News Archive
National | Wed, Feb 13, 2013

Almost 70 percent of Americans have been overweight or obese in recent years, and more than 78 million people in the country have been counted as obese.

As the U.S. population ages, and with the effects of the financial crisis promising to linger for some time, economic growth will be lower than we would like. This is why the federal government needs to do more to help Americans earn college degrees.

Toys R Us Inc. said Wednesday that Gerald L. Storch is stepping down as CEO, and the retailer is beginning a search for a new leader.

Facebook Inc., operator of the world’s largest social-networking service, is seeking a global head of diversity, as the quickly expanding company’s recruits people from different backgrounds to foster creativity.

McDonald’s Corp., the world’s largest restaurant chain by sales, fell the most of any stock in the Dow Jones Industrial Average after President Barack Obama announced a plan to raise the minimum wage.

Most stocks rose Wednesday, sending the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index to the highest level since October 2007, as investors weighed economic reports and President Barack Obama’s State of the Union address.

Legg Mason Inc. named Joseph A. Sullivan as chief executive officer, ending a five-month search for a leader to reverse five years of client redemptions and calm restive fund affiliates.

General Electric Co.’s $16.7 billion payday from the sale of its stake in NBC Universal gives Chief Executive Officer Jeffrey Immelt more room to make acquisitions as he focuses on industrial growth.

Retail sales rose in January for a third consecutive month, showing household spending is holding up even as an increase in the payroll tax takes a bigger bite from paychecks.

Obama administration officials and lawmakers agreed Wednesday that America is losing an aggressive cyber-espionage campaign waged from China. They vowed to push legislation that would make it easier for the government and industry to share information about who is getting hacked and what to do about it.

Comcast's $16.7 billion deal to buy the remaining half of NBCUniversal ahead of schedule represents a resounding vote of confidence in the future of TV, even as the growth of Internet video reshapes the entertainment landscape.

Feb. 13 (Bloomberg) -- The cheapest Apple Inc. shares in 12 years are encouraging some of the world’s biggest investors to bet that the stock will rebound after losing 33 percent of its value on concern about slowing profit growth.

Feb. 13 (Bloomberg) -- Time Warner Inc., the media business that spans television, film and print, is considering the sale of most of its magazines to Meredith Corp., the publisher of Better Homes and Gardens, a person familiar with the talks said.

The Dow was held back by a slump in McDonald's stock Wednesday, leaving it short of a record.

Feb. 13 (Bloomberg) -- West Texas Intermediate oil in New York fell after Iran said it was nearing agreement with nuclear inspectors and as the Energy Information Administration said U.S. crude output rose to the highest level in 20 years.

A free vacation could be in the cards.

Apple says it has lowered the price of its 13-inch MacBook Pro laptops by $200 and updated its processors. It also launched new models with faster processors and more memory.

Mortgage applications in the United States fell last week, as home purchases and refinancing declined.

Farm and construction equipment maker Deere & Co. said Wednesday that its first-quarter net income leaped 22 percent on growing sales of farm machinery at higher prices.

Feb. 13 (Bloomberg) -- The European Union aims to complete trade talks with the U.S. within two years now that leaders on both sides of the Atlantic have pledged to move ahead, EU Trade Commissioner Karel De Gucht said.

Feb. 13 (Bloomberg) -- B. Wayne Hughes, a sharecropper’s son who became a billionaire pioneering warehouses for Americans needing storage space, is buying thousands of houses to rent as more people find homeownership out of reach.

Feb. 13 (Bloomberg) -- West Texas Intermediate traded near the highest level in more than a week. U.S. crude stockpiles declined for the first time this year, according to the American Petroleum Institute.

Feb. 13 (Bloomberg) -- Retail sales in the U.S. rose in January for a third consecutive month as labor market progress helped Americans overcome an increase in the payroll tax.

Feb. 13 (Bloomberg) -- Prices of goods imported into the U.S. rose in January for the first time in three months, led by more expensive fuel and building materials.

The European Union and the United States announced Wednesday that they have agreed to pursue talks aimed at achieving an overarching trans-Atlantic free trade deal.

