BRIEFCASE

Financial stocks fell Friday after JPMorgan disclosed a huge trading loss.(AP Photo/Richard Drew)

NEW YORK — JPMorgan’s surprise $2 billion trading loss prompted a sell-off in financial stocks Friday, with smaller declines across the broader market as investors decided this was more of a problem for investment banks than for other industries.

Most of the 10 industries in the Standard & Poor’s 500 index were flat or posted modest declines; financial stocks fell 1.1 percent. Retail-focused banks fared better. Wells Fargo edged up 0.4 percent.

The Dow Jones industrial average fell 34.44 to close at 12,920.60. It had waffled around with small gains and losses throughout most of the day before settling into the red in the afternoon. The S&P 500 fell 4.60 to close at 1,353.39. The tech-heavy Nasdaq index was up 0.18 to 2,933.82.

WASHINGTON — A big decline in gas and energy costs drove a measure of U.S. wholesale prices lower in April. Outside that drop, prices barely rose.

The Labor Department said Friday that the producer price index dropped 0.2 percent last month from the previous month. It was the first decline since December and the biggest one-month drop since October.

Wholesale gas prices fell 1.7 percent last month. That accounted for half the drop in energy costs, which was the only major category to decline.

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Postal Service is banning international shipments of electronics using lithium batteries — such as smartphones, laptops and iPads — citing the risk of fire.

Beginning Wednesday, consumers may no longer make the shipments, including to army and diplomatic post offices. That means friends and family will have to use more expensive private companies such as UPS and FedEx to ship electronics to U.S. troops based abroad.

The Postal Service cited discussion by the International Civil Aviation Organization and the Universal Postal Union. They issue semi-binding guidelines for global trade.

WILMINGTON, Del. — Books-A-Million Inc.’s directors are being sued by an investor claiming the board wrongfully approved a $48.8 million buyout of the bookstore chain by its controlling shareholders.

Directors of Books-A-Million should be held liable for approving Chairman Clyde Anderson’s offer to pay $3.05 a share in cash to take the chain private, investor Jeffrey Ye said. Anderson and his family already own about 53 percent of the company.

Books-A-Million didn’t immediately return a call for comment. Officials said earlier this week that directors had set up a committee to evaluate the buyout offer.

Books-A-Million, which also runs stores under the names Books & Co., Bookland and Joe Muggs Newsstands, operates in the southeastern U.S. It has stores in West Ashley and North Charleston.

SHANGHAI — Weaker data from China and India on Friday may signal a further softening of the global recovery, undermining hopes the dynamic emerging economies of Asia can help prop up growth.

China reported its industrial production rose 9.3 percent from a year earlier in April, below expectations and down from nearly 12 percent in March. Investment and retail sales also slowed, though easing inflation offers leeway for fresh moves to boost growth.

India’s industrial output fell 3.5 percent in March from a year earlier on weak manufacturing and investment. Output for the fiscal year ending in March rose 2.8 percent, down from 8.2 percent the year before.

Associated Press