AP wire

Market rises despite inflation fears...Oil futures climb... Talks of increasing federal fuel tax for infrastructure

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NEW YORK (AP) — Investors saw some new hints that inflation is increasing today, but they still sent banks, technology firms, and consumer-focused companies climbing. The S&P 500 index rose over 35 points, or 1.3 percent, to 2,698. The Dow industrials added 253 points, or 1 percent, to 24,893. The Nasdaq composite climbed 130 points, or 1.9 percent, to 7,143. The Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks rose 27 points, or 1.8 percent, to 1,522.

NEW YORK (AP) — There are solid gains for oil futures today. Benchmark U.S. crude rose $1.41, or 2.4 percent, to $60.60 a barrel in New York. Meanwhile, Brent crude, used to price international oils, gained $1.64, or 2.6 percent, to $64.36 a barrel in London. Among other energy futures, wholesale gasoline added 3 cents to $1.71 a gallon. Heating oil rose 5 cents to $1.88 a gallon. Natural gas lost 1 cent to $2.59 per 1,000 cubic feet.

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump is signaling his openness to a 25-cent fuel tax increase to help pay for his infrastructure proposal in a meeting with members of Congress. Sen. Tom Carper of Delaware says Trump said he'd be willing to provide leadership on a 25-cent increase in the federal gas and diesel tax, which hasn't been increased since 1993.

WASHINGTON (AP) — The government says U.S. health care spending will keep growing faster than the overall economy in the foreseeable future, squeezing public insurance programs and employers who provide coverage. Annual projections from the Department of Health and Human Services cite an aging population and an uptick in prices for health care services and goods. Spending is projected to rise about 1 percentage point faster than economic growth.

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Apple's new internet-connected speaker is proving to be more appealing to the ears than to the eyes. Some people who bought the just-released $349 speaker, dubbed the HomePod, are reporting it leaves a white ring on wooden furniture. Apple says that often occurs with speakers that are equipped with a silicon base to minimize vibration. The company recommends wiping wood tarnished by the HomePod with a soft or damp cloth, or putting the speaker on another device.

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