• Small investors blame losses on brokers they once trusted

    Updated: 27 min ago

    NEW YORK (AP) — Susan Bernardo trusted her stockbroker. She wound up losing a fortune. Her broker, David Harris, advised her to sell $400,000 worth of relatively safe municipal bonds, she says, and sink the proceeds into real estate and energy partnerships in hopes of earning more income. She had received the cash from a settlement after her husband died in an accident and needed money to raise her small son. More than six years later, those investments are in trouble. The stream of interest payments she used for living expenses has mostly dried up and the value of her portfolio is half of what it was, according to a financial planner who helped her file a claim against the broker.

  • 4 tips to avoid getting fleeced by your broker

    Updated: 30 min ago

    Can your broker or adviser be trusted? There is no way to be 100 percent certain, but far too many investors don't even take a few simple steps to protect themselves. Start by asking questions. Here are four key ones, and tips for finding the answers. __ WHO'S PAYING YOU? If a broker or adviser is pushing a specific investment, maybe it's because they're getting paid to do so. Many mutual funds charge one-time "sales loads" or annual "12b-1" fees that come out of your pocket and go into theirs. Cheaper, equally good funds may be available, but they may not tell you. Make sure to also ask about commissions, markups or hidden fees they may get for selling stocks, bonds and insurance products.

  • Former Fed chairman starting 'Ben Bernanke's Blog'

    Updated: 40 min ago

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Former Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke is getting a new title — blogger. The man who spent eight years as the head of the nation's central bank carefully watching his every comment is writing "Ben Bernanke's Blog," where he'll be free to air his opinions on matters of economics and finance. Bernanke is now a senior fellow at The Brookings Institution, which made the announcement Monday, coinciding with the publishing of the former fed chief's first blog. Brookings said that Bernanke will use the blog to share his observations and opinions about current economic events, while welcoming questions and comments from readers. Bernanke served as Fed chairman from February 2006 until January 2014.

  • US treasury secretary presses Beijing on technology curbs

    Updated: 2 hr ago

    BEIJING (AP) — U.S. Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew said Monday he pressed Chinese leaders over proposed curbs on the use of foreign security products by banks and other restrictions on access to China's technology market. The United States and Europe say Beijing is improperly blocking access to its growing technology market with the curbs in proposed anti-terrorism and banking security measures. "We have already made clear our deep concern about issues regarding forced technology transfer and other attempts to bar technological competition most recently in the banking sector, and I look forward to continuing that discussion," Lew said in a meeting with a deputy Chinese premier, Wang Yang. Lew was due to meet later with

  • Small investors blame losses on brokers they once trusted

    Updated: 3 hr ago

    NEW YORK (AP) — Susan Bernardo trusted her stockbroker. She wound up losing a fortune. Her broker, David Harris, advised her to sell $400,000 worth of relatively safe municipal bonds, she says, and sink the proceeds into real estate and energy partnerships in hopes of earning more income. She had received the money from a settlement after her husband died in an accident and needed it to raise her small son. More than six years later, those investments are in trouble. The stream of interest payments she used for living expenses has mostly dried up and the value of her portfolio is half of what it was, according to a financial planner who helped her file a claim against the broker.

  • Federal funding in short supply for rural water projects

    Updated: 3 hr ago

    ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — A pipeline project intended to bring billions of gallons of water a year to a drought-stricken section of eastern New Mexico represents a lifeline to parched communities that are quickly running out of water. The lifeline, however, might not reach the region for more than a decade, even though officials say some areas don't have that long before wells dry up. The slow pace of construction in what would be the state's most expensive infrastructure project to date underscores the challenges faced by a number of states eyeing such projects.

  • A look at US Bureau of Reclamation rural water projects

    Updated: 3 hr ago

    ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — The federal Bureau of Reclamation oversees several large-scale projects aimed at delivering drinking water to rural communities in the West. The agency has $36 million to spend on projects during the next fiscal year — a fraction of the funds needed for the work. Here's a look at the projects and current allocations: ___ EASTERN NEW MEXICO WATER SUPPLY — $47,000. Would serve eight communities in eastern New Mexico and reduce the dependence on groundwater sources. ___ FORT PECK RESERVATION/DRY PRAIRIE — $3.7 million. Would provide for a single water treatment plant along the Missouri River and distribution of water through 3,200 miles of pipeline in northeastern Mo

  • Who claims what property seized in Cuba? Facts and figures

    Updated: 5 hr ago

    Soon after Fidel Castro came to power, his government seized the refineries, hotels and sugar plantations that were the most visible signs of the American hold on the island's economy. But a look at long-unsettled claims for what was taken shows that many of the Americans who lost out were individuals and families rather than corporations. And much of what was seized, while of limited value in dollars, was sometimes dearly prized. Nearly 90 percent of the Americans who filed claims for confiscated Cuban property were individuals, according to a Creighton University study commissioned by the U.S. Agency for International Development.

