News Archive
National | Thu, Jan 3, 2013

Google Inc. is free to extend its dominance of the $50 billion Internet-search market after U.S. regulators ended an investigation into whether the company unfairly skewed search results to disadvantage competitors.

Google has settled a U.S. government probe into its business practices without making any major concessions on how the company runs its Internet search engine, the world's most influential gateway to digital information and commerce.

A last-minute surge in spending saved the holiday shopping season.

Jan. 3 (Bloomberg) -- Crude slipped from a three-month high as more Americans than forecast filed applications for unemployment benefits last week and on concern that new budget legislation won’t reduce the deficit fast enough.

Consumer sentiment climbed last week and companies added more workers than projected in December, showing the world’s largest economy picked up even as lawmakers were embroiled in budget disputes.

A steadily improving economy and strong December sales lifted the American auto industry to its best performance in five years in 2012, especially for Volkswagen and Japanese-brand vehicles, and experts say the next year should be even better.

New York's comptroller has sued Qualcomm Inc. in an attempt to compel the wireless technology company to disclose its political spending to him and other shareholders.

The price of oil drifted lower Thursday as euphoria over a U.S. budget deal cooled and traders focused on bulging crude supplies and lackluster demand.

Average U.S. rates on fixed mortgages moved closer to their record lows this week, a trend that has made home buying more affordable and helped sustain a housing recovery.

Mortgage applications in the United States fell last week by more than 10 percent for the third consecutive period.

Of course, 2013 will be fine, because the 1950s sure were. That’s the premise for the coming year, especially in regard to the agreement in Washington to raise U.S. tax rates on the well-off.

I have the ultimate hot tip if you’re obsessing over what to do with your portfolio in 2013: Ignore all the “How to Invest in 2013” nonsense that you see in magazines, blogs and on business television this time of year.

The stock market crept higher in midday trading Thursday, one day after the Dow Jones industrial average posted its biggest gain in more than a year.

Hormel Foods apparently has a hankering for a peanut butter and bacon sandwich. The company primarily known for Spam and other cured, smoked and deli meats said Thursday that it's buying Skippy, the country's No. 2 peanut butter brand, in its biggest-ever acquisition.

Jan. 3 (Bloomberg) -- Companies added 215,000 workers in December, according to a private report based on payrolls.

More Americans sought unemployment benefits last week, though the winter holidays likely distorted the data for the second straight week.

Jan. 3 (Bloomberg) -- Treasuries erased gains after a private report from the ADP Research Institute said more companies added jobs in December than forecast.

Jan. 3 (Bloomberg) -- Safeway Inc., the second-largest U.S. grocery-store chain, said Chief Executive Officer Steven Burd, 63, will retire in May after 20 years at the company.

Jan. 3 (Bloomberg) -- Rambus Inc., the designer of high- speed memory chips, was barred by a judge from using 12 of its patents to demand royalties from Micron Technology Inc. because it improperly destroyed documents tied to intellectual-property litigation.

Jan. 3 (Bloomberg) -- Current TV, the network co-founded by former U.S. Vice President Al Gore, was sold for about $500 million to Al Jazeera, the Qatar-based cable-news channel, according to two people with knowledge of the deal.

Target says its fourth-quarter earnings will meet or possibly beat the low end of its prior forecast, even as a key December sales figure fell a bit short of analysts' expectations.

California Attorney General Kamala Harris is suing ConocoPhillips and its spinoff, Phillips 66, over underground tanks used to store gasoline at more than 500 gas stations in the state.

Jan. 3 (Bloomberg) -- Chief executive officers from DuPont Co. to Honeywell International Inc. urged U.S. politicians to move quickly on tax reform and debt reduction after the standoff over the fiscal cliff hurt the nation’s credibility.

Jan. 3 (Bloomberg) -- Inc., Macy’s Inc. and Sears Holding Corp. agreed to settle U.S. Federal Trade Commission lawsuits over claims the companies misled consumers by selling rayon fabrics labeled as made from bamboo fiber.

Jan. 3 (Bloomberg) -- Macy’s Inc.’s bid to prevent Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia Inc. from executing a sales agreement with J.C. Penney Co. is set to go to trial Feb. 19.

Charities in New York state have collectively raised more than $400 million for Hurricane Sandy relief efforts, the state's attorney general said Thursday.

Jan. 3 (Bloomberg) -- Boeing Co. is poised to keep the title of world’s largest planemaker for at least two more years amid rising deliveries of the delayed 787 Dreamliner, the jet that helped it beat Airbus SAS for the first time in a decade.

Jimmy Raye, San Diego's director of player personnel, apparently was the first candidate to interview to replace fired Chargers general manager A.J. Smith.

Rite Aid Corp.'s revenue from established stores slipped again in December, as cheaper generic drugs blunted the drugstore chain's prescription growth.

TJX, the parent company of TJ Maxx and Marshalls clothing stores, said Thursday that its December revenue at stores open at least a year rose 6 percent, and it boosted its profit outlook for the current quarter and full year.

A federal judge says General Motors workers in northeast Ohio can move forward with a lawsuit against the automaker and the United Auto Workers.

Quiksilver Inc. said Thursday that it named Andy Mooney president and CEO of the surf and skate clothing and shoe company, succeeding Quiksilver founder Bob McKnight, who became executive chairman. The changes take effect Jan. 11.

Jan. 3 (Bloomberg) -- Starbucks Corp., the world’s biggest coffee-shop operator, will open its first store in Vietnam next month as it expands into its 12th Asian nation.

UniFirst's first-quarter topped Wall Street expectations and the uniform company raised its annual earnings and revenue forecasts above what analysts had been predicting Thursday, sending shares to an all-time high.

