• Ruling on antibiotics in livestock reversed

    Updated: Thu, Jul 24, 2014

    NEW YORK (AP) — A federal appeals court in New York has thrown out a decision ordering the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to hold public hearings on the widespread use of antibiotics in livestock. The 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals issued the ruling Thursday. It reversed a decision in 2012 by a district court that sided with several health and consumer organizations. The health groups want the FDA to withdraw approval of using penicillin and tetracycline in animal feed. They say the practice can promote the spread of antibiotic-resistant bacteria. The appeals court found that the FDA isn't required to hold the hearings because it's made no official finding that the antibiotics pose a health risk.

  • Surveys explore U-boat, oil spill impact

    Updated: Thu, Jul 24, 2014

    NEW ORLEANS (AP) — The photos taken nearly a mile under the Gulf of Mexico are so clear that small holes are visible in a lifeboat that may have gone down or been scuttled when a passenger ship was sunk by a Nazi submarine in 1942. Interpretations differ. But the pictures taken remotely from Robert Ballard's exploration vessel Nautilus are among the brightest and clearest ever taken of the American ship Robert E. Lee and the U-166, a German U-boat that was sunk by depth charges from the Lee's escort during World War II on July 30, 1942. Ballard, whose crew photographed, videoed and mapped the vessels for a National Geographic documentary to air on PBS, uses a pair of tethered, remotely piloted mini-subs.

  • North Dakota lawmakers to tour state's oil patch

    Updated: Thu, Jul 24, 2014

    BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — Dozens of North Dakota lawmakers will be getting a warts-and-all tour next month of the state's booming oil patch and its impact. The North Dakota Petroleum Council-sponsored event is the second one of its kind to precede a Legislative session in recent years, and officials in the western part of the state hope it'll pay off with what they say is sorely needed additional money for infrastructure. They say the last tour in 2012 helped a little, but it hasn't been enough. The two-day bus tour begins Aug. 26, with more than 40 lawmakers mainly from cities well outside the oil patch visiting drilling rig and oil well sites and spending the night in a crew camp, said Alexis Brinkman, the council's governmen

  • Oil falls on worries about US gasoline demand

    Updated: Thu, Jul 24, 2014

    The price of oil fell near $102 a barrel Thursday, erasing gains from the day before. Benchmark U.S. crude for September delivery dropped $1.05 to $102.07 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. On Wednesday, the Nymex contract gained 73 cents after the Energy Department reported a far larger drop in U.S. crude inventories than what analysts had expected. Brent crude for September delivery, a benchmark for international oils, fell 96 cents to $107.07 on the ICE Futures exchange in London. The price of oil has stayed above $100 a barrel after a civilian jetliner was shot out of the sky last week over a part of eastern Ukraine controlled by pro-Russian separatists and as Israel's invasion of the Gaza Strip added to

  • US stocks end little changed after mixed news

    Updated: Thu, Jul 24, 2014

    NEW YORK (AP) — U.S. stocks are ending little changed after a day of mixed signals on corporate earnings and the economy. The Standard & Poor's 500 index rose less than one point, or 0.05 percent, to close at 1,897.98 Thursday, barely topping a record set the day before. The other two major indexes fell. The Dow Jones industrial average slipped two points, or 0.02 percent, to 17,083.80. The Nasdaq eased one point, or 0.04 percent to 4,472.11. Facebook rose 5 percent and was among the top gainers in the S&P 500 after beating earnings expectations. The Dow was weighed down by Caterpillar, which fell 3 percent after the equipment maker's quarterly revenue fell short of forecasts.

  • Money market fund assets fell $2.18 billion

    Updated: Thu, Jul 24, 2014

    Total U.S. money market mutual fund assets fell $2.18 billion to $2.56 trillion for the week that ended Wednesday, according to the Investment Company Institute. Assets in the nation's retail money market mutual funds fell $2.84 billion to $896.27 billion, the Washington-based mutual fund trade group said Thursday. Assets of taxable money market funds in the retail category rose $2.97 billion to $710.27 billion. Tax-exempt retail fund assets fell $140 million to $186 billion. Assets in institutional money market funds fell $5.03 billion to $1.67 trillion. Among institutional funds, taxable money market fund assets fell $4.22 billion to $1.6 trillion. Assets of tax-exempt funds decreased $810 million to $71.18 billion.

