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Warren Buffet & Berkshire Hathaway To Invest $5 billion in Bank Of America Corp

With the announcement on Thursday that Berkshire Hathaway where Warren Buffet is the chairman and CEO is to invest $5 billion to help out the Bank of America Corp., shares of the major banks surged. bank stocks have been dropping more than other markets, being continually hurt by fears of the debt crisis in Europe, but this move by Buffet has given a positive outlook for the Bank of America, the United States biggest bank. This year the Bank of America had lost about half of its value as investors were concerned about the lack of capital and its liabilities resulting from high risk mortgages. Buffet recently invested capital into Goldman Sachs as well as General Electric, and in fact the deal with the Bank of America, is similar to these previous … Read entire article »

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Google To Forfeit $500 Million In Pharmacy Ad Probe

On Wednesday morning at a news conference in Providence at the office of the United States attorney, the Justice Department announced that Google will forfeit $500 million for improperly permitting Canadian online pharmacies to use Google advertising, Google Adwords, to target U.S. consumers. The forfeit is one of the largest seen in U.S. history, so far, and represents the amount in part which Google received as a result of these pharmacies in Canada advertising with Google Adwords. According to the U.S. government, Google has acknowledged its part in improperly allowing this advertising. The U.S. Attorney Peter F. Neronha said that as a result of the settlement, Google, the leading search internet browser will not face criminal prosecution for the accusations that it profited from the illegal import of … Read entire article »

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Ford And Toyota Sign MOU On Development Of Hybrid System

It was announced on Monday that Ford and Toyota have signed a memorandum of understanding, MOU, on their combining forces to develop a new hybrid system which will be used in bigger vehicles such as full sized pickup trucks and SUVs. This news may seem a little puzzling as both companies have had success with their own hybrid vehicles, the Ford Fusion, and the Toyota Prius, both of which are way more fuel efficient than even the F-150 which is considered to be the most fuel efficient as well as one of the best selling trucks in America. However, the Ford group vice president of Global Product Development said of the decision, “This agreement brings together the capability of two global leaders in hybrid vehicles and hybrid technology to develop a better … Read entire article »

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Verizon Workers To End Strike and Return To Work On Monday

Despite not having a new collective bargaining agreement in place, Verizon Communications Inc and the unions have agreed that the 45,000 striking workers will return to work starting on Monday, and that the workers will be covered by the terms of the previous contract which expired earlier this month on 6th August. There are still major issues which have to be resolved, including benefits, work flexibility and job security, as well as cost structure, but Verizon has reported that progress has been made in some issues both local and regional. Two unions were involved and called for the strike, the Communications Workers of America and the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, but on Saturday announced the return to work. It has been a difficult time for the workers and their families, who … Read entire article »

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Bank Of America Cutting 3,500 Jobs By End Of September, More Likely

The Bank of America Corporation is by assets, the largest bank holding company in the United States, and it is an American multinational bank and financial services corporation, but nevertheless, it has announced that it will cut 3,500 jobs in this quarter, but warn that additional cuts could be necessary later. These cuts will be effective across the country, and are additional to the cuts of about 2,500 jobs already made this year by the company. It is possible that the job losses will exceed 10,000 for this year, which equates to a 3.5 per cent cut in its work force in the United States. The cuts are necessary because of the financial impact that the burst housing bubble had on the financial markets. This in turn has led to the … Read entire article »

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Tobacco Companies File Lawsuit Against FDA

On Tuesday five tobacco companies filed a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia against the United States Food and Drug Administration which alleges that the graphic warning labels the government are mandating be put on all packets of cigarettes infringes on the rights of the companies involved. Floyd Abrams is representing the plaintiffs and said “The primary complaint is that we think it violates the First Amendment for the government to require people who produce a lawful product to essentially urge prospective purchasers not to buy it.” The suing follows the unveiling in June of nine new warning labels which have very graphic photos, and under the FDA regulations, half of each packet of cigarettes is to display one of the new labels. this is to start … Read entire article »

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Google and Motorola Mobility Reach Deal And Stocks Gain

