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  • Dec 19- A U.S. federal appeals court has slashed the damages that Zimmer Holdings Inc will have to pay Stryker Corp for infringing its patents on a surgical cleaning wand. Last year a jury in Grand Rapids, Michigan, awarded medical device maker Stryker $70 million in lost profits and found Zimmer's conduct to have been willful. A three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of...

  • US says traffic deaths fell 3 percent in 2013 Friday, 19 Dec 2014 | 2:42 PM ET

    DETROIT— Driving is getting safer. A total of 32,719 people died in U.S. crashes in 2013, down from 33,782 in 2012, according to figures compiled by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. NHTSA Deputy Administrator David Friedman said the drop came because of safer vehicles, stronger laws and enforcement, and consumer education campaigns.

  • Chrysler to recall about 288K Ram pickup trucks Friday, 19 Dec 2014 | 8:09 AM ET

    DETROIT— Chrysler is recalling about 288,000 older Ram pickup trucks in North America and elsewhere because the rear axle can seize or the drive shaft can fall off. The recall comes after an investigation by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration that began in June. The recall includes nearly 257,000 trucks in the U.S., another 22,000 in Canada,...

  • NEW YORK, Dec 19- It sounds like the usual setup for a knock-knock joke: Who is the best-selling author on all of Amazon.com this holiday season? Yet it's no laughing matter for Rob Teigen, a father of five in Grand Rapids, Michigan who, under the pen name Rob Elliott, currently owns the No. 1 and No. 2 spots on Amazon.com' s best-selling book list, outpacing such hits as "...

  • Ford House sells Cezanne painting for $100 million Friday, 19 Dec 2014 | 6:36 AM ET

    GROSSE POINTE SHORES, Mich.— The Edsel& Eleanor Ford House kept secret the 2013 sale of an oil painting by French post-impressionist Paul Cezanne to a private buyer for $100 million to help protect Detroit- owned artworks under threat due to the city's bankruptcy. Mullins said Ford House officials didn't release news of the sale when it occurred for fear of...

  • Companies' data security in question after Sony hack Friday, 19 Dec 2014 | 12:05 AM ET

    The hack, which a U.S. official has said investigators believe is linked to North Korea, culminated in the cancellation of a Sony film and ultimately could cost the movie studio hundreds of millions of dollars. "The Sony breach is a real wake-up call even after the year of mega-breaches we've seen," says Lee Weiner, Boston security firm Rapid7's senior vice...

  • Government selling last stake in Ally Financial Thursday, 18 Dec 2014 | 7:20 PM ET

    WASHINGTON— The government is selling the last of its shares in Ally Financial Inc., the former financing arm of General Motors that was bailed out during the financial crisis. Detroit- based Ally said Thursday that the Treasury Department is selling its remaining 54.9 million shares. Ally, formerly called GMAC Inc., received a $17.2 billion bailout that began...

  • SAN FRANCISCO/ DETROIT, Dec 18- Google Inc is laying the groundwork for a version of Android that would be built directly into cars, sources said, allowing drivers to enjoy all the benefits of the Internet without even plugging in their smartphones. "It provides a much stronger foothold for Google to really be part of the vehicle rather than being an add-on," said...

  • Sony hacking fallout puts all companies on alert Thursday, 18 Dec 2014 | 4:52 PM ET

    The hack, which a U.S. official has said investigators believe is linked to North Korea, culminated in the cancellation of a Sony film and ultimately could cost the movie studio hundreds of millions of dollars. "The Sony breach is a real wake-up call even after the year of mega-breaches we've seen," says Lee Weiner, Boston security firm Rapid7's senior vice...

  • Correction: Meningitis Outbreak story Thursday, 18 Dec 2014 | 2:46 PM ET

    BOSTON— In a story Dec. 17 about arrests in a deadly meningitis outbreak, The Associated Press erroneously reported Stuart Delery's title. BOSTON— Mold and bacteria were in the air and on workers' gloved fingertips. Federal prosecutors leveled those allegations in bringing charges Wednesday against 14 former owners or employees of a Massachusetts pharmacy in...

