c.2013 New York Times News Service

c.2013 New York Times News Service

FOR ONCE-MIGHTY SEARS, PICTURES OF DECAY, SEVERE CRITICS AND MANY DOUBTS

Sears announced Tuesday that it was looking to split off its Lands’ End and Sears Auto Centers brands, two of the company’s best-known assets, to raise money to fund its future. It also said that Sears Canada, which it controls, had sold five store leases for $384 million. In a statement, Sears said the moves would let it become “a more focused company that is easier to understand and to manage,” and that it would concentrate on its best-performing Sears and Kmart stores. The moves announced Tuesday gave investors some hope, with shares of Sears surging 11.75 percent, to $62.09.

DUTCH BANK SETTLES LIBOR CASE CLAIMS

The Dutch lender Rabobank admitted Tuesday to criminal wrongdoing by its employees and agreed to pay more than $1 billion in criminal and civil penalties to settle investigations by authorities into its role in setting global benchmark interest rates. Its chief executive stepped down immediately. The bank is the fifth financial firm to settle accusations that its employees manipulated the London interbank offered rate, or Libor. The settlement with Rabobank is the second-largest agreement after the $1.5 billion penalty imposed on UBS related to the manipulation of benchmark rates, which help determine the borrowing costs for trillions of dollars.

AHEAD OF ITS IPO, TWITTER CHANGES FEED TO ADD IMAGES

Twitter has gone visual. The social network, which has been built around 140-character snippets of text since its founding in 2006, has added photo and video previews to the feed of items that users see when they log onto the service from the Web or mobile applications. In the past, Twitter users had to click on a link to see a photo or video. The change could help increase the use of Twitter as the company prepares for its initial public offering. The addition could also help the company sell more ads with visual elements.

NEW CHIEF OF FCC CONFIRMED BY SENATE

The Senate voted unanimously Tuesday to confirm President Barack Obama’s two nominations to the Federal Communications Commission, overcoming obstacles by Republican lawmakers. The vote came after Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, lifted a hold earlier in the day on the nomination of Tom Wheeler as chairman, with Cruz saying he had received assurances from him that the commission would not immediately pursue changes for political advertising on television. Cruz had blocked consideration of Wheeler’s nomination two weeks ago, saying he was worried that Wheeler would push the FCC to expand disclosure requirements for political advertisements on television.

UKRAINIAN CHOCOLATES CAUGHT IN TRADE WAR BETWEEN EUROPE AND RUSSIA

From the Baltic to the Black Sea, a chocolate wall has descended across the continent of Europe. In July, Russian regulators banned all chocolate, cake, cookie and candy imports from a Ukrainian chocolate factory and its parent company, Roshen, ostensibly over health concerns. The factory shares a problem with many businesses in the countries that lie between the European Union and Russia. It is caught in a no man’s land for trade, a place increasingly precarious as each side tries to recruit countries into exclusive trade deals.

ADOBE HACKING ATTACK WAS BIGGER THAN PREVIOUSLY THOUGHT

An online attack at Adobe compromised personal data for tens of millions more customers than was previously reported, the company acknowledged Tuesday. Earlier this month, Adobe said that hackers had gained access to credit card information and other personal data for 2.9 million of its customers. The company said hackers had also stolen an undisclosed number of Adobe usernames and encrypted passwords. On Tuesday, that tally of stolen usernames and passwords had grown to more than 38 million records. Heather Edell, an Adobe spokeswoman, said the company reset passwords for affected accounts and notified all 38 million affected users.