AP Business SummaryBrief at 11:39 a.m. EDT | Business

EXPLAINER: What is the Quad des 4 nations, where does it come from?

TOKYO (AP) — Leaders of the United States, Japan, Australia and India gathered in Tokyo on Tuesday for a so-called Quad summit. The name comes from the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue. It started as a loose partnership after the devastating Indian Ocean tsunami in 2004, when the four countries provided humanitarian aid and disaster relief. It was made official by former Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe in 2007, but then fell dormant until it was resurrected in 2017. The Trump and Biden administrations saw the Quad as a key way to gain more focus on the Indo-Pacific region, particularly as a counterweight to China’s assertive actions

In Davos, climate debate on the role of oil in the “going green”

DAVOS, Switzerland (AP) — Government and business leaders at the World Economic Forum debate whether oil and gas companies can or should be part of the future transition to renewable energy such as wind and solar. The matter is both practical and urgent, as Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has forced many countries that depended on Russian oil and gas to rapidly change their energy supplies. Many energy experts say viable alternatives are already in place. For example, the cost of wind and solar have come down significantly over the past few decades, while the efficiency of both has increased dramatically. At the same time, other more nascent technologies are promising but require massive investments to develop.

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Biden: Leaders in ‘dark hour’ after Ukraine invasion

TOKYO (AP) — President Joe Biden has warned fellow leaders of the informal Indo-Pacific security coalition known as the Quad that they are “going through a dark hour in our shared history.” His warning comes as Russia continues a brutal war against Ukraine. Biden called for greater Indo-Pacific leadership in efforts to stop Russian aggression at the start of a summit Tuesday with the leaders of Australia, India and Japan. Biden did not directly call any country. But his message appeared to be a nudge from Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, with whom differences persist over how to respond to Russia.

Social media hammered by growing advertising questions

Social media has had a tough 2022 with lingering questions about ad spend and a $44 billion Twitter takeover that may or may not happen, depending on which Elon Musk tweet you read. And on Monday night, Snap issued a rather dire earnings warning, saying the “macroeconomic environment has deteriorated further and faster than expected” since last month. All social media is in competition for advertising money, which is increasingly threatened by soaring inflation and changes at Apple Inc. that may restrict the information social media platforms can collect about users , an important selling point for advertisers. Shares of Snap fell 40% at the opening bell on Tuesday, and shares of Meta Platforms, Twitter and Alphabet all fell alongside it.

Stock market crash unsettles Americans considering retirement

Americans about to retire face a stark choice as they watch their nest egg dwindle: stay the course or keep working. A stock market crash this year took a big bite out of investors’ portfolios, including retirement plans like 401(k)s. The S&P 500, the benchmark for many index funds, is down about 17% since its all-time high in early January. The abrupt reversal after a 2021 banner for Wall Street was particularly troubling for those planning to retire sooner rather than later and banking on a healthier stock portfolio to help fund their after-work lifestyles.

Report: Dramatic increase in pesticides in EU fruit and vegetables

BRUSSELS (AP) — New research indicates that contamination of fruit and vegetables produced in the European Union by some of the most toxic pesticides has increased dramatically over the past decade. The study published on Tuesday by the group Pesticide Action Network Europe indicates that European citizens have been exposed to a “dramatic increase” in both the frequency and intensity of pesticide residues. This contradicts data from the EU executive showing a 12% reduction in the most dangerous pesticides in 2019 compared to the period 2015-2017. The European Commission did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Kremlin critic Browder urges forced whistleblowers of oligarchs

DAVOS, Switzerland (AP) — Kremlin critic Bill Browder wants governments to step up efforts to access wealth embezzled by Russian oligarchs by forcing accountants, lawyers and others who have set up legal structures and financial obscures to become whistleblowers. Browder, author of the best-selling “Freezing Order: A True Story of Money Laundering, Murder and Surviving Vladimir Putin’s Wrath,” says Russia’s war in Ukraine has drawn attention to how oligarchs are gatekeepers President Vladimir Putin’s wealth. He spoke to The Associated Press on Tuesday at the World Economic Forum meeting in Davos. A former president of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development said that “a lawyer shouldn’t do anything illegal”, but you can’t ask him to report a client.

Best Buy lowers outlook as first-quarter results show bite of inflation

NEW YORK (AP) — Best Buy Co. released first-quarter results that show shoppers cut spending and rising costs weighed on profits. The country’s largest consumer electronics chain also cut its full-year outlook on Tuesday, citing a deteriorating economic environment. Best Buy was among a handful of big winners from the pandemic, as shoppers flocked to its stores and website to buy hardware to furnish home offices or meet their children’s virtual learning needs. But like many retailers, Best Buy is grappling with rising costs for everything from labor to shipping as supply chain safeguards hit businesses around the world. The electronics channel has also had to contend with global chip shortages, soaring fuel costs and a new round of COVID-19 lockdowns in China.

More people are turning to UK food banks as food and fuel bills soar

LONDON (AP) — Across Britain, food banks and community food centers that have helped struggling families, the elderly and the homeless during the pandemic are now seeing growing demand. Soaring energy and food bills are pushing millions of people into financial hardship, and a growing number of people cannot afford to buy groceries. The cost of food and fuel in the UK has risen sharply since the end of last year, with inflation hitting its highest level in 40 years. In April, millions of families saw their annual energy bills jump by 54%, and another rise in energy prices is expected in October. Britain’s Conservative government has been criticized for not doing enough to ease the crisis.

Facebook and Instagram to learn more about how ads target users

WASHINGTON (AP) — Meta, the parent company of Facebook and Instagram, said it will begin publicly providing more details about how advertisers target people with political ads. It comes just months before the US midterm elections and years after criticism that social media platforms withhold too much information about how campaigns, special interest groups and politicians target small pockets of people with sometimes polarizing and misleading messages. Meta will begin showing the demographics and interests of audiences advertisers choose to target with political ads on platforms like Facebook and Instagram. The company will also share how much advertisers spend targeting people in certain states.

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