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Scores die breaking down ships in Asia

May 8, 2009 4:14 am | by MICHAEL CASEY - AP Environmental Writer - Associated Press | News | Comments

SINGAPORE (AP) — When it comes to jobs that workers in rich Western countries don't want, there are few more dirty and dangerous than scrapping the world's freighters, luxury liners and oil tankers.Explosions and fires kill scores of poorly equipped workers each year in South Asia where most ships...

China vehicle sales hit monthly high of 1.15 mln

May 8, 2009 3:49 am | by ELAINE KURTENBACH - AP Business Writer - Associated Press | News | Comments

SHANGHAI (AP) — China's vehicle sales jumped 25 percent in April from the year before to a record monthly high of 1.15 million units, according to industry figures released Friday.Passenger car sales surged 37 percent over a year earlier to 831,000, outpacing U.S. sales in April of 820,000 units,...

Poland's jobless rate down to 11 percent in April

May 8, 2009 3:43 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

WARSAW, Poland (AP) — Poland's jobless rate dropped to 11 percent in April from 11.2 percent the month before, according to government statistics released Friday.Labor Minister Jolanta Fedak said some 1.72 million people in the country of 38 million were without a job at the end of April — 28,000...

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Canada adds jobs in April, analysts expected loss

May 8, 2009 3:33 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

OTTAWA (AP) — Canada unexpectedly gained 35,900 jobs in April as the unemployment rate remained at a seven-year high of 8 percent, Statistics Canada said Friday.However, all of the job gains were in the self-employed category, which is normally a sign of labor market weakness.Economists had...

Bollywood boycott dulls Indian screens

May 8, 2009 2:42 am | by ERIKA KINETZ - Associated Press Writer - Associated Press | News | Comments

MUMBAI, India (AP) — The dispute between Bollywood producers and Indian multiplexes over revenue sharing hardened this week, with no end in sight to the monthlong boycott of new releases.Indian movie fans — who spend an estimated 63 billion rupees ($1.27 billion) each year at theaters — were again...

Puma 1Q net profit falls to euro5.6 million

May 8, 2009 1:57 am | by GEORGE FREY - AP Business Writer - Associated Press | News | Comments

FRANKFURT (AP) — German sportswear company Puma AG said Friday net profit fell substantially in the first quarter as the global recession and restructuring charges hurt sales and earnings.The Herzogenaurach-based company reported a net profit of euro5.6 million ($7.5 million) in the January-March...

'Babyface' look can help black CEOs, study says

May 8, 2009 1:47 am | by JESSE WASHINGTON - AP National Writer - Associated Press | News | Comments

Black Fortune 500 CEOs with a "babyface" appearance are more likely to lead companies with higher revenues and prestige than black CEOs who look more mature, an upcoming study says.In contrast with research showing that white executives are hindered by babyface characteristics, a disarming...

EU seeking energy independence from Russia

May 8, 2009 1:47 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

PRAGUE (AP) — The European Union has signed an agreement with four gas-producing nations in a bid to reduce its energy dependence on Russia.The declaration is meant to speed up pipeline links to the EU from gas-rich nations on the Caspian Sea and beyond.It asks signatories to commit to long-term...

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Study of Gates Foundation shows global influence

May 8, 2009 1:31 am | by DONNA GORDON BLANKINSHIP - Associated Press Writer - Associated Press | News | Comments

SEATTLE (AP) — A new study of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation illustrates its global reach with spending on health issues, but notes a need for accountability on whether the money is being spent in the most effective way.The world's largest philanthropic foundation focuses its global health...

Commerzbank posts 1Q net loss $991 million

May 8, 2009 1:26 am | by GEORGE FREY - AP Business Writer - Associated Press | News | Comments

FRANKFURT (AP) — Germany's Commerzbank AG reported Friday a large first quarter loss as the bank, struggling to recover from the effects of the global financial crisis, made provisions for bad loans and investments.The Frankfurt-based bank said it lost euro861 million ($991 million) in the...

RBS posts first quarter loss of $1.29 billion

May 8, 2009 1:16 am | by ROBERT BARR - Associated Press Writer - Associated Press | News | Comments

LONDON (AP) — Royal Bank of Scotland on Friday reported a first-quarter loss of 857 million pounds ($1.29 billion) as writeoffs from the financial crisis increased despite a jump in revenues, and warned the next two years would be difficult.The loss compared with a profit of 245 million pounds a...

Beetle, fungus threaten Florida's avocado industry

May 7, 2009 11:49 pm | by SARAH LARIMER - Associated Press Writer - Associated Press | News | Comments

MIAMI (AP) — A little beetle could cause big problems for Florida's multimillion-dollar avocado industry.Scientists are tracking the redbay ambrosia beetle as it crisscrosses the southeastern United States, spreading a fungus that is killing avocado trees. The beetle and the fungus it transmits...

Japan's top chipmaker Toshiba posts record loss

May 7, 2009 11:04 pm | by MARI YAMAGUCHI - Associated Press Writer - Associated Press | News | Comments

TOKYO (AP) — Japan's top chipmaker Toshiba Corp. tumbled to a record annual loss amid sinking global demand that has forced it to cut thousands of jobs.Toshiba reported Friday a 343.6 billion yen ($3.5 billion) net loss for the fiscal year ended March, compared with a 127.4 billion yen profit in...

4 Ernst & Young employees convicted of tax charges

May 7, 2009 10:59 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

NEW YORK (AP) — A Manhattan jury has convicted four current or former Ernst & Young partners on criminal tax shelter charges.Federal prosecutors say the four defendants were found guilty Thursday of conspiracy, tax evasion and other charges related to the design, marketing and implementation of tax...

Toyota sees losses deepening this year

May 7, 2009 10:48 pm | by YURI KAGEYAMA - AP Business Writer - Associated Press | News | Comments

TOKYO (AP) — Toyota Motor Corp., battered by plunging global sales, reported its worst annual loss since its 1937 founding — and forecast even more red ink in the year ahead.The world's largest carmaker said Friday its net loss for the January-March quarter was 765.8 billion yen ($7.7 billion) —...

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