Money, Financial industry & Banking :: World finance

Caterpillar shuts plant in Aurora, Illinois, that employs


Caterpillar Inc (CAT. N) said on Friday it will shut its Aurora, Illinois, plant, costing about 800 employees their jobs as the world's largest construction and mining equipment maker shifts production to other U.S. facilities. Caterpillar was among companies that met with President Donald Trump in February to talk about job creation, at a time when about 2,300 U.S. workers at five major manufacturing companies stand to lose their jobs within the next two years as a result of offshoring. The company said it will transition its large wheel loaders and compactors to its plant in Decatur, Illinois, and medium wheel loaders to North Little Rock, Arkansas.

"Out of about 800 production positions, about 500 positions would likely be added to Decatur and about 150 positions would be added in North Little Rock," Caterpillar spokeswoman Lisa Miller told Reuters. The company has already slashed its workforce by more than 16,000 to cope with a slumping economy and had said it would take another $500 million in restructuring costs in 2017.

Caterpillar said, in January, that it was considering closing two major production facilities, including the one in Aurora, Illinois, where it makes large-wheel loaders and compactors. The plant closure is expected to be completed by the end of 2018, Caterpillar said in a statement.

Three arrested in Atlanta highway bridge collapse: reports ATLANTA Three people were in custody Friday in connection with the fiery collapse of a major interstate highway bridge running through the heart of Atlanta, local media reported, as officials said it would take months to repair the damage.

Trump officials defend immigration arrests at California courthouses LOS ANGELES Federal agents have arrested illegal immigrants at California courthouses because local authorities have made such apprehensions at jails difficult, the Trump administration's top two law enforcement officials told the state's chief justice, who had requested a halt to the practice.

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Rock solid quarter on Wall Street ending with a whimper


Wall Street edged lower on Friday, held down by Exxon and JPMorgan Chase as investors wrapped up a strong quarter and weighed whether corporate earnings reports will justify the market's lofty valuations. Major indexes have hit a series of record highs following the election of President Donald Trump on bets that he would improve economic growth by cutting taxes and boosting infrastructure spending. The rally has also benefited from a raft of robust economic data and a pickup in corporate earnings growth. For the quarter ending Friday, the S&P 500 is on track to end 5.6 percent higher with the Dow Jones Industrial Average up 4.5 pct, their biggest first-quarter gains in four years. Investors are now looking to the upcoming quarterly earnings season to justify pricy valuations. First-quarter earnings for S&P 500 companies are expected to rise 10.1 percent, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S. The index is trading at about 18 times earnings estimates for the next 12 months, compared to its long-term average of 15.

"Valuations are as stretched as they ever get," said Bruce Bittles, chief investment strategist at Robert W. Baird & Co in Nashville. "Certainly that's cause for concern if earnings don't grow the way the are anticipated to grow."At 2:25 pm ET, the Dow Jones Industrial Average . DJI was down 0.28 percent at 20,671.29 points, while the S&P 500 . SPX had lost 0.10 percent to 2,365.55. The Nasdaq Composite . IXIC added 0.02 percent to 5,915.42.

Six of the 11 major S&P sectors fell, with the financial index . SPSY down 0.57 percent. JPMorgan Chase (JPM. N) fell 1.32 percent and Wells Fargo & Co (WFC. N) lost 0.78 percent. Also weighing on the S&P 500 and Dow, Exxon Mobil (XOM. N) fell 1.92 percent.

Major internet providers say will not sell customer browsing histories WASHINGTON Comcast Corp, Verizon Communications Inc and AT&T Inc said Friday they would not sell customers’ individual internet browsing information, days after the U.S. Congress approved legislation reversing Obama administration era internet privacy rules.

Snapchat adds more accessible search feature Snap Inc said on Friday its Snapchat messaging app would add an option for users to search through photos and videos that users have posted to the public.

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