Apple has agreed to give more than $100 million in iTunes Store credits to settle a lawsuit alleging that the iPhone and iPad maker improperly charged kids for playing games on their mobile devices.
The federal case centers on allegations that Apple didn’t create adequate parental controls to prevent children from buying extra features while playing free games on iPhones and iPads in 2010 and 2011.
Apple has agreed to award an iTunes credit of $5 to each of the estimated 23 million accountholders who may have been affected. Parents could receive more if they can show their bills exceeded $5. If the charges exceeded $30, cash refunds will be offered.
• JPMorgan Chase will eliminate as many as 19,000 jobs in mortgages and community banking through 2014 as chief executive officer Jamie Dimon trims expenses. The lender, employing about 259,000 people at the end of December, will cut 13,000 to 15,000 jobs in its mortgage unit and 3,000 to 4,000 in community banking, excluding home lending, through the end of next year, the company said.
• Best Buy cut 400 jobs at its headquarters as chief executive officer Hubert Joly works to reduce costs. The cuts and other actions will eliminate about $150 million in selling, general and administrative expenses, the company said.
• Home Depot said its fourth-quarter net income surged 32 percent, beating expectations, helped by strong U.S. sales and the cleanup related to Superstorm Sandy. Home Depot also said it will buy back $17 billion of its common stock and boosted its quarterly dividend 34 percent.
• Macy’s reported a fourth-quarter profit that beat Wall Street expectations as its strategy of tailoring merchandise to local markets paid off during the holiday season. The department store chain, which also operates Bloomingdale’s stores, said it earned $730 million, or $1.83 per share, for the period ending Feb. 2. That compares with $745 million, or $1.74 per share, a year earlier, when the company had more outstanding shares. Revenue was $9.35 billion, up from $8.72 billion a year earlier. Analysts expected a profit of $1.99 per share on revenue of $9.35 billion.
• Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia’s fourth-quarter net income slid 74 percent as the company continues to struggle with weak results at its publishing and broadcasting divisions. The company earned $1.1 million, or 2 cents per share, for the three months ending Dec. 31. Revenue declined 9 percent, to $56.4 million from $61.7 million, due mostly to lower revenue at its publishing and broadcasting units.
DuPont has begun developing hybrid wheat varieties to accelerate yield gains in the world’s most planted crop.
Hybrid wheat technology has been added at the first phase of a five-step research and development pipeline at DuPont’s Pioneer seed unit, the company said.
Banks earned $34.7 billion in the last three months of 2012, up from $25.4 billion a year earlier and the highest for a fourth quarter since 2006, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. reported.
Sixty percent of banks reported improved earnings from the fourth quarter of 2011, the agency said.
| Star news services