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Business news briefs — Dec. 19

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WOMEN IN BUSINESS

Chamber schedules program

The Greater Akron Chamber will hold a program on women’s business issues Jan. 15. The presenter for Power Plays for Women: Get What You Want, Need and Deserve will be E.L. “Betsy” Smith. Topics will include overcoming adversity, leadership, flexibility, balance, mentoring and negotiations.

The luncheon program is part of the chamber group called KNOW (Knowledgeable Network of Women).

Registration will be at 11 a.m. with the program from 11:30 to 1 p.m. at Portage Country Club, 240 N. Portage Path, Akron.

Call 330-376-5550 or register online at www.greaterakronchamber.org. Deadline is noon Jan. 10.

WALL STREET

Dow Jones gains 11 points

The Dow Jones industrial average added 11.11 points, or 0.1 percent, to 16,179.08, extending an all-time high. The S&P 500 lost 0.1 percent to 1,809.60, trimming an earlier drop of 0.5 percent.

Rite Aid Corp. dropped 10 percent after cutting its earnings forecast. Facebook Inc. lost 1 percent after saying the company and some shareholders, including Chief Executive Officer Mark Zuckerberg, will sell 70 million shares. Oracle Corp. rose 5.8 percent after forecasting third-quarter sales and profit in line with analysts’ estimates.

AUTO INDUSTRY

Camry tops recommended list

Toyota’s Camry, headed for its 12th consecutive year as the best-selling car in the United States, returned to Consumer Reports’ recommended list after showing improvement on an insurance-industry crash test.

The magazine excluded Camry in October after the 2013 model sedan received a poor rating in a new front-end test by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.

The 2014 Camry with a strengthened frame received an “acceptable” rating when retested, prompting the institute to give Camrys built after November its second-highest total rating in a report.

FRACKING

Chesapeake to pay EPA fine

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of Justice announced that a subsidiary of Chesapeake Energy, the nation’s second largest natural gas producer, will spend an EPA-estimated $6.5 million to restore 27 sites damaged by unauthorized discharges of fill material into streams and wetlands and to implement a comprehensive plan to comply with federal and state water protection laws at the company’s natural gas extraction sites in West Virginia, many of which involve hydraulic fracturing operations.

The company will also pay a civil penalty of $3.2 million, one of the largest ever levied by the federal government, for violations of the Clean Water Act.

Court backs local governments

The highest court in Pennsylvania, heart of the country’s natural gas drilling boom, struck down significant portions of a law that limited the power of local governments to determine where the industry can operate — rules the industry sought from Republican Gov. Tom Corbett and lawmakers.

In a 4-2 decision, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court ruled the industry-friendly rules set out by the 2012 law violated the state constitution, primarily by displacing local control over local matters.

Seven municipalities had challenged the law that grew out of the state’s need to modernize 20-year-old drilling laws to account for a Marcellus shale drilling boom made possible by innovations in drilling and technology, most notably hydraulic fracturing.

Compiled from staff and wire reports


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