  • FAA lifts ban on US flights to Tel Aviv airport

    Updated: Thu, Jul 24, 2014

    WASHINGTON (AP) — The Federal Aviation Administration has lifted its ban on U.S. flights in and out of Israel. The end of the ban, which the agency had imposed out of concern for the risk of planes being hit by Hamas rockets, was effective at 11:45 p.m. EDT Wednesday. "Before making this decision, the FAA worked with its U.S. government counterparts to assess the security situation in Israel and carefully reviewed both significant new information and measures the government of Israel is taking to mitigate potential risks to civil aviation," the FAA said. "The agency will continue to closely monitor the very fluid situation around Ben Gurion Airport and will take additional actions as necessary.

  • Wal-Mart names new CEO of US discount division

    Updated: Thu, Jul 24, 2014

    NEW YORK (AP) — Wal-Mart is replacing the chief of its U.S. discount stores in what could be an indication that it's losing confidence that its largest business unit will rebound after more than a year of disappointing results. Greg Foran, who was promoted to president and CEO of Wal-Mart Asia earlier this year, will succeed Bill Simon, who had been CEO of Wal-Mart's U.S. stores for four years, effective on Aug. 9. The move, which was announced Thursday, marks the company's first big management shake-up under Doug McMillon, who took over as CEO of Wal-Mart Stores Inc. in February. Foran, 53, will report directly to McMillon. Simon's departure isn't surprising.

  • US average rate on 30-year home loan 4.13 percent

    Updated: Thu, Jul 24, 2014

    Average U.S. rates on long-term fixed mortgages were stable to slightly higher this week.

  • Gold prices sink following better economic news

    Updated: Thu, Jul 24, 2014

    Gold is slipping to its lowest level in a month as signs of an improving economy lure traders into other investments. The gold contract for August delivery sank $13.90, or 1.1 percent, to settle at $1,290.80 an ounce Thursday. That's the lowest settlement price since June 18. The Labor Department said Thursday that the number of people applying for unemployment benefits last week dropped to the lowest level since February 2006, almost two years before the Great Recession started. In a separate report out Thursday, a gauge of manufacturing in China reached an 18-month high. Better economic reports tend to drag down gold prices. In other trading, news of stronger Chinese manufacturing gave copper prices a boost.

  • Airlines report big 2Q profits on strong demand

    Updated: Thu, Jul 24, 2014

    Investing in airlines has long been the butt of jokes, especially when many U.S. carriers traipsed through bankruptcy court in the past decade. Now riding a post-merger tide of higher fares and stable fuel costs, those same airlines are piling up profits — and sharing the newfound riches with investors. American Airlines announced Thursday that it would pay its first dividend in 34 years, and both American and United Airlines announced big plans to buy back their own stock, a strategy designed to boost the value of remaining shares. Those announcements came as American, United and Southwest reported record-setting second-quarter results, building on Delta's solid performance a day earlier.

  • Across US job market, layoffs are becoming rare

    Updated: Thu, Jul 24, 2014

    WASHINGTON (AP) — The risk of losing your job is getting smaller and smaller. As the U.S. economy has improved and employers have regained confidence, companies have been steadily shedding fewer workers. Which is why applications for unemployment benefits have dwindled to their lowest level since February 2006 — nearly two years before the Great Recession began — the government said Thursday. The trend means greater job security and suggests a critical turning point in the economic recovery. It raises the hope that workers' pay will finally accelerate after grinding through a sluggish recovery for the past half-decade. When the economy sank into recession at the end of 2007, employers cut deeply into their staffs.

  • Court throws out Chiquita terror payment claims involving thousands of Colombian deaths

    Updated: Thu, Jul 24, 2014

    MIAMI (AP) — Court throws out Chiquita terror payment claims involving thousands of Colombian deaths.

  • Fukushima study: Think about unthinkable disasters

    Updated: Thu, Jul 24, 2014

    WASHINGTON (AP) — A U.S. science advisory report says Japan's Fukushima nuclear accident offers a key lesson to the nation's nuclear industry: Focus more on the highly unlikely but worst case scenarios. That means thinking about earthquakes, floods, tsunamis, solar storms, multiple failures and situations that seem freakishly unusual, according to Thursday's National Academy of Sciences report. Those kinds of things triggered the world's three major nuclear accidents. "We need to do a soul searching when it comes to the assumptions" of how to deal with worst case events, said University of Southern California engineering professor Najmedin Meshkati, the panel's technical adviser.

