PRESS DIGEST – Wall Street Journal – Dec 28

Dec 28 (BestGrowthStock) – The following were the top stories in
The Wall Street Journal on Tuesday. Reuters has not verified
these stories and does not vouch for their accuracy.

* American shoppers expanded their year-end purchases by
the biggest margin since the boom year of 2005, but heady
challenges lie ahead for retailers.

* Multinational companies face a new British law they fear
will force them to rethink their compliance strategies and
upend their business practices.

* Pork-belly futures in Chicago are in danger of
extinction, due to lack of activity. The iconic futures
contract, a staple at CME Group’s (CME.O: ) Chicago Mercantile
Exchange since 1961, has seen its volume drop in recent years,
prompting calls for the exchange to shut down trading
altogether. Now exchange officials and the pork industry are
trying to figure out a way to save the contract from
extinction.

* Dr Pepper Snapple Group Inc (DPS.N: ) Chief Executive Larry
Young says retail soda-price increases have started to stick
after a summer of steep discounts, but consumers are still
being frugal.

* Over the past three weeks, Morgan Stanley (MS.N: ) (Read more about the money market today. ) and
Goldman Sachs Group Inc (GS.N: ) have traded places atop the
“league tables” that chart which investment banks advise on the
most merger deals for the year, and the jockeying can be
expected to continue.

* U.S. President Barack Obama’s budget proposal for fiscal
2012 will be released in mid-February, a little more than a
week after its planned release date. The administration is
scrambling to assemble what could be a pivotal document
following a six-week delay in the confirmation of the White
House’s new budget director, a senior administration official
said Monday.

* France’s government is trying to find ways to cut public
spending amid Europe’s deepening economic crisis, but a state
television channel has been spared the knife. Indeed, the
channel, Arte — continental Europe’s TV equivalent of National
Public Radio — will be getting even more money next year. Not
everyone here is happy.

* A federal judge in Vermont is reviewing a proposed
settlement of an antitrust lawsuit in which a major national
milk processor would pay $30 million to Northeastern dairy
farmers and change its milk-buying practices in the region, at
least temporarily.

* Wynn Resorts Ltd (WYNN.O: ) confirmed that its chairman,
Steve Wynn, has been granted citizenship in Monaco. He will
retain his U.S. citizenship, a company spokeswoman said.

* Japan’s industrial output rose for the first time in six
months in November and is expected to gain more in the near
future, the government said Tuesday, soothing concerns that
ongoing deflationary pressures will lead to a sharp economic
slowdown.

PRESS DIGEST – Wall Street Journal – Dec 28