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Friday Evening Business Brief

August 31, 2012, 5:24 PM

Friday Evening Business Brief

Stocks capped the week and the month of August with an advance. The Dow today gained 90 points to 13,091. The S&P added 7 points, while the Nasdaq surged 18 points. For the month, the Dow was up less than 1 percent, the S&P was up more than 2 percent, while the Nasdaq's gain topped 4 percent.

  • Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke told a conference in Jackson Hole, Wyo., that the economic recovery remains "far from satisfactory".  Analysts say the Fed wants to see more evidence on the economy before deciding to take further steps at boosting growth. The Fed's next meeting is in mid-September.
  • The Ford Focus is on track to unseat Toyota's aging Corolla as the world's top-selling car, according to Ford. The automaker says it sold more than 489,000 Focus sedans and hatchbacks globally in the first half of 2012, topping the Corolla by almost 27,000 vehicles.
  • A big spike in gasoline prices may be about over, but it's too late to bring much relief for Labor Day weekend. The national average price for gasoline stands at $3.83 per gallon, ending a string of dramatic increases caused by Hurricane Isaac.
  • The United Steelworkers union has decided not to go on strike, at least for now, over stalled negotiations with steelmaker ArcelorMittal. A contract, which expires Saturday, covers 14,000 employees in eight states - Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Ohio, Illinois, Indiana, Minnesota, Louisiana and South Carolina.

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