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Business News Summary Headlines

Company releases, economic news, and business coverage.

As talks loom, 'hard Brexit' option raises fear of tariffs

LONDON - Is it cod or haddock?

That's the sort of question that will matter to Britain if it leaves the European Union's tariff-free single market and ends up operating under rules overseen by the World Trade Organization.

Friday, January 13, 2017 | 10:30 AM

Ex-Playboy executive Victor Lownes dies at 88

LONDON - Victor Lownes, a former executive of Playboy who helped forge the brand's hedonistic ethos and put much of the swing into the "Swinging London" era, has died at 88.

Friend Barbara Haigh, a former "bunny girl" at London's Playboy Club, said Lownes died in his sleep Wednesday at a London hospital after suffering a heart attack at a New Year's party.

Friday, January 13, 2017 | 09:03 AM

US wholesale prices rise 0.3 pct., led by costlier gas, food

WASHINGTON - U.S. wholesale prices rose 0.3 per cent in December, led higher by more expensive gas, food and cars.

The producer price index, which measures price changes before they reach consumers, increased 1.6 per cent last year, the Labor Department said Friday. That's the biggest 12-month gain since September 2014. Still, it is low historically and suggests inflation is largely in check.

Friday, January 13, 2017 | 09:03 AM

U.S. dairy groups urge Trump to set his sights on Canadian dairy policies

MONTREAL - U.S. dairy groups are calling on Donald Trump to set his sights on Canada's "protectionist" dairy practices as he seeks to safeguard American jobs.

The International Dairy Foods Association, National Milk Producers Federation and U.S. Dairy Export Council, along with the National Association of State Departments of Agriculture say a planned national Canadian ingredients strategy will block U.S. exports in violation of NAFTA and the World Trade Organization.

Friday, January 13, 2017 | 08:55 AM

Amazon apologizes to India for selling doormats with national flag

TORONTO - Amazon has apologized to India's foreign minister for selling doormats depicting the Indian flag on the online shopping giant's Canadian website.

The head of the retailer in India sent the apology to External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj on Wednesday, according to a tweet by a ministry spokesperson.

Friday, January 13, 2017 | 08:53 AM

PR effort? Questions surround Trump's hotel profits pledge

WASHINGTON - It's a public relations win for the president-elect: Donald Trump's company says it will donate profits from any foreign governments that use his hotels. In practice, however, the public may never know if any money changes hands.

Trump says he is making the move to avoid the appearance that foreign governments can curry favour with him by using his hotels including one that just opened a short walk from the White House.

Friday, January 13, 2017 | 08:41 AM

More pay, greater confidence lifts US retail sales 0.6 pct.

WASHINGTON - Americans stepped up their auto buying and holiday shopping in December, reflecting a boost in confidence after the election and a solid increase in hourly pay.

The Commerce Department says retail sales rose a seasonally adjusted 0.6 per cent, following a small 0.2 per cent gain in November.

Friday, January 13, 2017 | 08:32 AM

Nintendo: Nintendo Switch game console to launch in March

TOKYO - The Nintendo Switch video game console will sell for 29,980 yen (about $260) in Japan, starting March 3, the same date as its global rollout in the U.S. and Europe. The Japanese company promises the device will be packed with the fun features of all its past machines and more.

The Kyoto-based maker of Super Mario and Pokemon games announced details of the Switch's release Friday at the Tokyo Big Sight events hall. It said the console will sell for $299.99 in the U.S. Customers in Europe would need to ask retailers there for prices.

Friday, January 13, 2017 | 08:26 AM

China overtakes US in screens but cinemas sit empty

ZHUOLU TOWN, China - The brightly-decorated 3-D cinema in this town outside Beijing is showing the latest Chinese and Hollywood films, to row after row of empty red seats. So few people come to watch films here that the theatre manager rents out the halls to travelling sales companies or music teachers.

China has overtaken the U.S. in terms of the number of its cinema screens, becoming the world's biggest movie market by that measure. But away from the bigger cities you wouldn't know it.

Friday, January 13, 2017 | 08:24 AM

US gov't accuses Fiat Chrysler of cheating on emissions

WASHINGTON - The U.S. government accused Fiat Chrysler on Thursday of failing to disclose software in some of its pickups and SUVs with diesel engines that allows them to emit more pollution than allowed under the Clean Air Act.

The Environmental Protection Agency issued a "notice of violation" to the company that covers about 104,000 vehicles including the 2014 through 2016 Jeep Grand Cherokee and Ram pickups, all with 3-litre diesel engines. The California Air Resources Board took similar action.

Thursday, January 12, 2017 | 10:20 PM