had been a stellar performer after the recession but has seen sales growth slow in the past year and a half as it and other traditional department store chains face competition from online and off-price rivals. Kohl’s shares also rose Thursday as the company reported better-than-expected profit as it controlled its inventory — but sales fell.

Disney embraces streaming as ratings sag

NEW YORK (AP) — As more and more people get their favorite TV shows and movies online, Disney is also learning to embrace the stream.

The Walt Disney Co. once resisted offering channels like ESPN directly over the internet, preferring old-fashioned cable subscriptions. Its investors are fretting over ratings as more people cut the cord and cancel cable or satellite service. NFL game viewership is also down, and the contentious election drew viewers away from Disney networks like ABC to cable news networks.

Disney stock was down 9.6 percent for the year, at Thursday’s closing. And a weaker-than-expected earnings report, which showed a drop in ESPN revenue, drove shares down in extended trading.

But Disney, which owns Marvel, Star Wars and its own Pixar and Disney Studios, is forging ahead with new streaming deals involving Netflix, Hulu and others.

FCC concerned about AT&T exempting DirecTV from data caps

NEW YORK (AP) — Federal regulators say that they are concerned that AT&T’s exempting its DirecTV unit from cellphone data caps could hurt competition.

AT&T lets customers watch video on DirecTV apps on their AT&T cellphones without eating into monthly data allotments. It’s expected to do the same with an upcoming, $35-a-month TV streaming service called DirecTV Now.

The Federal Communications Commission, in a letter to AT&T dated Wednesday, said that practice may disadvantage video providers that aren’t owned by AT&T, ultimately hurting consumers. The agency asked that AT&T reply to its concerns by Nov. 21.