• NBCUniversal settles with unpaid interns for $6.4M

    Updated: 26 min ago

    NEW YORK (AP) — NBCUniversal will pay $6.4 million to settle a class action lawsuit brought by unpaid interns who worked on "Saturday Night Live" and other shows who claim they are owed wages, according to court documents. The interns claim NBCUniversal wrongly classified them as non-employees in an effort to avoid labor laws. NBCUniversal said in court documents that even though it's settling the suit, it denies the allegations and doesn't admit any wrongdoing. The average amount that class-action members of the suit will receive is $505, although the main plaintiffs will receive more. The number of class members is capped at 8,975. The interns had been seeking recovery of unpaid wages, attorneys' fees, interest and

  • Hacker gets prison for cyberattack stealing $9.4M

    Updated: 38 min ago

    ATLANTA (AP) — An Estonian man who pleaded guilty to orchestrating a 2008 cyberattack on a credit card processing company that enabled hackers to steal $9.4 million has been sentenced to 11 years in prison by a federal judge in Atlanta. Prosecutors said Friday that 30-year-old Sergei Nicolaevich Tsurikov was also ordered to pay restitution of $8.4 million. Sally Quillian Yates, U.S. attorney for the Northern District of Georgia, called Tsurikov the leader of "one of the most sophisticated cybercrime rings in the world." Prosecutors say Tsurikov and others in November 2008 hacked the Royal Bank of Scotland Group in Atlanta and created counterfeit payroll debit cards used to withdraw money from more than 2,100 ATMs in a

  • US Chamber on sidelines in close Georgia race

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    WASHINGTON (AP) — The most powerful business group in the country is spending tens of millions of dollars to help Republicans win control of the Senate with one glaring omission — the tight Georgia Senate race. Rob Engstrom, political director for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, said Friday that the organization will stay on the sidelines in the contest between businessman David Perdue and Democrat Michelle Nunn in Georgia as well as the competitive Louisiana race pitting three-term Democratic Sen. Mary Landrieu against Republican Rep. Bill Cassidy. Days before the Nov. 4 election, both races are which are critical to GOP hopes of a Senate majority look as if they will be decided in runoffs — December for Louisiana and Ja

  • US stocks rise broadly on earnings; Amazon sinks

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    NEW YORK (AP) — U.S. stocks rose again Friday, putting the market on track for its best week in almost two years, led by strong quarterly results from Microsoft and UPS. Amazon sank after the company reported dismal third-quarter results, but it wasn't enough to drag the rest of the market down. KEEPING SCORE: The Dow Jones industrial average rose 55 points, or 0.3 percent, to 16,733 as of 1:20 p.m. Eastern. The Standard & Poor's 500 index rose four points, or 0.2 percent, to 1,955 and the Nasdaq composite is up seven points, or 0.2 percent, to 4,460. GOOD NEWS: Investors got encouraging earnings news from two closely watched companies: Microsoft and UPS.

  • Fitch upgrades Delta's credit rating

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    CHICAGO (AP) — Fitch is upgrading Delta's credit rating, citing its improved balance sheet, solid operating performance and better-than-expected free cash flow. The ratings agency also touted the airline operator's efforts in dealing with operating cost inflation. Fitch boosted Delta Air Lines Inc.'s issuer default rating one notch in junk status to "BB" from "BB-." Delta's rating outlook is positive. Earlier this month Delta reported a third-quarter adjusted profit and revenue that topped analysts' expectations, helped by strong demand and lower fuel prices. The Atlanta company's stock added $1.11, or 2.9 percent, to $39.03 in Friday afternoon trading.

  • Queen sends her first tweet, signed 'Elizabeth R'

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    LONDON (AP) — Queen Elizabeth II has sent her first tweet — though she kept things traditional, signing off with "Elizabeth R." The 88-year-old monarch tried her hand at Twitter as she opened a new gallery Friday in central London's Science Museum, taking off a glove to press a tablet screen as 600 guests looked on. The message, "I hope people will enjoy visiting" the exhibition, was sent instantly through the official British monarchy account on the social media website. "Elizabeth R" is how the queen signs official documents. The "R'' stands for "regina," the Latin for queen. Officials said the message came "personally" from the queen herself, although some eyebrows were raised about whether that was the case.

