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Top News & Analysis New York City

  • NEW YORK-- Shares of Sonic Corp. advanced Wednesday after the company said its net income rose 18 percent in its fiscal fourth quarter, helped by tighter cost controls at its drive-in restaurants. THE SPARK: The Oklahoma City company's earnings beat Wall Street expectations.

  • BANGKOK-- Asian stock markets rose Wednesday on better-than-expected earnings from U.S. corporate giants and growing speculation that Spain is finally ready to ask for financial aid.

  • LOS ANGELES-- News Corp. managed to avoid rowdy protests at its annual shareholders meeting Tuesday, but that didn't stop stockholders from voicing complaints about the grip on the company held by founder and CEO Rupert Murdoch and his family.

  • NEW YORK-- Pfizer Inc. said Tuesday a clinical trial showed its anti-smoking treatment Chantix was safe and effective in patients with depression. EU regulators and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration both approved Chantix in 2006. Sales approached $900 million in 2007 but have slipped because of concerns about the drug's side effects.

  • NEW YORK-- Sonic Corp. said Tuesday that its net income rose 18 percent in its fiscal fourth quarter despite a slight drop in revenue, partly because of lower sales at company drive-in restaurants. The Oklahoma City company's results beat Wall Street expectations and its shares rose nearly 3 percent in after-hours trading.

  • NEW YORK-- Annaly Capital Management Inc. on Tuesday said its board authorized the real estate investment trust to buy back as much as $1.5 billion worth of its outstanding common stock over a 12- month period. Shares of Annaly rose 15 cents, or about 1 percent, to close at $15.72.

  • In between its founding and its near-death, the company now called Citigroup has played a central role in U.S. financial history. On Tuesday, Corbat was named Citi's new CEO after the abrupt departure of Vikram Pandit, who had led the company through the financial crisis and its aftermath.

  • ABC, NBC and the CW all debuted new dramas last Wednesday to varied receptions. It finished a strong second behind CBS' long-running "CSI: Crime Scene Investigation" at the 10 p.m. ET slot. Despite that showing, long-slumping NBC can boast about its best showing for an early TV season in a decade.

  • Vikram Pandit, who steered Citigroup through the 2008 financial crisis and the choppy years that followed, abruptly left the bank on Tuesday, stepping down as CEO and as a director. The move shocked Wall Street, and Citigroup offered no explanation.

  • NEW YORK-- A Food and Drug Administration advisory panel on Tuesday recommended that the FDA approve NPS Pharmaceuticals Inc.' s experimental bowel drug Gattex. The positive recommendation from the Gastrointestinal Drugs Advisory Committee makes it more likely the FDA will approve Gattex, although does not guarantee approval.

  • ABC, NBC and the CW all debuted new dramas last Wednesday to varied receptions. NBC's " Chicago Fire" was a disappointment in the same time slot. NBC continued its best start in a decade in the ratings.

  • NEW YORK-- Stocks that moved substantially or traded heavily Tuesday on the New York Stock Exchange and Nasdaq Stock Market:. Murphy Oil Corp., up $4.74 at $63.74. Murphy Oil is spinning off its retail gasoline business into a separate company to focus on oil exploration and production.

  • NEW YORK-- In picking Michael Corbat to take over as CEO of Citigroup, the board of directors chose a low-profile veteran of the bank _ a sharp contrast to Vikram Pandit, his suddenly departed predecessor. Corbat, 52, has spent his entire career at Citigroup and its affiliated businesses.

  • There are lots of ways fungus could have gotten inside the Massachusetts compounding pharmacy whose steroid medication has been linked to a lethal outbreak of a rare fungal form of meningitis. Company spokesman Andrew Paven said by email that criminal investigators from the Food and Drug Administration were at the pharmacy in Framingham, Mass., on Tuesday.

  • 2011 net income _ $11.1 billion. Citigroup revenue breakdown in 2011:. Citi Holdings, which manages various Citi assets _ $12.9 billion.

  • NEW YORK-- The new CEO of Citigroup says the departure of Vikram Pandit doesn't mean a change of direction for the bank. Corbat says: "Today's changes do not reflect any desire to alter the strategic direction of Citi, which we believe to be the right one." The chairman of Citi's board, Michael O'Neill, says the decision was Pandit's and there is not "another shoe to drop."

  • NEW YORK-- Experts say there are many ways funguses could have gotten inside the Massachusetts pharmacy at the center of the nation's deadly outbreak of fungal meningitis.

  • Former American Airlines baggage handler Victor Bourne was found guilty last year of charges he used his behind-the-scenes access at New York City's busiest airport to orchestrate the smuggling of more than 330 pounds of cocaine from 2000 to 2009.. District Judge Nicholas Garaufis said at the sentencing in federal court in Brooklyn.

  • PITTSBURGH-- Pennsylvania's Supreme Court heard arguments Tuesday in a natural gas case that could create chaos for major energy companies and thousands of leaseholders. The Powers estate claims that the reference to "minerals" in the old deed gives them part ownership of the natural gas locked in the Marcellus Shale under the property.

  • NEW YORK-- The Coca-Cola Co. and Sanofi are partnering to launch a line of "beauty drinks" in France. The Coca-Cola business unit in France said in a statement that the drinks will be sold in a "small scale pilot" limited to a number of pharmacies in the country.