HAVANA— U.S. officials say the United States and Cuba will sign an agreement next week to restart commercial air traffic for the first time in five decades. It will let U.S. airlines bid on routes for dozens of U.S.- Cuba flights per day. State Department official Thomas Engle says the deal reinforces President Barack Obama's goal of building ties with Cuba.» Read More
WASHINGTON-- Eager to take note of signs of recovery, President Obama is drawing attention to improvements in the housing industry while keeping up pressure on Republicans to back policies the White House says would help struggling homeowners refinance their debts.
NEW DELHI-- A news report says the Indian government has suspended the license of Kingfisher Airlines which has been struggling to resume flights following a strike by pilots and engineers who have not been paid for months. Kingfisher, once one of India's best airlines, is battling for a lifeline with India's airline regulator.
WASHINGTON-- Medicare is coming under scrutiny in the meningitis outbreak that has rekindled doubts about the safety of the nation's drug supply. In 2007, Medicare revoked coverage of compounded inhaler drugs for lung disease.
WASHINGTON-- Unions are shifting more of their political resources to state and local races this year as they try to head off passage of laws that could undermine bargaining rights, make it harder to organize or reduce their political muscle. In Maine and Minnesota, labor leaders hope to overturn Republican majorities in state legislatures.
HONG KONG-- Casino operator SJM Holdings says it has signed a deal to buy land for a new casino in Macau, the world's biggest gambling market, giving it a chance to catch up with its rivals' rapid expansion. The company operates 20 casinos already in Macau but most are small.
SEOUL, South Korea-- South Korea says it has been chosen to host a new U.N. climate fund that aims to channel $100 billion a year in aid to developing nations. Seoul's Finance Ministry says the decision was made Saturday in a vote by the fund's 24- member board in Songdo, South Korea.
TORONTO-- Canada has blocked the Malaysian state-owned oil firm Petronas' US $5.2 billion bid for gas producer Progress Energy Resources, saying the proposed investment would not provide a net benefit to Canada. "Canada has a long-standing reputation for welcoming foreign investment.
In a story about athletes and corporate endorsements, The Associated Press erroneously described an endorsement by Gabrielle Douglas, the Olympic gymnast. Nike forgave Tiger Woods after he apologized for cheating on his wife.
On Thursday, Southwest Airlines said demand _ and pricing _ for business travelers grew weaker in September. Revenue seemed to be rebounding this month, Southwest said. But nothing quite says "ka-ching" like $981 for a short-notice round-trip ticket from Minneapolis to New York.
WASHINGTON-- Regulators on Friday closed two small banks in Florida and one in Missouri, bringing to 46 the number of U.S. bank failures this year. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. seized GulfSouth Private Bank and First East Side Savings Bank, both in Florida. Regulators also shuttered Excel Bank in Missouri.
SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico-- Popular Inc., which operates Banco Popular and other banks in Puerto Rico and the U.S., said Friday its third-quarter profit jumped 71 percent amid continued stable revenue and declining bad loans. Popular reported net income of $47.2 million, or 45 cents per share, in the July-September quarter.
PANAMA CITY-- Anti-riot police used tear gas and fired into the air to disperse protesters in the Caribbean city of Colon who rioted Friday over a new law allowing the sale of state-owned land in the duty-free zone next to the Panama Canal.
WASHINGTON-- Regulators say they have closed two small banks in Florida, bringing to 45 the number of U.S. bank failures this year. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. seized GulfSouth Private Bank, based in Destin, and First East Side Savings Bank, based in Tamarac. GulfSouth had about $159.1 million in assets and $151.1 million in deposits as of June 30.
CINCINNATI-- The U.S. Air Force said Friday it has awarded a $349.7 million contract to General Electric Co.' s aviation division to help develop new aircraft engines with longer range and better performance. The work is expected to be completed by Sept. 30, 2016, and will be used on aircraft after 2020..
The deal would value American Greetings at around $581 million. American Greetings' shares fell 7 cents to close at $16.99 Friday. American Greetings' brands include Carlton Cards, Recycled Paper Greetings and Papyrus.
NEW YORK-- The Defense Department said Friday that United Technologies Corp. received a $335 million contract with the Air Force. United Technologies is receiving orders for the Air Force's Adaptive Engine Technology Development Program. Shares of United Technologies lost $1.24 to close at $77.99 amid a broad market decline.
IRVINE, Calif.-- Edwards Lifesciences Corp. lowered its annual net income guidance on Friday, as it announced third-quarter results, citing disappointing sales of its Sapien heart valve.
LAS VEGAS-- A Japanese billionaire has dropped his campaign to win seats for his allies on the board of Wynn Resorts Ltd., ending a chapter in a feud with casino mogul CEO Steve Wynn. It was a legal setback for Okada, a former Wynn friend and business partner, who once was Wynn Resorts' single largest shareholder.
CRAZY WEATHER: Warm spring weather in the Northeast and Midwest tricked apple trees into budding early this year, and then a late frost damaged the blossoms. CROPS CRIMPED: Crops in apple-producing states like New York and Michigan shrank, falling off as much as 90 percent.
The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. seized GulfSouth Private Bank, based in Destin, Fla.. The failure of GulfSouth Private Bank, which had four branches, is expected to cost the deposit insurance fund $36.1 million. GulfSouth Private Bank is the sixth FDIC- insured institution in Florida to fail this year.