  • US issues 186 mining citations in June

    Updated: Thu, Jul 24, 2014

    ARLINGTON, Va. (AP) — The Mine Safety and Health Administration says inspectors issued 186 citations at 13 U.S. mining operations in June. Eleven of those mines were coal operations, while the others were metal and nonmetal. MSHA cited as examples Thursday coal mines in Virginia and West Virginia. Twenty-five citations were issued at the Dickenson-Russell Coal Co. LLC's Cherokee Mine in Dickenson County, Virginia. The West Virginia inspection occurred at Rhino Eastern LLC's Eagle Mine 3 in Wyoming County. MSHA said it found dozens of violations. The impact inspections began in 2010 after the Upper Big Branch mine explosion in West Virginia killed 29 coal miners.

  • Dick's Sporting Goods lays off 478 PGA golf pros

    Updated: Thu, Jul 24, 2014

    IMPERIAL, Pa. (AP) — The Dick's Sporting Goods chain has laid off 478 Professional Golfers' Association teaching pros months after the company reported that sales of golf gear are dwindling. Dick's didn't immediately respond Thursday to the layoffs, which were announced by the PGA on Wednesday. Dick's operates more than 500 stores nationwide, most under the Dick's name. Those stores sell golf equipment as do 79 stores the chain operates under the Golf Galaxy name. Dick's is based in the Pittsburgh suburb of Findlay Township. Earlier this year, Dick's announced it expected its year-end profits to drop about 10 percent because of reduced sales in golf equipment, which the company says was offsetting gains it made sellin

  • Bombardier restructuring cuts 1,800 jobs globally

    Updated: Thu, Jul 24, 2014

    WICHITA, Kan. (AP) — Airplane maker Bombardier Inc. is cutting 1,800 jobs across facilities worldwide as it restructures operations. Spokeswoman Isabelle Rondeau with the Montreal-based company said Thursday that Bombardier plans to reorganize the company into four business segments before Jan. 1. Bombardier says production-related jobs will not be affected. It plans a 15 percent reduction in what the company calls "indirect functions," such as human resources, finance and communications. Rondeau said it is too early to say what the impact will be on the company's Learjet plant in Wichita or any other of its facilities. The four business segments will report directly to Chief Executive Officer Pierre Beaudoin.

  • Texas governor's startup fund is not all it seems

    Updated: Thu, Jul 24, 2014

    AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Texas Gov. Rick Perry has distributed $205 million in taxpayer money to scores of technology startups using a pet program designed to bring high-paying jobs and innovation to the nation's second most-populous state. But a closer look at the Texas Emerging Technology Fund, one of Perry's signature initiatives in his 14 years as governor, reveals that some of the businesses that received money are not all they seem. One actually operates in California. Some have stagnated trying to find more capital. Others have listed out-of-state employees and short-term hires as being among the jobs they created. A few have forfeited their right to do business in Texas by not filing tax reports.

  • Morgan Stanley paying $275M to settle SEC charges

    Updated: Thu, Jul 24, 2014

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Morgan Stanley has agreed to pay $275 million to settle U.S. civil charges that it misled investors about risky mortgage bonds it sold ahead of the 2008 financial crisis. The Securities and Exchange Commission announced the settlement Thursday with the Wall Street bank. The SEC said Morgan Stanley failed to accurately disclose the delinquency status of home mortgages backing two securities deals that it financed and sold in 2007. The mortgages underlying the securities had a total value of about $2.5 billion, according to the SEC. New York-based Morgan Stanley neither admitted nor denied the allegations. "We're pleased to have settled this matter," said spokesman Mark Lake. The $275 million Mor

  • More girls now getting cervical cancer vaccine

    Updated: Thu, Jul 24, 2014

    NEW YORK (AP) — The government is reporting an increase in teen U.S. girls getting a controversial cervical cancer vaccine — but it's not much of a bump. Last year's rise follows a couple of years when the HPV vaccination rate was flat. For girls ages 13 to 17, the rate is now up to about 38 percent from 33 percent. The CDC on Thursday reported the latest rates for the vaccine that protects against human papillomavirus, or HPV. The sexually transmitted bug can cause cervical cancer, genital warts and other illnesses. The vaccine has been available since 2006. ___ Online: CDC: http://www.cdc.