Europe Negotiates ‘Grand Bargain’ Debt Plan; Murdoch Faces Shareholders

  • Europe will need a second summit to announce the details of the “grand bargain”. Germany and France remain split over the details of a plan to deal with the sovereign debt crisis, so another meeting is being planned for next week. This weekend’s meeting will be used to examine proposals to strengthen the region’s banks and boost the size of the proposed bailout fund. Europe’s problems are a big concern for financial markets — but stock averages are slightly higher this morning
  • Rupert Murdoch faces News Corp shareholders today in Los Angeles. Criticism is expected over the phone hacking scandal in Britain that forced the company to close its best selling tabloid The News of the World. Shareholders will also have the chance to vote on the company’s board members, including Murdoch and his sons, James and Lachlan.
  • The discount deal site Groupon is scaling back on its plans to sell shares to investors. The company says this morning it plans to raise up to $540 million in an initial public offering. That’s far less than previously expected. Groupon is facing more questions about its business model and new competition from Amazon, Microsoft and other firms. Groupon reported a 3rd quarter loss of $10.6 million.
  • So far earnings season has been a net positive for the stock market. General Electric is the latest big company to report quarterly numbers. GE profits were $3.22 billion.
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