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Stocks close lower ... Mexico opens oil rights bidding ... Airline complaints rise



Estimated read time: 2-3 minutes

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NEW YORK (AP) — U.S. stock indexes have closed moderately lower as the market comes off its best day in two months. Energy stocks fell the most today as oil prices moved lower. Exxon Mobil lost 1.7 percent, the most in the Dow Jones industrial average. The Dow fell 85 points, or 0.5 percent, to 18,105. The Standard & Poor's 500 index gave up 10 points, or 0.5 percent, to 2,105. The Nasdaq composite declined 10 points, or 0.2 percent, to 4,993.

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Royal Dutch Shell cleared a major hurdle today in its plans to drill off Alaska's northwest coast. The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management approved Shell's exploration plan for the Chukchi Sea. But Shell still must obtain other permits from state and federal agencies. Shell's exploration plan calls for two ships to drill up to six wells about 70 miles northwest of the village of Wainwright, Alaska.

MEXICO CITY (AP) — Mexico has opened bidding for oil and gas drilling rights in 26 areas. The latest changes in that country's oil industry allow participation of foreign companies. The National Hydrocarbons Commission approved the auction for the land-based areas in five states in southern and northern Mexico. Together the areas could yield 35,000 barrels of oil and 225 million cubic feet of gas per day. The previous two auctions were for areas in shallow water.

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Google Inc. says its self-driving cars have been in 11 minor traffic accidents since it began experimenting with the technology six years ago. The company says none of these minor collisions was caused by its cars and many major accidents were avoided over 1.7 million miles traveled. The company released the total number after The Associated Press reported today that California has received four collision reports involving self-driving cars since it began requiring them last September. Three of those involved Google's cars.

UNDATED (AP) — Consumer complaints against airlines are rising even as the carriers get slightly better at staying on schedule. The U.S. Department of Transportation says it received more complaints from consumers in March than it did in either the previous month or March of 2014. Passengers on Frontier Airlines are 34 times more likely to complain than passengers on Southwest Airlines, which has the lowest complaint rate. Spirit Airlines has the second-worst rate.

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The Associated Press

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