Top Stories

  • Bank of America's $4 billion mistake

    Published: Tue, Apr 29, 2014

    Bank of America disclosed on Monday that it had made a significant error in the way it calculates a crucial measure of its financial health, suffering another blow to its effort to shake its troubled history, according to The New York Times. The mistake, which had gone undetected for several years, led the bank to report recently that it had $4 billion more capital than it actually had. After Bank of America reported its error to the Federal Reserve, the regulator required the bank to suspend a share buyback and a planned increase in its quarterly dividend. While regulators still believe Bank of America has sufficient capital, the disclosure of the accounting error will most likely add fuel to the debate over whether the nation’s largest banks are too big and complicated to manage, The Times reports.

  • Stop using IE until bug is fixed, says US

    Published: Mon, Apr 28, 2014

    It's not often that the US government weighs in on the browser wars, but a new Internet Explorer vulnerability that affects all major versions of the browser from the past decade has forced it to raise an alarm: Stop using IE. This zero-day exploit is an unpatched flaw in the browser that allows attackers to run malicious code remotely. Security firm FireEye said that it is currently being used to attack financial and defense organizations in the US via Internet Explorer 9, 10, and 11. Those versions of the browser run on Windows Vista, Windows 7, and Windows 8, although the exploit is present in Internet Explorer 6 and above.

  • Taco Bell is launching a new upscale chain

    Published: Fri, Apr 25, 2014

    There are some people who would never eat at a Taco Bell. The fast food chain’s executives know this and they won’t bother trying to convince them otherwise. But how about enjoying a meal at U.S. Taco? Sounds better, right? U.S. Taco is the chain’s new alter-ego American-inspired restaurant (as opposed to Mexican-inspired, which is how company reps describe Taco Bell’s offerings.) Bloomberg Businessweek reports the first U.S. Taco opens this summer in Huntington Beach, California, not far from Taco Bell headquarters. “I would love one day to see 1,000 of these,” Taco Bell chief executive Greg Creed told the Orange County Register. “But let’s not get that far ahead of ourselves. We’re opening a restaurant and seeing what happens.”

  • Tulsa-based Williams closes Wyoming natural gas processing plant after explosion

    Published: Thu, Apr 24, 2014

    An explosion on Wednesday shut a natural gas-processing plant in Wyoming that can churn out about 2 percent of the daily U.S. gas supply, and a nearby town was evacuated though no injuries were reported, according to Reuters. The blast at the Williams Companies Inc plant in Opal, Wyoming, touched off a fire that was still burning several hours later, company spokeswoman Michele Swaner said.

  • For the Thrill of the Affair: Why Married Women Cheat

    Published: Tue, Apr 22, 2014

    When women cheat, it’s often considered a scandal, and never has cheating been as easy as it is now, when finding a willing partner is a click or a phone tap away. But what drives women to cheat? And do they stray as much and for the same reasons as men? Katherine, whose name has been changed, said she and her husband were married for 14 years. After undergoing major weight loss and multiple plastic surgeries, she began looking for excitement outside of what she said was a stale marriage and turned to, the notorious dating website for “casual encounters.”

  • After nearly 20 years, Alfa Romeo returns to America

    Published: Fri, Apr 18, 2014

    Following a nearly 20 year absence Alfa Romeo is returning to the United States market with the 4C, an exotic-looking two-seat sports car that made its American debut at the New York Auto Show, says CNN Money. Alfa's return has been seriously discussed ever since the brand's parent company, Fiat, rescued Chrysler from bankruptcy in 2009. Strictly speaking, Alfa did make a minor U.S.-market re-entry with the pricey Alfa Romeo 8C in 2008. Only about 100 of those cars, with prices starting around $260,000, were ever sold in North America.

