National business and financial news from NewsOK

  • U.S. consumer confidence jumps to 90.9 in July

    By MARTIN CRUTSINGER, Associated Press | Published: Wed, Jul 30, 2014

    The Conference Board said Tuesday that its confidence index rose to 90.9 in July from an upwardly revised 86.4 in June. The July reading is the highest since October 2007.

  • Debt collectors are after 35 percent of U.S.

    By JOSH BOAK, Associated Press | Published: Tue, Jul 29, 2014

    The Urban Institute study found that 35.1 percent of people with credit records had been reported to collections for debt that averaged $5,178, based on September 2013 records.

  • Taking Stock: Seven cheap stocks purely a speculative buy

    By Malcolm Berko, For The Oklahoman | Updated: Fri, Jul 25, 2014

    Malcolm Berko: I know bupkis about cheap stocks. But Big Jack, an on-again, off-again acquaintance of mine who was a low-level big shot at Merrill Lynch when John “The Pain” Thain was chosen as CEO, is a recognized certifiable cheap stock genius, or CCSG.

  • “Ace” Greenberg, Oklahoma City native and former head of Bear Stearns, dies at 86

    By Don Mecoy, Business Editor | Updated: Fri, Jul 25, 2014

    The Wall Street legend led Bear Stearns as it grew into one of the most profitable investment banks in history.

  • Across U.S. job market, layoffs are becoming rare

    By The Associated Press | Published: Fri, Jul 25, 2014

    Employers have added 200,000-plus jobs for five straight months, and the unemployment rate has reached 6.1 percent, the lowest since 2008.

  • Regulators consider acting against S&P over ratings

    Published: Wed, Jul 23, 2014

    Standard & Poor’s said Wednesday the Securities and Exchange Commission has told the rating agency they are considering taking civil enforcement action over ratings S&P gave to six deals in 2011 involving securities tied to commercial mortgages.

  • Study says bachelor's not needed for medical careers

    By Catherine Sweeney, Business Writer | Published: Wed, Jul 23, 2014

    Bachelor’s degrees aren’t necessarily vital to successful medical careers, according to a national study by the Brookings Institute.

  • Customer protection ideas against identity theft

    Published: Wed, Jul 23, 2014

    People aren’t likely to stop using their credit and debit cards any time soon, and as data breaches become increasingly common, consumers don’t often know what to do when a company they’ve done business with experiences a breach.

  • Health care industry investments can create healthy portfolio

    Published: Sun, Jul 20, 2014

    Berko says Obamacare will boost issues in the health care sector.

  • World events prompt buying in commodities markets

    Published: Sun, Jul 20, 2014

    The death of nearly 300 people on a Malaysia Airlines flight caused a sell-off in stocks and sent buyers to commodities that could be affected by the incident.

  • Smart Moves: Horizontal vs. vertical living

    by Ellen James Martin | Updated: Fri, Jul 18, 2014

    Homebuyers should carefully evaluate their current and future needs when deciding how many floors they need in a home, as what works for a young couple may prove troublesome for older people.

  • Average U.S. mortgage rates dip slightly

    By MARTIN CRUTSINGER, AP Economics Writer, AP Economics Writer | Published: Fri, Jul 18, 2014

    Mortgage company Freddie Mac reported Thursday that the nationwide average for a 30-year loan dropped to 4.13 percent, down from 4.15 percent last week.

  • FedEx charged with assisting illegal pharmacies

    By PAUL ELIAS, Associated Press | Published: Thu, Jul 17, 2014

    The Memphis, Tenn.-based delivery company FedEx is accused of shipping the powerful sleeping aid Ambien, anti-anxiety medications Valium and Xanax, and other controlled drugs to customers who had no legitimate medical need and lacked valid prescriptions.

  • Senate Republicans block effort to reverse Hobby Lobby decision

    By Chris Casteel, Washington Bureau | Published: Wed, Jul 16, 2014

    Democrats fall just short of necessary votes to advance legislation aimed at requiring for-profit companies to comply with birth control mandate in Affordable Care Act.

  • Nordstrom ads feature models with disabilities

    By BETH J. HARPAZ, Associated Press | Published: Wed, Jul 16, 2014

    It’s not easy to find models with disabilities in ads for the fashion and beauty industry — unless you look in the Nordstrom catalog.

  • Equal Employment Opportunity Commission updates 30-year-old protections against discrimination of pregnant workers

    By TOM RAUM, Associated Press | Published: Wed, Jul 16, 2014

    Agency toughens protections for pregnant workers in effort to combat workplace discrimination or harassment.

  • Labor market still needs support, Federal Reserve chairwoman says

    By MARTIN CRUTSINGER, Associated Press | Published: Wed, Jul 16, 2014

    U.S. economic recovery isn’t complete and extra caution is warranted, Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen said Tuesday while addressing the Senate Banking Committee delivering the Fed’s semi-annual economic report to Congress.

  • U.S. House votes to extend Internet tax moratorium

    By STEPHEN OHLEMACHER, Associated Press | Published: Wed, Jul 16, 2014

    Under current law, the moratorium expires Nov. 1, exposing Internet users to the same kind of connection fees that often show up on telephone bills.

  • U.S. companies look overseas for tax relief

    By TOM MURPHY, Associated Press | Published: Tue, Jul 15, 2014

    These tax-lowering overseas deals, combining operations with foreign businesses have raised concerns among some U.S. lawmakers over the potential for lost tax revenue.

  • Citigroup to pay $7 billion in mortgage settlement

    By ERIC TUCKER, Associated Press | Published: Mon, Jul 14, 2014

    Citigroup has agreed to pay $7 billion to settle a federal investigation into its handling of risky subprime mortgages, admitting to a pattern of deception that Attorney General Eric Holder said “shattered lives” and contributed to the worst financial crisis in decades, the Justice Department...

  • Taking Stock: Ask right questions if investing in annuities

    Published: Sun, Jul 13, 2014

    Malcolm Berko: Annuities and guaranteed minimum income benefit are explained. It’s important to ask the correct questions about what is in an annuity.

  • Eagle & Beagle for Sunday, July 13, 2014

    By Don Mecoy, Business Editor | Published: Sun, Jul 13, 2014

    Don Mecoy: A weekly look at Oklahoma companies’ high-performing (eagle) and low-performing (beagle) stocks.

  • Street Smart: To become an investor, think just like an owner

    By Ian Ogilvie, For The Oklahoman | Published: Sun, Jul 13, 2014

    Ian Ogilvie: Stocks outperform most other investments over time, although consumers’ opinions vary widely about that.

  • World Cup defeat can hurt domestic stock market

    By PAN PYLAS, Associated Press | Published: Sun, Jul 13, 2014

    Argentina and Germany face off in the World Cup final Sunday, and investors in both countries will do well to be alert to potential drops on their stock markets the day after in case of defeat.

  • Social Security Q&A: What is Supplemental Security Income?

    Updated: Fri, Jul 11, 2014

    Inheritance could affect SSI eligibility