Business Highlights


Delta resumes some service after extended global outage

LONDON (AP) — Delta Air Lines struggled to resume normal operations and clear backlogs of stranded passengers Monday after a power outage knocked out its computer systems worldwide.

By early afternoon, Delta said it had cancelled 451 flights. Tracking service FlightStats Inc. counted 2,000 delayed flights — about one third of the airline’s entire schedule.

Delta representatives said the airline was investigating the cause of the meltdown. They declined to describe whether the airline’s information-technology system had enough built-in redundancies to recover quickly from a hiccup like a power outage.


Wal-Mart buying online retailer newcomer

NEW YORK (AP) — Wal-Mart is buying fast-growing online retailer for $3 billion in cash plus $300 million in stock, scooping up a newcomer that launched a year ago with the intention of challenging online leader Amazon.

The deal announced Monday shows Wal-Mart is trying to compete more aggressively and effectively as it has seen its online business growth slow, even with big investments in distribution centres and expanding services. In June, it announced it was forming a partnership with in China to bolster its presence in that market.


US stock indexes close slightly lower; oil rises

A mostly listless day of trading left U.S. stock indexes little changed Monday, hovering just below the record highs they set late last week.

Drug company and consumer-focused stocks weighed on the market, while energy companies surged, getting a lift from a pickup in crude oil prices.

The slight pullback came as investors took advantage of the milestones reached Friday by the Standard & Poor’s 500 index and Nasdaq composite to pocket some gains. Strong U.S. jobs data left traders feeling more confident in the economy heading into this week.


Hulu dropping free video as it prepares cable TV alternative

NEW YORK (AP) — Hulu is dropping the free TV episodes that it was initially known for as it works on an online television service to rival cable TV.

Free episodes — typically the most recent four or five episodes from a show’s current season — will be gone from the site within a few weeks. Instead, Hulu is making free episodes available through Yahoo.

While Hulu started as a free site, supported by advertising, free video has become increasingly more difficult to find as Hulu tries to lure viewers into a subscription — $8 a month for a plan with ads, and $12 without.


Major resort operator buying largest North American ski area

DENVER (AP) — Vail Resorts Inc. announced Monday that it was purchasing Whistler Blackcomb Holdings Inc. for $1.06 billion, adding to its aggressive expansion.

The deal brings together the largest resort operator in North America and the continent’s biggest ski area.

It also adds to Vail Resorts’ growing portfolio. Two years ago, Vail Resorts bought Utah’s Park City Mountain Resort for $182.5 million and merged it with a neighbouring resort. It operates nine mountain resorts and two ski areas in the U.S. and Australia.


Some states reach $100M settlement with Barclays Bank

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — Barclays Bank has agreed to pay $100 million to 43 states and the District of Columbia to settle allegations it improperly set key interest rates almost a decade ago, affecting payments on investments.

Monday’s settlement includes $93.5 million in restitution and costs of the investigation led by the New York and Connecticut attorneys general.

Authorities said that during the global financial crisis from 2007 to 2009 the British bank lowered rates to avoid the appearance that Barclays was in financial trouble. They also said that from 2005 to 2009 Barclays traders requested rates to benefit their trading positions.


Reports: Egypt has proposed 18-month reform program to IMF

CAIRO (AP) — Three Egyptian newspapers said Monday that Cairo was proposing to IMF delegates an 18-month reform program in return for a $12 billion loan over three years to shore up its economy, but that differences remained between the two sides on how to proceed.

The reports by the privately-owned Al-Shorouk, Al-Masry Al-Youm and Al-Watan said the two sides were at odds over the size of a proposed devaluation of the Egyptian pound and the timetable for implementing some of the more politically sensitive reforms, like reducing or removing state subsidies on fuel, electricity and food staples.


China’s imports, exports fall again in July

BEIJING (AP) — China’s exports fell again in July by an unexpectedly wide margin while a decline in imports accelerated in a possible sign of weakness in the world’s second-largest economy.

Exports contracted 4.4 per cent to $184.7 billion, a slight improvement over June, customs data showed Monday. Imports fell 12.5 per cent to $132.4 billion, accelerating from a decline of 8.4 per cent.

Weak global demand has hampered efforts to shore up Chinese trade and stave off job losses in export industries. The contraction in imports reflects possible weakness in the domestic economy, but the figures also are depressed by a decline in prices of oil and other commodities.


Investor suits against Volkswagen move ahead in Germany

FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) — Investor lawsuits claiming up to 4 billion euros ($4.5 billion) in damages against Volkswagen over its diesel emissions scandal are moving ahead in German courts.

Investors claim that Volkswagen did not inform them in a timely way of the impending scandal over cars with software that enabled them to cheat on emissions tests in the United States, depriving them of a chance to decide whether to sell the stock.


The Dow Jones industrial average slipped 14.24 points, or 0.1 per cent, to 18,529.29. The S&P 500 index dipped 1.98 points, or 0.1 per cent, to 2,180.89. The Nasdaq shed 7.98 points, or 0.2 per cent, to 5,213.14.

Benchmark U.S. crude rose $1.22, or 2.9 per cent, to close at $43.02 per barrel in New York. Brent crude, used to price international oils, gained $1.12, or 2.5 per cent, to close at $45.39 per barrel in London. In other energy trading, wholesale gasoline slipped a penny to $1.36 a gallon, while heating oil rose 3 cents to $1.34 a gallon. Natural gas fell 2 cents to $2.75 per 1,000 cubic feet.