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Dec 28, 2011

Last-minute holiday shopping gives merchants a lift

NEW YORK — The holiday shopping season turned out to be two seasons split by a big lull. A surge in buying in the two weeks before Christmas coupled with a record-breaking Black Friday gave retailers a solid season. The doldrums between the buying binges show how shoppers have learned to wait for the discounts […]

Dec 13, 2011

Best Buy 3rd-quarter profit falls, shares skid

NEW YORK — Electronics retailer Best Buy said Tuesday that its third-quarter net income fell 29 percent as it cut prices in popular categories such as tablets and TVs to drive sales and traffic during the busy holiday season. Its adjusted earnings missed analysts’ expectations, and its shares tumbled 11 percent in midday trading. Best […]

Dec 8, 2011

Higher revenue helps Ciena shrink its 4th-quarter loss

Network equipment maker Ciena Corp. reported a smaller net loss Thursday for its fiscal fourth quarter, helped by higher revenue and lower operating expenses. President and CEO Gary Smith said Linthicum-based Ciena is gaining market share amid the economic downturn. “Our strong fourth quarter financial performance included positive cash flow and a second consecutive quarter […]

Nov 30, 2011

JoS. A. Bank 3Q net income rises, cautious on 4Q

Jos. A. Bank Clothiers Inc.’s fiscal third-quarter net income climbed 19 percent on a 21 percent rise in revenue, the company said Wednesday. The performance topped Wall Street’s expectations but the Hampstead-based men’s clothier cautioned that the fourth quarter has started slower than expected, with revenue at stores open at least a year down in […]

Nov 27, 2011

‘Fracking’ revenue looms large

ANNAPOLIS — Maryland lawmakers are starting to debate how much “severance tax” should be imposed on the natural gas that might be produced from the Marcellus Shale rock formation in Western Maryland. Though it is not clear when, or even whether, Maryland will allow drilling in the Marcellus Shale using the controversial gas extraction method […]

Nov 22, 2011

FDIC: Bank earnings hit highest level in 4 years

WASHINGTON — Bank earnings rose over the summer to their highest level in more than four years, while the number of troubled banks fell for the second straight quarter, federal regulators reported Tuesday. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. said the banking industry earned $35.3 billion in the third quarter. That’s up from $23.8 billion in […]

Nov 17, 2011

Even with tax hikes, transit funds lacking

ANNAPOLIS — A proposal to raise nearly $900 million a year more to spend on Maryland’s transportation needs would fall billions short of goals to pay for three major transit lines and support local projects and other initiatives, state budget analysts said Thursday. That forecast came packaged with a wide range of gloomy fiscal projections […]

Nov 16, 2011

Target’s 3Q profits up 3.7 percent

NEW YORK — Target Corp. reported a 3.7 percent increase in third-quarter profits, helped by solid spending and improvement in its credit card business. The Minneapolis discounter said Wednesday that it earned $555 million, or 82 cents per share, in the three-month period ended Oct. 29. That compares with $535 million, or 74 cents per […]

Nov 15, 2011

Wal-Mart’s 3Q results show U.S. turnaround

NEW YORK — Wal-Mart Stores Inc. got an early Christmas gift: its strategy of offering the lowest prices and shoppers’ favorite goods is starting to work just in time for the holiday shopping season Wal-Mart on Tuesday reported its first quarterly gain in revenue after nine consecutive quarters of declines at its branded U.S. stores […]

Nov 13, 2011

Kevin Fusco: Lost in shuffle, ‘hard’ data showing progress

For the past few years, a distinct divide has existed between Wall Street and Main Street. Some could argue that this separation has helped to create and further the social protests exhibited recently in New York, and now across the globe. What people, and more directly investors, see and feel when they look at the […]

Nov 11, 2011

Top 5: ‘We will be in your face’

More troubles for the organizer of the Baltimore Grand Prix, another round of terminal shuffling at BWI and a drop in casino revenue were among the most-read business stories of the week. Baltimore’s newest hotel and a contentious hearing over a controversial East Baltimore redevelopment round out the Top 5: 1. Baltimore threatens to cut […]

Nov 11, 2011

Stocks jump after Italy passes economic reforms

NEW YORK — Stocks rallied Friday as new governments get ready to take over in Italy and Greece, the two countries at the center of Europe’s debt crisis. Italy’s Senate approved an economic reform bill, opening the way for Premier Silvio Berlusconi to step down. The Dow Jones industrial average is up 266 points, or […]

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