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 Johnson Controls buys Texas firm for $1.6 billion | Move expands company's air ventilation products
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel (Wisconsin), April 17, 2014 Thursday

 In a $1.6 billion deal that would further reduce Johnson Control Inc.'s dependence on the automotive industry, the Glendale-based company has agreed to acquire a Texas manufacturer of air ventilation products.  Air Distribution Technologies, of Richardson, Texas, would expand Johnson Controls' offerings in heating, ventilation and air conditioning products with brands such as Ruskin, Titus, Hart & Cooley and Krueger. The Texas company is one of the largest independent providers of...
 Judge denies bid to ban driving GM vehicles; Plaintiffs say decision will further endanger consumers
The Boston Globe, April 18, 2014 Friday

 General Motors Co. won a significant round Thursday in the escalating legal battles over its handling of a defective ignition switch in millions of its small cars, avoiding an order that would have effectively taken the cars off the road.
 RadioShack stock sinks over report on talks with lenders
Fort Worth Star-Telegram (Texas), April 17, 2014 Thursday

 RadioShack stock sank nearly 17 percent on Thursday, to the lowest point in more than three decades, after The Wall Street Journal reported that the company is in the midst of contentious talks with lenders over its plan to close 1,100 stores.
 A Bid to Park Recalled G.M. Cars Is Denied
The New York Times, April 18, 2014 Friday

 General Motors may be losing the public relations battle in its recall of defective cars, but the company scored a victory on Thursday in its escalating legal war. The automaker fended off a potentially costly court order on Thursday when a federal judge denied a motion that would have forced it to advise the owners of the 2.6 million recalled Chevrolet Cobalts, Saturn Ions and other small cars with a faulty ignition switch to keep the cars off the road until they are fixed. Recent filings by...
 Shares of Twitter-Like Weibo Surge on Opening Day, as China I.P.O.s Mount
The New York Times, April 18, 2014 Friday

 The Chinese are still coming, and so are the investors. Despite signs that the fervor for initial public offerings might be waning a bit, shares of Weibo, the Twitter-like Chinese microblogging service, surged 19 percent in their first day of trading on Thursday. And another Chinese company, the real estate website Leju, enjoyed nearly as big a pop. The warm welcomes come ahead of the expected debuts of even bigger Chinese Internet players -- particularly the Alibaba Group, the online...
 Walmart Will Enter Cash Wiring Business
The New York Times, April 18, 2014 Friday

 In a move that threatens to upend another piece of the financial services industry, Walmart, the country's largest retailer, announced on Thursday that it would allow customers to make store-to-store money transfers within the United States at cut-rate fees. This latest offer, aimed largely at lower-income shoppers who often rely on places like check-cashing stores for simple transactions, represents another effort by the giant retailer to carve out a space in territory that once belonged...
 Nestlé Loses Clash in France Over Single-Serve Coffee
The New York Times, April 18, 2014 Friday

 PARIS -- Nestlé, the world's largest food company, was handed a defeat Thursday in its fight to maintain the global lead in the sale of single-dose coffee capsules. A competition regulator in France agreed that the Swiss giant might have abused its market dominance in siding with two competitors that had accused its Nespresso unit of undermining their sales, the latest twist in a continuing coffee clash. In response, Nestlé agreed to ''lift the barriers to entry and development'' facing other...
 Shares Close Mixed to End a Strong Week That Was Bolstered by Earnings
The New York Times, April 18, 2014 Friday

 The stock market ended a holiday-shortened week with mostly modest gains on Thursday, though the Standard & Poor's 500-stock index notched its biggest weekly advance since July as Morgan Stanley and General Electric rallied after reporting strong financial results. The two were the latest companies to post earnings that topped expectations, helping to lift the S.&P. 500, as well as the Nasdaq composite index, to a fourth consecutive daily advance. But the technology bellwethers Google and IBM...
 General Mills Amends New Legal Policies
The New York Times, April 18, 2014 Friday

 General Mills, the multibillion-dollar food company behind brands like Cheerios and Pillsbury, said on Thursday that an update to its new legal policies, which stated that consumers ''joining our online communities'' could not sue the company, did not apply to people who visit its Facebook pages and Twitter accounts.
 European Car Sales Rise, Bolstered by Incentives
The New York Times, April 18, 2014 Friday

 PARIS -- The European car market continues to grow, according to industry data published on Thursday, with manufacturers' incentives contributing to a seventh straight monthly gain in March.
 EARNINGS ROUNDUP; MATTEL; Barbie slide, markdowns lead to loss
Los Angeles Times, April 18, 2014 Friday

 El Segundo toy maker Mattel said weak sales of Barbie and markdowns to clear out excess inventory left over from a sluggish holiday season led to an unexpected first-quarter loss.
 Business digest: Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs earnings better than expected
The Washington Post, April 18, 2014 Friday

BANKINGFirms profit from old-style business Investment banks Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs posted better-than-expected quarterly earnings Thursday, helped by gains in merger advisory and stock underwriting. The results underscored how businesses viewed as stodgy before the financial crisis are becoming critical drivers of earnings for investment banks now. Goldman's investment management, stock underwriting and merger advisory businesses logged big gains. Morgan Stanley did well in those...
 IBM's revenues continue to tumble
The Boston Globe, April 17, 2014 Thursday

