Financial news on April 13, 2012

Business and Financial news
A Centuries-Old Villa in the Heart of Chianti Wine Country

The Renaissance-style home includes an 11-hectare vineyard. Read more..

By D.M. FOX - International Herald Tribune

An Interview with the Head of Zipcar

Ron Lieber interviews Scott Griffith, chief executive of Zipcar, a popular car-sharing service. Read more..

Mac William Bishop, Pedro Rosado and Channon Hodge - The New York Times

A Proposed Rule Seeks to Stop Runaway Cars

Federal safety regulators propose plan to require all new cars and trucks to have a brake-throttle override system, giving drivers the ability to step on the brake to stop the car if the accelerator pedal malfunctions; proposal is aimed at preventing runaway-car crashes like the one near San Diego that killed an off-duty California Highway Patrol officer and his family and prompted Toyota to recall millions of vehicles. Read more..

By NICK BUNKLEY - The New York Times

Argentina Has Oil Firm in Its Sights

Fate of Argentina's largest oil company, YPF, is uncertain following report that Pres Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner is preparing to nationalize it; Spain warns that it would consider such a move a hostile action; Argentina would take control of 50.01 percent of the shares in YPF, currently controlled by Repsol; move reflects resurgence of resource nationalism in the country. Read more..


BP Shareholders Approve Pay for New Chief

A revolt against the company's remuneration report, which included a $6.8 million compensation package for Robert Dudley, did not succeed in overturning it. Read more..

By STEPHEN CASTLE - The New York Times

Business Day Live | April 13, 2012

Looking at earnings in the financial sector; Ron Lieber interviews Scott Griffith, chief executive of Zipcar; and on credit card fees, a test of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau's power. Read more..

Mac William Bishop, Pedro Rosado, Channon Hodge, Matthew Orr and Gabe Johnson - The New York Times

California Court Sides With Businesses on Worker Breaks

In a unanimous decision, the California Supreme Court ruled that employers do not have to make sure that workers takes state-mandated breaks. Read more..


Clouds on Solar’s Horizon

Decision by BrightSource Energy to withdraw its initial public offering highlights the difficulties facing the solar energy market; despite a vast increase in installations, profits remain scarce. Read more..

By DIANE CARDWELL - The New York Times

Consumer Bureau Declines to Resist Upfront Credit Card Fees

Consumer Financial Protection Bureau introduces proposal that will make it easier for credit card issuers to charge fees before borrowers accounts are officially open; proposed rule is in response to a federal court decision that challenged how the Credit Card Act was being applied; many consumer advocates question why the agency is not taking a more aggressive stand against fees. Read more..


Departing EADS Chief Urges Europe to Recommit to Industry

Departing European Aeronautic Defense and Space chief executive Louis Gallois urges Europe to not ignore its own industry as it pursues its global vision; says industry is important for innovation and economic stability; Gallois, in his new role as ambassador for industry, will try to persuade leaders that the revival of European industry and globalization can go hand in hand. Read more..

By NICOLA CLARK - The New York Times

Ford Tries to Save the Lincoln Brand

Sales of Ford’s luxury nameplate peaked in 1990 at more than 200,000 vehicles, but by last year only 85,643 were sold. Read more..

By JAMES B. STEWART - The New York Times

Hong Kong Exchange Considers Loan for London Bid

Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing is considering borrowing up to $3 billion for a bid for London Metal Exchange. Read more..

By REUTERS - International Herald Tribune

In Struggling Spanish Town, Hopes of Reopening Mine Are Delayed

Plan to reopen the Riotinto copper mine in southern Spain is stalled, tied up over regulatory delays, environmental concerns and a property dispute; reopening of the long-idle mine could provide several hundred jobs for the struggling town of Minas de Riotinto; problems with project illustrate the challenges Spain faces in digging itself out of a deep economic hole. Read more..

By RAPHAEL MINDER - The New York Times

Life Expands at the Edge of the Fairway

In Scotland, golf courses and the properties next to them are mushrooming as they attract attention from a selective investor pool. Read more..

By LAURA HENDERSON - International Herald Tribune

Rite Aid Posts Narrower Loss

Rite Aid reports that its fourth-quarter loss was narrower than a year earlier due to increased sales, lower expenses and a boost from an extra week in the quarter; reports loss $163.8 million, or 18 cents a share, compared to a loss of $208.1 million, or 24 cents a share, in the final quarter of its previous fiscal year; revenue climbed 11 percent, to $7.15 billion, from $6.46 billion a year earlier. Read more..


Slow First Quarter in China, but Recent Signs of Growth

China's economic growth slowed sharply in the first three months of the year, but efforts by policy makers to jump-start the economy appear to be working, with industrial and retail activity both rising during March; nation's economy expanded 8.1 percent compared to a year earlier. Read more..

