News Archive
National | Tue, Dec 18, 2012

German residential landlords, the best-performing stocks on the country’s mid-cap index this year, will cool off in 2013, as acquisitions become more expensive and rent increases are curbed.

Apple Inc.’s request for additional damages against Samsung Electronics Co. for patent infringement remains to be decided after the iPhone maker lost its bid to block U.S. sales on 26 of the Galaxy maker’s devices.

Apple Inc. and Google Inc. have joined forces to offer more than $500 million to buy Eastman Kodak Co.’s patents out of bankruptcy, said people familiar with the situation.

The current-account deficit in the United States narrowed in the third quarter, helped by slowing imports.

New York on Monday dropped its proposal for a 45-percent increase in the state Thruway toll for truckers following pressure by an upstate business group, consumers and Republicans, while advancing a $3.14 billion replacement for the Tappan Zee Bridge in New York City's northern suburbs.

Dec. 18 (Bloomberg) -- Alcoa Inc., the largest U.S. aluminum producer, may have its credit rating cut to junk by Moody’s Investors Service Inc. after the price of the metal slumped.

Dec. 18 (Bloomberg) -- Investors almost doubled purchases of commodities this year, at a time when Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and Morgan Stanley are forecasting higher prices and Citigroup Inc. says the best returns are over.

Just two weeks from an economy-threatening deadline, fiscal cliff talks hit a lull Tuesday as House Speaker John Boehner announced that Republicans would also march ahead with their own tax plan on a separate track from the one he's been pursuing with President Barack Obama.

Coney Island's famous boardwalk is going plastic.

Napa Valley, one of the world's premier wine growing regions, has an uncommon problem these days: not enough new grapevine root stock is available to supply the massive replanting that's under way there.

Dec. 18 (Bloomberg) -- Oil climbed for a third day in New York on signs an agreement will be reached on the U.S. budget, avoiding automatic spending cuts and tax increases next year.

Stocks climbed on Wall Street Tuesday, pushing the Standard and Poor's 500 to its highest level in two months, on optimism that lawmakers are closing in on a budget deal that will stop the U.S. from going over the “fiscal cliff” at the beginning of next year.

Instagram, the popular mobile photo-sharing service now owned by Facebook, is the target of a storm of outrage, much of it on social media, after changes in its user agreement give it broader rights to use its members' photos in advertisements.

Dec. 18 (Bloomberg) -- Bank of America Corp., the best performer in the Dow Jones Industrial Average for 2012, has more than doubled since the start of the year as the company rebuilds capital and investor confidence.

Confidence among U.S. homebuilders inched up this month, to the highest level in more than six and a half years, as builders reported the best market for newly built homes since the housing boom.

Dec. 18 (Bloomberg) -- A gauge of U.S. corporate credit risk declined to the least in almost three months on signs of progress in U.S. budget talks.

Standard & Poor's ratings agency has raised Greece's credit grade by 6 notches to B-, yanking the debt-heavy country out of default but still keeping its devalued bonds in the junk zone.

Democratic Sen. Patrick Leahy of Vermont was sworn in Tuesday as president pro tempore of the Senate.

Facebook isn't just for goofy pictures and silly chatter. Whether shoppers know it or not, their actions online help dictate what's in stores during this holiday season.

A cellphone game for kids about U.S. geography, “Stack the States,” gets rave reviews from parents. Its creator, Dan Russell-Pinson, considered making the 99-cent app better by adding a feature to allow children to play online against one another. But with the Federal Trade Commission issuing more stringent online child privacy rules, he's not even pursuing the idea.

Dec. 18 (Bloomberg) -- More investors than ever say they are bullish about China’s economic outlook, and more favor European rather than U.S. stocks for the first time in two years, a Bank of America Corp. monthly survey showed.

Stock futures are higher on emerging signs that the White House and Congress are moving closer to a budget deal.

The liberal son of North Korean refugees faces the conservative daughter of a late dictator in South Korea's presidential election Wednesday. For all their differences, they've made remarkably similar campaign promises.

The U.S. current account trade deficit narrowed in the July-September quarter to the smallest level since late 2010, but the improvement may not last.

Dec. 18 (Bloomberg) -- Al Habtoor Group LLC, controlled by billionaire Khalaf Al Habtoor, delayed an initial share sale in Dubai as trading volumes fail to rebound in the Persian Gulf business hub.

Dec. 18 (Bloomberg) -- Construction employment in the U.S. is poised to rebound as a swelling pipeline of projects prompts companies to expand.