 NEW YORK — IBM's quarterly earnings fell and revenue came in below Wall Street's expectations amid an ongoing decline in its hardware business, one that was exasperated by weaker demand in China and emerging markets.
 LevelUp lowers its fee to merchants; Firm drops levy below 2% in bid to draw more retailers to its mobile pay service
The Boston Globe, April 17, 2014 Thursday

 With retailers still battling credit card companies over fees, LevelUp is trying a new tactic to get more merchants to use its mobile app to process payments from customers. On Wednesday the Boston company said it lowered the flat fee it charges merchants to 1.95 percent, from 2 percent, which puts it below what many businesses typically pay major credit card companies to process customer transactions.
 GM to ask US court for shield from suits
The Boston Globe, April 17, 2014 Thursday

 DETROIT — General Motors revealed in court filings late Tuesday it will soon ask a federal bankruptcy judge to shield the company from legal claims for conduct that occurred before its 2009 bankruptcy.
 Google's 19% doesn't wow; Shares dip despite strong earnings report
USA TODAY, April 17, 2014 Thursday

 Google is involved in plenty of high-tech ventures, from Google Glass to its broadband-on-steroids fiber network. But its core business -- online advertising -- can drive revenue up 19%, as it did in the first quarter of 2014, and still disappoint Wall Street.
 Criticized on Taxes, Starbucks Will Move European Offices to London
The New York Times, April 17, 2014 Thursday

 PARIS -- Starbucks, which has suffered withering criticism in Britain for avoiding taxes, said on Wednesday that it would move its regional headquarters to London from Amsterdam and pay more to the British Treasury. The company tried to make amends by paying 5 million pounds, or $8.4 million, in taxes last year, after paying no corporate taxes since 2009 in Britain, where it has hundreds of stores. But Starbucks noted that moving senior executives to London from the Netherlands would put them...
 Profit and Revenue Slip at IBM as Hardware Sales Fall and Layoff Costs Rise
The New York Times, April 17, 2014 Thursday

 IBM is investing heavily in the future. It has placed multibillion-dollar bets on businesses to deliver computing remotely over the Internet cloud, on sophisticated data-analysis software and on its Watson artificial-intelligence technology. But the giant technology company faces a classic bind: Can the new offerings grow fast enough to offset the erosion of its traditional hardware and software businesses? The company's first-quarter results underline the challenge. The company reported on...
 Nissan Offers Owners of the Leaf E.V. Free Electricity
The New York Times, April 17, 2014 Thursday

 Nissan has sold more than 110,000 Leaf battery electric cars around the world and almost 50,000 in the United States, but it obviously wants to increase that. Americans respond to ''free gas'' promotions, so the company is trying something similar with electricity. Fred Diaz, senior vice president in Nissan's sales and marketing after-sales operation, said Wednesday at the New York show that charging is going to be free for two years to new Leaf customers, first in 10 top markets, and later in...
 Moelis jumps after IPO
Los Angeles Times, April 17, 2014 Thursday

 Moelis & Co. climbed in its trading debut after raising less than planned in the first U.S. initial public offering of an investment bank since the financial crisis. The shares rose 4.6% to $26.15 on Wednesday after pricing at $25. Moelis raised $163 million in the offering, which was structured to let longtime Los Angeles investment banker Chief Executive Ken Moelis retain control while still receiving a payout.
 Alibaba plans giant IPO in U.S.; The stock launch could raise $15 billion and boost the Chinese online retailer's brand.
Los Angeles Times, April 17, 2014 Thursday

 The largest tech IPO of the year -- and perhaps of all time -- isn't coming from Silicon Valley. Alibaba, a Chinese e-commerce behemoth that handles more sales than Amazon and EBay combined, has decided to go public on Wall Street after months of speculation that it would list in Hong Kong. The company could raise $15 billion at an estimated valuation of up to $200 billion. "We expect it to be the largest tech IPO ever, the largest IPO of the year, the largest Chinese IPO of the year," said Max...
 Dish Network to refund $2M to customers in state
The Seattle Times, April 16, 2014 Wednesday

 Dish Network will reimburse customers in Washington state about $2 million for a surcharge officials called deceptive, but the satellite TV provider denied wrongdoing in the agreement announced Tuesday by the state Attorney General's Office.
 Maxwell House, Aiming to Reclaim Coffee Crown, Starts Makeover
The New York Times, April 14, 2014 Monday

 THOUGH it has been said that ''Good is the enemy of great,'' Maxwell House coffee -- a pantry staple promoted as ''Good to the last drop'' for almost a century -- is remaking its marketing by celebrating ''good'' as an antidote to the hyperbole of an era awash in ''OMG'' and ''Win!'' The makeover, to be introduced on Monday by the Maxwell House parent, Kraft Foods, includes logos, packaging, new products, the brand's presence in digital media and social media and advertising that carries the...
 Intel's 1Q net income tumbles; Chipmaker wrestles with PC decline
USA TODAY, April 16, 2014 Wednesday

 Chipmaker Intel saw its stock rise slightly despite its report Tuesday that net income fell 5% in the first quarter, with spending on its data center and tablet processors buoying optimism.
 GM creating new unit to focus on safety
USA TODAY, April 16, 2014 Wednesday

 General Motors is creating a new internal organization to focus on safety across all its vehicle lines, CEO Mary Barra said in New York. The Global Product Integrity organization will be modeled on a similar group within GM that is centered on product quality. "Our goal is to ensure the highest levels of execution consistently across all our vehicles," Barra said. The announcement follows GM's recall of 2.6 million small cars worldwide for faulty ignition switches, which are blamed for 13...

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