Top Headlines - part 61
ECONOMY August 24, 2011 | 9:15 AM
- ECB buys government bonds to ease eurozone debt crisis
- ECB total spending of government bonds now €110.5 billion
- Obama and Merkel meet to discuss financial crisis
The European Central Bank has purchased €14.3 billion, or $20.5 billion, in government bonds last week in an attempt to soften the blow from the debt crisis that lingers over Italy and Spain. The ECB has yet to release information regarding which government bonds it had purchased.
A week earlier, the ECB bought €22 billion in bonds for Italy and Spain. The ECB has purchased roughly €110.5 billion in bonds since the launching of the Securities Markets Program in May 2010.Read more »
WORLD August 23, 2011 | 5:50 PM
- Scientists produce first complete map of Antarctica ice flow using Satellite Radar Interferometry; vital in tracking rising sea levels
- Thwaites and Pine Island glaciers undergoing quickest changes in West Antarctica
- Map sheds light on an east-west running ridge that splits the continent
NASA-funded researchers say they have produced the first complete map which details how ice flows across Antarctica.
Published online by leading magazineScience, the map was constructed using detailed satellite images that show the great glaciers and all the ice streams surrounding them.Read more »
BUSINESS August 23, 2011 | 11:38 AM
- Apple value temporarily overtakes Exxon Mobil, which has held the top spot since 2005
- Four of the six most valuable companies in the world are IT firms
- 70% of Apple's stock is owned by institutional investors and mutual funds
Apple made history earlier this month when it temporarily overtook Exxon Mobil to become the most valuable company in the world. Although a last-minute rise in the Exxon stock price saw the oil giant recover its title before the end of the day, analysts see the battle between the two as evidence of powerful changes that are taking place in the American economy as tech companies continue to grow and grow.
Four of the six most valuable companies in the world are IT firms: Apple, Microsoft, IBM and Google. The number five slot is occupied by Chevron, another oil company, but Cisco Systems, Intel and Oracle are also among the top 20.Read more »
WORLD August 23, 2011 | 11:08 AM
- Move to IP-based communications to increase range of methods available for contacting 911
- Improved provision of automatic information will help pinpoint callers' location
- New services could be up-and-running within five to ten years
The US Federal Communications Commission Chairman Julius Genachowski has unveiled a plan to upgrade the communications technology that runs the country’s 911 emergency response service.
The move towards IP-based communications will see the public being offered a far broader range of methods for contacting the service – including text messaging.Read more »
BUSINESS August 23, 2011 | 10:09 AM
- Skype agrees to acquisition of mobile messaging company GroupMe
- Deal stands to benefit Microsoft, who awaits regulatory approval for Skype takeover
- Smartphone rivals aim to knock Blackberry Messenger 6 off its perch on top of mobile messaging market
Skype has concluded a deal to acquire mobile messaging start-up GroupMe, the company announced on its website Sunday. The online communications giant already provides text, voice and video services, and the acquisition of GroupMe will give it a major boost in the mobile group messaging services sector.
Sources close to the deal said the buyout price was around $80 million and that the papers would be signed Monday.Read more »
ECONOMY August 22, 2011 | 3:51 PM
- Forecasts predict inflation rate of 2.6% for 2011
- ECB slowly purchases European bonds from secondary markets
- ECB's Stark warns against common eurobond, low interest rates
The European Central Bank has announced that forecasters are now expecting higher rates of inflation at roughly 2.6% for the year and 2% for next year, up from the 2.5% for 2011 and 1.9% for 2012 predicted three months ago.
Economic growth figures have also been upgraded from 2.5% to 2.6% for the year. The ECB has also adjusted next year's growth figures, which have been downgraded from 1.7% to 1.6%.Read more »
BUSINESS August 22, 2011 | 12:01 PM
- Cloud-based appointment system lets customers book from anywhere
- Smart-technology virtual mirrors from Cisco set to boost cross selling of clothing and accessory
- Customer interest, newness improves John Lewis sales figures
UK department retailer John Lewis signed TOA Technologies to run its new cloud-based appointment booking system, which allows customers to book appointments from anywhere.
John Lewis will begin the system's use in all 28 of its department stores in November to obtain a nationwide view of customer appointments. The system is part of a larger project that will provide the ability for flexible customer solutions and unified scheduling options to meet the retailer's needs, an important advantage for a brick-and-mortar company seeking to compete in today's tech-heavy world.Read more »
BUSINESS August 22, 2011 | 10:16 AM
- Microsoft all but confirms Windows 8 operating system will include an app store
- New OS to come with touch-optimized user interface similar to Windows Phone smartphones
- Windows 8 billed as its biggest OS revamp since Windows 95
The new Windows 8 operating system will sport an app store, according to a post on Microsoft’s developers blog site.
While not officially announcing the app store, Windows president Steven Sinofsky more or less confirmed the speculation that had been doing the rounds when he listed different development groups working on the Windows 8 platform.Read more »
BUSINESS August 19, 2011 | 6:05 PM
- Hewlett Packard terminates TouchPad tablet PC and WebOS operating system operations
- HP announces it will end PC business to concentrate on software and business solutions
- iPad 2 sales continue to break records worldwide
Hewlett-Packard is pulling the plug on its TouchPad tablet PC less than two months after its release, the company reported. The world’s largest computer maker will end all WebOS hardware operations, which also includes HP smartphones.
Alongside headlines of the TouchPad’s demise, HP also confirmed it will put an end to its PC business in order to concentrate on software, servers and other business equipment. The company announced plans for its $11.7 billion acquisition of UK software firm Autonomy in a move that recalls the business overhaul that IMB pulled off six years ago.Read more »
WORLD August 19, 2011 | 5:54 PM
- Chemically engineered form of ecstasy could be effective against some types of cancer
- Ecstasy already known to kill certain cancer cells, though required doses dangerously high
- Modified ecstasy attracted to fatty deposits in cancer cell membranes, weakens cell walls and allows drug to destroy it
A modified form of the drug ecstasy could be helpful in fighting certain types of cancer, according to researchers at the University of Birmingham.
In 2006, researchers at the university discovered that ecstasy, an amphetamine derivative chemically known as MDMA, was capable of destroying some forms of cancer including leukemia, lymphoma and myeloma. In addition to the recreational drug, anti-depressants like Prozac and some weight-loss drugs were also found to have the potential to impede the spread of cancer.Read more »