Jan. 3 (Bloomberg) -- The fine print of Congress’s Jan. 1 budget deal includes a tax credit rewritten by Oregon lawmakers to benefit home-state motorcycle manufacturer Brammo Inc.

Jan. 3 (Bloomberg) -- Starbucks Corp., the world’s largest coffee-shop operator, began selling reusable plastic cups for $1 at its U.S. and Canadian stores today.

Jan. 3 (Bloomberg) -- Walt Disney Studios Motion Picture Production asked a federal judge to block a bankruptcy court ruling that would allow the sale of patents related to 3-D movies.

Gap Inc. said Thursday that its December revenue at stores open at least a year increased 5 percent, with a big sales jump at its North American Old Navy stores.

The competition to buy a small coffee chain is getting steamy, with Starbucks and actor Patrick Dempsey among those vying to become its new owners.

in confronting the nation's burgeoning debt.

Jan. 3 (Bloomberg) -- Gold for February delivery extended declines on the Comex in New York, dropping 0.7 percent to $1,677.40 an ounce at 8:20 a.m. local time.

Watson Pharmaceuticals Inc. said Thursday that a subsidiary has received regulatory approval for a generic drug designed for the treatment of heavy menstrual bleeding.

The U.S. job market showed resilience in three reports Thursday, suggesting it may able to withstand a federal budget battle that threatens more economic uncertainty in coming months.

Federal Reserve policymakers expressed broad support last month for the Fed's plan to buy bonds to support the U.S. economy. But they differed over how long to keep buying bonds to drive down long-term interest rates.

Jan. 4 (Bloomberg) -- Google Inc. Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt may travel to North Korea over opposition from the U.S. State Department, becoming the highest-profile businessman to visit the isolated nation since Kim Jong Un succeeded his father as leader just over a year ago.

Jan. 3 (Bloomberg) -- Congressional efforts to reduce the U.S. deficit revived tax breaks for mortgage insurance and extended interest deductions for homeowners that will cost the government $600 billion over five years.

A report released Thursday says Holiday shoppers spent of $42.3 billion online in November and December, 14 percent more than in the same months a year ago.

Jan. 3 (Bloomberg) -- Google Inc., avoiding a potentially costly legal battle with U.S. regulators, ended a 20-month antitrust probe by pledging to change some business practices and settling allegations it misused patents to thwart competitors in smartphone technology.

Subaru is recalling nearly 634,000 cars and SUVs in the U.S. because lights beneath the doors can overheat and cause fires.

Jan. 3 (Bloomberg) -- The dollar rose to its strongest level in almost three weeks against the euro on speculation U.S. policy makers will struggle to reach agreement on raising the nation’s debt limit, underpinning demand for the safest assets.

Biogen Idec is halting the development of an experimental treatment for Lou Gehrig's disease after a late-stage study.

Jan. 3 (Bloomberg) -- More Americans than forecast filed claims for unemployment insurance payments last week as the closing of some state agencies during the holidays prompted the government to estimate some figures.

President Barack Obama signed a $633 billion defense bill for next year despite serious concerns about the limits Congress imposed on his handling of terror suspects and lawmakers' unwillingness to back the cost-saving retirement of aging ships and aircraft.

Gov. Chris Christie's blunt talk has long been one of his hallmarks.

A private survey shows U.S. businesses sharply increased hiring in December, helped by a surge of new construction jobs to help rebuild from Superstorm Sandy.

Holiday storms that pounded much of the nation with snow and rain did little to ease the overall grip of the worst U.S. drought in decades.

Housing is rebounding. Families are shrinking debts. Europe has avoided a financial crackup. And the fiscal cliff deal has removed the most urgent threat to the U.S. economy.

As Utah's air quality worsens, state regulators are working on a set of plans to limit everyday emissions, from banning the sale of aerosol deodorants and hair spray to prohibiting wood burning in fireplaces more often.

A conservation group was able to preserve part of a national forest in western Wyoming with an $8.75 million buyout of oil and gas leases secured by last-minute donations, including $750,000 from the founder of online stock broker TD Ameritrade.

The wind energy and ethanol industries celebrated a victory Wednesday with the inclusion of tax credit extensions in the tax relief bill approved by Congress, but that may not mean lost jobs will come back anytime soon.

As a young adult, Kathleen Cheramie visited her grandmother's grave in a tree-lined cemetery where white concrete crosses dotted a plot of lush green grass just off Louisiana Highway 1.

A former hedge fund portfolio manager charged with engineering a record-setting inside trade scheme has pleaded not guilty to insider trading charges.

Boeing Co. says it delivered 601 planes last year, putting it on track to beat European rival Airbus as the top plane maker for the year.

Two U.S. drone strikes on northwest Pakistan killed a senior Taliban commander who fought American forces in Afghanistan but had a truce with the Pakistani military, intelligence officials said Thursday.

Starbucks Corp. says it will open its first Vietnam cafe early next month in Ho Chi Minh City as part of its strategy to expand across Asia.

Enthusiasm faded on Wall Street and in European markets Thursday over U.S. legislators' deal to stave off the so-called fiscal cliff, a series of automatic tax increases and spending cuts that could have hurt the world's largest economy.

General Motors' U.S. sales rose 3.7 percent last year as the company's growth was eclipsed by other automakers.

Ford Motor Co. says its U.S. sales rose 2 percent in December, as strong sales of small cars made up for weak truck sales.

For the first time in decades, a river otter has made San Francisco its home, taking up residence in the ruins of a 19th Century seaside bath near the Golden Gate Bridge.

Thu, Jan 3, 2013