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May 14, 2014 06:30 AM

Wednesday Morning Business Update

New York

So close. The Standard & Poor's 500 index briefly climbed above the 1,900 level on Tuesday before dropping back to close just below it. Still, it set an all-time closing high by a fraction of a point, at 1,897.45. The Dow Jones industrial average rose 19.97 points to 16,715.44. Futures point to a lpwer opening today.

  • International stock markets are mixed today. European shares eased lower early in early trading as investors watched for cues from the European Central Bank on whether it will ease policy in June. Asian shares were mostly higher, except for Japan's benchmark. Benchmark U.S. crude oil rose above $102 a barrel. The dollar edged up against the yen and slipped against the euro.
     
  • The Labor Department reports this morning on U.S. producer prices - the prices that companies receive for their goods and services - in April. In March, producer prices jumped 0.5 percent, led by gains for food, clothing, jewelry and chemicals.
     
  • Sony Corp. sank to a 138 billion yen ($1.3 billion) quarterly loss, hit by costs from selling its personal computer business. The company is forecasting more red ink as it struggles to execute a long-promised turnaround. The Tokyo-based maker of the PlayStation 4, Bravia TVs and Walkman digital player also reported a loss of 128.4 billion yen ($1.3 billion) for the fiscal year through March 2014, about three times its loss the previous year.
     
  • Samsung Electronics has apologized to chip factory workers who suffered from leukemia and other cancers and is promising compensation to the workers and their families. For the past few years, Samsung has resisted calls to apologize. The company also provided assistance to a government compensation agency in legal battles over the agency's refusal to pay compensation to workers. Samsung says it will no longer be a part of those lawsuits.
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