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Friday Evening Business Brief

December 6, 2013, 6:45 PM

Friday Evening Business Brief

NEW YORK (AP) - Stocks are closing sharply higher after the U.S. government reported a big increase in hiring last month. The Dow Jones industrial average jumped nearly 199 points, or 1.3 percent, to 16,020. The S&P 500 index rose 20 points, or 1.1 percent, to 1,805. And the Nasdaq composite rose 29 points to 4,062. It was the first increase for the market after five days of losses.

  • The price of oil is up again on signs of a stronger U.S. job market. It finished the week with a gain of more than 5 percent. Benchmark crude for January delivery rose 27 cents at $97.65 a barrel in New York. The increase for the week was $4.93 a barrel. Those gains are showing up at the gas pump. The average price of a gallon of gasoline rose 1 cent to $3.26.

 

  • A federal judge in New York is refusing to block a merger between American Airlines and US Airways. The judge ruled that a bankruptcy judge was right to reject the arguments made by a lawyer for some consumers, allowing the merger to proceed. American, United, Delta and Southwest will control more than 80 percent of the U.S. market.

 

  • A federal judge has approved a $153 million settlement of a securities fraud lawsuit against Fannie Mae and KPMG brought by shareholders of the mortgage giant. The ruling yesterday came after nearly a decade of litigation. Shareholders accused Fannie and its former accountant KPMG of causing them losses by intentionally manipulating earnings.
  • Federal health officials have approved a highly anticipated hepatitis C drug from Gilead Sciences. It's expected to offer a faster, more palatable cure to millions of people infected with the liver-destroying virus.  The Food and Drug Administration says it approved the pill Sovaldi in combination with older drugs to treat the main forms of hepatitis C in the U.S.

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