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Business briefs

Median home prices rise in many U.S. cities during 2Q

Home prices rose in nearly two-thirds of U.S. cities this spring as buyers took advantage of tax incentives that gave the struggling housing market a temporary jolt. The median sales price for previously occupied homes rose compared with last year in 100 out of 155 metropolitan areas tracked in the April-to-June quarter, the National Association of Realtors said Wednesday. That compares with 91 out of 152 cities in the January-to-March quarter. Fourteen cities had double-digit price increases. In metropolitan New York, including Long Island, all of the city and several counties in New Jersey, the median price rose 3.7 percent to $393,000. But the boost to the housing market in the second quarter faded shortly after tax credits expired at the end of April.

Macy's net income soars at expense of retail rivals

Cincinnati-based Macy's Inc.'s net income surged in the second quarter. Macy's boosted its profit outlook and increased its forecast for a key revenue measure as it takes market share from rivals such as J.C. Penney Inc. The chain said Wednesday that it posted net income of $147 million, or 35 cents per share, for the period ended July 31. That compares with $7 million, or 2 cents per share, in the same period last year. Revenue rose 7.2 percent to $5.54 billion. For the quarter, revenue at stores opened at least a year increased 4.9 percent. Macy's shares rose $1.14 Wednesday to close at $20.52.

Job market stale as openings fall for second straight month

Company job openings fell for the second straight month in June, a sign that hiring isn't likely to pick up in the coming months. Wednesday's report, known as the Job Openings and Labor Turnover survey, or JOLTS, suggests that won't change anytime soon. The survey counts job openings on the last day of the month. The Labor Department says job openings at businesses fell to 2.54 million in June from 2.6 million in May. Overall openings were unchanged, at 2.9 million, as government openings ticked up. The government figures have been distorted in recent months by the ending of hundreds of thousands of temporary census jobs.

- From wire reports

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