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Saturday Business Brief

February 22, 2014, 4:06 PM

Saturday Business Brief

NEW YORK (AP) - Investors appear reluctant to push the stock market higher before they see firmer evidence of a sustainable economic recovery. Stocks ended broadly lower yesterday. The S&P 500 index lost 3 ½ points, or 0.2 percent, closing at 1,836. The Dow Jones industrial average slipped 30, or 0.2 percent, to 16,103. The Nasdaq composite fell four points, or 0.1 percent, to 4,263.

  • The price of oil is up 2 percent for the week because of strong U.S. demand for heating oil during a bitterly cold winter. But benchmark crude for April delivery fell 55 cents yesterday to close at $102.20 a barrel in New York. Meanwhile, the average retail price of gasoline nationwide rose yesterday for the 14th straight day, to $3.39 per gallon.
     
  • Health officials say one person has died and three newborns have become ill in an outbreak of listeria linked to Hispanic-style cheese. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says the death occurred in California. Seven other illnesses were reported in Maryland. The CDC says the cheese was probably produced by Roos Foods of Kenton, Del.
     
  • BP is pressing a federal court to disallow a $7.9 million Gulf oil spill claim awarded to a Louisiana law firm. The dispute involves the Andry Law Firm. Former FBI director Louis Freeh, who investigated the claims process, said in a report last fall that he found evidence Jon Andry and others tried to corrupt the process. Andry's lawyers say their client did nothing wrong and question Freeh's impartiality.
     
  • Volkswagen is offering $9.2 billion to take over the rest of Swedish truck maker Scania. The German automaker says it wants to purchase the 37.4 percent of Scania it doesn't already own. VW estimates that a takeover will result in cost savings. The company announced the offer yesterday as it reported its annual net profit fell 58.2 percent last year due to the integration of Porsche.

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