  • A look at Michigan road funding plan Thursday, 18 Dec 2014 | 2:31 PM ET

    In May, voters would be asked to increase the state's 6 percent sales and uses tax to 7 percent and eliminate the sales tax on motor fuel, generating a net $588 million— mainly for $300 million for schools and nearly $100 million for local governments. The plan also would bar the Legislature from spending School Aid Fund revenue on public universities, an issue for...

  • Wisconsin ranks 32nd in private-sector job growth Thursday, 18 Dec 2014 | 10:01 AM ET

    MADISON, Wis.— Wisconsin ranks 32nd in private-sector job growth and lags behind the national average for the 12- month period that ended in June, according to the latest figures released Thursday by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The numbers are consistent with where Wisconsin has ranked in recent years. Wisconsin ranked 32nd nationally in...

  • Neogen misses Street 2Q forecasts Thursday, 18 Dec 2014 | 8:51 AM ET

    LANSING, Mich. _ Neogen Corp. on Thursday reported fiscal second-quarter earnings of $7.8 million. The average estimate of analysts surveyed by Zacks Investment Research was for earnings of 22 cents per share. Analysts expected $70.3 million, according to Zacks.

  • Ford expands drivers air bag recall nationwide Thursday, 18 Dec 2014 | 8:47 AM ET

    DETROIT— Ford Motor Co. has agreed to government demands to expand a driver's side air bag inflator recall to the entire U.S. Ford's action puts pressure on BMW and Chrysler, the only two automakers that haven't agreed to national recalls. Honda and Mazda already took their recalls national.

  • Indiana officer asked to stop selling 'divisive' shirts Thursday, 18 Dec 2014 | 7:55 AM ET

    SOUTH BEND, Ind.— Some officials in the Indiana city of South Bend have called on a police officer to stop selling T-shirts that make light of the "I can't breathe" refrain used in recent protests of the police killing of a New York City man. Mishawaka police officer Jason Barthel this week began selling T-shirts with the message "Breathe easy, don't break the law" at a...

  • Michigan to vote on 7 percent sales tax for roads Thursday, 18 Dec 2014 | 4:05 AM ET

    LANSING, Mich.— Michigan voters would be asked to approve a sales tax increase as part of a $1.6 billion deal struck Thursday by Gov. And $11.8 billion in annual school funding would jump by at least $300 million, the equivalent of $200 per student. Michigan spends less per driver on roads than any other state.

  • 2 in meningitis outbreak case to be released Thursday, 18 Dec 2014 | 2:07 AM ET

    The co-founders, pharmacists and pharmacy technicians at a Massachusetts compounding pharmacy are accused of using expired ingredients and failing to follow standards for cleanliness at the now-closed New England Compounding Center in Framingham, which is blamed for tainted steroids that caused the deadly outbreak. The most serious charges in the...

  • Dec 17- Dow Chemical Co's ex-fraud investigator can pursue claims of being unlawfully fired after disclosing alleged financial misconduct related to the company, including heavy spending by Chief Executive Andrew Liveris, a U.S. judge has ruled. Kimberly Wood worked at Dow for 25 years before she was fired in October. Wood alleges in the lawsuit that she was...

  • Dec 17- Dow Chemical Co's ex-fraud investigator can pursue claims of being unlawfully fired after disclosing alleged financial misconduct related to the company, including heavy spending by Chief Executive Officer Andrew Liveris, a U.S. judge has ruled. Kimberly Wood worked at Dow for 25 years before she was fired in October. The Dow Chemical Co., 14- cv-13049,...

  • The United States' commercial ties with Cuba were broken 54 years ago after Fidel Castro took over. Now U.S.- Cuba trade is poised to resume: President Barack Obama on Wednesday announced plans to re-establish diplomat relations with Havana, and economic ties are expected to follow. Gary Hufbauer and Barbara Kotschwar of the Peterson Institute for...