Police scoured mountain peaks for days, using everything from bloodhounds to high-tech helicopters in their manhunt for a revenge-seeking ex-cop. They had no idea he was hiding among them, holed up in a vacation cabin across the street from their command post.

Americans barely spent more last month at retail businesses and restaurants after higher taxes cut their paychecks. The small increase suggests consumer spending may be weak in the January-March quarter, which could hold back economic growth.

Global stocks pushed higher on Wednesday on evidence that U.S. consumer spending is withstanding tax increases and on the back of upbeat corporate news.

but pledged to tolerate the increase in an attempt to help the economy recover.

General Motors Co. said Wednesday that Nick Cyprus, its vice president, chief accounting officer and controller, has decided to retire.

Organic dairy company WhiteWave Foods Co. said Wednesday its fourth-quarter net income from continuing operations fell 8 percent, pulled down by costs related to its initial public offering and other one-time charges.

Cigarette maker Lorillard Inc. said Wednesday its fourth-quarter profit fell slightly despite selling more cigarettes at higher prices.

Feb. 13 (Bloomberg) -- News Corp.’s phone-hacking scandal is widening after London police arrested six more former journalists at its now-defunct News of the World tabloid and uncovered a new conspiracy to intercept voice mail.

Milk producer Dean Foods on Wednesday posted a fourth-quarter profit of $37 million, reversing a loss from the year before. But its profit outlook fell short of Wall Street expectations, and shares slumped.

Feb. 13 (Bloomberg) -- WellPoint Inc., the second-biggest U.S. health insurer, picked a new chief executive officer from outside the industry who says his work with hospitals and doctors will help smooth the insurer’s path in a time of change.

Feb. 13 (Bloomberg) -- Duke Energy Corp. reported profit rose 51 percent in the fourth quarter, the second period after its $17.8 billion takeover of Progress Energy Inc. made it the largest U.S. utility owner, as cooler temperatures boosted earnings from its regulated units.

Feb. 13 (Bloomberg) -- Intel Corp. hired Spencer Stuart & Associates Ltd. to help find its next chief executive officer, people with knowledge of the matter said, a sign that the chipmaker is seriously considering external candidates.

Feb. 13 (Bloomberg) -- President Barack Obama bypassed Congress and issued an executive order to boost U.S. cybersecurity while telling lawmakers they still must act to further strengthen the nation’s computer defenses.

With three nettlesome financial issues resolved, Duke Energy Corp. CEO Jim Rogers says the company is now ready to face a future in which homes and businesses will no longer consume increasing amounts of electricity.

Feb. 13 (Bloomberg) -- As paychecks for consultants hired to review faulty foreclosures threatened to exceed compensation to the homeowners harmed by the flaws, the U.S. Comptroller of the Currency says he decided to end the reviews.

Acco Brands Corp.'s shares fell in trading Wednesday after the office products maker reported that its fourth-quarter revenue came in below market expectations.

Caribbean tourism is bouncing back to pre-recession levels, with visitors from Canada and the U.S. giving a boost to a region struggling to recover from a global economic crisis.

Feb. 13 (Bloomberg) -- A New York realty firm holding claims assigned to it by Sheldon H. Solow sued Citigroup Inc, JPMorgan Chase & Co., Bank of America Corp., UBS AG and several other banks accusing them of manipulating Libor, the London interbank offered rate, by falsely reporting the interest rates at which the lenders themselves were able to borrow money.

Feb. 13 (Bloomberg) -- Texas Governor Rick Perry said he visited California for four days to lure businesses by touting the tax and regulatory advantages of relocating.

Feb. 13 (Bloomberg) -- Vodafone Group Plc is considering a bid for Kabel Deutschland Holding AG, Germany’s largest cable provider, to expand in the country’s pay-TV and Internet market, according to a person with knowledge of the matter.

Shares of Blue Nile Inc. tumbled Wednesday after the online diamond and jewelry seller announced a lower-than-expected fourth-quarter profit and issued a weak earnings forecast for the full year.

Packaging maker Sonoco Products Co. said Wednesday that fourth-quarter net income jumped 45 percent, helped by better profitability at its paper and industrial converted products business.

The head of the U.S. Postal Services is pleading with Congress not to thwart his plan to cut Saturday mail as a way to save money.