On Monday it was announced that Google and Motorola Mobility have agreed for Google to buy the wireless phone company for $12.5 billion, or $40 per share. This sent shares of Motorola to $38.22 up by $56 per cent, while Google shares dropped about 2 per cent to $551.63. The takeover has been approved by the boards of both companies. Motorola Mobility is based in Libertyville, Illinois, and apparently has Google’s agreement that should the deal fall through they will receive $2.5 billion from Google, although this has not yet been confirmed. This news was announced after Japan had reported that its economy had shrunk less than half of the amount that economists were expecting for the last quarter after the earthquake and tsunami, back in March. This helped the world markets … Read entire article »

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Latest Setback For China’s Bullet Train

The Beijing to Shanghai high speed rail link that China was so proud of has hit another obstacle this week as the manufacturer is set to recall 54 CRH380BL rail cars for testing. The cars are China’s version of the bullet train, and with the recall, the rail service will be cut from the 88 trains it has been running each day to 66 beginning on 16 August, the new timetables show. This testing and cutback is the result of a deadly train crash near Wenzhou on 23 July in which 40 people lost their lives when two trains crashed. Although the cars to be inspected were not the ones involved in the crash, safety is now of great concern to the government, as the media backlash they have received has … Read entire article »

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Gas Prices At The Pump Starting To Fall Following Drop In Oil Prices

Because of recent drop in the price of crude oil, lower gas prices at the pump are starting to be seen. However, with the summer driving season almost over, the demand for the coming months is likely to be lower, and it is expected that this will be reflected in the price of gas at the pumps. According to the AAA, American Automobile Association’s Daily Fuel Gauge Report, the price of gasoline has dropped by 7 cents to an average of $3.63 per gallon on 10 August in the United States, which is still way higher that the price of $2.78 paid just twelve months ago. However, the record average price of gasoline was set on 17 July 2008 when prices averaged at $4.11 a gallon across the country. The Energy Information … Read entire article »

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Gold Prices Increase To Over $1,800 An Ounce

With fears of a global recession as well as concerns over the U.S. economy, prices of gold again rose while equity markets slumped, and on Wednesday gold rose to a new high for the third day running. Bullion set a new high of over $1,800 per ounce as new fears over the state of Europe’s debts shifted from Italy and Spain to concerns over France as its President Nicolas Sarkozy called  for new fiscal restraints. The markets are now watching to see whether its debt will be downgraded. Spot gold has rallied by almost 7 per cent this week after last Friday’s downgrade to the United States credit rating hit hard those assets which were seen to be a higher risk. Silver has not had the gains that gold has seen and … Read entire article »

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U.S. Magazine Sales Drop 9%

The latest report from the Audit Bureau of Circulations, ABC, shows that the sale of magazines at retail stores and at newsstands has dropped by over 9 per cent in the first half of this year, 2011 compared to this same period in 2010. This suggests that readers are trimming their spending as the economy and job futures appear uncertain for many. However, the overall circulation is only down about 1 per cent, but most of these are from single copy sales, where publishers typically make more profit than from the annual subscriptions. These subscriptions are often offered at bargain prices so that circulation can be boosted and that means more advertisers sign up. In the latest report, the ABC data reports that 418 titles were looked at and these sold 29.8 … Read entire article »

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Labor Talks Fail For Verizon – 45,000 Workers Go On Strike

As of Sunday morning, EDT the strike began for 45,000 workers at Verizon Communications in the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic states from Massachusetts to Washington D.C. Union leaders who are representing the Communications Workers of America (CWA) and the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) called for the strike, which is not affecting Verizon Wireless services, as talks between the two sides broke down as they failed to reach an agreement for the workers on work rules, pensions and health care issues. Verizon Communications Inc has its headquarters in Lower Manhattan, New York City, but the dispute is with the wireline division of the company, which includes land line operations along with business services and services for the government of the United States. About a fifth of the workers employed by Verizon … Read entire article »

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Boeing Employees To Fly To ISS On Boeing Spaceship

