By Chuck Mikolajczak NEW YORK (Reuters) - U.S. stocks were little changed on Wednesday, as equities recouped much of their earlier declines amid signs of progress in diplomatic attempts to ease tensions surrounding Ukraine. U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry will meet with his Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov in London on Friday ahead of a referendum Sunday on whether the Ukraine's Crimean peninsula will join Russia or go independent. "People are just kind of reassessing, they are looking at that headline and thinking maybe it is not going to turn out to be a disaster in Russia and Ukraine," said Ken Polcari, Director of the NYSE floor division at O'Neil Securities in New York.
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U.S. fourth-quarter growth is likely to be revised higher after services industry data on Wednesday suggested a much stronger pace of consumer spending than the government had previously assumed, JPMorgan economist Daniel Silver said. The government last month slashed its gross domestic product estimate for October-December quarter to a 2.4 percent annual pace from a previously reported 3.2 percent rate. Silver, at JPMorgan in New York, said the quarterly services survey, from which government's estimates for services consumption and intellectual property products are derived, showed a much more robust pace of consumer spending in the fourth quarter than the government's estimated 2.6 percent rate.
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By Edward Krudy NEW YORK (Reuters) - The average bonus on Wall Street jumped 15 percent last year to the highest level since the 2008 financial crisis and was the third largest on record, New York State's budget watchdog said on Wednesday. The cash bonus pool swelled to $26.7 billion in 2013, pushing the average cash bonus to $164,530, a post-2008 high, according to the New York state comptroller's annual estimate. The increased payouts came as Wall Street posted a fifth consecutive year of profits after record losses during the financial crisis. "Wall Street navigated through some rough patches last year and had a profitable year in 2013.
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Pimco, home to the world's largest bond fund run by co-founder Bill Gross, upgraded its assessment on U.S. economic growth on Wednesday, saying it now expects expansion to run between 2.5 percent and 3 percent in 2014. In its global economic outlook, Pimco said its improved baseline expectation for real growth in the United States stems from "trends toward growth and spending in the consumer, corporate and public sectors." In December, Pacific Investment Management Co, better known as Pimco, had said the firm expected U.S. economic growth to run between 2.25 and 2.75 percent in 2014. "The global economy will likely experience steady, broad-based growth in 2014 thanks in no small part to the extraordinary expansion in central bank balance sheets in 2013," portfolio manager Saumil H. Parikh said in the report. A spokeswoman said Parikh's report represents the views of Pimco, which oversaw $1.91 trillion in assets under management as of December 31.
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GM has been telling the owners of the more than 1.6 million vehicles with the faulty ignition switches linked to 12 deaths that until the repairs are made only the key should be on the key ring. "We recommend that customers only utilize the key, key ring and key fob (if equipped) that came with the vehicle," GM said in the document filed with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. A GM spokesman said after the repair is completed, there is no danger of the problem reoccurring. GM disclosed how it is answering customer questions related to last month's recall in a "frequently asked questions" document filed with NHTSA.
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By Ann Saphir and Jonathan Spicer SAN FRANCISCO/ NEW YORK (Reuters) - Stanley Fischer, U.S. President Barack Obama's pick to be the Federal Reserve's next vice chair, called on Wednesday for financial stability to be an "explicit focus" of Fed policy, alongside the congressionally mandated goals of price stability and maximum employment. "The Great Recession has driven home the lesson that the Fed has not only to fulfill its dual mandate, but also to contribute its part to the maintenance of the stability of the financial system," Fischer said in written testimony released on Wednesday for a Senate confirmation hearing set for Thursday.
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By Lucia Mutikani WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The Federal Reserve is expected to start raising U.S. interest rates in the third quarter of next year as the unemployment rate falls and the economy charts a new path of stronger growth, a Reuters survey of economists showed. The U.S. central bank slashed short-term interest rates to a record low close to zero in December 2008 and committed to keep them there while it nursed the economy back to health. Thirty-two of 63 economists surveyed forecast the Fed hiking overnight rates in either the second or third quarters of 2015, while 14 saw a rate hike coming earlier and six saw it coming later. "You are looking at an unemployment rate that probably gets below 6 percent by the second half of 2015 and that's within a hair's breath of full employment," said Scott Anderson, chief economist at Bank of the West in San Francisco.
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By Sarah N. Lynch WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. regulators proposed long-awaited rules on Wednesday designed to safeguard the country's largest clearing agencies from collapsing and spreading systemic market risks. The Securities and Exchange Commission's plan primarily targets the major clearinghouses it regulates, such as the Options Clearing Corp (OCC) and units of the Depository Trust & Clearing Corp (DTCC). Clearing agencies offer important back-office functions in the marketplace, standing between trading partners to ensure money is properly transferred and serving as a vital backstop in case a brokerage defaults and cannot pay up. The proposal would impose additional regulatory responsibilities on large clearing agencies, such as stress-testing, capital requirements and certain governance rules to strengthen board independence.
