Stocks climb higher; Dow at another record
NEW YORK - Stocks closed slightly higher, enough to send the Dow Jones industrial average to another all-time high.
A day of back-and-forth trading left U.S. indexes with modest gains as first-quarter earnings reports for U.S. companies began to wind down.
The Dow rose 32.37 to end at 16,583.34 Friday. That's 3 higher than its last record reached April 30. The S&P 500 index rose 2.85 to 1,878.48. The Nasdaq ended up 20.37 at 4,071.87.
Netflix raises prices $1 for its new subscribers
SAN FRANCISCO - Netflix is raising its Internet video prices by $1 per month for new customers and giving its current U.S. subscribers a two-year break from the higher rates.
The changes mean anyone signing up for Netflix's video subscription service will pay $9 per month in the U.S. The old price of $8 per month will continue until May 2016 for Netflix's existing 36 million U.S. subscribers.
Netflix says it needs more money to pay for more original programming, like its Emmy award-winning political drama "House of Cards."
Report: Apple on verge of buying Beats maker
SAN FRANCISCO - Apple is orchestrating a $3.2 billion acquisition of Beats Electronics, the headphone maker and music streaming distributor founded by hip-hop star Dr. Dre and record producer Jimmy Iovine, according to a published report.
Citing people familiar with the negotiations, The Financial Times says Apple could announce the deal as early as next week. The newspaper warned the talks could still collapse.
Both Apple and Beats Electronics declined to comment.
Gap's outlook is strong after April sales gains
NEW YORK - Retailer Gap said its sales climbed in April and it forecast first-quarter results that were better than Wall Street had expected. The company says its Old Navy chain did particularly well.
Gap is to report its full first-quarter results on May 22.
Kashi settles litigation over its 'All Natural' tag
NEW YORK - Kellogg says it will no longer use the "All Natural" or "Nothing Artificial" labels on certain Kashi products as part of an agreement to settle a class-action lawsuit.
The company will also pay $5 million to settle the suit.
Kellogg Co. said it stood by its advertising and labeling practices but that it would change its formulas or labels nationally by the end of the year. The suit had accused Kashi of misleading people by stamping the phrase "All Natural" or "Nothing Artificial" on products that contained a variety of synthetic and artificial ingredients.
Ford recalls more than 692,000 SUVs, hybrids
DETROIT - Ford is recalling more than 692,000 Escape small SUVs and C-Max gas-electric hybrids in North America to fix two safety problems.
The recalls cover vehicles from the 2013 and 2014 model years. Most of the Escapes have both problems.
The first case covers 692,500 Escape and C-Max vehicles. A software glitch can stop the side curtain airbags from inflating in certain types of rollover crashes. Dealers will reprogram the control computer for free.
The second case covers about 692,700 Escapes. Exterior door handles can bind and stop the door from latching properly. This could allow doors to open while the SUVs are in motion.Dealers will inspect the handles and reposition them if needed.
US Postal Service had $1.9B loss for quarter
WASHINGTON - The U.S. Postal Service reported a $1.9 billion loss for the first three months of this year and pleaded again Friday for reforms to its troubled financial system.
The agency said the loss for the quarter ended March 31 matched the $1.9 billion in red ink in the same period last year and marked the 20th time of the last 22 quarters that it posted a loss. It came despite continued cost-cutting efforts.
The Postal Service is an independent agency that receives no tax dollars for its day-to-day operations but is subject to congressional control.
McDonald's is testing seasoned french fries
NEW YORK - McDonald's says it plans to start testing seasoned french fries at select U.S. locations starting Friday.
The hamburger chain says the test of its "Shakin' Flavor Fries" will take place in northern California and St. Louis. Customers will be able to choose garlic Parmesan, spicy Buffalo or zesty ranch flavors.