By BETTINA WASSENER - The New York Times

Sony Chief Unveils Plans to Revive Company

Sony chief executive Kazuo Hirai details company's turnaround plan, saying focus will shift resources away from the unprofitable television business and toward mobile devices, cameras and games; plan also includes cutting 10,000 jobs; Sony has had four consecutive years of losses, but has rapidly lost ground to other companies. Read more..


W.T.O. Warns of Global Trade Slowdown in 2012

The World Trade Organization warned that international trade would grow by only 3.7 percent in 2012 after decelerating sharply last year, suggesting the global economy is losing steam. Read more..

By DAVID JOLLY - The New York Times

Stock Markets

Values are reported in US Dollars

StockTicker symbolOpenHighLowCloseVolume
JPMorgan ChaseJPM44.9544.9543.0643.2158.2M
Wells Fargo & Co.WFC33.7333.8732.8032.8441.9M
General ElectricGE19.1819.1818.8618.8840.3M
Procter & GamblePG66.0466.5065.8065.8129.8M
Cisco SystemsCSCO20.0220.0419.7919.8527.9M
AT&T Inc.T30.7530.8630.5230.5425M
HP Inc.HPQ24.9325.0524.3324.5724.5M
Oracle Corp.ORCL28.7028.7728.4928.5016.7M
Verizon CommunicationsVZ37.4537.5637.1537.2615.7M
Bristol-Myers SquibbBMY32.4632.5732.2832.5412.1M
Abbott LaboratoriesABT59.7859.9059.3859.5911.9M
Johnson & JohnsonJNJ63.9464.0063.5263.5411.2M
Home DepotHD50.6051.2850.6050.9610.4M
Walt Disney & Co.DIS42.0342.2241.7041.857.31M
General MotorsGM24.2224.2923.6223.807.31M
Wal-Mart StoresWMT60.0060.2159.7559.776.69M
Gilead SciencesGILD45.7846.1545.4745.516.21M
UnitedHealth GroupUNH58.3958.5557.7458.055.66M
Berkshire HathawayBRK.B79.9180.0078.7078.824.43M
International Business MachinesIBM204.32204.65202.80202.803.77M
United TechnologiesUTX80.5680.9379.7479.803.25M
Union PacificUNP108.28108.68107.50108.042.41M
Exchange Rates of April 13, 2012
CurrenciesExchange Rates
US DollarJapanese Yen1 USD = 80.910 JPY1 JPY = 0.012 USD
US DollarCanadian Dollar1 USD = 0.999 CAD1 CAD = 1.001 USD
US DollarSwiss Franc1 USD = 0.919 CHF1 CHF = 1.088 USD
US DollarChinese Yuan1 USD = 6.303 CNY1 CNY = 0.159 USD
EuroJapanese Yen1 EUR = 105.800 JPY1 JPY = 0.009 EUR
EuroPound Sterling1 EUR = 0.825 GBP1 GBP = 1.213 EUR
EuroAustralian Dollar1 EUR = 1.260 AUD1 AUD = 0.793 EUR
EuroCanadian Dollar1 EUR = 1.307 CAD1 CAD = 0.765 EUR
EuroSwiss Franc1 EUR = 1.202 CHF1 CHF = 0.832 EUR
EuroChinese Yuan1 EUR = 8.243 CNY1 CNY = 0.121 EUR
Japanese YenPound Sterling1 JPY = 0.780 GBP1 GBP = 1.283 JPY
Japanese YenAustralian Dollar1 JPY = 1.191 AUD1 AUD = 0.840 JPY
Japanese YenCanadian Dollar1 JPY = 1.235 CAD1 CAD = 0.810 JPY
Japanese YenSwiss Franc1 JPY = 1.136 CHF1 CHF = 0.880 JPY
Pound SterlingAustralian Dollar1 GBP = 1.528 AUD1 AUD = 0.655 GBP
Pound SterlingCanadian Dollar1 GBP = 1.585 CAD1 CAD = 0.631 GBP
Pound SterlingSwiss Franc1 GBP = 1.456 CHF1 CHF = 0.687 GBP
Pound SterlingChinese Yuan1 GBP = 9.994 CNY1 CNY = 0.100 GBP
Australian DollarCanadian Dollar1 AUD = 1.037 CAD1 CAD = 0.965 AUD
Australian DollarSwiss Franc1 AUD = 0.952 CHF1 CHF = 1.050 AUD
Australian DollarChinese Yuan1 AUD = 6.542 CNY1 CNY = 0.153 AUD
Canadian DollarSwiss Franc1 CAD = 0.919 CHF1 CHF = 1.088 CAD
Canadian DollarChinese Yuan1 CAD = 6.305 CNY1 CNY = 0.159 CAD
Swiss FrancChinese Yuan1 CHF = 6.854 CNY1 CNY = 0.146 CHF

See what else happened on April 13, 2012