Tuesday Evening Business Brief
May 27, 2014, 6:29 PM
- More promising signs that the economy is strengthening after its winter slowdown have pushed stocks higher. The S&P 500 index, the benchmark for most U.S. mutual funds, rose for the fourth straight day and ended at another all-time high. It added 11 points to 1,911.91. The Dow climbed 69 points to 16,675.50. And the Nasdaq composite rose 51 to 4,237.
- The Federal Trade Commission is urging Congress to tighten rules for data brokers and help consumers control their personal information. FTC Chairwoman Edith Ramirez calls the amount of information collected on consumers "quite astonishing." She says the FTC wants Congress to require more transparency from data brokers and for consumers to have more control over how their personal information is used.
- The president of the European Central Bank says he is mindful of the danger of inflation remaining too low in the 18-country eurozone, but he's not saying what action might be taken to address it. The inflation rate among countries using the euro currency has been below 1 percent since October, which makes debt reduction more difficult. The ECB's monthly policy meeting next week is widely expected to announce new measures on inflation.
- Philadelphia's two largest newspapers have been sold at auction for $88 million. Businessman Lewis Katz and philanthropist H.G. "Gerry" Lenfest are taking over The Philadelphia Inquirer, the Philadelphia Daily News and the Philly.com news website. Katz and another businessman bought it for $55 million two years ago, but feuded over how the papers should be run. Kats supports the investigative reporting favored by the current Inquirer editor. He vows to keep a focus on serious journalism, despite ad and circulation declines.
- A scientists' group says Hyundai-Kia has unseated Honda as the greenest automaker in the U.S. The Union of Concerned Scientists ranks the eight top-selling automakers based on carbon and smog-forming emissions of their fleets. The group says all eight automakers reduced pollution for the first time.
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