  • Wyndham 3Q adjusted profit tops Wall Street's view

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    PARSIPPANY, N.J. (AP) — Wyndham Worldwide Corp.'s third-quarter net income rose 10 percent as revenue improved across all business segments. The hotel operator's adjusted profit topped analysts' estimates and it raised its 2014 adjusted profit forecast, but its preliminary 2015 guidance came in below Wall Street's view. The stock fell in afternoon trading on Friday. Wyndham earned $206 million, or $1.64 per share, for the period ended Sept. 30. That compares with $187 million, or $1.40 per share, a year earlier. Excluding certain items, earnings were $1.67 per share. The results topped Wall Street expectations. The average estimate of analysts surveyed by Zacks Investment Research was for earnings of $1.63

  • W.Va. lab appeals revocation of certification

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — A Raleigh County laboratory is appealing a decision by state environmental regulators to revoke its certification to perform water sampling and analysis after a worker pleaded guilty to tampering. Appalachian Laboratories Inc. on Thursday asked the West Virginia Environmental Quality Board in Charleston to put the decision by the Department of Environmental Protection on hold pending a hearing. The appeal said the lab's certification is unrelated to the conduct of former field technician and manager John W. Shelton. He pleaded guilty earlier this month in federal court to tampering with water samples in violation of the Clean Water Act.

  • Wyoming jobless rate up slightly in September

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) — Wyoming's unemployment rate increased slightly to 4.7 percent in September. The rate was 4.6 percent in August. The state Department of Workforce Services says the Wyoming rate remains lower than the national rate of 5.9 percent. In September, Fremont County had the highest jobless rate in the state at 4.8 percent, followed by Lincoln at 4.5 percent and Laramie at 4.4 percent. The lowest rate among counties was Sublette with 2.9 percent, followed by Converse and Campbell counties with 3 percent each. Teton County is at 3.1 percent.

  • US halal food supplier indicted over beef exports

    Updated: 2 hr ago

    IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) — The founder of a popular brand of food for observant Muslims has been indicted on charges that he shipped beef to Malaysia and Indonesia that didn't meet those countries' import requirements. A federal grand jury returned the indictment Thursday against Bill Aossey, Jr., who founded the Midamar Corp. in 1974. The Cedar Rapids company grew into the leading U.S. halal brand, selling more than 200 products in the U.S. and abroad. A 19-count indictment charges Aossey with directing employees to change labels and fabricate documents to make beef products appear that they originated from a slaughterhouse that met Malaysia and Indonesia's strict requirements. Halal meat is supposed to be killed in ritual sla

  • Ford profit falls in third quarter on truck costs

    Updated: 2 hr ago

    DEARBORN, Mich. (AP) — Ford's new aluminum-sided F-150 will be a lot lighter and more efficient when it goes on sale later this year. But for now it's a serious drag on profits. Net income dropped 34 percent to $835 million in the third quarter, largely due to the cost of launching the pickup. The new F-150, which is 700 pounds lighter due to its aluminum construction, is scheduled to go on sale by the end of this year. Ford has repeatedly warned investors that this year would be difficult financially. It's launching a record 23 vehicles worldwide, including the F-150 and the new Mustang sports car that went on sale during the third quarter. It's also building five plants in Asia and launching the luxury Lincoln brand in Ch

  • Rwandan government bans BBC local language service

    Updated: 2 hr ago

    KIGALI, Rwanda (AP) — The Rwandan government on Friday suspended all BBC radio broadcasts in Rwanda's most common language, Kinyarwanda, to protest the news organization's recent documentary about Rwanda's genocide. President Paul Kagame's government, members of parliament and genocide survivors have expressed their anger at the BBC over the recent documentary that suggested the country's president may have had a hand shooting down his predecessor's plane, a crash that triggered the mass killings. The hour-long documentary — "Rwanda, The Untold Story" — also quoted U.S. researchers who suggested that many of the more than 800,000 Rwandans who died in the 1994 genocide may have been ethnic Hutus, and not ethnic Tutsis as

  • Shakira to release baby toys with Fisher-Price

    Updated: 2 hr ago

    NEW YORK (AP) — Shakira is partnering with Fisher-Price to launch a line of baby toys as well as a Web series for moms. The Mattel, Inc.-owned company announced Friday that the First Steps collection of toys and baby gear would be available in November. Shakira co-developed six products, including a bouncer that plays music, alphabet blocks and a musical soccer ball, an ode to her soccer-playing boyfriend Gerard Pique, who plays for FC Barcelona. All of the proceeds will benefit her Barefoot Foundation, which provides education and nutrition to children in impoverished areas of her native Colombia. Pre-order on Amazon for the products begins Monday.

