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Biz Buzz


High-tech startups eye funding

A handful of scientists-turned-entrepreneurs from Long Island will get a chance next month to present their big ideas to investors who fund high-tech startups. The Long Island Capital Alliance yesterday named six research teams and fledgling companies that will present June 8 at the Technology Transfer Capital Forum in Melville. The event connects venture capitalists with scientists from Brookhaven National Laboratory looking to turn their discoveries into businesses. Three of the presenters have already formed fledgling companies, but need funding to take the next step. They include Hybridyne Imaging Technologies Inc., which uses a tiny digital gamma camera to identify prostate cancer while in its early stage. -- Joe Ryan


U.S. jobless claims unchanged

The number of people seeking unemployment benefits was unchanged last week, suggesting modest but steady gains in the job market. The Labor Department said Thursday that weekly unemployment aid applications stayed at a seasonally adjusted 370,000, the same level as the previous week. The four-week average, a less volatile measure, fell from roughly 380,000 to 375,000. Applications for benefits surged in April to a five-month high of 392,000. They have fallen back since then and are near the lowest levels in four years. The decline suggests hiring could pick up in May after slumping in the previous two months.

Berkshire to buy 63 newspapers

Billionaire Warren Buffett's company is making another foray into newspapers, agreeing to buy 63 newspapers from Media General Inc. for $142 million. Berkshire Hathaway Inc. is also extending a loan to Media General and taking a 19.9 percent stake in the company, which will still own 18 TV stations. Media General said on Thursday that the deal includes all of its newspapers except the Tampa Tribune of Florida and smaller newspapers in that market. It's in talks to sell those newspapers to other buyers. Berkshire Hathaway is buying the Richmond Times-Dispatch in Virginia, the Winston-Salem Journal in North Carolina and the Morning News of Florence, S.C., among others. Berkshire Hathaway has owned the Buffalo News for decades and bought its hometown paper, the Omaha World-Herald, in December.

Tariffs put on China solar panels

The Obama administration moved Thursday to impose stiff new tariffs on solar panels made in China, finding that Chinese companies are improperly flooding the U.S. market with government-subsidized products. The Commerce Department said Chinese producers had dumped solar cells and panels in the United States at margins ranging from 31 percent to nearly 250 percent. If the preliminary ruling is upheld, tariffs averaging 31 percent could be imposed on Chinese solar-panel imports. The tariffs would be in addition to fees ranging from 2.9 percent to 4.73 percent imposed in March after the department found that China is improperly subsidizing its solar manufacturers. The new tariffs could ratchet up trade tensions between the two countries.

Dimon willing to testify in D.C.

JPMorgan Chase chief executive Jamie Dimon is willing to testify at a congressional hearing this spring on the bank's $2 billion trading loss. Chairman Sen. Tim Johnson, a South Dakota Democrat, says he has invited Dimon to testify about the loss at the nation's largest bank. Since Dimon acknowledged the misstep, Democratic lawmakers have stepped up calls for stricter oversight of major financial firms. A spokeswoman for the bank says Dimon will accept the invitation. Dimon this week apologized to the bank's shareholders for the loss. -- AP


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