  • Focus shifts to cause of NYC explosion after 2 bodies found

    Updated: 5 hr ago

    NEW YORK (AP) — With the recovery of two bodies, focus has shifted to what caused the explosion and fire that leveled three Manhattan apartment buildings. Mayor Bill de Blasio says someone may have improperly tapped a gas line before the explosion. Consolidated Edison said workers discovered in August that a line had been illegally tapped. Twenty-two people were injured in the explosion, four critically. Authorities say they believe the two dead, found Sunday, were the two missing men they had been searching for since Thursday's explosion. Twenty-six-year-old Moises Lucon worked at a restaurant in one building and 23-year-old Nicholas Figueroa was a bowling alley worker who had been there on a date.

  • AAA Michigan: Gas prices fall 7 cents in past week to $2.41

    Updated: 5 hr ago

    DEARBORN, Mich. (AP) — AAA Michigan reports statewide gas prices have decreased by about 7 cents a gallon within the past week. The auto club says the average price per gallon of self-serve regular unleaded gasoline was about $2.41 on Sunday. That's about $1.21 less than it was a year ago. Dearborn-based AAA Michigan surveys daily fuel costs at 2,800 Michigan gas stations. It says the cheapest price was about $2.33 a gallon in the Saginaw, Bay City and Midland areas, while the highest price was about $2.46 a gallon in the Jackson area.

  • Run from Cuba, Americans cling to claims for seized property

    Updated: 5 hr ago

    OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — The smell of Cuban coffee drifts from the kitchen as Carolyn Chester digs through photos, faded with age, that fill four boxes spread across the dining table. Friends linked arm-in-arm on the sands of a Cuban beach. Men in suits and women in evening gowns at a Havana nightclub. And in almost every frame, a dapper American man with a salt-and-pepper mustache and a raven-haired woman with the arched eyebrows of a 1950s movie star — Chester's father and mother — smiling at the good fortune that, they could not know, would soon be snatched away. "That life is gone," Chester says. "I always heard about Cuba ... and all this money that we lost and 'Maybe one day,' but I didn't understand i

  • Run from Cuba, Americans cling to claims for seized property

    Updated: 5 hr ago

    OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — The smell of Cuban coffee drifts from the kitchen as Carolyn Chester digs through photos, faded with age, that fill four boxes spread across the dining table. Friends linked arm-in-arm on the sands of a Cuban beach. Men in suits and women in evening gowns at a Havana nightclub. And in almost every frame, a dapper American man with a salt-and-pepper mustache and a raven-haired woman with the arched eyebrows of a 1950s movie star — Chester's father and mother — smiling at the good fortune that, they could not know, would soon be snatched away. "That life is gone," Chester says. "I always heard about Cuba ... and all this money that we lost and 'Maybe one day,' but I didn't understand i

  • Century-old NYC matzo factory faces a high-tech future

    Updated: 5 hr ago

    NEW YORK (AP) — The last ever Passover matzos have rolled out of a century-old bakery on Manhattan's Lower East Side — a neighborhood that's been dubbed the "Jewish Plymouth Rock" but is rapidly gentrifying. The Streit's factory building is the oldest in the nation where the unleavened flatbread that's essential for Jewish holidays is still churned out. About 2.5 million pounds of matzos were baked for April's Passover holiday, and distributed worldwide. Streit's is planning to shut down its nine-decade-old ovens by year's end and move to a 21st century computerized plant somewhere in the New York area. The contract has yet to be signed.

