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Thursday July 30th 2015: Latest financial news from the worldConsumer spending bolsters U.S. second-quarter growth
By Lucia Mutikani WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. economic growth accelerated in the second quarter as solid consumer spending offset the drag from weak business spending on equipment, suggesting a steady momentum that could bring the Federal Reserve closer to hiking interest rates this year. "This was a very constructive report and given the supportive domestic economic backdrop, we expect this positive momentum in activity to be sustained in the coming months, providing the Fed with the necessary justification to raise rates this year - perhaps as early as September," said Millan Mulraine, deputy chief economist at TD Securities in New York. The report also showed a pick-up in inflation during the quarter, which economists say keeps the Fed on track for its first interest rate hike since 2006.
Wall St. recovers as data points to growing economy
Gross domestic product expanded at a 2.3 percent annual rate in the second quarter, while first-quarter numbers were revised to show that the economy, previously reported to have shrunk, grew at 0.6 percent. The Federal Reserve on Wednesday said the economy was improving and left doors open for a possible rate hike in September. The Fed has maintained near-zero interest rates for nearly a decade, saying it will raise rates only when it sees a sustained recovery in the economy.
P&G sales fall for 6th straight qtr as strong dollar hurts
P&G has been raising prices to offset the impact of a strong dollar, but this has resulted in customers turning to cheaper local alternatives. It named David Taylor as its new chief executive this week. Quarterly sales volumes fell 1-4 percent in grooming products, baby, feminine and family care products and health care products business - three of the four product segments the company is focusing on.
Time Warner Cable targets closing Charter deal by year end
Time Warner Cable Inc said on Thursday it was working towards closing the deal with Charter Communications by the end of the year. Charter said in May that it would buy Time Warner Cable in a cash-and-stock deal, which valued the larger rival at $78.7 billion. "We're well into the process of seeking regulatory approvals and planning for integration of our operation," Chief Executive Robert Marcus said on a post-earnings conference call with analysts.
Facebook shares dip as results fail to impress
(Reuters) - Facebook Inc's shares fell as much as 5 percent on Thursday, after the company's weak advertising sales growth outlook dampened investor expectations boosted by Google Inc's strong report earlier this month. Facebook's shares rallied 7 percent since the search giant reported a better-than-expected profit on June 16, and said it would take a disciplined approach to spending. In contrast, Facebook said it plans to keep spending heavily on its messaging services, Instagram and its virtual reality headset business.
Higher U.S. travel helps Virgin America fly past estimates
(Reuters) - Virgin America Inc , a low-cost airline partly owned by Richard Branson, reported a better-than-expected second-quarter profit, helped by higher U.S. travel and lower fuel costs. Virgin America, the first U.S. airline to go public since Spirit Airlines Inc's debut in 2011, said it expects capacity to increase 2-3 percent in the third quarter. Virgin America's U.S.-focused operations have sheltered the company from a strong dollar, which has crimped revenues at rivals that fly internationally.
Health insurer Cigna says second-quarter medical costs stay low; profit beats
Health insurers have benefited from low medical services use during the past five years as the weak economy has kept down doctor visits and hospitalizations and membership growth has helped increase revenues. The national healthcare reform law, also known as Obamacare, has contributed to the increase as millions of people gained health insurance coverage in the past two years. Aetna Inc agreed to buy smaller rival Humana Inc in early July, just weeks before Anthem and Cigna reached a deal.
Greece, Europeans must reach deeper deal before IMF program possible
By Jason Lange WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The International Monetary Fund can only approve new loans for Greece after Athens reaches an agreement with European governments that would ensure it can pay its debts, an IMF official said on Thursday. "The IMF can only support a program that is comprehensive," the official said in a telephone briefing with journalists, adding that it "will take some time" before Greece and its European creditors can lay the necessary groundwork for a new IMF program. The IMF has teamed up with the European Union and the European Central Bank in recent years to lend Greece money repeatedly to save it from a debt crisis.
ITG shares plunge on likely dark pool settlement with regulators
Shares of brokerage Investment Technology Group were down more than 20 percent on Thursday after the company said it had set aside $20.3 million for a probable settlement with regulators related to how it ran its "dark pool." ITG disclosed late on Wednesday that the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission was investigating the lack of disclosure by the firm to its clients that a subsidiary of the agency broker was trading against client orders within ITG's private stock trading venue, or "dark pool." The issue involved a trial market making program the ITG subsidiary, AlterNet, ran between 2010 and mid-2011. ITG also said the employee who headed the trial program used customer information from within ITG's dark pool, as well as information from ITG clients that used the firm's algorithms to execute trades on other trading platforms, which should not have been available.
L'Oreal says sales growth to accelerate in H2
French cosmetics group L'Oreal sees sales growth accelerating in the second half as demand in Western Europe and the United States improves. The world's biggest cosmetics group on Thursday said positive currency movements in the first half helped it enjoy its strongest sales growth in twenty years in reported terms. Its Armani and Yves Saint Laurent brands recorded double-digit first-half growth while its professional hair products unit saw a solid rebound helped by its L'Oreal Professionel and Redken brands.
