Stocks Finish Flat After Mixed Earnings
Business Roundup for Wednesday, January 22
NEW YORK (AP) —Stocks are little changed after a mixed batch of company earnings. IBM dropped 3 percent after its revenue fell short of what investors were expecting. Norfolk Southern climbed 5 percent after the rail company said its fourth-quarter profit rose as shipping volume grew.
The Standard & Poor’s 500 index rose a point to close at 1,844 Wednesday. The Dow Jones industrial average was down 41 points, or 0.3 percent, at 16,373. The Nasdaq composite rose 17 points, or 0.4 percent, to 4,243.
Coach slumped 6 percent after the luxury goods maker reported a lower quarterly profit, citing weakness in women’s bags and accessories in North America.
Small-company stocks are doing better than large ones since the beginning of the year, continuing a trend from 2013.
CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — The company behind West Virginia’s chemical spill has reached a bankruptcy court deal for up to $4 million in credit from a lender to help continue operations. Freedom Industries’ attorney says the arrangement reached yesterday allows the company to continue paying its employees and top vendors and also provide funds to cover environmental cleanup from the spill in the Elk River. The Jan. 9 spill contaminated water supplies for 300,000 people in West Virginia.
PARIS (AP) — McDonald’s says French tax authorities have searched its offices, but denies a report that the company hid profits in tax havens. A French magazine says the French budget ministry suspects the fast food chain of owing up to 2.2 billion euros in taxes since 2009. The report, citing tax officials, says the company hid profits in subsidiaries in Luxembourg and Switzerland. McDonald’s France says in a statement that it “firmly refutes the accusation.”
PALO ALTO, Calif. (AP) — Cloud computing company VMware says it is buying mobile computing company AirWatch for about $1.18 billion in cash. The deal also includes about $365 million in installment payments and assumed unvested equity. VMware says the acquisition of the privately held Atlanta-based company will boost its mobile computing offerings for businesses without compromising security. AirWatch will continue to be led by its founder and CEO John Marshall.
DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — JetBlue Airways and the national airline of the United Arab Emirates, Etihad Airways, have formed a partnership to allow passengers to fly on routes operated by both carriers on a single ticket. A statement by the two airlines says that initially, they will codeshare on 40 JetBlue routes within the United States. The agreement is subject to government approval.
MUMBAI, India (AP) — International stock markets mostly posted gains today, led by a surge in Chinese stocks and in anticipation of a raft of British economic data. Benchmark U.S. crude oil rose above $95.50 a barrel. The dollar gained against the euro and the yen.
UNDATED (AP) — It’s a light day for economy data, with no new reports before the markets open. EBay and Netflix are scheduled to release quarterly financial results after the market closes. Meanwhile, the World Economic Forum is on in Davos, Switzerland through Friday.
BRUSSELS (AP) — The European Union’s top court has upheld an EU-wide regulation that bans some short-selling practices to increase financial market stability. Many blamed short-selling, a practice in which investors bet that the price of a stock or bond will go down, for creating tremendous volatility and threatening the stability of the financial system. Britain claimed the EU exceeded its authority.
LONDON (AP) — Britain’s unemployment rate dropped sharply to 7.1 percent in the three months ending in November, edging closer to the point at which the Bank of England will consider raising interest rates. The Office of National Statistics said Wednesday the unemployment rate is down 0.5 percentage points from June to August 2013 and down 0.6 percentage points from a year earlier. Governor Mark Carney has said the bank will reassess its policy when the unemployment rate hits 7 percent.
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