Pinnacle Entertainment Inc. moved to a loss in its fourth quarter, pressured by a write-down and some charges.

Citi Trends Inc. shares sank Wednesday after the clothing retailer reported disappointing fiscal fourth-quarter sales and said it expects a loss for the period.

Dubai's ruler has approval a $1.6 billion island development project that would be home to what's billed as the world's biggest Ferris wheel.

Feb. 13 (Bloomberg) -- Platinum rose for a second straight day, widening its premium to gold to a 17-month high, on concern supply may fall after Zimbabwe seized land from the nation’s top miner of the metal. Gold retreated.

Feb. 13 (Bloomberg) -- Lawyers for Barry Bonds, Major League Baseball’s home-run record holder who was rejected for the sport’s Hall of Fame last month, asked a federal appeals court to overturn his 2011 conviction for obstructing a U.S. probe of steroid use.

The changes to the 2013 Civic came quickly after the 2012 Civic _ a new, ninth-generation version -- debuted to criticism from reviewers and consumers about cheap-looking materials and plain styling.

Feb. 13 (Bloomberg) -- Lawmakers in Congress and more than a dozen states are seeking to shield Americans from spying by domestic drones as the Federal Aviation Administration works to integrate unmanned aircraft into the U.S. aviation system.

As Lauren Smith and Matt Hendrickson drive home together, all conversation about work must stop a few blocks from their house.

Feb. 13 (Bloomberg) -- Groupon Inc. surged the most in two months amid optimism that its new e-commerce service may expand to more cities, bolstering sales.

Feb. 13 (Bloomberg) -- Apple Inc. said it will fight Greenlight Capital Inc.’s bid to bar the company from adopting a measure restricting its ability to issue preferred stock.

Feb. 13 (Bloomberg) -- Dell Inc., the computer maker that agreed to a $24.4 billion buyout this month, is coming under increased pressure to make the deal more attractive to shareholders who say the transaction undervalues the company.

Feb. 14 (Bloomberg) -- FedEx Corp.’s home hub is poised to build on shipment growth last year that topped Hong Kong’s for the first time since the Memphis, Tennessee, facility lost the title of world’s busiest cargo airport in 2010.

Feb. 14 (Bloomberg) -- Honda Motor Co. is seeking to quadruple motorbike and scooter sales in India by 2020 and overtake former partner Hero MotoCorp Ltd., as rising incomes in rural areas boost demand for personal transportation.

Feb. 13 (Bloomberg) -- MetLife Inc., the largest U.S. life insurer, said fourth-quarter profit fell 87 percent on costs tied to lower interest rates and annuities.

Data storage company NetApp Inc. said Wednesday that its net income rose 32 percent in the latest quarter, as it kept costs in check while revenue inched up.

Acorda Therapeutics Inc. said Wednesday that its net income surged in the fourth quarter because of a one-time tax benefit worth $132.7 million.

Natural and organic grocery chain Whole Foods Market Inc. reported Wednesday that its fiscal first-quarter profit jumped 24 percent on stronger revenue. But the company narrowed its revenue forecast and said its earnings growth may slow through the remainder of the fiscal year as it faces higher store-opening costs and plans to increase the number of lower-priced products in its stores to remain competitive with other grocers.

Shares of Mondelez International Inc. dropped in after-hours trading Wednesday after the maker Oreo, Cadbury and Nabisco reported a fourth-quarter profit that fell short of Wall Street expectations.

Fighting the problem of fake drugs will require creating a national drug-tracking system, the Institute of Medicine said Wednesday.

Feb. 13 (Bloomberg) -- Carnival Corp. said the fire on the Triumph cruise ship will cost the company 8 cents to 10 cents a share in the first half of fiscal 2013 for repairs and travel disruptions. The stock fell.

Feb. 13 (Bloomberg) -- Take-Two Interactive Software Inc. agreed to take over development and production of World Wrestling Entertainment Inc. video games from bankrupt THQ Inc.

Feb. 13 (Bloomberg) -- Cisco Systems Inc. reported quarterly profit that beat estimates as the world’s largest maker of computer-networking gear benefited from price reductions and surging Internet traffic.

