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Wednesday, September 15, 2010 ∫ THE ALPENA NEWS ∫ 3A

Stocks & markets DOW JONES AVERAGE

Industrial

Close Chg. 10526.49 -17.64

Gold Silver

1268.55 +22.95 20.47 +0.43

PRECIOUS METALS

OF LOCAL INTEREST

Name Volume Close Chg. AT&T 20,314,372 27.93 UNCH Microsoft CP 87,055,992 25.03 -0.08 Ford 39,706,984 11.98 -0.01 Pepsico 4,137,648 65.98 -0.27 Flagstar 3,786,623 2.12 -0.55 Wal-Mart 11,149,971 52.66 +0.45 Oracle 31,199,348 25.38 +0.27 Merck 12,809,826 36.52 +0.30 Dell 24,475,062 12.38 +0.07 DTE Energy 1,509,051 48.25 +0.41 First Federal 100 2.75 +0.11 Disney 7,732,086 34.05 -0.22 Louisiana Pacific 1,188,672 7.60 -0.13 USG Corp 605,070 13.25 -0.20 GE 48,019,936 16.16 -0.09 Intel 64,047,180 18.74 +0.18 Home Depot 14,061,897 29.97 -0.02 Verizon 11,994,042 30.91 +0.01 Closing stock prices appear couirtsy of Edward Jones. Alpena representatives: Charles R. Ingle, 421 S. Ripley, Marc Ferguson, 319 W. Chisholm, Bryan Strong, 1065 N. Bagley St., #13, Alpena and William Dempsey, 145 S. Third, Rogers City. Accuracy and completeness of report is not guaranteed. NEW YORK (AP) — A September rally faltered on the stock market Tuesday as worries returned about Europe’s economy. The Dow Jones industrial average and the Standard & Poor’s 500 index both closed with slight losses, breaking a four-day winning streak. Stocks are still up strongly this September, a historically weak month for the market. Stocks had edged higher for much of the day following positive reports on U.S. retail sales and business inventories, but retreated in the final 10 minutes of trading as investors’ enthusiasm waned. Disappointing news from overseas hung over the market all day. European markets struggled to end barely higher after reports that German investor confidence fell sharply in September and industrial production unexpectedly stagnated during July in the countries that use the euro. Stocks in Tokyo also fell after the yen touched another 15-year high against the dollar, which is bad news for Japanese exporters. In other signs that investors remain cautious, gold climbed to another record and Treasury prices rose, sending interest rates lower. The Dow fell 17.64, or 0.2 percent, to close at 10,526.49 and the S&P 500 lost 0.8 point, or 0.1 percent, to end at 1,121.10. The Nasdaq edged up 4.06, or 0.2 percent, at 2,289.77. Signs of modest growth have been enough to get traders to put more September 14, 2010 money into stocks in September and -17.64 &QY ,QPGU shake off malaise KPFWUVTKCNU 10,526.49 about the economy that dogged the +4.06 market for most of 0CUFCS August. EQORQUKVG 2,289.77 However analysts caution that the -0.80 5VCPFCTF  gains have come 2QQT¶U  1,121.10 amid very light volume, a sign that -3.05 4WUUGNN many investors  649.23 aren’t participating in the market and 0;5' FKCT[ may still be skeptiAdvanced: 1,379 cal about how well the economy is Declined: 1,593 doing. Unchanged: 122 The losses Tuesday for the Dow and Volume: 3.89 b S&P 500 were only 0CUFCS FKCT[ the second so far this month. SeptemAdvanced: 1,089 ber has historically Declined: 1,472 been a weak month for stocks but this Unchanged: 138 year has been an exVolume: 2.1 b ception. Even after Tuesday’s losses SOURCE: SunGard AP the Dow is still up 5.1 percent in September, the S&P 500 6.8 percent. The Commerce Department said Tuesday that retail sales rose in August Nat their fastest pace in five months and slightly beat forecasts. The modestly higher growth is in line with economic reports over the past two weeks indicating that the economy continues to expand, though at a sluggish pace. Retailers including Macy’s Inc. and J.C. Penney Co. rose after the retail sales report. Electronics retailer Best Buy Co. also jumped after the company reported income that easily topped forecasts and raised its full-year outlook.

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Making sense of Investing

Bryan Strong

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Visa: Finance reform affects 16 pct of revenue

NEW YORK (AP) — The part of financial reform that requires limiting the fees charged to merchants when customers use debit cards will likely effect just a small portion of Visa Inc. revenue, the payment processor’s finance chief said Tuesday. CFO Byron Pollitt said the provision in the financial regulatory overhaul law known as the Durbin Amendment appears to mainly target debit transactions wherein consumers use personal identification numbers, or PIN, to verify their purchases. “Our view on the legislation is that this is much more aimed at PIN debit than signature debit,” he said. Signature debit involves the customer signing a receipt for the transaction, as if using a credit card. While Visa has the largest share of debit in the U.S., PIN-based transactions are a small portion of the San Francisco company’s overall business, Pollitt said. There were 405 million debit cards bearing Visa logos in circulation in the U.S. at the end of March, the latest date for which that figure has been disclosed.

