Business briefs

Published: Wednesday, January 29, 2003 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Tuesday, January 28, 2003 at 11:44 p.m.

Wall Street gets first lift in about two weeks

  • NEW YORK - Bargain hunters took charge of Wall Street Tuesday, halting the market's protracted sell-off and giving stocks their first respectable advance in more than two weeks.
    The Dow closed up 99.28, or 1.2 percent, at 8,088.84, its biggest advance in more than two weeks, or since Jan. 9, when it rose 180.87 The Nasdaq composite index rose 16.91, or 1.3 percent, to 1,342.18. The Standard & Poor's 500 index advanced 11.06, or 1.3 percent, to 858.54. Still, the market's gains failed to entirely wipe out Monday's declines.

    Delta frequent flyers file suit against airline

  • NEW YORK - A group of customers has filed a lawsuit against Delta Air Lines Inc., claiming it's too difficult to use frequent-flyer miles.
    The Delta frequent flyers contend that the airline's program, SkyMiles, started out as a "miles-flown" loyalty program, but has evolved into a larger marketing tool where Delta awards the majority of its miles to credit-card users and buyers of promotional items. As a result, Delta has adopted numerous restrictions, including blackout periods, capacity controls and expiration dates "that make it ever more difficult for plaintiffs . . . to obtain fair value for the miles credited to their accounts," according to the suit, filed Monday in Manhattan federal court.

    Charges in Sunbeam scandal to be settled

  • BOCA RATON - Two former Sunbeam Corp. executives and a former Arthur Andersen partner agreed to settle civil charges brought against them by the Securities and Exchange Commission for their roles in a massive accounting scandal that helped push the company into bankruptcy. The deal announced Monday marks the end of civil litigation by the SEC against those it held responsible for a scheme during 1996 and 1997, during the tenure of former chairman "Chain Saw" Al Dunlap that masked the company's financial problems.

    New York Times Co. reports earnings up

  • NEW YORK - The New York Times Co., helped by an improving advertising climate, reported a 45 percent earnings increase in the fourth quarter, beating Wall Street projections. The company, which owns The New York Times, The Boston Globe and 16 other newspapers, including The Gainesville Sun, as well as radio, TV and Internet holdings, posted profits of $107.5 million, or 69 cents per share, for the three months ended Dec. 31 versus $74.08 million, or 48 cents per share, in the year-ago period. Revenue rose to $840.2 million from $780.6 million a year earlier.

    Counterclaim filed in Internet music suit

  • NEW YORK - The owners of the Kazaa file-sharing network are trying to defend a copyright-infringement lawsuit by alleging that the entertainment industry promotes piracy by failing to work with them to create a legal alternative. In court papers filed in Los Angeles, Sharman Networks Ltd. accused several movie studios and recording labels of antitrust violations.
    "The plaintiffs have failed to reasonably act to discourage infringing conduct, and the plaintiffs thereby promote the very infringing conduct about which they complain," Sharman said Monday.
    - Compiled from The Associated Press
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