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Business

Tuesday business briefs

Kraft's hostile bid to buy

Cadbury hits a roadblock

Kraft Foods Inc.'s hostile bid for Cadbury Plc grew more contentious Tuesday as Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway sternly warned against the deal, even as Kraft sweetened its offer. Kraft plans to sell its North American frozen pizza business, whose brands include Tombstone and DiGiorno, to Nestle SA for $3.7 billion, and use the proceeds to raise the cash share of its bid for British candy maker Cadbury. Berkshire Hathaway, Kraft's largest shareholder, said Tuesday it voted against Kraft's proposal to issue shares to finance part of the $16.5-billion bid, saying it was worried it gave Kraft a "blank check" to raise the bid even higher. Buffett has said Kraft's prior offers were adequate for Cadbury. Nestle, the world's largest food company, also declared it is not bidding for Cadbury, as some analysts had speculated.

Hedge-fund insider profits

now $36M, prosecutors say

Prosecutors say they will file new charges against hedge fund operator Raj Rajaratnam as they double the amount of profits they say he reaped from insider trading. The government filed papers Tuesday in federal court in Manhattan saying it will bring a superseding indictment against the billionaire. Prosecutors say they now believe Rajaratnam's illegal profits from insider trades were at least $36 million.

FCC urged to expand radio

spectrum for wireless services

The Obama administration is calling on federal regulators to make more radio spectrum available for wireless Internet services so they can compete with broadband plans provided by the major phone and cable companies. The National Telecommunications and Information Administration said in a recent letter to the Federal Communications Commission that wireless connections offer the best hope for injecting new competition into the duopoly market for broadband services in the United States. The FCC is drafting a plan for bringing affordable high-speed Internet access to all Americans. That plan, mandated by last year's stimulus bill, is due next month.

Overstock.com bows to PETA, pulls some exotic listings

Overstock.com Inc. has stopped selling watchbands, shoes and luggage made from the skins of exotic animals. The Salt Lake City-based Internet retailer announced Monday that it pulled listings involving items with alligator, lizard, ostrich, stingray, eel, shark and kangaroo skin from its Web site. The group People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals took credit for pushing Overstock to reverse course. In a statement, Overstock chief executive Patrick Byrne thanked PETA for "informing us of these issues."

Reports cloud economic

picture; stocks end mixed

Investors turned cautious on 2010's second trading day as two reports on November - factory orders were up, pending homes sales down - sent mixed signals on the recovery. Stock indexes ended mixed Tuesday: The Dow industrials slipped 11.94, or 0.1 percent, to 10,572.02; the Standard & Poor's 500 index rose 3.53, or 0.3 percent, to 1,136.52; the Nasdaq composite index edged up 0.29, or 0.1 percent, to 2,308.71. From wire reports

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