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AP Business NewsBrief at 2:02 p.m. EST
[January 22, 2013]

AP Business NewsBrief at 2:02 p.m. EST

(Associated Press Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) Expiring credits, deductions extended by CongressWASHINGTON (AP) _ Taxpayers preparing to file their 2012 returns can breathe a collective sigh of relief. The alternative minimum tax or AMT has been patched _ permanently _ and several tax credits and deductions that technically expired at the end of 2011 were extended as part of the fiscal cliff legislation that Congress passed and President Barack Obama signed into law in January.

CEOs head to Davos more pessimistic about 2013DAVOS, Switzerland (AP) _ The snow has fallen and the hotels are ready, but the CEOs gathering in Davos for the World Economic Forum are facing strong worries about public mistrust, disappearing jobs and a shaky global recovery. New survey results Tuesday show a steady drop in the number of CEOs worldwide who are "very confident" their companies will grow this year. The number fell to 36 percent from 40 percent last year and from 48 percent in 2011.

Reports: Microsoft may invest in Dell buyoutNEW YORK (AP) _ Microsoft has joined the negotiations to buy struggling computer maker Dell, according to media reports. Both CNBC and The Wall Street Journal reported that Microsoft Corp. may invest some of the money needed to take Dell Inc. private after 25 years as a publicly traded company. Tuesday's stories cited unidentified people familiar with the negotiations.

US home sales dip in Dec.; 2012 best in 5 yearsWASHINGTON (AP) _ U.S. sales of previously occupied homes dipped in December from November, in part because of a limited supply of available homes. But for all of 2012, sales rose to their highest level in five years. The National Association of Realtors said Tuesday that sales declined in December to an annual rate of 4.94 million. That's down from a rate of 4.99 million in November, which was revised lower but was still the highest in three years.

US stocks mixed as DuPont, J&J report earningsU.S. stocks wavered between small gains and losses Tuesday as big companies reported their fourth-quarter financial results. The Dow Jones industrial average rose 19 points to 13,669 as of 12:10 p.m. Eastern time. The Standard & Poor's 500 index rose a fraction to 1,486. The Nasdaq composite average dropped seven to 3,127.

Survey: Global movie spending up 2.1 pct in 2012LOS ANGELES (AP) _ Global spending on movies rose 2.1 percent last year to $62.4 billion, helped by increased theater attendance in China and growth in emerging markets as spending on discs continued to fall. That's according to research firm IHS, which released the results Monday.

White House: Obama wouldn't block GOP debt billWASHINGTON (AP) _ The White House says a House Republican bill to extend the government's borrowing authority for three months still faces concerns in Congress but press secretary Jay Carney says that if it reaches President Barack Obama's desk, "he would not stand in the way of the bill becoming law." The White House in the past has voiced reservations about a short-term debt ceiling extension. But on Tuesday, Carney said the three-month plan by House GOP leaders is significant because it "de-escalates the sense of conflict." Delta Air Lines clings to $7M profit in 4QMINNEAPOLIS (AP) _ Delta Air Lines Inc. said Tuesday that its fourth-quarter profit was nearly wiped out by Superstorm Sandy and special charges. The storm forced airlines to cancel more than 20,000 flights. The impact was bigger at Delta because Sandy also slowed its operations at its new oil refinery near Philadelphia.

Verizon posts record 4Q loss on pension adjustmentNEW YORK (AP) _ Verizon strengthened its position as the top dog of the wireless industry in its latest quarter by raking in new subscribers and selling millions of iPhones, but also posted a record loss. The loss of $4.23 billion, or $1.48 per share, for the fourth quarter was mainly due to adjustments to the value of its pension funds and obligations, an annual routine for Verizon Communications Inc.

News Summary: J&J 4Q profit jumps on lower chargesBETTER NUMBERS: Johnson & Johnson's fourth-quarter net income jumped, mainly because of big charges a year ago. It made $2.57 billion, or 91 cents per share, on revenue of $17.56 billion. It expects 2013 earnings per share of $5.35 to $5.45. ONGOING TROUBLES: Some consumer health products included in J&J's 30-plus recalls since 2009 still won't be back in stores this year, and consumer sales dipped again.

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