CHICAGO, Nov 28- Sales at U.S. brick-and-mortar stores on Thanksgiving Day and Black Friday were down slightly from last year, but the performance was still seen as strong in a holiday shopping season where discounts spread well beyond the weekend and many shoppers moving to the web. Preliminary data from ShopperTrak showed sales at stores totaled about $12.1...» Read More
*CME sees big interest from U.S. commercial sector. LONDON, Oct 25- CME Group expects to see the first trades in its new aluminium swap futures contract by the end of this year as it taps consumer frustration with having to pay steep surcharges to get metal in the midst of a glut, the exchange's head of metals said.
Copper for December delivery dropped 1.75 cents Thursday to finish at $3.5505 per pound. The National Association of Realtors said the number of people who signed contracts to buy homes rose slightly in September. In addition, the Commerce Department said orders for durable goods jumped 9.9 percent last month, driven by a hefty increase in aircraft orders.
Oct 25- The New York Times Co reported worse-than-expected results on Thursday as advertisers cut spending on both print and digital outlets, sending shares down 12 percent. Adjusting for severance costs and other special items, the company reported a quarterly loss of 1 cent per share, well below expectations of earnings of 8 cents per share.
NEW YORK-- A weak showing in home sales and a mixed batch of earnings reports kept the stock market flipping between minor gains and losses on Wall Street.
JOHANNESBURG, Oct 25- About 100,000 workers have downed tools for better pay in South Africa since August. In October around 15,000 were sacked and thousands returned to work after threats of dismissal.
LANSING, Mich.-- Michigan is reporting a second straight big drop in unemployment, with the rate down 2.1 percentage points in two months. The Department of Technology, Management& Budget said Thursday that Michigan's seasonally unadjusted unemployment rate stood at 8.2 percent in September, down from 9.2 percent in August and 10.3 percent in July.
CARLE PLACE, N.Y.-- Flower delivery service 1-800- Flowers.com said Thursday that its fiscal first quarter loss widened, mainly because year-ago results included a hefty gain from discontinued operations. Loss for the three months ended Sept. 30 totaled $4.6 million, or 7 cents per share.
*AstraZeneca, Sanofi, Novartis all hit by patent loss in Q3. *Sanofi, Novartis forecast to post rises of 21 pct, 9 pct. While AstraZeneca faces years of continuing sales declines, due to a lack of new drugs to replace those losing protection, Sanofi and Novartis are turning the corner.
*Lifts full-year profit view by 15 cents to $1.85- $1.95.
This week an even more radical debate burst into the open in Britain.
*P&G profit of $1.06/ share tops expectations of 96 cents. Oct 25- Procter& Gamble Co's profit rose more than expected, indicating that the world's largest household products maker is making progress after coming under pressure from activist investor William Ackman, and its shares soared to the highest level in four years.
WASHINGTON, Oct 25- U.S. business investment showed signs of stalling in September, an indication that worries over a possible sharp tightening in the federal budget are already weighing on the economy.
DETROIT, Oct 25- AutoNation Inc, the largest U.S. automotive retailer, posted slightly lower than expected third-quarter earnings and revenue on Thursday and its shares fell more than 7 percent. In an interview, Chief Executive Mike Jackson said the earnings miss was due to AutoNation buying back fewer shares than expected.
The media company, which publishes its namesake newspaper and the Boston Globe, earned $2.3 million, or 2 cents per share, in the July-September period. In the year-ago quarter, the Times Co. booked a one-time gain of $37.8 million, or 24 cents per share, from the sale of its stake in the Red Sox and other sports holdings.
Oct 25- CME Group Inc, the biggest operator of U.S. futures exchanges, reported a slide in third-quarter profit as investors used fewer futures and options, but it beat expectations by a penny per share due to lower expenses.
Oct 25- Bayerische Motoren Werke AG's BMW of North America affiliate said it will recall 7,485 of its 7 Series luxury sedans from model years 2005-2007 that may have faulty door latches. BMW said the doors may not latch due to a software problem on cars equipped with both Comfort Access and Soft Close Automatic options.
*Shares in Hong Kong more than halved this year. HONG KONG, Oct 25- ZTE Corp, the world's fourth-biggest maker of mobile phones and fifth-ranked telecommunications equipment manufacturer, reported its first quarterly loss- of $310 million- since listing in Hong Kong in 2004, on shredded margins, project delays and accounting changes in China.
TOKYO-- Radioactive cesium levels in most kinds of fish caught off the coast of Fukushima haven't declined in the year following Japan's nuclear disaster, a signal that the seafloor or leakage from the damaged reactors must be continuing to contaminate the waters _ possibly threatening fisheries for decades, a researcher says.
HARTFORD, Conn.-- Utilities and governments along the East Coast are working to head off long-term power failures as forecasters predict a major storm to hit a region already skittish after foul weather in recent months that plunged residents into darkness for weeks.
Oct 25- Medical device maker Medtronic Inc edited health journal articles and paid doctors millions of dollars for company-sponsored studies of its Infuse bone-grafting product used in spinal surgery, according to a U.S. Senate report published on Thursday.