  • Conservative Activist Claims Women Paid The Same As Men Won't Find Husbands

    Published: Wed, Apr 16, 2014

    Days after Senate Republicans unanimously blocked a vote on the Paycheck Fairness Act, Phyllis Schlafly, founder of "pro-family" organization Eagle Forum, claimed that providing women with equal pay for equal work would deter their chances of finding a “suitable mate” in a Christian Post op-ed published Tuesday. Since a woman prefers to marry a man who makes more money than she does, Schlafly argued, decreasing the gender pay gap would leave women unable to secure a husband.

  • Opinion: What if the government guaranteed you an income?

    Published: Tue, Apr 15, 2014

    First, the bad news: Even if the economy improves, middle-class career paths will continue to disappear as globalization and technological innovation render more jobs obsolete. Now, the good news: The fear, stress and humiliation caused by unemployment (and underemployment) can be alleviated with a simple solution. And now, the even-better news: This simple solution is starting to find backers on both sides of the political spectrum.

  • Chevrolet drops top on super-hot Corvette Z06

    Published: Mon, Apr 14, 2014

    Take a 625-horsepower sports car and knock off the roof. That's behind the Chevrolet Corvette Z06 convertible that is expected to make its appearance at the New York Auto Show this week, USA Today reports. "The Z06 Convertible is a world-class supercar in every sense," says Mark Reuss, a General Motors executive vice president, in a statement. "Only a handful of convertibles in the world bring more than 600 horsepower and 600 pound-feet of torque."

  • Amazon offers employees $5,000 to quit

    Published: Fri, Apr 11, 2014

    Amazon is offering its warehouse employees up to $5,000 to quit their jobs, even as the company is in the process of adding workers and locations, reports CNN Money. The "Pay to Quit" program, which was announced by CEO Jeff Bezos in his letter to shareholders late Thursday, is an effort to make sure that the Internet retailer's employees really want to be there. "The goal is to encourage folks to take a moment and think about what they really want," he wrote in the letter. "In the long-run, an employee staying somewhere they don't want to be isn't healthy for the employee or the company."

  • Austin or bust: America's biggest cities lose people to urban B-list; OKC ranks 7th

    Published: Thu, Apr 10, 2014

    The flight to second-tier cities is thriving, says Bloomberg Businessweek. The fastest growth came in regions that host fracking boom towns and retiree meccas, but those areas still have relatively small populations.

  • Rich face tax surprise when they die

    Published: Wed, Apr 9, 2014

    If you're a New York multimillionaire, you now have another incentive to stay alive. A change this month in New York's estate tax, which was billed as tax relief for the wealthy, contains a hidden wrinkle that could leave some multimillionaires with a much bigger surprise tax upon their death. Certain estates could even wind up with a tax rate of 164 percent on portions of their estates, according to one tax expert.

  • Beef prices hit all-time high in U.S.

    Published: Wed, Apr 9, 2014

    Come grilling season, expect your sirloin steak to come with a hearty side of sticker shock. Beef prices have reached all-time highs in the U.S. and aren't expected to come down any time soon. Extreme weather has thinned the nation's beef cattle herds to levels last seen in 1951, when there were about half as many mouths to feed in America.

  • As Obama Spotlights Gender Gap in Wages, His Own Payroll Draws Scrutiny

    Published: Tue, Apr 8, 2014

    WASHINGTON — President Obama on Tuesday will call attention to what he has said is an “embarrassment” in America: the fact that women make, on average, only 77 cents for every dollar that a man earns. But critics of the administration are eager to turn the tables and note that Mr. Obama’s White House fares only slightly better. A study released in January showed that female White House staff members make on average 88 cents for every dollar a male staff member earns.