  • US new-home sales close to flat in September

    Updated: 2 hr ago

    WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. sales of new homes were nearly flat in September, after the government sharply revised downward what was initially an August surge in buying. New-home sales edged up 0.2 percent last month to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 467,000, the Commerce Department reported Friday. The report also revised down the August sales rate to 466,000 from 504,000. The pace of sales for newly built homes has improved a mere 1.7 percent so far this year compared to 2013. Only the South has experienced gains in buying year-to-date, while purchases have fallen in the Northeast, Midwest and West. Housing has struggled to fully rebound since the recession ended more than five years ago.

  • More earnings gains send US stocks higher

    Updated: 3 hr ago

    NEW YORK (AP) — Stocks are rising in midday trading as U.S. companies report more earnings gains. UPS and Microsoft rose after reporting earnings that were higher than analysts were expecting. Procter & Gamble rose after saying it would make its Duracell battery business a stand-alone company. The Dow Jones industrial average rose 84 points, or 0.5 percent, to 16,762 as of 11:55 a.m. Eastern time Friday. The Dow jumped 216 points the day before. The Standard & Poor's 500 index rose eight points, or 0.5 percent, to 1,959. The Nasdaq composite rose 17 points, or 0.4 percent, to 4,470. Crude oil fell 99 cents to $81.12 a barrel in New York. Bond prices rose. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note fell to 2.26

  • AT&T closes $2 billion sale of Conn. operations

    Updated: 3 hr ago

    NEW YORK (AP) — AT&T Inc. said Friday that it has completed its $2 billion sale of its Connecticut wireline business, fiber network, video and satellite business to Frontier Communications Corp. The deal was first announced in December. AT&T customers in Connecticut will now become Frontier customers. And about 2,500 AT&T employees who work to support the Connecticut business will be Frontier employees. Dallas-based AT&T said it will still provide cellphone service and other products in the state. AT&T shares rose 8 cents to $33.74 in morning trading Friday. Shares of Frontier, based in Stamford, Connecticut, fell 5 cents to $6.23.

  • Avis Budget buying licensee for $210M

    Updated: 3 hr ago

    PASIPPANY, N.J. (AP) — The Avis Budget Group is acquiring a Budget Car Rental licensee for southern California and Las Vegas for approximately $210 million, plus the cost of its vehicle fleet. The acquisition of the licensee, which Avis Budget said Friday is Budget Car Rental's largest in North America, is expected to increase earnings and add $100 million in revenue. The deal is expected to close in fourth quarter. The licensee operates at Los Angeles International and Bob Hope Burbank airports, as well as numerous local market locations throughout the Los Angeles metropolitan area. Sub-licensees operate throughout Southern California and in Las Vegas as well.

  • Con-way freight business will raise rates Monday

    Updated: 3 hr ago

    NEW YORK (AP) — Trucking company Con-way said Friday its freight business will raise its rates on Monday. The company said general rates for Con-way Freight will go up an average of 4.7 percent. Con-way said the increase will offset higher costs, including greater compensation programs for drivers, regulatory compliance and equipment costs. Con-way Inc. gets the majority of its revenue from the freight business. Shares of the Ann Arbor, Michigan, company rose 47 cents, or 1.1 percent, to $43.63 in morning trading. Its shares are down 3.6 percent over the past year.

  • Procter & Gamble taking out its batteries

    Updated: 4 hr ago

    NEW YORK (AP) — Procter & Gamble plans to remove its batteries and make Duracell a stand-alone company. The world's largest consumer products maker, which acquired Duracell in 2005, has been trimming its product lineup to focus on its top performers. After it finishes jettisoning more than half its brands around the globe over the next year or two, P&G said it will be left with about 70 to 80 brands. If a split-off of Duracell occurs, P&G said its shareholders would have the option of exchanging some, none or all of their P&G shares for shares of the new Duracell company. Jon Moeller, the company's chief financial officer, said during a call with reporters that Duracell is an "attractive" business that generates about

  • Spain challenges Canary Island poll on oil plans

    Updated: 5 hr ago

    MADRID (AP) — The Spanish government says it will ask the Constitutional Court to block proposals by the Canary Islands regional government to stage a referendum on oil exploration in waters off the popular tourist archipelago. Deputy Prime Minister Soraya Saenz de Santamaria said Friday that energy issues are a matter for the state to decide on, not regional governments. The Spanish government has licensed energy company Repsol to begin exploration some 60 kilometers (40 miles) off the islands in the coming weeks. The Canary Islands, located off the northwest coast of Africa, plans a referendum Nov. 23 asking residents if the archipelago should change its environmental and tourism policies for the sake of oil and gas