BC-Business News Preview

Staff Writer
Columbus CEO

Among the stories Wednesday from The Associated Press:

TOP STORIES:

FEDERAL RESERVE

WASHINGTON — The Federal Reserve wraps up a two-day meeting. It's unlikely to raise interest rates this time but may offer new clues into its thinking as it weighs the U.S. economy's strengths and threats. By Martin Crutsinger. SENT: 740-word setup. UPCOMING: 130 words after 2 p.m. release of Fed policy statement, then expanded.

MARKETS & ECONOMY:

IMF-LAGARDE

WASHINGTON — International Monetary Fund chief Christine Lagarde says the world economy is recovering but fragile and "faces some downside risks." By Paul Wiseman. SENT: 130 words. UPCOMING: 350 words by 10:45 a.m.

PENDING HOME SALES

WASHINGTON — The number of signed contracts to buy homes fell in June, as limited supplies of homes on the market are holding back possible sales growth. By Josh Boak. SENT: 380 words, photo.

FINANCIAL MARKETS

NEW YORK — Stocks post mode gains as Chinese shares rebound and traders wait to hear from the Federal Reserve. SENT: 300 words, photo. UPCOMING: 700 words by 5 p.m.

— CURRENCY REDESIGN — Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew says he's gotten more than a million responses to his request for comments on how U.S. currency should be redesigned and recommendations for what woman should become the first female on U.S. paper money in more than a century. By Martin Crutsinger. SENT: 130 words. UPCOMING: Will be updated.

EARNINGS:

ANTHEM-FORECAST HIKE

Anthem pumps up its 2015 forecast again after earnings jump more than 17 percent in its most recent quarter, helped by a surge in government money. By Tom Murphy. SENT: 590 words, photo.

— EARNS-ALTRIA — A better economy is prompting smokers to buy more cigarettes, even as prices climb. This helped Marlboro maker Altria in its second quarter. By Michelle Chapman. SENT: 580 words, photo.

— EARNS-MASTERCARD — MasterCard Inc. says its second-quarter profit edged down 1 percent as a strong dollar weighed on the company's results. By Ken Sweet. SENT:250 words, photo.

— EARNS-WHOLE FOODS — Whole Foods Market Inc. reports quarterly financial results after the market closes. UPCOMING: 130 words after release.

— EARNS-GOODYEAR — The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. reports a drop in second-quarter profit as a strong U.S. dollar cut into international sales, but the results beat Wall Street expectations. SENT: 270 words, photo.

— SKOREA-EARNS-LG ELECTRONICS — LG Electronics says its second quarter earnings sank 45 percent over a year earlier as losses widened in its TV business and mobile phones earned little income. By Youkyung Lee. SENT: 470 words.

— VOLKSWAGEN-EARNS — Automaker Volkswagen AG sees profits slip in the second quarter despite taking the global lead in sales over Toyota and GM. By David McHugh. SENT: 430 words, photo.

— JAPAN-EARNS-NISSAN — Nissan's April-June profit jumped 36 percent as the Japanese automaker benefited from a cheap yen and better sales in the U.S. and Europe. By Yuri Kageyama. SENT: 270 words, photo.

— JAPAN-EARNS-NINTENDO — Nintendo posts an 8.28 billion yen ($67 million) profit for the fiscal first quarter, helped by better sales and a cheap yen, but did not announce a new president to lead the company after the death this month of Satoru Iwata. By Yuri Kageyama. SENT: 300 words, photo.

— BRITAIN-EARNS-GSK — Britain-based drugmaker GlaxoSmithKline reports a drop in earnings in the first full quarter since its deal to swap some assets with Swiss rival Novartis. SENT: 240 words.

— FRANCE-EARNS-TOTAL — French energy giant Total SA says its net profit slid 4 percent in the second quarter as higher production helped offset a steep drop in the price of oil. SENT: 130 words.

INDUSTRY:

SAVING GREEN CHILE

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Green chiles have defined New Mexico for generations, but as this year's harvest begins, labor shortages, shrinking acreage, drought and foreign competition have hurt production in the state. By Russell Contreras. SENT: 480 words, photo.

— BELGIUM-SOLVAY-CYTEC — Belgium's chemical group Solvay announces it will buy U.S.-based Cytec for $5.5 billion, making it the second biggest company in the aerospace composite materials market. SENT: 120 words.

— GERMANY-ITALY-CEMENT COMPANIES — Germany's HeidelbergCement AG says it plans to buy Italy's Italcementi, starting with the 1.67 billion euro ($1.85 billion) acquisition of a 45 percent stake. SENT: 150 words.

— EUROPE-DISNEYLAND-PARIS — The European Union is looking into complaints that Disneyland Paris is unfairly charging different prices for consumers depending on what nation the request comes from. SENT: 120 words.

AUTOS:

AUTOS-AVERAGE AGE

DETROIT — In the age of Apple's CarPlay, a lot of cars still have tape decks. A new study shows that the average vehicle in the U.S. is now 11.5 years old, a new record. By Dee-Ann Durbin. SENT: 500 words.

CHINA-AUTO SLUMP

BEIJING — General Motors Co.'s $5 billion initiative to create cars for China and other emerging markets comes just as automakers face a collapse in the booming Chinese demand they were counting on to power their growth. By Joe McDonald. SENT: 900 words, photos.

— MINI RECALL — Mini is recalling about 35,000 cars in the U.S. and Canada because they don't meet side-impact crash-test requirements. SENT: 130 words.

— SPAIN-AUTO FIRMS — Spain's competition authorities fine 20 car manufacturers and distributors 171 million euros ($188 million) for practices it said constituted a cartel. SENT: 150 words.

TECHNOLOGY & MEDIA:

DIGITAL LIFE-REVIEW-MICROSOFT WINDOWS 10

NEW YORK — With a major update, Windows no longer feels jarring, as though I'm using two different computers at once. Goodbye, Windows 8. Hello, 10. By Anick Jesdanun. SENT: 1,000 words, photos.

— NOKIA-VR CAMERA — Nokia says it's launching a virtual reality camera that will be able to capture three-dimensional video designed for professional content creators. SENT: 150 words.

INTERNATIONAL:

GREECE-BAILOUT

ATHENS, Greece — Greece's prime minister says he does not want early elections, but rebels within his radical left Syriza party could force his hand. SENT: 780 words, photo. UPCOMING: Will be updated.

— GERMANY-ECONOMY — A closely-watched survey indicates German consumers remain optimistic but are showing signs of worry about the country's economic situation amid uncertainty about Greece's financial future. SENT: 150 words, photo.

— US-TRADE — Trade ministers from 12 nations around the Pacific Rim are meeting on the Hawaiian island on Maui to negotiate a trade pact. SENT: 140 words, photo.