Business Highlights

AP News
Posted: Sep 17, 2012 5:32 PM
Business Highlights


Apple: iPhone 5 orders topped 2M in 24 hours

CUPERTINO, Calif. (AP) — Orders for the new iPhone 5 topped 2 million in 24 hours, more than double the amount of its predecessor over the same period.

Since Apple started taking iPhone 5 orders on its website at 3 a.m. EDT on Friday, buyers who have a two-year service agreement with AT&T, Sprint or Verizon Wireless have been able to order the phone for $199 (16 gigabyte model), $299 (32 GB) or $399 (64 GB model).

Apple said Monday that while most orders will be delivered on Friday, demand for the iPhone 5 exceeds the initial supply. As a result, some of the devices are scheduled for delivery in October.


China files trade case against Washington

BEIJING (AP) — China filed a World Trade Organization case Monday challenging U.S. anti-dumping measures on billions of dollars of kitchen appliances, paper and other goods, adding to worsening trade strains as global demand weakens.

Beijing's move came shortly before the Obama administration filed its own WTO case accusing China of improperly subsidizing exports of automobiles and auto parts.

China and the U.S. have clashed over complaints about market barriers and subsidies for goods including autos, solar panels, tires, steel and chicken. Political pressures on both sides are worsening as demand for their goods cools, raising the threat of job losses in export industries.


More than 100 Occupy Wall Street arrests in NYC

NEW YORK (AP) — Occupy Wall Street protesters marked the movement's anniversary on Monday by clogging intersections in the city's financial district, marching to the beat of drums that were a familiar refrain last year.

Protesters roamed around Manhattan's financial district all morning in groups of a few dozen each, from one intersection to another and back again, chanting loudly about the ills of Wall Street. In all there were a few hundred protesters scattered throughout the city. More than 100 of them were arrested by midafternoon, mostly on disorderly conduct charges.

The day's events lacked the heft of Occupy protests last year, when protesters gathered by the thousands. But Occupiers were upbeat as they spread out in their old stomping grounds, giddy at the prospect of being together again. They brushed off any suggestions that the movement had petered out.


Shell: Won't hit oil in Alaska this year

AMSTERDAM (AP) — Royal Dutch Shell PLC said Monday it will no longer look for oil off the coast of Alaska this year after suffering several setbacks.

The company, which has so far spent around $4.5 billion to obtain licenses and prepare for exploratory drilling in the Chukchi and Beaufort Seas, said it is scaling back ambitions until next summer after one of its containment systems failed during a test. Earlier the company delayed drilling due to ice floes.

The company said that in the time remaining this season it plans to drill shallow "top holes" for wells that may be further pursued in coming years.


Peregrine CEO pleads guilty to cheating investors

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (AP) — Peregrine Financial Group CEO Russ Wasendorf Sr. pleaded guilty Monday to carrying out a 20-year fraud that duped investors and transformed his image from a highly regarded businessman to a notorious corporate criminal.

During a court hearing in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, Wasendorf admitted to the $200 million fraud that he first confessed in a note found on him after an unsuccessful suicide attempt in July. The 64-year-old pleaded guilty to charges of mail fraud, embezzling customer funds and making false statements to two regulatory agencies.

Wearing an orange jail-issue jumpsuit, Wasendorf repeatedly answered "yes, your honor" as he admitted guilt to each element of the four felony counts.


Lowe's withdraws buyout bid for Canada's Rona

MOORESVILLE, N.C. (AP) — Home-improvement company Lowe's is withdrawing its buyout bid for Rona Inc., saying that the Canadian home-improvement company's board does not seem to want to engage in talks.

Lowe's Cos. says it has repeatedly attempted to engage Rona's board to conduct due diligence and move forward with a friendly, negotiated deal.

In July, Lowe's offered 14.50 Canadian dollars ($14.92) per share for Rona, but the company rejected the offer. Based on Rona's 127.4 million outstanding shares, the value of the proposed deal is $1.9 billion.


Long flight delays soar in July

NEW YORK (AP) — The number of long delays in July involving planes stuck on airport tarmacs was more than the previous eight months combined, the government said Monday.

Twenty eight planes were stuck on the ground at U.S. airports for more than three hours that month, the height of the summer travel season. Eighteen of those were operated by U.S. carriers.

Sixteen of the U.S. flights were in or out of Chicago O'Hare on July 13, a day of severe thunderstorms. All of the longest delays were on regional carriers that operate smaller jets for larger airlines.


Waste Connections buying R360 for about $1.3 billion

THE WOODLANDS, Texas (AP) — Solid waste services company Waste Connections is buying R360 Environmental Solutions Inc. for about $1.3 billion in cash.

Waste Connections said Monday that the transaction is a natural extension of its exploration and production disposal services.

R360 provides non-hazardous oilfield waste treatment, recovery and disposal services in areas including the oil-rich Permian, Bakken and Eagle Ford Basins. The privately held company runs 26 facilities in Louisiana, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Texas and Wyoming.


Government expands Hyundai Elantra air bag probe

DETROIT (AP) — U.S. safety regulators have added two model years to an investigation of an air bag problem with Hyundai Elantras that cut a car owner's ear in half.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says it will look into 2011 and 2013 Elantras in addition to those from 2012. The agency also upgraded the probe to an engineering analysis, a step closer to a recall. No cars have been recalled yet.

The agency started investigating 123,000 of the 2012 Elantra model in May. Monday NHTSA said only Korean-built Elantras have the part that caused the problem. About 75,000 were sold in the U.S.


Gap names Rebekka Bay head of global design

NEW YORK (AP) — Gap Inc. has tapped Rebekka Bay as creative director and executive vice president for global design, effective Oct. 1.

Bay, who developed and launched the COS brand at the Swedish fast-fashion retail chain H&M, will be responsible for products sold online and in the nearly 1,600 stores in 42 countries in which Gap's namesake brand operates, according to a statement issued Monday.

She fills the spot vacated by Patrick Robinson who was ousted in May 2011. He had been design director for the Gap chain.


By The Associated Press(equals)

The Dow Jones industrial average fell 40.27 points, or 0.3 percent, to 13,553.10. The Standard & Poor's 500 fell 4.58 to 1,461.19. The Nasdaq composite lost 5.28 to 3,178.67.

Benchmark crude fell $2.38, or 2.4 percent, to finish at $96.62 on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Brent crude, used to price international varieties of oil, fell $2.87, or 2.5 percent, to $113.79 on the ICE Futures exchange in London.

Wholesale gasoline dropped 7.23 cents to $2.9433.per gallon. Natural gas fell 7.8 cents to $2.8650 per 1,000 cubic feet. Heating oil slipped 7.61 cents to $3.1634 per gallon.