Stocks edge higher as service sector improves
NEW YORK - Stocks closed slightly higher as enthusiasm about an improving U.S. service sector outweighed concerns about China.
The market started the day lower on news that manufacturing contracted in China in April. Indexes erased their losses after a U.S. trade group reported that service firms grew more quickly last month. Walgreens rose 1 percent after it said revenue from established drugstores rose sharply.
The Dow Jones industrial rose 17.66 to close at 16,530.55. The S&P 500 rose 3.52 to 1,884.66. The Nasdaq composite rose 14.66 to 4,138.06.
Amazon.com unveils a new tie-in with Twitter
NEW YORK - Amazon wants to make shopping online as easy as a tweet. The online retailer is introducing a service that lets Twitter users add Amazon.com products to their carts without leaving the social media site.
Under the program, users must link their Amazon.com account with their Twitter account. Products can then be automatically added to their shopping cart. The service is for U.S. customers only.
Pfizer's profit drops for 1Q, cites generic rivals
NEW YORK - Despite sharply lower expenses and taxes, Pfizer's first-quarter profit dropped 15 percent due to cheaper generic competition for multiple medicines and some promotion partnerships with other drugmakers ending.
The world's second-biggest drugmaker missed Wall Street's revenue expectations by $730 million, but narrowly beat profit expectations.
The company has seen its revenue shrink since 2011 as inexpensive copycat pills hurt sales of about 20 off-patent drugs that once brought in billions annually.
Meanwhile, Pfizer said it's reviewing its options after rival AstraZeneca rejected Pfizer's third acquisition proposal.
Dunkin' Donuts aiming to do battle in Europe
AMSTERDAM - The doughnut, that classic deep-fried American snack, is going forth to do battle with European national treats in their homelands.
After beating a retreat in the 1990s, Dunkin' Donuts has been quietly building up its presence in Europe and now has 120 outlets, mostly in Germany but also in Russia, Spain, Bulgaria and Britain.
Dunkin' Donuts says it's now looking to open in Denmark, Austria, Belgium and the Netherlands. Despite a weak European economy, it thinks consumers have money.
Another engineering executive at GM retires
DETROIT - Another General Motors engineering executive is retiring in the wake of the automaker's mishandled recall of small cars.
GM says Jim Federico elected to retire after 36 years with the company. Federico plans to work outside the auto industry.
Federico was in charge of vehicle performance and safety leading up to the company's February recall of 2.6 million older-model small cars for defective ignition switches. He was also the chief engineer for global small cars starting in 2010, and may have known about ongoing internal investigations into the switches.
Congress, the Justice Department and others are investigating why GM took more than a decade to recall the cars after finding problems.