Global Glance: White House without debt ceiling plan; tech stocks trip away from highs

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

White House without a plan to address debt ceiling

WASHINGTON (AP) — The White House lacks a unified plan to increase the government’s borrowing cap as a likely September deadline is drawing near, said Mick Mulvaney, director of the Office of Management and Budget. A failure by Congress to raise the debt ceiling could possibly send dangerous shockwaves through the global economy. The federal government could be at risk of defaulting on obligations such as interest payments on bonds as well as temporarily halting benefit programs. Read more

Tech stocks trip away from highs, but few expect bigger drop

NEW YORK (AP) — Technology stocks have taken a stumble over the last week after soaring to heights they last saw just before the dot-com bubble collapsed 17 years ago. Here’s why this time might be different. Technology companies are the main reason the stock market has climbed in recent months. The technology index of the Standard & Poor’s 500 index is up 17 percent this year, twice as much as the broader S&P 500. Last week they got close to the highs they set all the way back in March 2000. At that time, Mark Zuckerberg was in high school, the iPod didn’t exist, and few people had any idea how a company could make money from internet searches. Read more

US antitrust regulators approve merger of DuPont and Dow

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — The long-delayed $62 billion merger of chemical giants DuPont and Dow has been approved by U.S. antitrust regulators. The Justice Department said Thursday it would approve the deal as long as the companies sell off some herbicide and chemical units to preserve competition. Those sales are already in the works. The merger was originally announced in December 2015 and was initially expected to close in the first half of 2016. But it was delayed several times while U.S. and foreign regulators reviewed it. Read more

Greece gets enough to avoid another bailout trauma

ATHENS, Greece (AP) — Greek stocks rallied to two-year highs on Friday, after the government struck a deal with European creditors that means the country won’t face another brush with bankruptcy anytime soon. However, for austerity-weary Greeks the deal does little to lift the pall from years of belt-tightening. After months of haggling that raised fears of another escalation in Greece’s near eight-year debt crisis, the 19-country eurozone agreed late Thursday to release a further 8.5 billion euros ($9.5 billion) from its current, third bailout after the Greek government delivered on an array of reforms. Read more

Higher prices squeezing both renters and would-be homeowners

A diminished supply of available homes is swelling prices in large U.S. metro areas from New York to Miami to Los Angeles, squeezing out would-be buyers and pushing up rents as more people are forced to remain tenants. The trend is pressuring Americans’ budgets, with about one-third of households spending more than 30 percent of their gross income on housing as of 2015, according to a report being released Friday by Harvard University’s Joint Center for Housing Studies. Read more

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