Speaking at the Barclay’s Capital Financial Services Conference, Pollitt said U.S.-based PIN debit transactions represent about 16 percent of overall revenue. That estimate boosted Visa shares, sending the stock up as much as 3.8 percent. Shares then settled back a bit, posting a gain of $1.64, or 2.5 percent, to $67.12. Visa stock has stumbled since the Durbin Amendment made it into the financial regulatory overhaul. Shares reached a 52-week high of $97.19 on April 27, and closed Monday trading down 31 percent from that peak as investors worried about how much the reforms could hurt the company. The company expects to post revenue between $7.67 billion to $7.95 billion for 2010, while Wall Street expects, on average, $8.02 billion. At 16 percent of total revenue, PIN debit would account for roughly $1.07 billion to $1.23 billion of fiscal 2010 projected revenue. The law would impose limits on, but not eliminate, this revenue stream. And because the Federal Reserve needs time to

write the rules under the new law, Visa doesn’t expect any impact until the June-to-September quarter of 2011. Visa has contacted regulators and explained the mechanics of debit transaction processing, Pollitt said, and is working on its response to the rules when they are released. The Fed has so far been “silent” on what exactly will be required. “We are developing strategies to compete aggressively across a range of

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chairman Bart Stupak, DMich., said they were concerned that DeCoster did not inform them of the positive results when the panel asked him to provide documents in August. One of the questions the panel asked DeCoster was to show dates and results of all positive findings after microbiological testing. “When you testify before the committee, we ask that you come prepared to explain why your facilities tested potentially positive for Salmonella Enteritidis contamination on so many occasions, what steps you took to address the contamination identified in these test results, and whether you shared these results with FDA or other federal or state food safety officials,” Waxman and Stupak wrote. According to the committee, the company received as many as 67 positive results this year alone. That includes one positive result for Salmonella Enteritidis on July 26, less than three weeks before the company recalled the eggs. The recall eventually grew to a half-million eggs and included another company, Hillandale Farms, that also has ties to DeCoster. The letter does not say how the committee obtained the results or from whom.

WASHINGTON — In a win for President Barack Obama and his political allies, Senate Democrats on Tuesday won a crucial vote to clear the way for a bill to create a $30 billion government fund to help open up lending for credit-starved small businesses. Democrats cracked a GOP filibuster of the bill with the help of two Republicans: Sens. George Voinovich of Ohio and George LeMieux of Florida. The 61-37 tally sets the stage for a final vote later this week to return the measure to the House, which is likely to approve it for Obama’s signature. The bill is probably the last piece of Democrats’ ambitious jobs agenda that would become law before midterm elections, which will determine whether Democrats keep their majorities in the House and Senate. Democrats started the year with ambitious plans for a series of bills designed to boost the economy and job creation but have relatively little to show for it. The nationwide unemployment rate ticked up to 9.6 percent last month. Obama welcomed the vote. “This is a bill that would cut taxes and help provide

loans to millions of small business owners who create most of the new jobs in this country,” Obama said in a statement. “Small businesses across the country have been waiting for Washington to act on this bill for far too long.”

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Investigators say egg company knew of salmonella

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Iowa egg farm at the center of a massive salmonella outbreak received hundreds of positive results for salmonella in the two years before its eggs sickened more than 1,500 people, congressional investigators said Tuesday. In a letter to the company’s owner, the House Enand Commerce ergy Committee said its investigators had obtained records showing Wright County Egg received 426 positive results for salmonella between 2008 and 2010. The company recalled 380 million eggs in August after its products were linked to hundreds of illnesses. The committee said the positive results found over the last two years included 73 samples that were potentially positive for Salmonella Enteritidis, the strain responsible for the recent outbreak. The owner of Wright County Egg, Austin “Jack” DeCoster, was scheduled to testify before the panel next week. A company spokeswoman did not immediately respond to a request for comment. In the letter to DeCoster, committee chairman Henry Waxman, D-Calif., and investigations subcommittee

rulemaking,” Pollitt said. Shares of competitor MasterCard Inc. also gained Tuesday, adding $5.60, or 2.9 percent, to $198.63 in afternoon trading after earlier bouncing up 3.2 percent. Purchase, N.Y.-based MasterCard has a smaller share of the U.S. debit business, with about 119 million cards in circulation as of June 30. The stock has seen a similar pullback in recent months, losing 28 percent since reaching a high of $269.88 April 26.

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