Morning Brief: Apple apologizes

Friday, December 29, 2017

What to watch today

Friday is the final trading day of 2017. And what a year it has been. Investors in the U.S. are currently looking at gains of right at 20% for the benchmark S&P 500, over 25% for the Dow, and 29% for the tech-heavy Nasdaq. All in, this will be the strongest year for U.S. stocks since 2013.

The earnings calendar will bring investors no action to end the year and an empty economic calendar. And with volume on Thursday coming in at about a third of the average day over the last few months, Friday should be a very quiet day on the Street.

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Top news

Apple apologizes after outcry over slowed iPhones:  Facing lawsuits and consumer outrage after it said it slowed older iPhones with flagging batteries, Apple Inc. (AAPL) is slashing prices for battery replacements and will change its software to show users whether their phone battery is good. [Reuters]

SoftBank succeeds in tender offer for Uber shares: A consortium led by SoftBank Group Corp. will buy a large number of shares of Uber Technologies Inc. in a deal that values the ride-services firm at $48 billion, Uber said on Thursday, in a victory for new Chief Executive Dara Khosrowshahi. The price is a roughly 30% discount to Uber’s most recent valuation of $68 billion. [Reuters]

18 states will raise their minimum wage on January 1:  While the White House and members of the GOP package the sweeping tax code overhaul as a win for the average American, low-wage workers may be hit the hardest. This setback comes as the U.S. minimum wage has remained stagnant over the last decade. The last time the federal minimum wage increased was in July 2009, from $6.55 to $7.25. Now 18 states are taking matters into their own hands, raising the minimum wage. [Yahoo Finance]

Icahn wins tussle with SandRidge:  SandRidge Energy Inc. (SD), succumbing to a campaign led by activist investor Carl Icahn, gave up on its proposed purchase of rival oil explorer Bonanza Creek Energy Inc. (BCEI) After consultation with its largest shareholders, the company’s board of directors concluded that it would not receive approval for the transaction at its planned special meeting, SandRidge said in a statement. [Bloomberg]

For more of the latest news, go to Yahoo Finance

People line-up at the Town of Hempstead tax receiver’s office to pay their real estate taxes before the end of the year, hoping for one last chance to take advantage of a major tax deduction before it is wiped out in the new year. (Howard Schnapp/Newsday via AP)

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Look for a special edition of Morning Brief tomorrow. We will be highlighting the best of Yahoo Finance in 2017.

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The Morning Brief provides a quick rundown on what to watch in the markets, top news stories, and the best of Yahoo Finance Originals.