As part of the NASA’s Commercial Crew Development program, Boeing is developing a spacecraft, the CST-100, and is planning to send two of its own employees in the space capsule on the third flight planned for 2015. The spacecraft will use the Atlas-5 rocket to launch it, and the first launch will test getting it into orbit, while the second is being planned as an aborted orbit attempt, to test the escape abilities of the capsule should a launch go wrong for some reason. Both of these will be unmanned. However, provided these first two launches are successful, the third launch is being planned to take two Boeing employees to the International Space Station, ISS. Because Boeing wants the two astronauts to be involved in the development of the capsule, the … Read entire article »

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Honda To Recall Vehicles in U.S. Canada and China

The Honda Motor Corporation has said on Friday that it is getting set to recall about 2 million vehicles in the United States and China, as well as over 130,000 in Canada. Honda will begin contacting the appropriate Honda owners at the end of August to inform them about the recall of 4-cylinder Honda Accords from 2005 to 2010, as well as CR-Vs dated 2007 to 2010 and Elements models from 2005 to 2008. They should call their authorized dealer to arrange for the necessary update to be done. There is a need to update the software for the automatic transmissions on these vehicles, otherwise a bearing in the automatic transmission system may become damaged under certain circumstances. This includes shifting gears quickly between reverse, neutral and drive positions, which is … Read entire article »

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General Motors Makes Big Profit In Second Quarter Earnings

On Thursday, General Motors announced that their profit in the second quarter of the year rose by 89 per cent for the same time period last year, earning $2.5 billion, or $1.54 per share compared with $1.3 billion and 83 cents per share last year. This makes it six quarters consecutively that GM have made a profit. Dan Akerson, the chief executive for GM said that “GM’s investments in fuel economy, design and quality are paying off around the world, as our global market-share growth and financial results bear out. We had a solid quarter, each region posted a profit. Our cash flow was positive,” Akerson added. It is reported to be the best quarter that GM have had since it emerged from bankruptcy. GM filed for bankruptcy in June 2009. This … Read entire article »

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HSBC Plans Job Cuts Of 30,000 Worldwide by 2013

HSBC, the Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation, which was founded in London, U.K. in 1991 is a global banking and financial services company, but announced on Monday that it is planning to cut about 30,000 jobs throughout the world by 2013, and it is also planning to sell about half of its retail bank branches in the United States. About 5,000 job cuts had been announced earlier in the year by the bank. The cuts are to be made to enable the bank to grow in other markets such as Brazil, Mexico, Singapore and Turkey where the bank has the leading market share. With the number of people employed by HSBC worldwide being about 295,000, the job cuts announced represents an estimated 10 per cent reduction in the number of employees … Read entire article »

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Three More Banks Fail In U.S.

On Friday United States regulators shut down three small bank which brings the total number of bank closures to 61 for 2011. This time, according to the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. (FDIC), the Integra Bank NA of Evansville was closed with 52 branches in Indiana South Carolina and Virginia. In Columbia, South Carolina, BankMeridian NA was closed and in Richmond Virginia, the Virginia Business Bank, both smaller banks. The Old National Bancorp which is based in Evansville will take over the Integra Bank NA which has $2.2 billion in assets as well as $1.9 billion in deposits. The FDIC announced that Xenith Bank of Richmond will take over the Virginia Business Bank and its $85 million in deposits, as well as their assets which total around $95 million. For South Carolina, the … Read entire article »

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Home Prices And Sales Still Not Looking Good In The U.S.

On Tuesday the Standard and Poor’s Case Shiller home price index showed that in 20 major cities in the United States, the price for existing homes fell 4.4 per cent in May from twelve months earlier, and these declines were across the country. However, comparing April and May’s prices this year, without any adjustment for the season, the prices remain virtually unchanged. In a separate report also released on Tuesday, the Census Bureau reported that in June the sales of new homes fell by 1% from May, to an annual rate of 312,000 units. Although economists were not optimistic beforehand, this was lower than expected by many. The battle that is being waged in Washington D.C. in the political arena between the Democrats and the Republicans over raising the debt ceiling is … Read entire article »

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