AP Business NewsBrief at 12:20 a.m. EDT
(Associated Press Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) Europe's debt fix falters, rattling marketsFRANKFURT, Germany (AP) _ Europe's plan to fix its debt crisis by imposing budget cuts frayed Monday. Heavy selling rocked financial markets, uncertainty gripped two governments, and the economic outlook darkened across the continent. The German stock market suffered its worst day in six weeks. In the United States, the Dow Jones industrial average lost more than 100 points.
Apple's squeeze hits phone companies, competitorsNEW YORK (AP) _ Apple is set to report another record quarterly profit on Tuesday, continuing the relentless string of results that's made it the world's most valuable company. Those profits don't come out of thin air: A range of businesses _from the company's wireless carrier friends to its PC-making foes_ are seeing their profits melt away and flow to Apple's bottom line. Apple's success is good for the U.S. economy, and some businesses, like software developers and memory-chip makers, have benefited from the disruption Apple is causing. But its enormous gains have resulted in others' pains, sometimes in unexpected places.
Asia stocks fall amid Europe debt turmoil growsBANGKOK (AP) _ Unsettling news about Europe's debt crisis and disappointing U.S. corporate earnings weighed on Asian stock markets Tuesday. Japan's Nikkei 225 index fell 0.4 percent to 9,506.82 and South Korea's Kospi dropped 0.2 percent to 1,969.66. Still, the losses were muted compared to Europe, where political turmoil and disappointing economic data led to steep drops in stocks on Monday.
Bakken oil booms _ and so does crime on the PlainsGLASGOW, Mont. (AP) _ Drug crimes in eastern Montana have more than doubled. Assaults in Dickinson, N.D., have increased fivefold in just two years. And the once-sleepy town of Plentywood, Mont., has seen three assaults with weapons in the past few months _ a prospect previously unheard of in the tiny community tucked against the Canada border. Booming oil production has brought tens of thousands of jobs and hundreds of millions of dollars in new revenues to communities across a wide expanse of the Northern Plains. But it also has brought more crime, forcing law enforcement from the U.S. and Canada to deal with spiking offenses ranging from drug trafficking and gun crimes to prostitution.
Oil hovers near $103 amid EU economy worriesSINGAPORE (AP) _ Oil prices hovered near $103 a barrel Tuesday in Asia amid investor worries that Europe's debt crisis will undermine economic growth and crude consumption. Benchmark oil for June delivery was down 13 cents to $102.98 a barrel at midday Singapore time in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract fell 77 cents to settle at $103.11 in New York on Monday.
US stocks slide on economic tremors from EuropeNEW YORK (AP) _ A collection of worrying news out of Europe sent stocks sharply lower on Monday. The Dutch government collapsed Monday, a day after French President Nicolas Sarkozy lost the first round of that country's presidential election. A new report showed that European government debt continues to pile up despite severe budget cuts, which have led to unrest and political upheaval across the continent.
Wal-Mart faces big fines amid bribery chargesNEW YORK (AP) _ Allegations that Wal-Mart Stores Inc. covered up the findings of an internal probe that proved its Mexican subsidiary bribed officials in that country could have huge implications for the world's biggest retailer and its executives. The alleged bribery scheme was revealed by The New York Times, which reported that Wal-Mart failed to notify law enforcement after the company's investigators found evidence of millions of dollars in bribes given to Mexican officials in exchange for getting building permits faster and other favors to help it aggressively expand in the region.
Appendix removal: Huge sticker shock in studyCHICAGO (AP) _ What do hospitals charge to remove an appendix? The startling answer is that it could be the same as the price of a refrigerator _ or a house. It's a common, straightforward operation, so you might expect charges to be similar no matter where the surgery takes place. Yet a California study found huge disparities in patients' bills _ $1,500 to $180,000, with an average of $33,000.
Netflix's 1Q tops forecasts, stock still plummetsSAN FRANCISCO (AP) _ Netflix's comeback from a customer backlash accelerated during the first quarter, but the recovery wasn't impressive enough to ease more pressing concerns about the Internet video subscription service's ability to cope with tougher competition. Wall Street's worries about the challenges facing Netflix Inc. crystallized Monday with the release of the company's first-quarter results and forecast for the upcoming months.
Facebook reports lower 1Q net incomeNEW YORK (AP) _ Facebook's first-quarter net income fell 12 percent, weighed down by higher expenses even as its revenue soared, the social networking company said Monday, just a few weeks ahead of its expected initial public offering in May. Facebook Inc. said in a regulatory filing that its net income fell to $205 million in the three months that ended March 31, from $233 million a year earlier.
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