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Evening Business Brief

May 16, 2011, 6:49 PM

Evening Business Brief
Stock prices finished lower, with technology shares leading the way. The Dow was down 47 points to 12,548. The S&P slipped 8 points and the Nasdaq composite shed 46 or 1.6 percent.
  • Oil prices fell amid concerns Mississippi River flooding could disrupt Gulf Coast-region refineries and supplies.  Investors instead focused on weakening demand for gasoline. On the New York Mercantile Exchange, crude fell $2.28 to settle at $97.37 per barrel.
  • Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner says he's halting investments in two big government pension plans so the government can continue to borrow money. He informed Congress of his decision in a letter stating that the government had officially reached its $14.3 trillion borrowing limit. He says if lawmakers do not increase the borrowing limit by August 2, the government is at risk of an unprecedented default.
  • Research In Motion has recalled about 1,000 of its BlackBerry PlayBook tablet computers due to defective operating software that can make it impossible for users to set up the device. Only PlayBooks with 16 gigabytes of memory are said to be affected and RIM says most of them have not yet been sold.
  • Bank of America reports a slight increase in credit card defaults in April, while late payments edged down. The bank says in a regulatory filing that it wrote off credit card balances at an annualized rate of 8.25 percent last month, up from 8.18 percent in March.

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