MID-DAY UPDATE: U.S. economy creates 244,000 jobs in April
Here are today’s top headlines from the Marketplace Morning Report and from around the web.
The American economy created 244,000 jobs in April. Thousands of Americans went back to work in April, as private companies added a slew of jobs to the economy. A good sign going forward indeed. But the nation’s unemployment rate was up slightly for the month, back to 9 percent. Here is our coverage.
The price of oil is well below $100 a barrel. A mark it had been above for weeks. Gold prices are off from their recent record highs. Even the price of cotton is down.
Goldman Sachs said on Friday it saw a further downside risk for oil prices in coming days, but added the prices could return to or surpass recent highs by next year as supplies may reach critically tight levels.
Bailed out insurance giant AIG says its first quarter profit fell 85 percent. AIG has become more dependent on its property and casualty insurance business, which has suffered because of all the recent natural disasters around the world.
Kraft Foods said its profit fell by more than half. The company said it may have to raise some prices this year.
Domino’s Pizza said costs for meats and cheeses didn’t go up as much as expected. And sales were up more than 8 percent with help from its new pizza recipe.
Japan’s prime minister has told a utility to halt three reactors in central Japan because of safety concerns in the event of a major earthquake.
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is warning that shortages of food and spiraling prices threaten widespread destabilization. She is urging immediate action to prevent a repeat of the 2007 and 2008 crisis that led to riots in dozens of countries around the developing world.
Eleven counties in Mississippi have been declared disaster areas in anticipation of major flooding along the Mississippi River. Meanwhile in Missouri, where the Army Corps of Engineers is blowing holes in levees to protect towns, the cost of flood damage to farmland could exceed $100 million.
The family that owns Walmart is making the biggest cash donation ever made to an American art museum. The Walton Family Foundation is giving $800 million to Alice Walton’s new American art museum, which is set to open this November in Bentonville, Ark.
To Seattle where the tables have turned on the companies that make the yellow pages. Under a new city ordinance, the publishers of those annoying and enormous phone books that pile up on the porch can be fined up to $125 if they deliver books to people who have asked to be taken off the list. One city council member told the Seattle Times that 2 million yellow page books get recycled every year at a cost of $350,000.
Here’s your chance to own a piece of Hollywood history. The house from the movie “Home Alone” is for sale. The family that’s selling the northside Chicago home has lived there for more than 20 years, including during the six-month film shoot while Macauly Caulkin ran off bungling burglars in the house. The asking price is $2.4 million. Makeshift burglar repellent system sold separately.
You can read the rest of today’s stories from the Marketplace Morning Report here.
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