OnStar hack remotely starts cars, GM working on a fix
Hacker Samy Kamkar unveiled his latest triumph this morning: OwnStar, a tiny box that acts as a Wi-Fi hotspot and intercepts commands sent from a driver's OnStar RemoteLink app, allowing an unauthorized ...
Fundraisers, Are You Ready? Five Tips for a Successful Race Day Fundraising Event
Back in 1977, Billy Starr hopped on his bicycle and went for a ride. His mother had just died from melanoma and pushing the limits of the physical body helped Starr grieve the loss of his mother. On one rather strenuous ride, Starr had an idea. He and his friends would make a weekend of cycling, but instead of just pushing their physical and...
The Big Picture: VHS monstrosities invade Iceland
French artist Ob Rey mashes together a number of different media for his latest series, dubbed "V"HS. The five apparitional black and white images, each of which is accompanied by a short film, ...
Books for Our Times: Winner-Take-All Politics , by Jacob S. Hacker and Paul Pierson
Sixth in an ongoing series, Books for Our Times.To ensure a book's long life, authors should pick a big problem that remains unsolved and big. Money in politics, for one. This time, not the money in political campaigns, but the money that secures and exerts power in Washington.Winner-Take-All Politics, published in 2011 and surveying the ruin...
US wants the world's fastest supercomputer by 2025
Formula 1 driver joins video game racing team
Gran Turismo, Forza Motorsport, Project Cars and other racing games offer a surprisingly realistic depiction of motorsport. It should come as no surprise then to hear that professional drivers are starting ...
Hedge Clippers Protest Outside BlueMountain Capital
blue mountain capital hedge clippers
'Mr. Robot' creator on the evils of Facebook and hackers in Hollywood
You'd be forgiven for being skeptical about Mr. Robot, USA's new hacker thriller starring Rami Malek and Christian Slater. In general, movies and TV shows haven't done a great job of portraying hackers, ...
Fiat Chrysler 'Will Do Better' on Recalls, CEO Says
Fiat Chrysler Automobiles does not expect additional costs tied to a repurchase program for recalled trucks, and CEO Sergio Marchionne vowed that FCA "will do better."
Luxury smartwatch maker Olio adds 24k gold to its repertoire
Ready to build robots? The Raspberry Pi Hacker Bundle shows you how
Ways to Save Money on Your Next Vacation
It’s never a bad time to think about your next vacation. Getaways can be expensive, but by planning ahead, you can avoid breaking the bank.
Prince is still using Spotify to promote new music, one song at a time
Prince may have pulled his music from nearly every streaming service, but that's not stopping the artist from using them for promotional purposes. He has a new single, titled "Stare," that's ...
Windows 10's Wi-Fi Sense is not a security risk. Here's why
Yesterday, tech sites went full Chicken Little over a Windows 10 feature that allows you to share your wireless connection without having to give away your Wi-Fi password. If only those alarmists had actually used the feature first...
Microsoft expanding program to put Windows 10 on Xiaomi Android phones
US backpedals on plan to regulate hacking software
After a huge outcry from the security community, the US government will re-write proposed regulations on software used to hack smartphones and computers, according to Reuters. The Department of Commerce ...
Salesforce delivers Salesforce1 Lightning Components - an app builder for non-coders
Twitter's Turnaround in 4 Easy Steps … Sort of
Finally, Twitter acknowledged what the rest of us have known for years: that for the vast majority of us, it’s a lousy product.
Stocks Slide, 2Q Growth Signals Higher Rates
U.S. equity markets slid after second-quarter GDP data showed the economy rebounded from the first part of the year. Figures for the first quarter were also revised up to reflect positive growth, rather than contraction as originally thought.
GDP Report Offers Clearer Picture of Economic Growth
Thursday's GDP report and upward first-quarter revisions make the trajectory of economic growth during the first half of 2015 a lot clearer.
Living with Cortana, Windows 10's thoughtful, flaky assistant
OwnStar: Unlock and track any GM OnStar connected car for $100
Gay Baby Boomers Can Finally Say 'I Do'
The recent Supreme Court decision on same-sex marriage opens the door to many gay and lesbian baby boomers to finally get to say 'I do,' and enjoy the same legal benefits as married couples.
Sage refocuses on SMB customer at Sage Summit 2015
'Fallout 4' won't support user mods this fall
One of the biggest surprises from E3 this year was that Fallout 4 would support user mods across PC and Xbox One. That's still in the cards, but it definitely won't happen at launch. Of course, that's ...
T-Mobile nets 2.1 million customers in Q2, revenue surges
Why Boone Pickens Still Sees $70 Oil by Year End
In an interview with FOX Business Network’s Maria Bartiromo, T. Boone Pickens of BP Capital Management again predicted oil prices will reach “$70 by years end” -- and he expects the Saudis to cut production.
Military drone helped look for missing schoolteacher
Amazon Signs Former 'Top Gear' Hosts for Prime Show
Amazon.com signed the former hosts of 'Top Gear,' the most popular TV show in the world, to create a new series for its Prime video service.
Google's testing pollution-sensing gear in its Street View cars
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