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U.S. economy cools in fourth quarter, but consumer spending shines

Friday, January 30, 2015 9:37am

Man gets gasoline at a BP station in St. Louis, MissouriBy Lucia Mutikani WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. economic growth slowed sharply in the fourth quarter as weak business spending and a wider trade deficit offset the fastest pace of consumer spending since 2006. The slowdown followed two back-to-back quarters of bullish growth and is likely to be short-lived given the enormous tailwind from lower gasoline prices. Other data on Friday showed consumer sentiment jumped to an 11-year high in January. "We look for strong domestic consumption to continue supporting growth momentum in the coming quarters even as investment suffers due to falling oil prices," said Gennadiy Goldberg, an economist at TD Securities in New York.

Chevron scraps 2015 share repurchase program on low oil prices

Friday, January 30, 2015 9:30am

By Ernest Scheyder WILLISTON, N.D. (Reuters) - Chevron Corp halted its 2015 share repurchase program on Friday, a move designed to conserve cash amid tumbling oil prices and its latest cost-cutting step after slashing capital spending. Chevron repurchased $5 billion worth of shares in 2014. "Given the change in market conditions, we are suspending our share repurchase program for 2015," Chevron Chief Financial Officer Pat Yarrington said on the call. Chief Executive Officer John Watson said Chevron's dividend, currently $1.07 a quarter, remained the "highest priority" for the company's balance sheet.

5 things to know before Obama rolls out his budget Monday

Friday, January 30, 2015 9:26am

FILE - In this March 4, 2014 file photo, copies of President Barack Obama’s proposed budget for fiscal 2015 are set out for distribution by the Senate Budget Committee, on Capitol Hill in Washington. Despite all the hoopla surrounding it, a president's budget is merely a suggestion. That's especially true this year, with Obama delivering his multi-trillion-dollar wish list to a Senate and House run by the opposition. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, File)WASHINGTON (AP) — A quick quiz:

US stock markets mostly lower on mixed US economic data

Friday, January 30, 2015 9:24am

Danny Meyer, center, Founder & CEO of Union Square Hospitality Group, waits for the Shake Shack IPO to begin trading, on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange, Friday, Jan. 30, 2015. Shares of Shake Shack Inc. have more than doubled minutes after they debuted on the stock market Friday.(AP Photo/Richard Drew)New government data showing a slowdown in U.S. economic growth helped pull stocks mostly lower in midday trading Friday. Financial stocks were among the biggest decliners. Investors also were monitoring the latest crop of corporate earnings.

Olympic champ Zaripova faces losing gold in doping ban

Friday, January 30, 2015 9:21am

FILE - In this Tuesday, Aug. 7, 2012 file photo, Russia's Yuliya Zaripova poses with her gold medal for the women's 3000-meter steeplechase during the athletics in the Olympic Stadium at the 2012 Summer Olympics, London. Russian athlete Yulia Zaripova faces losing her gold medal in the 3,000 steeplechase from the 2012 London Olympics after being banned for doping. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum, File)MOSCOW (AP) — In the latest of a slew of Russian doping cases, Yulia Zaripova faces being stripped of her gold medal in the 3,000 steeplechase from the 2012 London Olympics after being banned for a drug violation.