Morning Business Memo

Jan 19, 2012 8:03am

A Kodak moment the photography company did not want to see: Eastman Kodak has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. For more than a century,  the iconic company ruled the world of film photography. Then came a stunning reversal of fortune: cutthroat competition from Japanese firms in the 1980s and a seismic shift to the digital technology it pioneered but couldn’t capitalize on. Eastman Kodak has failed to find a buyer for more than a thousand digital imaging patents. The company said in November it could run out of cash in a year if it didn’t sell its patents. This morning Kodak said it secured $950 million in financing from Citigroup and expects to stay in business as it reorganizes …

Major stock averages are now at their highest valuations since last July. The Standard and Poor’s 500 closed over 1300. The Dow Jones Index gained 97 Wednesday. The high technology Nasdaq index is up more than 6 percent  this month. Positive economic reports from the U.S. and China helped lift share values. Global stock averages rose again this morning.

Greek Prime Minister Lucas Papademos is to meet the leaders of political parties backing his coalition government before continuing talks with private creditors on a bond swap deal needed to avoid default. The New York Times says hedge funds may sue Greece in the European Court of Human Rights to make good on its bond payments. In a bond auction today, Spain raised far more money than first planned. There was strong demand and lower interest rates than December. It’s the second successful test of investor confidence since Spain was downgraded by Standard and Poor’s …

More fallout from the mortgage mess. A $25 billion settlement appears close between five major banks and all 50 states over deceptive foreclosure practices. Under the deal, banks would pay states and the federal government, which would fund programs to compensate homeowners.

Reported by ABC News’ radio correspondent Richard Davies.

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