Top Headlines - part 74

Galileo Satellites Launched as European GPS Takes Off

Galileo Satellites Launched as European GPS Takes Off

WORLD

  • Soyuz rockets take two Galileo satellites into orbit
  • New GPS system to generate up to $124 million for European economies
  • $6.2 billion in public funds already spent with a further $9.6 billion required

The European GPS program Galileo has successfully launched its first two satellites from the European Space Station in French Guiana. The global navigation system is scheduled to become operational in 2014 and will play a major part in generating as much as $124 million for European economies over the next 20 years.

The satellites were launched on Russian Soyuz rockets to an altitude of 23,000 kilometers, with another two set for launch in 2012.

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Green Light for Nissan’s Electric Car

Green Light for Nissan’s Electric Car

BUSINESS

  • Nissan sets its sights on top spot in green car market at 1.5 million units
  • Nissan’s plug-in hybrid to cut CO2 emissions 20% by 2016
  • Electric Leaf car sales exceed 16,500 since December 2010

Nissan Motor Co. intends on being the world’s leading green-car manufacturer, implementing a plan to deliver 1.5 million zero-emissions vehicles in conjunction with French carmaker Renault SA, which has an almost 44% share in Nissan.

Nissan plans to bring out a plug-in hybrid in 2016 and cut carbon dioxide emissions 20% on 2005 emissions. The Japanese car manufacturer is planning on boosting fuel efficiency by 35% in the same period. The company is also seeking to meet demand from developing countries such as India, Russia and Brazil.

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Bank of America Reports Over $6 Billion Gain

Bank of America Reports Over $6 Billion Gain

FINANCE

  • Bank of America gains gain 56 cents per share in third quarter
  • JPMorgan Chase & Co report $2.3 trillion assets in third quarter
  • Bank of America to shed 30,000 jobs to cut expenses

Bank of America earned more than $6 billion in the third fiscal quarter of 2011 due to accounting gains and the sale of its share of a Chinese bank. Profits from other banking activities - including investment banking, real estate and credit card businesses - meanwhile declined.

In the third quarter of 2010, Bank of America saw its profits fall close to $7.5 billion, representing 77 cents per share. In comparison, the third quarter of 2011 has seen the bank gain 56 cents per share. However, the bank’s assets worth has declined to just over $2.2 trillion in the quarter, seeing competitor JPMorgan Chase & Co. take the lead with assets worth close to $2.3 trillion.

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Solyndra Hired Lobbyist With Cash All But Gone

Solyndra Hired Lobbyist With Cash All But Gone

BUSINESS

  • Solar company hired lobbyist one month before bankruptcy
  • Glover Park hired to lobby over $535 million US loan guarantee
  • Company spent $1.3 million on lobbying since 2009

Folded solar panel company Solyndra LLC hired a lobbying group just weeks before going into bankruptcy, according to documents filed on Thursday.

Public disclosure reports, a legal requirement for lobbying in the United States, indicate that the Glover Park Group LLC did around $20,000 of lobbying for the solar panel maker, signing on just one month before the company filed for bankruptcy on September 6.

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Nokia Not Going Global For Windows Phone Launch

Nokia Not Going Global For Windows Phone Launch

BUSINESS

  • Nokia Windows Phone release set for “select countries” before end 2011
  • Company mindful not to undercut Symbian market share
  • “Bunch of new devices” to be unveiled at Nokia World

Nokia will release its first Windows Phone-powered handset before the end of the year but only to a handful of countries. The partnering of the world’s largest mobile phone maker and Microsoft, the world’s biggest software company, has been much anticipated, but the Finnish company decided to forego an up-scale global launch.

Nokia CEO Stephen Elop said in a statement that adopting Microsoft’s smartphone operating system represented a significant change of direction, which required all strategic decisions to be thoroughly planned.

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US Airlines Jack Up Prices For Holiday Season

US Airlines Jack Up Prices For Holiday Season

BUSINESS

  • Delta first to raise airfares; all major airlines follow suit
  • Increase of $4 to $10 round trip
  • Average ticket price has risen from $58 to $70 in 2011

Airlines across the United States are increasing airfares as travelers look to make plans for the holiday season.

Delta Air Lines was the first to up its prices this past Tuesday, announcing a jump of $4 to $10 on return tickets to most domestic destinations. United Airlines followed suit, with all other major carriers having signed on by early Wednesday.

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US, UK and Other Countries Bolstering Cyber Security Defenses

US, UK and Other Countries Bolstering Cyber Security Defenses

WORLD

  • US Cyber Command deciding on legal framework for “active defense” taken in cyberspace
  • Britain and other countries also hiring cyber experts for their militaries
  • Researchers warn of risk from new Stuxnet-like worm

The United States is in the process of defining legal framework that would guide any offensive action the country may take in cyberspace, according to a statement by a senior military official.

Air Force General Robert Kehler, who is in charge of the US Cyber Command, said discussions were still “ongoing” with regard to how to protect Defense Department networks and what options could be made available to policymakers if ever the order was given to take offensive action.

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Energy Update: New Wind Power Projects In The US

Energy Update: New Wind Power Projects In The US

ECONOMY

  • Poseidon Atlantic wind project to create 5,000 long-term jobs
  • Duke Energy in agreement with MHI, Siemens for wind turbines in Texas
  • Vestas delivers 56 turbines for Michigan wind project, creates shadow prevention system

An global energy partnership will build a facility of ten test pads for offshore wind turbines in Virginia, creating more than 5,000 jobs in construction, logistics, manufacturing, maintenance and operations activities over the long-term. Poseidon Atlantic LLC, a joint-venture between Dutch-based Ecofys and Maryland-based Real NewEnergy, will begin site development late next year in Northampton County.

Proponents of the facility believe that tapping into the wind energy market could stimulate economic development projects throughout the area and increase port activity, allowing the region to gain recognition as an offshore energy supply hub. The facility should also lead to the creation of research, manufacturing and assembly facilities for further development of offshore wind activity. Supporters of the project include the Virginia Port Authority and current Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell.

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Oracle Buys Endeca, Beefs Up Data Management Strategy

Oracle Buys Endeca, Beefs Up Data Management Strategy

BUSINESS

  • Deal expected to be finalized by end 2011
  • Buyout a response to HP acquisition of Autonomy
  • Oracle Social Network unveiled

Oracle intends to buy Endeca Technologies in an effort to boost its unstructured data management services. The hardware and software systems specialist agreed to acquire Endeca, a privately held data analyzing firm that helps businesses organize unstructured information from text-based data sources such as emails, by the end of the year. No financial details were given.

Endeca’s MDEX Engine technology, along with its Latitude analytics program and InFront customer experience management application, will allow Oracle to deliver a specifically tailored and relevant service to clients in need of structuring various information sources.

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Beats Forecast; Profit Still Down

Beats Forecast; Profit Still Down

FINANCE

  • US market sales down, but demand oversees still high
  • Pharmaceuticals still company’s highest-performing category
  • Customer health care division hurt by product recalls

Johnson & Johnson preformed better than analysts had predicted, but profits in the United States were down for the third quarter. Predictions showed that Johnson & Johnson would earn $1.21 per share, yet the company hit $1.24 per share.

Overseas revenue rose by 16.4% while only rising 6.8% in the US. The revenue increase overseas is a bit misleading, however, appearing so strong because of the weak US dollar. "Results were in line,” Atlantic Equities analyst Richard Purkiss told Reuters, “but not the sort of quality that people would have wanted."

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