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Thursday Evening Business Brief

June 5, 2014, 6:51 PM

Thursday Evening Business Brief
  • Stocks are ending higher after the European Central Bank cut two key interest rates to boost the region's sluggish economy. The S&P 500 index rose 12 ½ points to close at 1,940. The Dow Jones industrial average climbed 98 ½ points to 16,836. Both indexes closed at record highs. The Nasdaq composite increased 44 1/2 points to 4,296, far below its record high.
  • The price of oil is holding steady. It barely budged for a fourth straight day, as traders await the latest report from the government on the state of the jobs market. Benchmark U.S. crude for July delivery fell 16 cents to $102.48 a barrel today in New York. For the week oil is down 33 cents. At the gas pump, the price of a gallon averaged $3.66. That up 1 cent from a week ago.
  • Mortgage buyer Freddie Mac says average rates on fixed mortgages rose slightly this week, reversing a five-week downward trend. The average rate for a 30-year loan edged up to 4.14 percent from 4.12 percent last week. The average for the 15-year mortgage climbed to 3.23 percent from 3.21 percent.
  • Verizon Communications, the country's fourth-largest home Internet service provider, is telling Netflix to stop blaming it for bad video quality or face a lawsuit. Verizon is reacting to messages appearing on the screens of some Netflix subscribers that blame poor video quality on their Internet service providers.
  • A New York City jury is awarding the Beastie Boys $1.7 million in a copyright violation case against beverage-maker Monster Energy Co. The decision came today in federal court. Monster admitted wrongly using Beastie Boys songs in a video that was online for five weeks but insisted it should owe no more than $125,000. The Beastie Boys had sought $2 million.

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