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Friday Evening Business Brief

January 4, 2013, 5:14 PM

Friday Evening Business Brief

It's been a good day on Wall Street. The S&P 500 is closing at its highest level in five years as the stock market extends a New Year's rally. The S&P closed at 1,466, the highest since Dec. 31, 2007, before the financial crisis. The Dow Jones industrial average ended up 43 points at 13,435. The Nasdaq rose just one point to end at 3,101.

  • The price of oil has finished the day higher after the Energy Department reported a much bigger drop in the nation's crude supplies than analysts expected. Benchmark crude for February delivery closed up 17 cents at $93.09 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. There were also some encouraging economic reports today that raised hopes for higher oil demand.
  • One of the longest and most bitter labor disputes in Atlantic City, N.J. is over. Resorts Casino Hotel has signed a contract with the main casino workers' union, ending a more than two-year dispute that included picketing on the Boardwalk and a pressure campaign by Local 54 of the Unite-HERE union to have other unions cancel conventions at the hotel.
  • Jason Kilar is stepping down as the chief executive of Hulu, the online video service owned by the parents of ABC, NBC and Fox. While he didn't state a reason, the video site has been losing money despite posting nearly $700 million in revenue last year. Kilar has at times clashed with Hulu's owners over company strategy.
  • Spaceport America is urging legislators to limit potential lawsuits from wealthy outer space tourists who take off from New Mexico, saying such a bill is crucial to the future of the project. At issue is liability for passengers who pay to take spaceflights like those planned by Virgin Galactic for $200,000 a head.

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