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  • TOKYO, Oct 5- Japan's Nikkei stock average is likely to tread in range on Friday, as investors wait for the outcome of a Bank of Japan policy meeting due during trading hours, as well as key U.S. jobs data later in the day. closed at 8,845 on Thursday, up 0.1 percent from the Osaka.

  • Q+A-Tying Fed rates policy to numerical economic goals Thursday, 4 Oct 2012 | 7:01 PM ET

    Oct 4- The Federal Reserve appears to be moving toward adopting specific numerical thresholds for inflation and joblessness as guideposts for monetary policy. Most policymakers think doing so would be a useful step, minutes from the Fed's September policy-setting meeting showed.

  • The informant, a Wall Street banker who remained anonymous to protect his career, previously received two other million-dollar payouts from the IRS, said his attorney, Erika Kelton, with Phillips& Cohen in Washington. His reward last week could have been larger if his claims were brought forward under newer IRS whistleblower rules revamped in 2006, she said.

  • *Middle East tensions, Turkey strikes at Syria lift oil. NEW YORK, Oct 4- Oil prices jumped 4 percent on T hursday as inflamed Middle East tensions stoked supply fears and U.S. gasoline futures rallied following a fire at the largest operating refinery in the United States.

  • UPDATE 1-Walmart says union's LA protest has no impact Thursday, 4 Oct 2012 | 5:15 PM ET

    LOS ANGELES/ CHICAGO, Oct 4- Walmart employees affiliated with a union-backed group walked off the job in Los Angeles on Thursday, protesting conditions at the world's largest retailer, which promptly defended itself, saying the "publicity stunt" was not having an impact on its business. unfair labor practices by Wal-Mart Stores Inc, sponsors of the action said.

  • Fed open to linking rate hike to economic gauge Thursday, 4 Oct 2012 | 4:43 PM ET

    WASHINGTON-- The Federal Reserve wants to find a clearer way to signal to the public when it might start raising interest rates. Most members agreed at the Sept. 12-13 meeting that linking a future rate increase to a level of unemployment or some other numeric target could be useful.

  • CPS board president 'pleased' by contract vote Thursday, 4 Oct 2012 | 4:37 PM ET

    CHICAGO-- Chicago Board of Education President David Vitale says he's pleased that teachers ratified a new contract. The Chicago Teachers Union announced Wednesday night that 79 percent of the union's membership had voted in favor of the contract. Teachers walked off the job Sept. 10, idling about 350,000 students for seven days.

  • *Middle East tensions, Turkey strikes at Syria lift oil. NEW YORK, Oct 4- Oil prices jumped 4 percent on T hursday as inflamed Middle East tensions stoked supply fears and U.S. gasoline futures rallied following a fire at the largest operating refinery in the United States.

  • Walmart says union's LA protest has no impact Thursday, 4 Oct 2012 | 4:28 PM ET

    LOS ANGELES/ CHICAGO, Oct 4- Walmart employees affiliated with a union-backed group walked off the job in Los Angeles on Thursday, protesting working conditions at the world's largest retailer, which promptly defended itself, saying the "publicity stunt" was not having an impact on its business.

  • Sears' holiday hiring to be flat from last year Thursday, 4 Oct 2012 | 3:52 PM ET

    NEW YORK-- Sears Holdings Corp. said that its hiring of seasonal workers for the crucial winter holidays will be unchanged from a year ago.

  • Environmental groups file complaint over coal ash Thursday, 4 Oct 2012 | 3:23 PM ET

    CHICAGO-- Several environmental groups want the Illinois Pollution Control Board to order Midwest Generation to clean up groundwater pollution that allegedly leached from coal-ash ponds at four of the company's power plants.

  • Oct 4- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration said it has cracked down on thousands of online pharmacies for selling potentially unsafe, unapproved or fake medicines, including the erectile dysfunction drug Viagra and antiviral Tamiflu.

  • Oct 4- Li& Fung Ltd, a global supplier of apparel, is in advanced talks to buy Synergies Worldwide, a small, New York- based supplier, a source familiar with the matter said on Thursday. The move would help Hong Kong- based Li& Fung gain a better foothold in the fast fashion and discount clothing space.

  • Retirees turn more attention to personal legacies Thursday, 4 Oct 2012 | 2:10 PM ET

    CHICAGO-- A growing number of retirees are looking to pass along more to the next generation than money and possessions. "There's an element regarding money, but it is really more about affirming your life as a legacy," says Neal Van Zutphen, a certified financial planner in Mesa, Ariz..

  • Feds charge 91 people in $429M Medicare fraud Thursday, 4 Oct 2012 | 1:56 PM ET

    WASHINGTON-- A federal strike force has charged 91 people, including a hospital president, doctors and nurses, with Medicare fraud schemes in seven cities involving $429 million in false billings. The law enforcement effort focused on fraudulent Medicare schemes in Baton Rouge, La.; Brooklyn, N.Y.; Chicago; Dallas; Houston; Los Angeles and Miami.

  • Google acquired Motorola in May for $12.5 billion to bolster its patent portfolio as its Android mobile operating system competes with rivals such as Apple Inc and Samsung Electronics Co Ltd. But many investors and analysts have questioned Google's need to be in the hardware business, where profit margins are lower and Google has little experience.

  • In mobile-computing boom, a battle rages for marketing Thursday, 4 Oct 2012 | 11:43 AM ET

    NEW YORK/ SAN FRANCISCO, Oct 4- Amazon.com Inc. Take Apple Inc, for example. Now Samsung Electronics Co Ltd, Amazon, Microsoft Corp and other tablet and smartphone makers are stepping up with big spending on TV spots, print ads, guerilla marketing stunts and over-the-top launch events.

  • Kaplan adds new campus in Maine Thursday, 4 Oct 2012 | 10:38 AM ET

    AUGUSTA, Maine-- Kaplan University has opened a new campus in Augusta. It's Kaplan's third campus in Maine, joining other ones in South Portland and Lewiston. Kaplan University is based in Chicago and serves nearly 50,000 online and campus-based students.

  • Drought worsens in some key Midwest farming states Thursday, 4 Oct 2012 | 9:36 AM ET

    Conditions worsened, though, in Kansas and Iowa, the nation's biggest corn producer, and nearly 98 percent of Nebraska was still deemed to be in one of the two worst categories. According to the map, which is put out by the National Drought Mitigation Center at the University of Nebraska in Lincoln, 75 percent of Iowa is enduring extreme or exceptional drought.

  • Ill. powerbroker to be sentenced in shakedown plot Thursday, 4 Oct 2012 | 9:31 AM ET

    CHICAGO-- The final case to stem from the corruption investigation into imprisoned former Illinois Gov. William Cellini, 77, was convicted last year for his role in trying to get a $1.5 million campaign contribution for Blagojevich from the Oscar-winning producer of "Million Dollar Baby" in exchange for state business.

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