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Eaton Vance 2nd-quarter profit falls 52 percent, 1st Ld-Writethru, APFN

May 20, 2009 9:40 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

BOSTON (AP) — Investment manager Eaton Vance Corp. on Wednesday said its fiscal second-quarter profit fell 52 percent as market declines continued to chip away at the value of the assets it manages, pushing down revenue for its advisory services.For the three months ended April 30, Eaton Vance...

Fitch Affirms Westamerica Bancorporation's Ratings; Outlook Stable Business Editors

May 20, 2009 9:40 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

NEW YORK-- (BUSINESS WIRE) — May 20, 2009-- Fitch Ratings has affirmed the ratings of Westamerica Bancorporation (WABC) and its banking subsidiary Westamerica Bank. The Rating Outlook remains Stable.The affirmation reflects the company's continued consistently strong earnings performance,...

Xcel Energy to pay higher dividend July 20, APFN

May 20, 2009 9:40 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Xcel Energy Inc. said Wednesday the company raised its quarterly dividend by three-quarters of a penny, to 24.5 cents per share from 23.75 cents per share.The Minneapolis-based utility said its second-quarter dividend for common stock would be payable July 20 for shareholders of...

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HL:The Canadian Press Business News Budget for Wednesday, May 20 2009@

May 20, 2009 9:40 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

BUSINESS EDITORS:@ Here are Canadian Press Business budget lines as of 10 p.m. ET. Plans may change as circumstances warrant.To contact Canadian Press Business by email, send messages to business(at)thecanadianpress.com.In addition to the following, a story slugged BC-Economy has moved General (G)...

Sides wait as Culver, courts decide franchise fee, 1st Ld-Writethru, IA

May 20, 2009 9:40 am | by MICHAEL J. CRUMB - Associated Press Writer - Associated Press | News | Comments

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — A court ruling and decision by Gov. Chet Culver could make the difference in a debate over millions of dollars in utility franchise fees.At issue is a battle over fees charged by the city of Des Moines for natural gas and electrical customers, but the matter could soon...

State Farm settles Indiana hail damage claims, IN

May 20, 2009 9:39 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Indiana officials say State Farm has agreed to pay the state $275,000 and review thousands of claims to settle complaints over its response to an April 2006 hailstorm.To date, 425 State Farm customers have complained to the Indiana Department of Insurance about the insurer's...

Flying in comfort _ or not

May 20, 2009 9:39 am | by HARRY R. WEBER - AP Airlines Writer - Associated Press | News | Comments

ATLANTA (AP) — Fares, fees and destinations aren't the only things that vary by airline.The width of your seat, the amount of legroom and the entertainment options available can make the time, well, fly by — or make a long flight feel a lot longer.Legroom is important to many fliers. Seat pitch —...

Senate confirms former Idaho AG for Indian Affairs, US

May 20, 2009 9:33 am | by MATTHEW DALY - Associated Press Writer - Associated Press | News | Comments

WASHINGTON (AP) — An American Indian who served as Idaho attorney general is the new head of the Bureau of Indian Affairs.The Senate this week confirmed Larry EchoHawk, a law professor at Brigham Young University and a member of the Pawnee tribe, as Assistant Interior Secretary for Indian Affairs....

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INSIDE WASHINGTON: Hired hands for sensitive tasks

May 20, 2009 9:33 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

EDITOR'S NOTE — An occasional look at how Washington works behind the scenes.By RICHARD LARDNERAssociated Press WriterWASHINGTON (AP) — Stung by an internal audit that found troops were issued body armor that failed critical ballistic testing, Army officials canned the private laboratories they'd...

Germany to Google: Erase raw street-level images

May 20, 2009 9:33 am | by MELISSA EDDY - Associated Press Writer - Associated Press | News | Comments

BERLIN (AP) — A data protection official for Germany said Wednesday that Google had yet to meet a key request that photos gathered for its panoramic mapping service be erased after they are sent to the United States for processing.Johannes Caspar, the head of the Hamburg regional office for data...

Western Digital to sell facility to Hitachi, APFN

May 20, 2009 9:33 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

LAKE FOREST, Calif. (AP) — Hard drive maker Western Digital Corp. said Wednesday it agreed to sell a Malaysia manufacturing facility to a unit of Japan's Hitachi Ltd.Financial terms were not disclosed. Western Digital's employees at the facility will become employees of the buyer.The factory makes...

HL:Optimism returns about economic prospects as steep fall slows@

May 20, 2009 9:32 am | by Julian Beltrame@Associated Press | News | Comments

OTTAWA — The hair-raising plunge in the world and Canadian economies this winter is showing signs of levelling off as new evidence emerged Wednesday pointing to improving conditions.Economic growth is till months away, say economists, but with each "less bad" indicator that is posted, fear of...

Colo considers more oversight of 4-state generator, APFN

May 20, 2009 9:32 am | by JUDITH KOHLER - Associated Press Writer - Associated Press | News | Comments

DENVER (AP) — A power struggle is brewing as state regulators consider increasing oversight of Colorado's second-largest electricity provider to help the state move toward a clean-energy future.Regulators are taking comments on proposals that range from continuing their hands-off approach to...

Cornell Cos. lowers fiscal 2009 outlook, APFN

May 20, 2009 9:32 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

HOUSTON (AP) — Shares of Cornell Cos. slipped on Wednesday, after the correctional facility company lowered its fiscal 2009 profit outlook mostly below Wall Street expectations, expecting a facility to remain empty for the year.Shares slipped $2.57, or 13.6 percent, to $16.32 in afternoon...

7 in NY charged in Craigslist prostitution ring

May 20, 2009 9:32 am | by MARCUS FRANKLIN - Associated Press Writer - Associated Press | News | Comments

NEW YORK (AP) — Seven New Yorkers were indicted on charges of running a 24-hour prostitution ring on Craigslist as the Web site's CEO struck back to keep South Carolina's attorney general from pursuing criminal charges against the company.Five of the seven New York residents were arrested Wednesday...

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