Dec. 18 (Bloomberg) -- Samsung Electronics Co. will withdraw patent lawsuits seeking to block sales of Apple Inc. products as part of litigation in Europe, hours after a U.S. court ruled it wouldn’t halt sales of some Samsung smartphones.

The White House is defending President Barack Obama's proposal to set a higher threshold for tax increases than what he vowed to do during his presidential campaign. The White House says Obama has moved halfway to meet House Speaker John Boehner on a “fiscal cliff” deal that raises $1.2 trillion in tax revenue, down from the $1.6 trillion Obama had initially requested.

Dec. 18 (Bloomberg) -- Treasuries remained lower as speculation U.S. lawmakers will resolve a fiscal showdown fueled appetite for higher-yielding assets, damping demand at the government’s auction of $35 billion in five-year notes.

Dec. 18 (Bloomberg) -- Level Global Investors LP co-founder Anthony Chiasson, who left SAC Capital Advisors LP to start his hedge fund, and former Diamondback Capital Management LLC portfolio manager Todd Newman were convicted in an insider- trading scheme that reaped more than $72 million.

A judge declared a mistrial Monday in the case of a watchdog group accused of violating federal law when it shared a whistle-blower settlement with a government economist 14 years ago.

The Justice Department has been investigating new ways to curb gun violence in the United States, including expanding and automating earlier this year the federal databases used in background checks on gun purchasers and coming up with new ideas for legislation to be considered by Congress and the White House.

Dec. 18 (Bloomberg) -- California home prices rose 25 percent in the 12 months through November, the most in eight years, as demand rose in expensive coastal areas, the state Realtors group said.

Dec. 18 (Bloomberg) -- Hedge funds and private-equity firms are betting on delinquent home loans being sold by the U.S. Federal Housing Administration as the government agency accelerates debt sales to avert a bailout and stem foreclosures.

The company that operates the financial news website TheStreet.com and three executives have settled federal civil charges of accounting fraud.

Dec. 18 (Bloomberg) -- More Americans who identified themselves as conservative received government benefits than those who said they are moderate or liberal, a survey shows.

Hopes that U.S. lawmakers are closer to a budget deal are pushing the euro to a seven-month high against the dollar.

Dec. 18 (Bloomberg) -- A band of Apple Inc.’s most bullish fans on Wall Street are growing increasingly bearish over concerns that holiday iPhone sales have been weak and that the company needs new breakthrough products to fend off rivals Google Inc. and Samsung Electronics Co.

Dec. 18 (Bloomberg) -- General Electric Co., the world’s largest jet-engine maker, may reach an agreement to buy aerospace-parts supplier Avio SpA from Cinven Ltd. this week, according to two people familiar with the matter.

Department store chain Dillard's Inc. is paying $2 million to settle charges that it illegally required workers who took sick leave to reveal confidential medical information.

Dec. 18 (Bloomberg) -- Getco LLC sweetened its offer to acquire Knight Capital Group Inc. as the market maker’s board prepares to decide between competing bids, according to a person with knowledge of the matter.

Rio de Janeiro is getting its own Trump Towers.

U.S. insurance company AIG sold its remaining stake in Asian life insurer AIA Group for $6.4 billion, the Hong Kong based-company said Tuesday.

Investment banking firm Jefferies Group said Tuesday that its fiscal fourth-quarter net income rose 48 percent as its fixed income revenue more than doubled. The company's results beat analysts' estimates and its stock climbed in afternoon trading.

Baker Hughes Inc. said Tuesday that it expects its North American revenue and profitability to be lower than previously it previously thought because of weaker-than-expected onshore drilling and falling prices at its pressure pumping operations.

Shares of Goldman Sachs rose on Tuesday to their highest level in nearly nine months after an analyst upgraded the stock, saying the investment bank is well-positioned heading into 2013.

Dec. 18 (Bloomberg) -- Pfizer Inc., the company that lost its patent a year ago on the top-selling drug Lipitor, is firing almost 20 percent of its roughly 3,000-person sales force for primary-care drugs, said a person familiar with the matter.

Dec. 18 (Bloomberg) -- Securities and Exchange Commission Chairman Elisse Walter may hire as her top lawyer a former enforcement director from the main U.S. derivatives regulator.

The nation's largest teachers' pension fund announced Tuesday that it will review its holdings after being criticized for having an investment in the manufacturer of an assault rifle used in last week's Connecticut school massacre.

Nielsen, the dominant source of TV ratings, on Tuesday said it had agreed to buy Arbitron for about $1.26 billion to expand into radio measurement.

