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Friday Evening Business Brief

April 4, 2014, 7:03 PM

Friday Evening Business Brief

Technology stocks are sharply lower as traders dump big-name companies that had made huge gains. Facebook, Google and Netflix fell sharply. Biotech firms also took a beating. The tech-heavy Nasdaq plunged 110 points, or 2.6 percent, to 4,127. The S&P 500 fell 24 points, or 1.3 percent, to 1,865. The Dow industrials lost 160 points, or 1 percent, to 16,412.

  • Oil prices are up slightly after a monthly U.S. jobs report showed stronger hiring in the U.S. Benchmark crude for May delivery rose 85 cents to close at $101.14 a barrel today in New York. Meanwhile, the average retail price of gasoline rose less than a penny to $3.57 per gallon. That's 9 cents a gallon more than a month ago and 7 cents a gallon less than last year at this time.
     
  • Attorney General Eric Holder says the Justice Department is investigating high-frequency stock trading, to see if any of the practices violate insider trading laws. Brokerage firms' computers analyze market information and execute buy and sell orders for stocks within a fraction of a second. New York's attorney general says that gives those firms an unfair advantage.
     
  • Samsung is adding two safeguards to its latest smartphone in an effort to deter rampant theft of the mobile devices. The features will protect the Samsung Galaxy 5 S, which goes on sale next week. The models sold by Verizon Wireless and U.S. Cellular will include "Find My Mobile" and "Reactivation Lock" anti-theft options that users can activate for free.
     
  • Evenflo is recalling more than 1.3 million child safety seat buckles due to the risk children could not be removed quickly in an emergency. The recall involves buckles used in a number of convertible and booster seat models made between 2011 and 2014, including some Momentum, Chase, Maestro, Symphony, Snugli, Titan, SureRide and SecureKid models.

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