News Archive
National | Wed, Dec 19, 2012

China Communications Construction Co. said it has access to at least 300 billion yuan ($48 billion) of credit lines from local banks as it seeks to invest in infrastructure projects in the U.S. and other developed nations.

For a half-century after gaining independence in 1947, India’s politics were dominated by the Congress Party’s socialist orientation and tilt toward the Soviet Union.

The most valuable new book I’ve read this year is Justin Yifu Lin’s “The Quest for Prosperity.” George Akerlof, a Nobel laureate in economics and a man not given to reckless overstatement, calls it “a masterpiece.” I’d say that’s right.

General Motors, trying to clear the stigma of being partly owned by the U.S. government, will spend $5.5 billion to buy back 200 million shares of its stock from the treasury.

Fiscal cliff talks at a partisan standoff, President Barack Obama and House Speaker John Boehner swapped barbed political charges on Wednesday yet carefully left room for further negotiations on an elusive deal to head off year-end tax increases and spending cuts that threaten the national economy.

FedEx Corp., operator of the world’s largest cargo airline, maintained its full-year profit forecast amid increasing concern that U.S. economic growth may slow.

Builders in November capped the strongest three months for residential construction in four years, and permits climbed as record-low borrowing costs buoyed the U.S. housing market.

Oil rose to a two-month high after the Energy Department said inventories decreased as refineries ramped up operations, boosting demand for crude.

Stocks fell, pulling the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index down from a two-month high, as deteriorating federal budget negotiations fueled concern that automatic tax increases and spending cuts will be triggered.

Bank of America Corp. has amassed $64 billion of mortgages that are at least six months delinquent and have yet to enter foreclosure, more than twice the amount held by its four largest competitors combined.

The U.S. subsidiaries of French pharmaceutical giant Sanofi will pay $109 million to settle allegations they gave kickbacks to induce doctors to buy and prescribe Hyalgan, a knee injection.

Dec. 19 (Bloomberg) -- The number of building applications issued in November rose to a four-year high, a sign the U.S. housing-market recovery will extend into 2013.

Google is turning on a “scan and match” service for Google Music users to store copies of their songs online, offering for free what Apple charges $25 a year for.

The price of oil rose Wednesday as the government reported shrinking crude supplies, and some good news overseas offset concerns about political wrangling in Washington.

Eastman Kodak is selling its digital imaging patents for about $525 million, money the struggling photo pioneer says will help it emerge from bankruptcy protection in the first half of next year.

FedEx may be pessimistic about the U.S. economy, but it's confident about growing its earnings.

Wells Fargo & Co. will offer almost $60 million in cash rebates to more than 3,900 minority borrowers who were put into nonprime loans when eligible for prime ones as part of a loan bias settlement with the United States.

Internet advertising hit a new high in the third quarter as marketers continued to shift money from print and broadcasting.

Satellite radio company Sirius XM Radio named one of its executives, James Meyer, as its interim CEO while it looks for a replacement for Mel Karmazin.

Dec. 19 (Bloomberg) -- Gun-control advocates, seeking new laws in the aftermath of the Connecticut school shooting, are drawing support from an unlikely source: the U.S. Supreme Court’s landmark 2008 decision backing the right to bear arms.

Mortgage applications in the United States dropped last week by the most in more than a year, as home purchasing and refinancing slumped.

Dec. 18 (Bloomberg) -- Even as retailers debate the efficacy of social-media marketing on Facebook and Twitter, they have no doubts about the power of a decades-old technology to drive sales. The killer app is called e-mail.

Dec. 18 (Bloomberg) -- The U.S. House shelved efforts to update a 26-year-old e-mail privacy law as it passed a bill, backed by Netflix Inc., making it easier for people to share their video-viewing habits on Facebook Inc.’s social network.

Dec. 19 (Bloomberg) -- A group including Apple Inc., Google Inc. and Research In Motion Ltd. agreed to buy patents from bankrupt Eastman Kodak Co. for about $525 million, gaining the right to use the digital technology to capture and share photos.

Dec. 19 (Bloomberg) -- Treasuries rose for the first time in three days as the White House said President Barack Obama would veto a Republican budget proposal in a fiscal showdown that could push the U.S. economy into recession.

The White House threatened Wednesday to veto House Speaker John Boehner's backup plan for averting the “fiscal cliff,” saying it was time for Republicans to stop political posturing and continue trying to reach a compromise deficit-cutting package.

Dec. 19 (Bloomberg) -- Brent crude rose for a second day in London, gaining more than $1, after an industry report showed stockpiles fell the most in more than three months in the U.S., the world’s biggest oil consumer.

U.S. builders broke ground on fewer homes in November after starting work in October at the fastest pace in four years. Superstorm Sandy likely slowed starts in the Northeast.

Dec. 19 (Bloomberg) -- Gold swung between gains and losses in New York as U.S. lawmakers sought a budget deal to avert tax increase and spending cuts set to begin in two weeks.

Nearly five months after a major software malfunction at Knight Capital roiled financial markets, the trading firm has agreed to sell itself to a competitor, Getco, in a cash-and-stock deal that the companies value at $1.4 billion.

Dec. 19 (Bloomberg) -- Bank of Canada Governor Mark Carney will receive an annual housing allowance of 250,000 pounds ($407,000) a year when he takes over from Mervyn King at the helm of Bank of England next year.

Dec. 19 (Bloomberg) -- UBS AG’s $1.5 billion fine to U.S. and European regulators for rigging global interest rates is a “blatant example” of the problems with benchmarks not tied market trades, said Gary Gensler, chairman of the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission.