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(Reuters) - An Illinois mass transit agency has sued American Airlines Group Inc , accusing the world's largest carrier of operating a "sham" fuel sales office in a smaller town to avoid paying higher taxes in Chicago. The Regional Transportation Authority, which oversees train, bus and rail service in the Chicago area, said in the lawsuit filed in Cook County Circuit Court on Tuesday that American "reports" its jet fuel sales take place in Sycamore, Illinois, "in an attempt to avoid paying millions of dollars." American Airlines, which emerged from Chapter 11 bankruptcy and merged with US Airways Group late last year, defended its practices. The lawsuit contends that while an American fuel subsidiary operates an office in Sycamore, which is more than 50 miles from Chicago O'Hare International Airport and outside the RTA's taxing jurisdiction, the actual selling, storage and delivery of jet fuel takes place within the RTA's service region near O'Hare.
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Two months before Mt. Gox filed for bankruptcy it was sued by a customer seeking the return of funds in a case that highlights some of the red flags raised in the run-up to the collapse of what was once the world's biggest bitcoin exchange. New York resident Marko Simovic filed a civil action at the Tokyo District Court on December 24, seeking to recover $105,000 he had on deposit at Mt. Gox and about $14,000 in interest, court filings show. Simovic, who described himself as a software developer who previously managed the bitcoin operations for a hedge fund, said Mt. Gox dodged repeated requests to withdraw funds from his account, which as of July 1 was credited with $935,000 in cash. Simovic could not be reached for comment.
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HONG KONG (AP) — Within an industry notorious for impoverishing shareholders and irking customers, Malaysia Airlines has stood out for its years of restructurings and losses. The company now has global recognition of a far more unfavorable kind after one of its jets disappeared four days ago with 239 people aboard.
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SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Google is betting that good things will happen to Credit Karma, an online service that provides consumers with free copies of the credit scores that define their financial reputations.
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WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama will direct the Labor Department to strengthen overtime pay protections for millions of workers, a White House official said.
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WASHINGTON (AP) — Warren Buffett's company says it has agreed to acquire a Miami-based TV station from Graham Holdings Co. in exchange for most of its shares in the company that once owned The Washington Post.
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NEW YORK (AP) — A once high-flying Goldman Sachs trader dubbed "Fabulous Fab" was ordered Wednesday to pay more than $825,000 in one of the prominent cases stemming from the mortgage meltdown that helped spark the Great Recession.
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WASHINGTON (AP) — The Group of 7 world leaders say they won't recognize results of a referendum for the Crimea region to split from Ukraine and join Russia.
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Two women died and at least 17 people were injured in an explosion that leveled two residential buildings in Manhattan's East Harlem neighborhood, a law-enforcement official said.
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Jody Schwartz is a 1990 graduate of Brandeis University. She worked with Random House in their sales and marketing department until joining Free Country in 1994. Free Country offers a wide range of fashionable yet functional everyday outerwear, constructed from high-performance fabrics with rugged charm, smart styling and classic authenticity for all seasons. The high-quality, affordably priced apparel that includes jackets, pants, fleeces, swimwear and accessories, are available at numerous major retailers, such as Kohl's, JC Penney, Bass Pro Shops and additional specialty stores. ...
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WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) -- Consolidated Edison tweeted from its corporate account that it was responding to a report of a gas odor in the area just before the explosion in Harlem occurred. At least one ...
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When applying for jobs, we all know the obvious moves you should absolutely avoid. Whether it's typos in your resume, showing up late for an interview or dressing inappropriately, there are things a professional collegiette just never does. However, there are a lot of things you may not have given a second thought to that could be deterring employers. Her Campus spoke with the experts to find out employers' biggest pet peeves that could be hurting your chances of landing the job. 1. Talking about money before you get the job Of course, money is important. If a position doesn't
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While the Lean LaunchPad class has been adopted by Universities and the National Science Foundation, the question we get is, "Can students in K-12 handle an experiential entrepreneurship class?" Hawken School has now given us an answer. Their seniors just completed the school's first-ever 3-credit semester program in evidence-based entrepreneurship. Students are fully immersed in real-world learning during the 12-week Entrepreneurial Studies course. Here's what Doris Korda Associate Head of School and Tim Desmond, Assistant Director of Entrepreneurial Studies did, and how they did it. ...
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LightSquared said Dish was interested in an acquisition as early as 2012.
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The top three tax scams in the IRS "Dirty Dozen Tax Scams for 2014" are Identity Theft, Telephone Scams, and Phishing. Each of these relate to stealing a taxpayer's identity information, personal information, and financial account information through various means including dumpster diving and pretending to be an IRS employee through threatening e-mails or telephone calls. Prevention: IRS employees do not call and threaten to take your license, put you in jail, or deport you for not making a tax payment. They also do not send e-mails requesting payment information via your financial account or credit card.
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We've come full circle. For most of our existence people sold things to others through one-on-one relationships. It's only since World War II that mass media has enabled the few to sell to the many with any effect utilizing one-way communication. Now we're going back to two-way conversations, enabled by new technologies - social media. Go beyond communicating your brand messages to customers, beyond two-way conversations between you and those customers, all the way to building a community by enabling customers to have conversations with each other. ...