Morning Business Memo:
Are consumers being misled by the makers of energy drinks? New York State’s Attorney General Eric Schneiderman has opened an investigation into a booming industry. Energy drinks have been sharply criticized in the recent past. Last year the American Academy of Pediatrics said some products were harmful to children and young adults because they contain large amounts of caffeine and other stimulants. The Wall Street Journal says Schneiderman issued subpoenas last month to Pepsico, maker of AMP, Monster Beverage, and Living Essentials LLC, maker of 5 hour Energy drink. .
The quote for September gasoline futures jumped 2.5 percent yesterday with the approach of Tropical storm Isaac. Much of the oil and gas production in the Gulf of Mexico has been shut down as a safety precaution. Isaac’s winds may not be very fierce – which means little damage to offshore rigs is likely. The global price of oil this morning is stable $95 a barrel. But gas for many US motorists may be more expensive for a while.
Remember the days when Spain’s bond rate yields soared to dangerously high levels? Today investors accepted much lower interest rates in short term debt auctions – a sign of easing concern that Spain will need a full-blown bailout. Spain’s Treasury says it sold three-month bills at an average interest rate of 0.95 percent — down from 2.43 percent in a similar auction late last month. Spain’s borrowing rates have fallen back recently on hopes the European Central Bank will intervene in markets to lower them.
Apple wants eight Samsung products to be banned, following last week’s court win. A jury found Samsung copied the iPhone and iPad in creating and marketing the products. The devices on Apple’s list are not Samsung’s latest and hottest products, but several are still being sold. A judge will decide the issue next month.
The buzz about the Volt might fizzle. General Motors will temporarily close the Detroit-area plant that makes the electric Chevrolet Volt next month to control inventory and prepare to make a new model. Spokesman Bill Grotz says the factory will be off-line to match supply with demand and prepare to build the 2014 Chevrolet Impala. Automotive News says GM has 6,500 Volts in stock, enough to supply dealers for 84 days at the current sales rate. Automakers like to have a 60-day supply.
Richard Davies Business Correspondent ABC NEWS Radio twitter.com/daviesabc