And, buyers of the Lancer SE AWC _ for Mitsubishi's all-wheel control moniker -- get a larger four-cylinder engine with 20 more horsepower and 22 more foot-pounds of torque than the Impreza.

Dec. 18 (Bloomberg) -- Cerberus Capital Management LP, the New York-based investment firm that owns the largest U.S. gunmaker, will put the company up for sale, acting four days after one of its rifles was used in the Connecticut school shootings that left 26 people dead, including 20 six- and seven- year-olds.

Dec. 18 (Bloomberg) -- The following are the day's top general news stories:

Will the Marlboro Man light up a joint soon?

talk.

Dec. 19 (Bloomberg) -- Professional golfer Phil Mickelson has withdrawn his ownership interest in Major League Baseball’s San Diego Padres, a spokesman for the golfer said.

Ally Financial has repaid $4.5 billion of debt owed to the government after it helped bail the company out during the 2008 banking industry meltdown.

Dec. 20 (Bloomberg) -- Holiday shoppers aren’t the only ones who sometimes wait until the last minute. Whether by design or delay, some gadgets don’t show up until fairly late in the season.

When it comes to fat holiday discounts, better late than never.

Dec. 19 (Bloomberg) -- Potential spending cuts and tax increases aimed at reducing the U.S. budget deficit will weigh on the economy’s growth and depress financial company stocks in 2013, according to Fidelity Investments’ Benjamin Hesse.

Dec. 19 (Bloomberg) -- Facebook Inc., the world’s largest social-networking company, could be exposed to legal challenges surrounding its initial public offering similar to those faced by Morgan Stanley, according to legal experts.

Dec. 19 (Bloomberg) -- Herbalife Ltd., the maker of namesake nutritional and weight loss supplements, fell the most in more than seven months after hedge fund manager Bill Ackman said he has taken a short position on the company.

Navistar International Corp.'s shares plunged Wednesday after the truck maker posted a fiscal fourth-quarter loss on weaker revenue and a major tax expense.

Dec. 19 (Bloomberg) -- Bed Bath & Beyond Inc., the operator of more than 1,400 home-furnishing stores, declined in extended trading after projecting full-year profit that trailed analysts’ estimates.

Aiming to prevent companies from exploiting online information about children under 13, the Obama administration on Wednesday imposed sweeping changes in regulations designed to protect a young generation with easy access to the Internet.

Struggling video game company THQ Inc. says it has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection and plans to sell off its assets.

President Barack Obama is launching an administration-wide effort to curb gun violence, underscoring the growing political consensus over tightening gun restrictions following the horrific massacre at a Connecticut elementary school.

Fitch Ratings is warning that the U.S. is more likely to lose its top-notch “AAA” rating if lawmakers cannot agree on how to cut the deficit, sending the country over the “fiscal cliff” of broad government spending cuts and tax increases next year.

Dec. 19 (Bloomberg) -- Greek retailers will see Christmas and New Year-related revenue decline 18 percent as business is blighted by the country’s fifth year of recession, the National Confederation of Hellenic Commerce said.

Civil servants in Greece staged a 24-hour strike Wednesday, as thousands gathered to protest new pay cuts as well as suspensions that are expected to lead to layoffs.

Dec. 19 (Bloomberg) -- The European Central Bank acted to ease Greek banks’ access to funding by accepting the country’s bonds in exchange for cash for the first time since July.

Dec. 19 (Bloomberg) -- A gauge of U.S. corporate credit risk held at about the lowest level in three months as German business confidence increased for a second month in December.

General Mills Inc. is raising its earnings outlook for the year after newly acquired businesses helped lift its second-quarter profit by 22 percent.

The European Central Bank says it will once again accept Greek government bonds as collateral for loans to banks.

Up a sweeping jungle valley in a remote corner of Cambodia, Chinese engineers and workers are raising a 100-meter- (330-foot-) high dam over the protests of villagers and activists. Only Chinese companies are willing to tame the Tatay and other rivers of Koh Kong province, one of Southeast Asia's last great wilderness areas.

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

Nintendo is switching on a television service that transforms the tablet-like controller for its new Wii U game console into a remote that changes the channel on your TV and puts programs from the Internet just a few finger taps away.

The Justice Department says an international investment bank will pay more than $1.5 billion in penalties in three nations to resolve charges of trying to manipulate an interest rate used as a benchmark in global banking transactions.

A Soyuz spacecraft carry three astronauts has taken off atop a towering Russian rocket, headed for the International Space Station.

German prosecutors have charged two former Porsche executives with market manipulation in connection with the sports car company's failed takeover of Volkswagen AG, officials said Wednesday.

A Jerusalem official says Israel is moving ahead with construction of a new east Jerusalem settlement, despite an international outcry over continued building.

Syrian government forces are carrying out a broad offensive against rebels in the suburbs of Damascus, the state media said Wednesday, as the United Nations appealed for a billion dollars to support rising numbers of Syrian refugees.

Russia's parliament on Wednesday gave overwhelming preliminary approval to a measure banning Americans from adopting Russian children, a harsh retaliatory move against U.S. human rights legislation.

An Egyptian judicial official says a top elections official in charge of overseeing the vote on a contentious draft constitution has resigned citing health problems.

Dec. 19 (Bloomberg) -- India hasn’t been spared the effects of the recession and the recent slowing of global growth.

The movie “Zero Dark Thirty” is misleading and “grossly inaccurate” in its suggestion that torture produced the tip that led the U.S. military to find terrorist leader Osama bin Laden, three senators said Wednesday in a letter to the head of Sony Pictures Entertainment.


Wed, Dec 19, 2012
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