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Thursday Evening Business Brief

February 27, 2014, 7:01 PM

Thursday Evening Business Brief

NEW YORK (AP) - The Standard & Poor's 500 index is closing at a record high and has turned positive for the year. The all-time high came after solid results from a number of U.S. companies. The S&P 500 increased nine points today to 1,854, beating its Jan. 15 record by six points. The Dow Jones industrial average rose 74 points to 16,272. The Nasdaq climbed 27 points to 4,318.

  • Oil prices are down a bit. Benchmark crude for April delivery slipped 19 cents today to close at $102.40 a barrel in New York. At the gas pump, the average price for a gallon of regular rose a penny to $3.44. The price has risen 16 cents in the past month as refineries undergo seasonal maintenance. That reduces supplies and forces pump prices higher.
     
  • Wells Fargo is cutting 700 jobs from its home lending business as mortgage refinancing slows down. The rise in interest rates is blamed. A Wells Fargo spokesman says the number of new mortgages is continuing to drop in the first quarter of this year, although not as fast as last year. On Tuesday, JPMorgan Chase said it would cut 6,000 jobs from its mortgage unit this year.
     
  • Rowe Fine Furniture is recalling about 220 ottomans because young children could become trapped inside its storage compartment and suffocate, although no injuries have been reported. The recall is for Rowe's Dalton-style wooden ottomans with the model number F135-064 printed on a tag underneath it.
     
  • Google's mystery barge is heading on a short cruise to comply with an order requiring it to move from its current home on a San Francisco Bay island. The agency leasing the Treasure Island space where the barge is being built says the four-story vessel is bound for the Port of Stockton. Google says the barge will become a floating technology center once it's done.

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