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Business Update for 12/2/13

Business news for Monday, December 2

Gray Thursday shoppers at the Old Navy store inside Freehold Raceway Mall
Gray Thursday shoppers at the Old Navy store inside Freehold Raceway Mall (Dino Flammia, Townsquare Media NJ)
NEW YORK (AP) — Shoppers spent less over the Thanksgiving weekend, and that is weighing on stocks. Although record numbers of shoppers turned out over the four-day Thanksgiving weekend, they spent less than they did last year. It was the first decline in Thanksgiving weekend spending since a retail trade group began tracking it in 2006. The Dow was little changed at midday.

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. manufacturing grew in November at the fastest pace in two and a-half years, with factories ramping up production, stepping up hiring and receiving orders at a healthy clip. The Institute for Supply Management says today that its index of manufacturing activity rose to 57.3, the highest since April 2011. A reading above 50 signals growth.

NEW YORK (AP) — It’s Cyber Monday, expected to be the busiest online shopping day of the year. Early results show online shopping was up more than 20 percent compared with the same time last year. IBM Benchmark released that figure at noon, Eastern time. Mobile traffic, which includes smartphones and tablets, accounted for 31 percent of all online traffic.

WASHINGTON (AP) — In some states, next year’s online shoppers may have to pay the taxman as well as retailers. The Supreme Court has refused today to wade into a dispute over New York state’s taxes on purchases on websites like Amazon.com. The move likely will prompt more states to attempt to collect taxes on Internet sales.

NEW YORK (AP) — Fast food workers in about 100 cities across the country are slated to walk off the job Thursday. They’re protesting the current federal minimum wage of $7.25 a hour, or about $15,000 a year. Protesters are calling for $15 an hour, although many see the figure as a rallying point rather than a near-term possibility.

STOCKHOLM (AP) — Swedish automaker Saab’s production line is rolling again for the first time in two-and-a-half years. A Hong Kong electronic carmaker bought the financially troubled company and brought it out of bankruptcy in September. Meanwhile another Swedish automaker, Volvo, says it aims to start testing self-driving cars on select roads by 2017.


(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved)

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