High oil prices are cutting into sales of pick-up trucks and SUVs, prompting Ford Motor Co. to cut production of those models and project that the manufacturer will not make profit goals for 2009. “The automaker … didn't rule out layoffs and plant closures,” reports Business Week.
Barnes and Noble reported a first-quarter decrease in same-store sales of 1.5 percent, yet its online business was up 7.2 percent year-on-year from first-quarter 2007. The bookstore chain is said to be mulling a buyout of competitor Borders. Silicon Alley Insider writes that Barnes and Noble’s numbers “looked pretty much the way you'd expect a book retail chain's quarter to look these days: Thoroughly underwhelming.”
Forex expert Grace Cheng writes that the dollar “is likely to stay suppressed, but the knowledge that the Fed is going to keep rates on hold could possibly limit the dollar’s fall, though not enough to halt it.”
Todd Davis, founder of identity protection service Lifelock, is being sued by customers in West Virginia, Maryland and New Jersey on the accusation that “his service didn’t work as promised and he knew it wouldn't, because the service had failed even him.” He posted his Social Security number in his ads, daring people to steal his identity. Attorney David Paris told the Associated Press that he found 20 attempts to use Davis’s identity, “though some of the applications may have been rejected because data in them didn't match what the Social Security Administration had on file.”
“The world's premier energy monitor is preparing a sharp downward revision of its oil-supply forecast, a shift that reflects deepening pessimism over whether oil companies can keep abreast of booming demand,” reports The Wall Street Journal. The International Energy Agency is in the middle of its first attempt to assess the condition of the world’s top 400 oil fields.
Microsoft’s “cashback search service,” which allows users to get rebates for any purchases they make through Live.com “seems like an admission by Microsoft that it has given up on trying to win customers' hearts and minds and is unabashedly appealing to customers' wallets,” writes Wired.
Time Warner and its cable television arm, Time Warner Cable, said Wednesday their boards have approved their legal separation. Time Warner Cable is expected to pay a $10.9 billion one-time dividend to shareholders.
On today’s broadcast of the “Ellen” show, GOP presidential contender Ariz. Sen. John McCain said, “I just believe in the unique status of marriage between man and woman. … We just have a disagreement. And I, along with many, many others, wish you every happiness.” Host Ellen DeGeneres asked, “So you'll walk me down the aisle? Is that what you're saying?” The candidate responded, “Touché.”
McCain is set to host Fla. Gov. Charlie Christ, former Mass. Gov. and presidential candidate Mitt Romney, and La. Gov. Bobby Jindal at his ranch in Arizona, prompting speculation that McCain is getting set to pick running mates.
The viral e-mails that began as an assault on Democratic presidential contender Barack Obama’s faith “have spiraled into a broader assault that questions his patriotism and citizenship and generally portrays him as a threat to mainstream, white America,” reports Politico.
Hillary Clinton wants to stay in the race, “but the viability of her candidacy may depend on the outcome of a meeting of Democratic Party officials to determine whether and how to count the delegates from Michigan and Florida,” reports ABC.
Energy Secretary Samuel Bodman rebuffed a Congressional move last week to halt oil shipments to the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, “saying oil is needed to respond to future supply emergencies and not to influence prices.”
Texas’ Third Court of Appeals ruled today that the state’s child welfare body had “legally and factually insufficient" grounds to take away more than 400 children during the April raid of the Yearn for Zion polygamist compound. The Texas Department of Family and Protective Services maintains that underage girls were subjected to statutory rape and boys were taught to become “future perpetrators.”
U.S. Army Gen. David Petraeus faces senators Thursday as they consider his nomination to run U.S. Central Command, the headquarters responsible for “an unstable swath of the world that includes the Middle East, Central Asia and East Africa,” Reuters reports.
The Federal Aviation Administration on Wednesday banned pilots and air traffic controllers from using the antismoking drug Chantix, after a medical safety group said that the medication has contributed to auto accidents and other mishaps that posed risks to both users and others.
President George W. Bush has announced that the United States will soon be allowed to send cell phones to Cuba, which he hopes will push the communist regime to increase freedom of expression for Cuban citizens.
“The military cannot automatically discharge people because they're gay, a federal appeals court ruled Wednesday in the case of a decorated flight nurse who sued the Air Force over her dismissal,” bringing new scrutiny to the "don't ask, don't tell" military policy, reports the AP.
Gen. David Petraeus called military action against Iran “a last resort” and said that global political pressure on the country is “affecting the Iranian energy market and may convince Tehran to focus on longer-term, less malign interests."
Gold nanoparticles have proved successful in resurrecting a failed HIV drug, according to scientists. By hacking off the ends of the drug and sticking the resulting molecules onto gold nanoparticles, scientists stopped HIV from infecting lab-cultured white blood cells.