Penney’s 2Q results show some signs of life
NEW YORK (AP) — The worst may be over at J.C. Penney Co.
The beleaguered department store chain on Tuesday reported its sixth straight quarter of big losses and steep revenue drops as it continued to face challenges related to a botched turnaround plan spearheaded by its ousted CEO Ron Johnson.
But investors sent Penney shares up six per cent to nearly $14 — after having pushed the stock down nearly 70 per cent in the last 18 months — in an expression of confidence that returning CEO Mike Ullman has started to stabilize the business.
Barnes & Noble 1Q loss widens; Riggio ends offer
NEW YORK (AP) — Barnes & Noble said Tuesday that its first-quarter net loss nearly doubled and the struggling bookseller’s chairman said he is abandoning his bid for the company’s retail stores. But the retailer says it plans to keep making its Nook electronic readers and will focus on offering content to its customers.
Barnes & Noble is reviewing its strategy in the wake of CEO William Lynch’s departure in June and continuing declines in Nook revenue, a unit the company has invested heavily in.
Chairman Leonard Riggio dealt the company another blow, saying he is ending a bid for the company’s bookstores.
Home Depot 2Q results top Street, ups 2013 outlook
ATLANTA (AP) — Home Depot’s second-quarter net income jumped 18 per cent, helped by an improving housing market and good response to holiday events.
The nation’s biggest home improvement retailer’s results beat Wall Street expectations and the company raised its full-year earnings and revenue expectations.
A slowly improving employment landscape and extremely low interest rates this year have created such great demand that homebuilders are having some difficulty securing land and keeping pace. That’s good news for home-improvement retailers because as home values improve customers feel more comfortable investing money in projects for their home.
Home Depot’s smaller rival Lowe’s Cos. will report results Wednesday.
Kodak approves court approval for bankruptcy plan
NEW YORK (AP) — A federal judge approved Kodak’s plan to emerge from bankruptcy protection.
Tuesday’s ruling paves the way for the photography pioneer to emerge from court oversight as a new company focused on commercial and packaging printing. The company has said it hopes to emerge from bankruptcy protection on Sept. 3.
Founded in 1880, Eastman Kodak Co. filed for Chapter 11 early last year after struggling with increasing competition, the shift from film to digital photography and growing debt levels.
The Rochester, N.Y., company has since sold off many of its businesses and patents so it can concentrate on commercial and packaging printing.
Allegiant Air targets East Coast with new routes
NEW YORK (AP) — Tiny Allegiant Air is expanding its service again, this time with a focus on the East Coast.
The Las Vegas-based airline announced Tuesday that it is adding service to 10 new airports, including two on the far edges of the New York metropolitan area. It is also adding flights to Portsmouth, N.H., about an hour north of Boston.
Those markets represent a slight departure for the leisure-focused airline, which mostly flies from small, underserved cities to sunny vacation destinations. Allegiant will now serve 99 airports across the country, two more than Southwest Airlines, the largest domestic carrier.
TiVo refreshes lineup with 6-tuner Roamio DVRs
NEW YORK (AP) — TiVo Inc. has unveiled a new generation of devices that it says will give television viewers more control over what they watch on traditional channels and over the Internet.
The new devices face tough competition from cable and satellite TV companies that are improving their own DVR offerings, as well as stand-alone devices such as Roku and Apple TV that simplify Internet streaming on big-screen TVs. Meanwhile, game consoles and smartphones now come with apps to do much of what TiVo does.
TiVo’s Roamio device, which went on sale Tuesday, marks the company’s first major update in three years. The company is counting on the notion that avid television viewers prefer one device to do it all.
Versace plans hotel in Asian gambling hub Macau
HONG KONG (AP) — Italian fashion house Versace says it has signed a deal to build a luxury hotel at a casino-resort in Macau, the world’s top gambling market.
Versace and Macau casino operator SJM Holdings Ltd. said in a joint statement Tuesday that the five-star Palazzo Versace hotel will be part of the resort SJM is building in the former Portuguese colony.
SJM, founded by billionaire Stanley Ho, received official approval in May to build a 2,000-room resort with 700 gambling tables. It will be SJM’s first resort on the Cotai Strip, modeled as Asia’s version of the Las Vegas Strip.
The companies revealed few details such as cost or completion date.
Macau is the only place in China where are casinos are legal. It earned $38 billion in casino revenue last year thanks to rising numbers of affluent mainland Chinese visitors.
India scrambles to halt rupee slide
NEW DELHI (AP) — Indians returning from abroad bring nearly 3,000 flat screen televisions into the country a day, turning airport luggage belts into revolving electronics displays. A stiff new customs duty aims to sink that popular trade as officials scramble to halt a dizzying plunge in the rupee.
The 36-per cent TV tax is the latest in a slew of measures the government has announced to steady the currency and is a sign, critics say, of its increasing desperation.
New limits were imposed on the amount of money individuals and companies can invest overseas. Higher taxes were slapped on gold imports. Interest rates on rupee deposits were raised. All to no avail.
The rupee has plumbed new lows against the dollar on a near daily basis, showing the pressure of a current account deficit that has swelled from high import costs. A dollar now buys more than 63 rupees, a decline of 8 per cent for the rupee so far this August. The Sensex stock index is down more than 10 per cent in the past month. Nearly half that fall was in the past few days.
The government is panicked because the slumping rupee threatens to worsen two important barometers of the nation’s financial standing — its budget, already in deficit because of subsidized oil imports, and the overseas trade account, also deeply in the red.
By The Associated Press=
The Dow Jones Industrial average lost 7.75, or 0.05 per cent, to close at 15,002.99. The Standard & Poor’s 500 index rose 6.29 points, or 0.4 per cent, to 1,652.35 points. The Nasdaq rose 24.5 points, or 0.7 per cent, to 3,613. 59.
U.S. benchmark oil for September delivery fell $2.14 to $104.96 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Heating oil rose 1 cent to $3.08 per gallon. Wholesale gasoline lost 1 cent to $2.93 a gallon. Natural gas fell 2 cents to $3.44 per 1,000 cubic feet.
Brent North Sea crude, which is used to price imported oil used by many U.S. refineries, rose 25 cents to $110.15 a barrel on the ICE Futures exchange in London.