Daimler earnings rebound strongly on new model sales PDF  | Print |  E-mail
Written by DAVID McHUGH, AP Business Writer   
Wednesday, 30 April 2014 06:32

FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) — Automaker Daimler AG said Wednesday that net profit almost doubled in the first quarter, as new Mercedes S-Class and E-Class models fueled sales growth.

The company gave an upbeat outlook for this year and predicted stronger demand for cars in the world's developed countries — including recovering Western Europe.

Net profit rose to 1.086 billion euros ($1.498 billion) from 564 million euros in last year's quarter. Revenue increased 13 percent to 29.5 billion euros. The net profit figure was short of the 1.173 billion euros foreseen by analysts surveyed by financial information provider FactSet, and Daimler shares fell 2.2 percent at 66.35 euros.

The company credited its efforts to update its model line and continue growth in unit sales in China and the United States. The new version of the luxury S-Class more than doubled sales for the brand's flagship model, which brings fat profit margins, and the company's range of smaller cars saw sales growth as well.

Apple versus Samsung case goes to California jury PDF  | Print |  E-mail
Written by Associated Press   
Wednesday, 30 April 2014 06:14

SAN JOSE, Calif. (AP) — After listening to a month's worth of testimony from expert witnesses hired by Apple and Samsung as well as executives from each company, a Silicon Valley jury of four men and four women were tasked with sorting out the latest legal dispute over technology between the world's two largest smartphone makers.

Apple is demanding Samsung pay it $2.2 billion after accusing the South Korean company of infringing five software patents related to smartphones. Samsung denies the claims and counters that Apple owes it a little more than $6 million for infringing two of its patents.

The jury began deliberating late Tuesday and left at 4:30 p.m. PDT without reaching a verdict. The jurors are scheduled to resume deliberations Wednesday morning in San Jose.

A lawyer for Apple on Tuesday accused Samsung of copying key features of its iPhone and iPad products and demanded $2.2 billion in damages.

An attorney for Samsung denied the allegations and argued that its Google-developed software differs from Apple's operating system.

ING agrees to sell $1.8B stock in insurance arm PDF  | Print |  E-mail
Written by Associated Press   
Wednesday, 30 April 2014 06:31

AMSTERDAM (AP) — ING Groep NV, the Dutch bank and insurance company, has struck a deal to sell $1.8 billion (1.28 billion euros) worth of shares in its insurance arm to Asian investors later this year.

The European Commission has instructed ING to spin off its remaining insurance operations in compensation for needing state support during the financial crisis of 2008. The date of the initial public offering has not been set.

In Wednesday's deal, RRJ Capital, Temasek and SeaTown Holdings agreed to purchase shares at 3 percent below whatever IPO price is eventually set.

ING benefits from guaranteed support for the IPO, while the Asian investors benefit from the discount.

The business, which is to be branded NN Group, had a book value of 14.3 billion euros at the end of 2013.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

N.Y. fund manager pleads guilty in $100M Ponzi case PDF  | Print |  E-mail
Written by FRANK ELTMAN, Associated Press   
Tuesday, 29 April 2014 15:45

CENTRAL ISLIP, N.Y. (AP) — A New York investment fund manager has admitted stealing nearly $100 million of investors' money in a Ponzi scheme that helped fund his interest in a Hamptons resort.

Brian Callahan, of Old Westbury, pleaded guilty Tuesday in U.S. District Court in Central Islip to securities fraud and wire fraud. He could face up to 20 years in prison on each count when he is sentenced on Aug. 8.

Federal prosecutors indicted the 44-year-old Callahan and his brother-in-law, Adam J. Manson, in August.

Callahan was accused of raising more than $118 million from at least 40 investors between 2006 and 2012. Despite assuring the investors the money would be invested in mutual funds, hedge funds and other securities, Callahan "siphoned off" about $96 million, prosecutors said.

Among the victims of the scheme were the Montauk, N.Y., volunteer fire department and a Maryland investor, who reported losing $11 million. Prosecutors said Callahan fraudulently diverted $600,000 in fire department's funds to the Panoramic View.

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