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News In Brief

MID-DAY UPDATE: SC sides with former Enron CEO, Mortgages hit lowest level

Melissa Kaplan Jun 24, 2010

The Mid-Day Update is a five-day-a-week podcast from the Marketplace Morning Report co-hosted by Bill Radke and Steve Chiotakis that wraps up the morning news in a fun little package. Listen here every day at 10 a.m. PT or download it to your iPod by subscribing to the Morning Report Podcast:

From the Marketplace world headquarters in Los Angeles, this is Bill Radke.

The Supreme Court this morning sided with former Enron CEO Jeffrey Skilling. The court said the fraud law known as the “honest services” law — executives can’t deprive companies of their honest services — cannot be used to hold Skilling responsible for the Enron collapse. The ruling could also affect the case against ex-HealthSouth CEO Richard Scrushy and ex-Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich.

The government-owned mortgage company Fannie Mae wants to prevent homeowners from walking away from their mortgages when they could afford to make the payments. It’s called a strategic default, and homeowners do it because their home is worth less than they owe the bank. Fannie will start “locking out” these borrowers from getting new mortgages for seven years and maybe even take them to court.

Viacom says it will appeal yesterday’s ruling in its billion-dollar copyright case against Google. Viacom claims YouTube (which Google owns) intentionally lets users upload videos from Viacom programs like “The Daily Show” and “South Park.” Yesterday, a federal judge ruled Google is following the law by removing illegal materials as soon as it’s notified about them.

The iPhone 4 hit stores today. Need anyone say more?

And finally: Do you remember the Good Luck Trolls? The homely little dolls with the wild hairdos? I should’ve hung onto the ones I had a kid — they might be about to appreciate in value. DreamWorks Animation says it’s turning the dolls into a movie franchise. Troll is the new Shrek.

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