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Wednesday Afternoon Business Brief

January 25, 2012, 1:13 PM

Wednesday Afternoon Business Brief

Stock prices have turned higher after the Federal Reserve said it is unlikely to raise its key interest rate before late 2014. In its written statement, the central bank led by Ben Bernanke said record-low rates are still needed for the improving but still sluggish economy.

  • Coming off his State of the Union address, President Barack Obama says manufacturing must be the foundation for a renewed American economy. He's in Iowa embarking on a tour political battleground states.
  • German Chancellor Angela Merkel is expressing determination to solve Europe's debt crisis through greater political unity. But speaking at the World Economic Forum in Davos, she also dashed hopes of a big injection of money for the region's bailout fund.
  • Universal Orlando is continuing to invest in the theme park, after last year's highly successful launch of a Harry Potter attraction. It plans a daily interactive character parade and a nighttime light and pyrotechnics show highlighting its involvement with a century of filmmaking.
  • After posting a much better than expected quarterly earnings report, Apple has again surpassed Exxon as the most valuable U.S. company. With a gain of more than 5 percent today, Apple's market capitalization has topped that of oil giant Exxon Mobil.

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