Facebook IPO — Morning Business Memo

Apr 6, 2012 6:58am

Facebook has chosen Nasdaq to list its shares, using the symbol FB. The social network’s planned share offering is the year’s most widely anticipated IPO. Facebook is expected to sell $5 billion worth of shares to the public.

The US economy probably added more than 200,000 jobs for the fourth straight month in March. That would be the longest stretch of strong jobs gains since 1999. The Labor Department’s monthly survey is likely to give more evidence of a steadily improving jobs market. The unemployment rate is seen holding steady at a three-year low of 8.3%. That’s because unemployed Americans who had given up looking for jobs are now re-entering the workforce. While the jobless rate has come down since last year, long-term unemployment remains high with more than 23 million Americans either out of work or underemployed.

Today’s cell phones are all about apps. So Microsoft is paying developers of some well-known apps to come up with Windows Phone versions of their products. Microsoft teamed up with Nokia last year to challenge the huge popularity of iPhones and Android smart phones. The Lumia 900 goes on sale this weekend. But the New York Times reports many of the thousands of apps that run on Android and Apple devices will not work on phones that use Microsoft’s Windows software. That’s why major incentives may be needed for apps developers to invest the time and money on new versions.

America’s vast supply of natural gas is getting even bigger as prices continue to fall. The latest quote of less than $2.09 per 1 thousand cubic feet is the lowest price in over a decade. Natural gas prices are down 30 percent this year. Oil prices are now at $103 a barrel. The change continues to shake up the energy industry.

Richard Davies Business Correspondent ABC NEWS Radio twitter.com/daviesabc 

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