Is General Electric letting Comcast gobble up the NBCUniversal media empire at a bargain price? Wall Street thinks so.

The price of oil fell near $97 a barrel Wednesday after a government report showed an increase in U.S. crude supplies.

A New York judge is dismissing a key group of the many lawsuits against Facebook over its initial public offering in May, saying the plaintiffs did not show that they lost money because of corporate wrongdoing.

Striking a decidedly populist tone, President Barack Obama stood in a resurrected factory Wednesday, imploring lawmakers to work as hard as American blue-collar workers as he pitched his plan to jump-start manufacturing and expand opportunities for the middle class.

President Barack Obama's call to raise the minimum wage to $9 an hour and keep increasing it annually for inflation is already getting a trial run.

in cars, while jogging, in between smartphone calls or while working at a desk. Thousands of our favorite songs are just a playlist away.

Mexico's new administration offered the first details on Tuesday of a long-touted shift in the country's war on drugs, saying the government will spend $9.2 billion this year on social programs meant to keep young people from joining criminal organizations in the 251 most violent towns and neighborhoods across the country.

Feb. 13 (Bloomberg) -- Treasuries fell for a third day before the government sells $24 billion of 10-year notes, the second of three auctions of coupon-bearing debt this week.

President Barack Obama set up high-stakes clashes over guns, immigration, taxes and climate change in a State of the Union address that showcased a newly re-elected president determined to mark his legacy, facing off against a deeply divided Congress with Republicans eager to rein him in.

An amount of freshwater almost the size of the Dead Sea has been lost in parts of the Middle East due to poor management, increased demands for groundwater and the effects of a 2007 drought, according to a NASA study.

Feb. 13 (Bloomberg) -- Hyatt Hotels Corp., the chain controlled by the Pritzker family, said fourth-quarter profit fell 69 percent as margins decreased at some of its properties.

Feb. 13 (Bloomberg) -- The euro strengthened for a third day against the dollar after the region’s industrial output rose more than forecast and Italian bonds stayed higher as the government sold almost $9 billion of debt.

A former government official responsible for protecting whistle-blowers has pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor charge of injury to government property.

There is plenty of blame to go around for the pending automatic budget cuts that have put the U.S. military on the brink of a readiness crisis, the Republican chairman of the House Armed Services Committee said Wednesday.

A world monitoring group on conflict diamonds said Wednesday it wants restrictions on the sale of Zimbabwe diamonds tightened after calls to relax them by diamond companies in Belgium.

The nation's crude oil supplies rose last week, the government said Wednesday.

The dollar is at a 6-month high against the British pound after the Bank of England predicted rising prices.

U.S. companies restocked their store shelves and warehouses at a slower pace in December, a sign of caution as sales weakened. Slower restocking was a major drag on the economy in the final three months of last year.

With schools still closed, cars still buried and streets still blocked by the widespread weekend snowstorm, officials around southern New England are asking people to pick up a shovel and help out.

Plastic checkout bags would be banned throughout Rhode Island under legislation introduced Rhode Island's General Assembly.

The Vatican says Pope Benedict XVI will spend his final day as pontiff attending a morning farewell ceremony with his cardinals, then fly off by helicopter in the early evening to his papal summer residence in Castel Gandolfo.

Feb. 13 (Bloomberg) -- Democrats and Republicans in the U.S. Congress are nowhere near a plan to avert $1.2 trillion in spending cuts about two weeks before they are set to begin.

British officials say a mysterious virus related to SARS may have spread between humans, as they confirmed the 11th case worldwide of the new coronavirus in a patient who they say probably caught it from a family member.

A NATO airstrike struck two houses, killing 10 Afghan civilians and four insurgents near the Pakistani border, officials said Wednesday. President Hamid Karzai condemned the attack, the latest in a series of civilian casualty reports that have raised tensions between the Afghans and the U.S.-led foreign forces.

Iran said Wednesday that it has begun installing a new generation of centrifuges at its main uranium enrichment facility, a move that will allow it to vastly increase its pace of uranium enrichment in defiance of U.N. calls to halt such activities.

The disabled cruise ship in the Gulf of Mexico had mechanical problems last month that delayed its departure from Galveston on a previous voyage.

Wed, Feb 13, 2013