  • Late audits halt trading in Morgan Stanley-backed stocks

    Updated: 5 hr ago

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Two major companies in a prominent $1.4 billion Asia investment fund managed by banking giant Morgan Stanley failed to file their financial statements on time, freezing trading in their stocks. Such delays are generally considered worrisome for a company's investors, which include U.S. pension funds and college endowments. The companies — Tianhe Chemicals Group Ltd. and Sihuan Pharmaceutical Holdings Group Ltd — both blamed the delay on incomplete audits. Though both companies could eventually earn auditors approval, accounting experts say that such holdups are a worrying sign. Accounting trouble at the companies would be a black eye for Morgan Stanley, which pitched investors on its ability to improve

  • AP PHOTOS: As the Lincoln Continental returns; a look back

    Updated: 6 hr ago

    Ford Motor Co. said Monday that the Lincoln Continental is coming back after a 13-year hiatus. A concept version of the full-size Continental will be shown at the New York auto show this week. The production car goes on sale next year. Lincoln, Ford's luxury division, was founded in 1917 by Henry Leland, the former manager of General Motors Co.'s Cadillac division. Leland named the company after his hero, Abraham Lincoln. Initially, the company made motors for World War I airplanes, but by 1920 it was making luxury cars. In 1922, Lincoln declared bankruptcy and was sold to Ford, which wanted to acquire a luxury nameplate. Henry Ford's son, Edsel, became Lincoln's president. Edsel Ford was more interested in style and design t

  • Lincoln Continental, the car of presidents, is returning

    Updated: 6 hr ago

    DEARBORN, Mich. (AP) — Elvis Presley had one. So did presidents from Kennedy to Reagan. Now, the Lincoln Continental is back. Ford Motor Co. is resurrecting the Continental with a concept car debuting at this week's New York Auto Show. The full-size sedan goes on sale next year. The Continental dates to the late 1930s and was once the pinnacle of luxury. But Ford stopped producing it in 2002 when sales slowed. Now, it's returning the Continental to the top of Lincoln's car lineup. The concept car has a new, smaller grille and a more elegant look. It also has new technology, including hidden door handles. Ford hopes to take advantage of luxury sales growth in China, where customers appreciate Lincoln's hist

  • Officials: Iran nuke talks solving some issues, not others

    Updated: 8 hr ago

    LAUSANNE, Switzerland (AP) — Iran is considering demands for further cuts to its uranium enrichment program but is pushing back on how long it must limit technology it could use to make atomic arms, Western officials involved in the nuclear talks said Sunday. Iran's potential movement on enrichment reflected the intense pressure to close a deal. But substantial differences between the sides may prove too difficult to bridge before Tuesday's deadline for a preliminary agreement, which is meant to set the stage for a further round of negotiations toward a comprehensive deal in June. The goal is a long-term curb on Iran's nuclear activities. In return, Tehran would gain relief from the burden of global economic penalties.

  • Official: 2 found dead in rubble believed to be missing men

    Updated: 8 hr ago

    NEW YORK (AP) — Two bodies were found Sunday amid rubble from the Manhattan apartment building collapse three days earlier and authorities said everyone was accounted for since the apparent gas explosion that caused a massive fire and altogether leveled three buildings and damaged a fourth. Authorities had been looking for signs of two missing men since Thursday's explosion, in which 22 people were injured, including four critically. Officials suspect someone may have improperly tapped a gas line serving one of the buildings.

  • 10 Things to Know for Monday

    Updated: 9 hr ago

    Your daily look at late-breaking news, upcoming events and the stories that will be talked about Monday: 1. ARAB SUMMIT ENDS WITH VOW TO DEFEAT SHIITE REBELS IN YEMEN Arab leaders also plan to form a joint intervention force, setting the stage for a clash between U.S.-allied Arab states and Iran, accused of backing Houthi rebels in Yemen. 2. WHAT NSA CONSIDERED ABANDONING PRIOR TO SNOWDEN LEAK The National Security Agency discussed ending its secret program to collect and store American phone records before Edward Snowden revealed the practice, The Associated Press learns. 3.

  • DreamWorks' 'Home' bests 'Get Hard' at box office with $54M

    Updated: 16 hr ago

    NEW YORK (AP) — Business was brisk at the weekend box-office, where the DreamWorks animated alien adventure "Home" beat out the Will Ferrell-Kevin Hart comedy "Get Hard" with a resounding debut of $54 million, according to studio estimates Sunday. While the two films had been expected to vie for the top spot at North American theaters, "Home" came in well above expectations, handing DreamWorks Animation a much-needed hit. Though a distant second, "Get Hard" also opened strongly with an estimated $34.6 million, rewarding the Warner Bros. pairing of two of the most bankable stars in comedy. Last week's top film, the young-adult sequel "The Divergent Series: Insurgent," slid to third with $22.1 million.




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