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Securities and Exchange Commission to check S&P’s math on downgrade

The US Securities and Exchange Commission has launched a probe into the process by which Standard & Poor’s downgraded the US credit rating, the Wall Street Journal reported. US officials lashed out at S&P after it docked the country’s credit rating from AAA to AA+, accusing the agency of committing…

Apple ‘sued for price fixing’

Five book publishers and computer manufacturer Apple have been sued for allegedly colluding to drive up the price of e-books, lawyers for the plaintiffs said. The class-action suit, filed in the US District Court here, claims HarperCollins, Hachette, Macmillan, Penguin and Simon & Schuster had worked with Apple to break…

Apple, publishers ‘sued for price fixing’

Five book publishers and computer manufacturer Apple have been sued for allegedly colluding to drive up the price of e-books, lawyers for the plaintiffs said. The class-action suit, filed in the US District Court here, claims HarperCollins, Hachette, Macmillan, Penguin and Simon & Schuster had worked with Apple to break…

Retail sales gain while consumer confidence plunges

WASHINGTON/NEW YORK (Reuters) – U.S. consumer sentiment worsened sharply in early August, falling to the lowest level in more than three decades, after retail sales posted the biggest gain in four months in July. High unemployment, stagnant wages, gridlock in Congress, and a stock market slump all contributed to a…

U.S. consumer confidence hits three-decade low

WASHINGTON — US consumer confidence plunged to the lowest level in more than three decades in early August, according to data published Friday by Reuters and the University of Michigan. Their index of consumer sentiment tumbled to 54.9, its lowest reading since May 1980, when the index sank to 51.7.…

Europe stocks mainly down after short selling ban

PARIS — Europe’s main stock markets mainly opened lower on Friday after France, Italy, Spain and Belgium banned on short selling amid continued volatile trade due to concerns over the US and eurozone debt crisis. In Paris, the CAC 40 stock index dropped 2.06 percent to 3,019.84 points, as official…

U.S. firms pile up cash, but not jobs

NEW YORK — Piles of cash built up since the financial crisis have left big US companies sitting pretty as financial markets gyrate, but their reluctance to invest is holding back US growth. The result is that while corporate America is looking good amid all the instability, the country is…

Google+ social network adds games

SAN FRANCISCO — Google+ added games, including the hugely popular Angry Birds, to the fast-growing social network vying with Facebook to be the hub for people’s online lives. “We want to make playing games online just as fun, and just as meaningful, as playing in real life,” Google senior vice…

No charges for bloggers who published details of iPhone 4 prototype

SAN FRANCISCO — Prosecutors on Apple’s home turf have decided not to pursue criminal charges against Gizmodo technology bloggers who got hold of a lost iPhone 4 prototype. A man who purportedly found the gadget in a bar and another who brokered a deal to sell it to Gizmodo will…

Pfizer begins long-delayed payouts over Nigerian drug trial

US pharmaceutical giant Pfizer on Thursday began long-awaited compensation payments to families over a 1996 drug trial blamed for the deaths of 11 children and disabilities in dozens of others. But even as the compensation process began, the company faced further criticism since only four families were paid in the…

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