  • Taco Bell escalates breakfast war vs. McDonald's

    Published: Mon, Apr 7, 2014

    McDonald's is starting to look like Taco Bell's private punching bag, according to USA TODAY. Monday afternoon, the feisty Mexican fast-food chain, eager to attract attention -- and customers -- for its new breakfast platform, will release yet another commercial that makes McDonald's the butt of its running breakfast joke. This time, McDonald's gets skewered in a lampoon version of the song "Old MacDonald Had a Farm." While the Taco Bell ads seem like fun and games, they are very pointed attempts to steal attention -- and market share -- from the incredible lock that McDonald's has on the $50 billion fast-food breakfast business. For Taco Bell, it's all about garnering attention and social media buzz. For McDonald's, it's a tricky marketing decision about whether to ignore or respond to Taco Bell's high-profile sucker punches. Last week, in a rare move, McDonald's announced it was offering free, small coffees during breakfast hours at participating domestic McDonald's locations, USA TODAY reports.

  • Uncle Bubba's, co-owned by Paula Deen and her brother, closes after 10 years

    Published: Fri, Apr 4, 2014

    As long-time employees collected severance checks in the parking lot, Uncle Bubba’s Seafood and Oyster House announced its closing Thursday morning on its website and Facebook page, reports the Savannah Morning News. “Thank you for 10 great years,” the written comment stated, “Uncle Bubba’s is now closed.” The Whitemarsh Island restaurant is co-owned by Paula Deen and her younger brother, Earl W. “Bubba” Hiers Jr.

  • Revenge of the nerds: 19 loser stocks bounce back

    Published: Thu, Apr 3, 2014

    Investors love a good comeback story, and they’re getting a few of them this year, according to USA TODAY. Stocks like for-profit college Strayer Education, teen retailer Abercrombie & Fitch and robotic surgery companyIntuitive Surgical, all but left-for-dead last year, are getting their revenge by blowing past the market averages this year. These comeback kids are a big reminder that some of the market’s biggest gains come from stocks Wall Street gives up on. There are 19 stocks in the broad Standard & Poor’s 1500 index that got clobbered 20% or more last year, but are beating the market this year, according to a USA TODAY analysis of data from S&P Capital IQ. Some of the bouncebacks are staggering, especially as the market is only up 2.3% this year so far, USA TODAY reports.

  • Charles Keating dies at 90; thrift owner accused of bilking investors

    Published: Wed, Apr 2, 2014

    Charles H. Keating Jr., who became the poster child of the savings and loan debacle 25 years ago after his Irvine thrift was seized by federal regulators in what at the time was the nation's costliest bank collapse, has died, the Los Angeles Times reports. He was 90. In the early 1990s, state and federal juries in Los Angeles convicted Keating of swindling thousands of Lincoln Savings & Loan customers and looting the thrift, whose failure cost the government $3.1 billion. Those convictions eventually were overturned, and Keating pleaded guilty instead to bankruptcy fraud charges in Phoenix, his adopted home and the city where Lincoln's parent company, American Continental Corp., was based. He served 4 1/2 years in prison.

  • Cobalts Were Seen as Lemons From Start, State Data Shows

    Published: Tue, Apr 1, 2014

    Long before the Chevrolet Cobalt became known for having a deadly ignition defect, it was already seen as a lemon. Owners complained about power steering failures, locks inexplicably opening and closing, doors jamming shut in the rain — even windows falling out. In more than 120 instances, General Motors was forced under state lemon laws to buy back faulty Cobalts, pay settlements to owners or let them trade in the cars, an analysis by The New York Times of state databases and court records shows. The buybacks came as dozens of claims were filed separately at G.M. from 2005 to 2009 that fit a specific pattern — moving cars, sometimes traveling at high speeds, would suddenly stop working.

  • Michael Moore: General Motors 'criminals' deserve death

    Published: Tue, Apr 1, 2014

    Liberal filmmaker Michael Moore believes that whoever was responsible at General Motors for failing to recall a faulty ignition switch deserves death, reports the Washington Examiner. "I am opposed to the death penalty, but to every rule there is usually an exception, and in this case I hope the criminals at General Motors will be arrested and made to pay for their pre-meditated decision to take human lives for a lousy ten bucks," he wrote. Moore blamed former President George W. Bush's transportation Department for ignoring the problem in 2007 and praised new GM CEO Mary Barra for telling the truth about the problem.