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Growth fears hit global stocks, investors eye Fed and Draghi

LONDON (Reuters) - World stocks fell on Wednesday as a decline in Chinese inflation and weaker European industrial data combined to suggest global growth

may be slowing, eclipsing a positive start to the U.S. earnings season. The mining company Alcoa Inc reported results after Wall Street closed that beat analysts' expectations, but that was not enough to help European equities recover after they fell the most in three months on Tuesday.

Major currencies and bond markets were steady before a speech by European Central Bank President Mario Draghi and the release of the U.S. Federal Reserve's minutes of its latest meeting. More



Jobs, cars seen cementing U.S. spring rebound
BRUSSELS (Reuters) - The United States can firmly consign its weather-beaten start to the year to history this week with June vehicle sales and jobs data expected to show a strong end to the second quarter.

The U.S. economy contracted at a 2.9 percent annual rate, the sharpest decline in five years, in the Jan-March period, figures showed last Wednesday.

An exceptionally bitter winter, the expiration of long-term unemployment benefits and a marked slowdown in restocking by businesses combined to drag down the world's largest economy, but these factors should have faded by April. More



AT&T makes bet on video with $48.5 billion DirecTV bid
Reuters) - AT&T Inc plans to pay $48.5 billion to buy DirecTV, in the latest sign that the wireless industry and the U.S. television market are set to converge as customers consume more video on their mobile devices.

The deal, announced on Sunday, highlights AT&T's pressing need for fresh avenues of growth beyond the maturing U.S. cellular business, which has become increasingly competitive. The combination with DirecTV, the No.1 U.S. satellite TV provider with 20 million customers, would beef up Dallas-based AT&T's packages of cellular, broadband, TV and fixed-line phone services.

For DirecTV, the deal will enable it to offer broadband Internet for the first time to its U.S. customers, filling in a gap that had made the company vulnerable to cable rivals, which can provide Internet service through their networks.
More



Microsoft’s Surface 2 may be a holiday hit. Opinion: The software giant may be getting it right in tablet computing
SAN FRANCISCO (MarketWatch) — A friend recently told me he was having a hard time finding the newest version of the Microsoft tablet, the Surface 2, in a store in Silicon Valley. And last Friday, the New York Times ran the headline, “Microsoft Produces a Winner in Tablets” with a mostly glowing review of the 32-gigabyte, $449 version of the Surface 2, which included this phrase: “The software sparkles with thoughtful and innovative touches that will most likely find their way to competing platforms.” More



Gold slips on economic optimism; platinum adds to gains”
SINGAPORE (Reuters) - Gold extended losses to a third straight session on Monday as U.S. data pointed to strong economic growth, while platinum group metals continued to add to gains on supply worries from South African labour strikes.

FUNDAMENTALS
* Spot gold slipped 0.08 percent to $1,292.01 an ounce by 0030 GMT, while platinum gained about half a percent. Palladium rose 0.2 percent.

* U.S. housing starts jumped in April and building permits hit their highest in nearly six years, offering hope the troubled housing market could be stabilizing, though another report showed that consumer sentiment fell in May.

* Hedge funds and money managers cut their bullish bets in gold futures and options, but raised their net longs in silver, according to data from the Commodity Futures Trading Commission on Friday. More



Apple And Google Settle; Good, The Patent System Seems To Work
Apple AAPL +1.46% and Google GOOGL -0.15% have agreed to settle their various patent suits against each other. This was all, of course, about whatever Android might have taken or not taken from Apple and whatever Apple’s iOS might have done to infringe on any of the patents that Google brought on board when it bought Motorola Mobility.

This doesn’t affect the Apple and Samsung cases though. Florian Mueller is, as ever, good on the technical details of this. My interest is, also as ever, in the economics of this. It’s evidence that while horribly expensive and tortuous, the patent system does actually work.
More




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BAHAHAHA Moment of the Week - Thank you very much!
Pelosi on the Border: We Have to Use This 'Crisis' as an 'Opportunity
Saturday at a press conference from the Rio Grande Valley, Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) discussed her tour of a border holding facility and addressed the humanitarian crisis of thousands unaccompanied minors flooding across the U.S.-Mexico border, which she called a "humanitarian opportunity." More




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Pow! Right Between the Eyes: Profiting from the Power of Surprise
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Peter Schiff - Crash Proof: How to Profit From the Coming Economic Collapse
The economic tipping point for the United States is no longer theoretical. It is a reality today. The country has gone from the world's largest creditor to its greatest debtor; the value of the dollar is sinking; domestic manufacturing is winding down - and these trends don't seem to be slowing. Peter Schiff visits with Kurt Schemers on Traders Nation(tm).
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Steve Forbes - Flat Tax Revolution: Using a Postcard to Abolish the IRS
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Larry Winget: No Time for Tact: 365 Days of the Wit, Words, and Wisdom of Larry Winget
In these uncertain times, why mince words? America needs a straight- talk dose of Winget reality more than ever. Winget visits with Kurt Schemers on Traders Nation(tm).
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