Business & Tech

Talking Points AM/Larry Edelman

It’s going to get cheaper to gas up the car — and here’s why

In this July 17, 2018 photo, a customer pumps gas in Salem, N.H. (AP Photo/Elise Amendola)
AP/File
Filling up in Salem, N.H. in July

Welcome to Talking Points AM Live for Thursday, Nov. 8, the day after the day after. The big story remains politics, but President Trump has effectively diverted attention away from the GOP's loss of the House by firing Attorney General Jeff Sessions. Here's what's happening in business today (and you can scroll down to see this morning’s newsletter).

Oil enters bear market: The stock market isn’t doing much after yesterday’s big surge, but there is action in the oil market. The benchmark for crude in the US — it’s called WTI, for West Texas Intermediate — fell about 0.8 percent today to $62.21 a barrel, which was enough to mark a bear market, or decline of 20 percent from the most recent peak. It’s the first oil bear market since 2008, when the financial crisis crushed demand. Driving the decline today was a weekly report showing a build up in inventories and a revision downward of the US Energy Information Agency’s forecast for 2019 demand. Gas prices, which GasBuddy says are around $2.83 a gallon for regular in Boston, usually fall when WTI does, but not as quickly. The Wall Street Journal has more here.

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AM Headlines

Google plans big Big Apple expansion: The Internet search giant may buy or rent enough New York office space to add 12,000 employees, almost doubling its workforce in the city. (WSJ)

Tesla replaces Elon Musk as chairman: A settlement in September with US securities regulators allowed Musk to remain CEO but required him to give up his role as chairman for at least three years. (AP)

China's exports to US rise despite tariffs: The data could strengthen Beijing’s resolve to resist making concessions on trade. (FT) 

S&P futures point to lower open: Markets in Asia and Europe were mixed after a big rally Wednesday on Wall Street.(CNBC)

Executive Summary

Blowing the doors off: Shares of TripAdvisor are up more than 8 percent in pre-market trading after the Needham-based travel review site beat analysts' estimates for quarterly profit even as revenue fell short. The company said after the market's close on Wednesday that adjusted profit in the third quarter, which excludes certain items such as taxes and stock compensation, was 72 cents a share, compared with an average estimate of 48 cents. Revenue was $458 million vs. an average estimate of $469 million. The stock ended regular trading yesterday at $58.07, marking a gain of 66 percent from the start of the year. (MarketWatch)

Tracking affordable housing: A survey by City Hall found that 20 percent of all the 54,247 housing units in Boston have some type of income restriction placed on them, the highest percent of affordable housing among any big city in the country. The Globe's Milton J. Valencia says the city is trying to get a handle on the housing stock as part of its efforts to add 15,820 income-restricted units by 2030. (Boston Globe)

Pollsters give themselves props: Did pollsters do a better job forecasting the outcome of the midterms elections that they did in the 2016 presidential campaign? They think so, and the Globe's Hiawatha Bray says there's merit to the self-congratulations. "Having failed to foresee Donald Trump’s stunning victory in the 2016 presidential election, polling firms changed how they survey US voters. Those changes seem to have paid off, as this year’s polls matched up pretty well with the behavior of actual voters." There were two big exceptions, Bray notes: "Republican Ron DeSantis’s victory over Democrat Andrew Gillum in the Florida governor’s race, and the huge margin that Republican Mike Braun put up over incumbent Democratic US Senator Joe Donnelly in Indiana." (Boston Globe)

Can Dems restore health care?: Exit polling on Tuesday showed that voters' No. 1 concern was being able to afford the rising cost of health care. That affirmed Democrats decision to bet the house that focusing on GOP efforts to dismantle Obamacare was the way to take back the House. From my STAT colleagues Lev Facher and Andrew Joseph: "The victory puts Democrats in a far better position to test the far-reaching health care agenda they have campaigned on for well over a year, though their ambitions will almost certainly be curtailed by a Republican-held Senate and President Trump’s White House." (STAT)

Never too soon for a sale: It happens every year. We complain about how capitalism trumps religion as retailers launch battle each other to offer early holiday season bargains. Walmart says it will start offering some online deals at 10 p.m. EST on the night before Thanksgiving, as it tries to keep pace with Amazon and Target. In-store sales begin on Black Friday. (Reuters)

Watch List

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8:30 a.m.: US weekly initial jobs claims
10:30 a.m.: US EIA weekly natural gas storage report 
Noon: Bank of America CEO Brian Moynihan speaks at the Boston College Chief Executives Club, Boston Harbor Hotel
2 p.m.: Federal Reserve statement on interest rates

That's it for now. We'll be back at the end of the business day with Jon Chesto and the Talking Points PM edition.

You can reach me at larry.edelman@globe.com and follow me on Twitter @GlobeNewsEd. And if you're not signed up for the PM edition, you can do so here.9