Global Glance: Belgium holding up Canada trade deal; Consumer prices up in September

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Here are today’s top business headlines from across the nation and world:

Belgium still holding up EU approval of Canada trade deal

LUXEMBOURG (AP) — European Union nations failed to endorse a landmark trade deal with Canada as scheduled on Tuesday, but remain optimistic they can do so by next week, when Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is due to fly over to sign it. Where the EU foreign trade ministers failed, the EU leaders will now step in to try and clinch a deal when they meet for a two-day summit starting Thursday. Ministers and EU officials see the high-stakes meeting as a final deadline. Read more

Judge to hear objections to $10B Volkswagen emissions deal

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — A federal judge on Tuesday was set to hear from Volkswagen owners opposed to a $10 billion settlement over the automaker’s emissions cheating scandal before he determines if the deal is fair to consumers. More than two dozen people – many of them car owners unhappy with the proposed settlement – signed up to address U.S. District Judge Charles Breyer in San Francisco. He will decide whether to give the deal final approval, though he may not issue a ruling at the hearing. The judge gave it preliminary approval in July. Read more

US consumer prices rose in September on higher oil costs

WASHINGTON (AP) — Higher energy costs fueled U.S. consumer prices in September, but overall inflation remains in check as it has for the past several years. The Labor Department said Tuesday that consumer prices increased 0.3 percent last month. Much of that rise stemmed from energy, housing and medical care commodities. Energy costs surged 2.9 percent in September as oil and gasoline prices rebounded from recent lows. Previous price declines still mean that gas costs 6.4 percent less than a year ago. Read more

Social Security recipients to get tiny increase in benefits

WASHINGTON (AP) — Millions of Social Security recipients and federal retirees will get a 0.3 percent increase in monthly benefits next year, the fifth year in a row that older Americans will have to settle for historically low raises. Next year’s benefit hike will be small because inflation is low, driven in part by lower fuel prices. The federal government announced the cost-of-living adjustment, or COLA, Tuesday morning. By law, the COLA is based on a government measure of consumer prices. The COLA affects more than 70 million people – about 1 in 5 Americans. Read more

Survey: More first-timers than expected are now buying homes

WASHINGTON (AP) — First-time buyers may be entering the U.S. home market in greater numbers than industry watchers had assumed. Nearly half of sales in the past year went to people who were buying their first home, according to a survey released Tuesday by the real estate firm Zillow. That’s a much higher proportion of the market than some other industry estimates had indicated. Zillow’s survey results suggest that this year’s growth in home sales has come largely from a wave of couples in their 30s, who are the most common first-time buyers. Read more

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