Oracle's latest quarterly earnings rose 18 percent as companies splurged on more software and other technology toward the end of the year.

Dec. 18 (Bloomberg) -- Health Net Inc., the medical insurer that has missed analysts’ estimates the past three quarters, said it expects 2013 profit and sales to also fall below expectations. The company’s stock declined in extended trading.

Dec. 18 (Bloomberg) -- The cheapest copper mining deal in five years has traders convinced that First Quantum Minerals Ltd.’s latest bid for Inmet Mining Corp. won’t be its last.

Dec. 18 (Bloomberg) -- Wall Street’s largest banks are exposed to increased financial risks through their membership in clearinghouses charged with guaranteeing most swaps under the Dodd-Frank Act, a trade group said.

Dec. 18 (Bloomberg) -- Dick’s Sporting Goods Inc., the largest U.S. sporting-goods chain, suspended sales of modern sporting rifles nationwide in the wake of the shooting in Newtown, Connecticut, as the massacre’s victims are mourned.

A Cincinnati-based company and one of its executives pleaded guilty Tuesday in a bid-rigging scheme involving employees with the Ohio Department of Transportation that authorities said cheated taxpayers out of tens of thousands of dollars.

Dell Inc. said Tuesday that it is buying data-protection company Credant Technologies for an undisclosed sum.

The world economy grew at a significantly weaker pace in 2012 and is not likely to pick up enough in the next two years to recover jobs lost during the global financial crisis, the United Nations said Tuesday.

Dec. 18 (Bloomberg) -- The U.S. Federal Trade Commission will delay a final decision on how to resolve its 20-month antitrust investigation of Google Inc. until next year, said two people familiar with the situation who asked not to be named because the talks aren’t public.

Flanked by dozens of shooting survivors and relatives of victims of gunfire around the country, Mayor Michael Bloomberg pressed Congress and President Barack Obama on Monday to toughen gun laws and tighten enforcement after the Connecticut school massacre that left 20 children among the dead.

Participant Media plans to launch a cable network aimed at viewers 18 to 34 years old with programming it describes as inspiring and thought-provoking.

Nu Skin Enterprises Inc. plans to boost its regularly scheduled dividend payments by 50 percent next year.

Cerberus is planning to sell its stake in Freedom Group, maker of the Bushmaster rifle, following the school shootings in Newtown, Conn.

Democrats on Monday began trying to push $60.4 billion in emergency spending for Superstorm Sandy victims through Congress by Christmas. Republicans responded: Not so fast.

The privately held Dr. Fresh company is buying Reach toothbrushes from McNeil-PPC Inc., saying it will complement its existing group of products.

Where is the NRA?

Germany's iconic gummy bear has won a sweet legal victory over a foil-wrapped Swiss chocolate teddy.

Samsung Electronics Co. says it has withdrawn its requests to have sales of certain Apple Inc. products banned in Europe.

A sporting goods chain says it's suspending sales of modern rifles nationwide because of the school shooting in Connecticut.

France's President Francois Hollande may be facing a tough 2013, now that the opposition conservatives have ended a month of internal feuding and the Socialist leader struggles to solve the problems of Europe's No. 2 economy.

Signs that U.S. politicians are inching toward a budget deal that will avoid potentially damaging tax increases and spending cuts shored up markets Tuesday.

Queen Elizabeth II sat in on a Cabinet meeting for the first time on Tuesday, taking a seat between British Prime Minister David Cameron and Foreign Secretary William Hague to observe the weekly discussion of government business.

Iraqi President Jalal Talabani has been hospitalized in Baghdad after suffering a stroke and is in stable condition, a spokesman for the prime minister said Tuesday.

A European diplomat says Germany and three other European members of the U.N. Security Council are preparing a statement condemning Israel's latest settlement plans in east Jerusalem and the West Bank.

Clashes between Syrian rebels and an armed Palestinian group loyal to President Bashar Assad raged inside a Damascus refugee camp Tuesday, as the Syrian military deployed tanks outside, activists said.

On Dec. 7, 1941, high school senior Daniel Inouye knew he and other Japanese-Americans would face trouble when he saw Japanese dive bombers, torpedo planes and fighters on their way to bomb Pearl Harbor and other Oahu military bases.

to a grief-stricken town as it buries 20 of its children.

The king is dead, but the molecatcher lives on.

Dec. 18 (Bloomberg) -- TheStreet Inc., which operates the financial website TheStreet.com, and three former executives were sued by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission over claims of accounting fraud at the company.


Tue, Dec 18, 2012
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