PRESS DIGEST – Wall Street Journal – Aug 23

Aug 23 (BestGrowthStock) – The following were the top stories in
The Wall Street Journal on Monday. Reuters has not verified
these stories and does not vouch for their accuracy.

* Cities and states across the nation are selling and
leasing everything from airports to zoos — a fire sale that
could help plug budget holes now but worsen their financial
woes over the long run.

* The weak economy, volatile markets, regulatory upheaval
and changes in how traders are paid are starting to trigger job
cuts on Wall Street that could reverse a recent rebound in
employment levels.

* Interest rates continue to tumble for the U.S. Treasury,
companies and home buyers alike. But for a large portion of 381
million U.S. credit-card accounts, borrowing rates have been
moving only one way: up. And average rates are likely to climb
further in the near future.

* Stockholders are set to gain greater clout to elect
corporate directors on Wednesday when the Securities and
Exchange Commission is expected to finalize a “proxy access”
rule.

* Obama administration officials are considering
overhauling 26 troubled federal technology projects valued at
as much as $30 billion as part of a broader effort by White
House budget officials to cut spending.

* Mortgage fraud, which helped inflate the housing bubble
and left banks and government housing agencies with an
avalanche of bad debt, is up again. The crime rose last year
after declining for two years from its 2006 peak.

* Hon Hai Precision Industry Co Ltd (2317.TW: ), whose
Chinese factories produce many of the world’s most popular
electronics products, including iPads and iPhones is making a
push to sell gadgets in China’s own fast-growing consumer
market.

* Non-financial companies in the Standard & Poor’s
500-stock index are sitting on a record $2 trillion, according
to FactSet. While no one is calling for a new mergers boom,
many are looking for companies to increasingly spread some of
that money in other ways — namely through dividends and
buybacks.

* China’s rising labor costs represent an opportunity for
other developing countries, as producers scour the globe for
cheaper places to make things. But China’s wage increases are
already rippling to some of those new frontiers and have
contributed to worker unrest recently in countries such as
Cambodia and Bangladesh.

* International Lease Finance Corp, the airplane-leasing
arm of American International Group Inc (AIG.N: ), repaid a $3.9
billion government loan ahead of schedule and now expects to
fund itself without support from its bailed-out parent company.

* A group of Mexican investors has bought a controlling
stake in Mexicana airlines in a bid to save the debt-ridden
company, the consortium announced Saturday.

* “The Expendables,” a movie starring a host of familiar
action stars including Sylvester Stallone, topped the weekend
box office for the second straight week.

PRESS DIGEST – Wall Street Journal – Aug 23