Global Glance: Trump thrusts presidency into perilous area; ECB’s Draghi cautiously upbeat on Eurozone

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

AP Analysis: Trump thrusts US presidency into perilous area

WASHINGTON (AP) — With his shocking dismissal of FBI Director James Comey, Donald Trump is propelling the presidency into rarely traversed territory. His surprise announcement Tuesday flouts decades of presidential deference to the nation’s top law enforcement agency and its independence. It earns Trump the dubious distinction of being the first president since Richard Nixon to fire the official overseeing an investigation involving the commander in chief. And it cements a clear pattern of a man willing to challenge – in dramatic fashion – the institutions created to hold the president accountable. Read more

European Central Bank’s Draghi cautiously upbeat on Eurozone

FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) — The head of the European Central Bank says that risks to the strengthening economy of the 19-country eurozone have fallen – but insists it’s too early to declare victory and start withdrawing stimulus measures. Mario Draghi said in remarks delivered Wednesday in the Dutch parliament that recent data confirm that the rebound “is becoming increasingly solid and that downside risks have further diminished.” He added that “nevertheless, it is too early to declare success” and stressed that the bank’s improved forecasts assume the full implementation of its stimulus measures. Read more

Amazon gives voice-enabled speaker a screen, video calling

NEW YORK (AP) — Amazon is giving its voice-enabled Echo speaker a touch screen and video-calling capabilities as it competes with Google’s efforts at bringing “smarts” to the home. The 7-inch screen on the new Echo Show enables the speaker to supplement voice responses with visuals and other information displays , similar to the Echo-like features on the Fire tablets and Fire TV streaming devices. That could mean extended weather forecasts, not just current conditions, or music lyrics to go with the song you’re listening to. You can also call up cooking tutorials on YouTube, hands-free, while making dinner in the kitchen. Read more

Retail funk: Stores face biggest challenges since recession

NEW YORK (AP) — It’s starting to look a lot like the Great Recession redux for retailers. More than twice as many stores have closed this year than at the same point last year. Bankruptcies are far outpacing last year’s rate. Retailers slashed jobs at the sharpest pace in seven years this spring. And retailers collectively could report the biggest drop in first-quarter profits since 2009. This time, the culprit’s not the economy but shoppers whose habits have changed profoundly and permanently, as they shop online more and look for deals. The results this week from department stores like Macy’s, Kohl’s and J.C. Penney are expected to illustrate the latest damage by the spending shift and the dominance of Amazon. Read more

Southwest reports few snags with switches to new system

DALLAS (AP) — Airlines appear to be getting better at updating technology systems. Southwest Airlines completed a switch to a new reservation system Tuesday and seemingly did it with relatively few glitches. The airline says the new system, from Amadeus IT Group, will help it improve flight scheduling and other tasks and also bring in more revenue from selling add-on services. Read more

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