AP Business NewsBrief at 9:11 a.m. EST
(Associated Press Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) Markets rise as Alcoa sees stronger demandLONDON (AP) _ World stock markets rose Wednesday after the fourth-quarter earnings season got off to a positive start in the U.S. with aluminum giant Alcoa forecasting higher demand for 2013. Demand for aluminum has been hurt by the weak global economy, but Alcoa predicted a 7 percent increase in demand this year, slightly better than the 6 percent increase in 2012. Because Alcoa supplies so many key industries, investors study its results for clues about the health and direction of the overall economy.
AIG board weighs suing US over bailoutNEW YORK (AP) _ AIG is considering Wednesday whether the company should join a lawsuit against the government that spent $182 billion to save it from collapse. American International Group Inc. said its board of directors will weigh whether to take part in a shareholder lawsuit against the U.S. over the government's $182 billion bailout of the New York-based insurer.
Chinese buyer says solar firm MiaSole will expandBEIJING (AP) _ The Chinese company that bought MiaSole, a California producer of thin-film solar panels, says it can make the emerging technology successful where others have suffered huge losses. Hanergy Group's strong finances will help MiaSole invest in research and ride out a downturn in the global solar market, while its links to customers in China and abroad will help build sales, chairman Li Hejun said Wednesday. Hanergy says it is China's biggest privately owned renewable energy company, with interests in hydro, wind and solar power.
Gadget Watch: Electronic fork nags you on eatingLAS VEGAS (AP) _ If you've always wanted a fork that spies on your eating habits, you're in luck: A company has developed a utensil that records when you lift it to the mouth. The electronic fork is one of the gadgets getting attention this week at the International CES in Las Vegas, an annual showcase of the latest TVs, computers and other consumer-electronic devices.
Review: Aereo makes it tempting to cut cable TVNEW YORK (AP) _ Broadcast networks make many of their shows available on the Internet, but you usually have to wait at least a day after an episode airs on television. A subscription service called Aereo breaks those shackles and makes network programs available right away. That sounds too good to be true, and in a sense it is. First, it works only in New York City for now, though Aereo said Tuesday that it will expand to 22 more U.S. cities this spring. Its channel selection is limited to 29 over-the-air channels and Bloomberg TV. It doesn't include the other cable networks I frequently watch.
Futures rise as earnings season begins in the USNEW YORK (AP) _ Stock futures are rising after a pair of U.S. companies opened the earnings season with a surprisingly strong start. Dow Jones industrial futures are up 13 points to 13,280. The broader S&P futures have added 0.80 points to 1,435.10. Nasdaq futures are up 0.25 points to 2,714.25.
MGM China gets official OK for 2nd Macau casinoHONG KONG (AP) _ The Chinese arm of U.S. casino company MGM Resorts International won official approval Wednesday for its new Macau casino-resort, putting it a step closer to catching up with rivals in the world's most lucrative gambling market. Notice of MGM China's plan to build a $2.5 billion resort in the Cotai district was published Wednesday in Macau's official government gazette.
UN: At least 52 million domestic workers worldwideGENEVA (AP) _ At least 52.6 million people worldwide are employed as domestic workers, most of them women without adequate legal protection, the U.N.'s labor agency said Wednesday in its first global snapshot of the often invisible workforce that cares for other people's families and households. The research by the U.N.'s International Labor Organization found that 83 percent of all the domestic workers were women, many of them vulnerable to exploitation and abuse because of their lack of knowledge of local languages and laws or because they are often paid a flat weekly or monthly fee that is not based on how many hours they work.
Dish Network makes $5.15B bid for ClearwireNEW YORK (AP) _ Satellite TV provider Dish Network is offering to buy wireless network operator Clearwire _ which agreed to sell itself to Sprint in December _ for $3.30 per share, or $5.15 billion. Clearwire Corp. said it will discuss the unsolicited offer with Dish. However Sprint, which owns 51 percent of Clearwire, said it would have to sign off on Dish's offer and that it does not intend to do so.
Business leaders warn UK PM against leaving EULONDON (AP) _ Top U.K. executives warned Prime Minister David Cameron on Wednesday that he could damage Britain's economy by inadvertently taking the country out of the European Union. In a letter published in the Financial Times, Virgin Group's Richard Branson, London Stock Exchange head Chris Gibson-Smith, WPP chief executive Martin Sorrell and seven other business leaders challenged Cameron's plan to renegotiate the U.K.'s membership terms of the 27-country EU and put the matter to a referendum.
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