General Motors selling
Saab got a new life Tuesday as General Motors Co. agreed to sell the Swedish car brand to the small Dutch luxury carmaker Spyker Cars NV. Under the deal, GM will get $74 million in cash plus $326 million worth of preferred shares in Saab. GM will get "other considerations," which it did not specify. The Swedish government is also ready to guarantee a loan of up to $550 million from the European Investment Bank. The deal is a coup for Spyker and a lifeline for Saab, which has lost money for years under GM's ownership and was slated for liquidation. But it's also a huge challenge for Spyker, which sold only 23 cars in the first half of 2009. The 11-year-old company has yet to make a profit. Saab's U.S. sales last year amounted to only 8,680, down 59 percent from 2008. Saab has around 3,500 employees in Sweden.Stocks give up advance as
traders mull bank regulationStocks gave up a healthy advance and closed slightly lower yesterday as investors suffered another bout of anxiety over President Barack Obama's plan to regulate banks. The drop was the market's fifth in seven days, and the fact that it came shortly before the closing bell showed how uneasy investors are. The Dow Jones industrial average fell 2.57 points, or less than 0.1 percent, to 10,194.29. The Standard & Poor's 500 index slid 4.61, or 0.4 percent, to 1,092.17. The Nasdaq composite index dropped 7.07, or 0.3 percent, to 2,203.73.U.S. bans texting while driving
for some commercial driversThe Transportation Department said Tuesday it is prohibiting truck and bus drivers from sending text messages on hand-held devices while operating commercial vehicles. The prohibition, which applies to drivers of interstate buses and trucks over 10,000 pounds, is effective immediately, the department said in a statement. Truck and bus drivers who text while driving commercial vehicles may be subject to civil or criminal penalties of up to $2,750, the department said. Trucking and bus industry officials said they support the texting ban. "A lot of our members already have policies in place. It's just safe and smart," said American Bus Association President Pete GenerPantuso.
eBay axes listing fees but will
take cut of final selling price
eBay hopes to lure more sellers by essentially doing away with listing fees for people who occasionally auction items on its site. Instead it will take a cut of the final selling price. eBay has tinkered with its fee structure in recent years in hopes of improving the experience people have on its site and reinvigorating its growth. Changes like the ones announced yesterday are meant to encourage more people to list items for sale. - AP