Afternoon Roundup: Today's Top Stories
AtThe Motley Fool, we know our readers like to be informed. We have scouted out today's most relevant news items and brought them to you all on one page. We hope you find this midday edition informative and useful.
After employers became wary of the success of the recovery, employment unexpectedly stagnated, holding the jobless rate at 9.1%. The employment data took a hit on the stock market during early morning trading with most indexes falling by 2%. The Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped 1.57% or 180.08 points, while the S&P 500 fell by 1.76% and the Nasdaq fell by 1.58%. President Barack Obama is scheduled to give a speech on Thursday where he will unveil his job recovery program. Read more atBloombergandReuters.
Years after economic downturn, banks continue to struggle with liabilities from their faulty mortgages. Now the government agency overseeing Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac is preparing to sue banks for having misrepresented the mortgages they were selling. The Federal Housing Finance Agency suits will be aimed at Bank of America (NYS: BAC) , JPMorgan (NYS: JPM) , Goldman Sachs (NYS: GS) , and Deutsche Bank (NYS: DB) , among others. The suits will argue that banks that assembled the mortgages and later sold them failed to follow proper procedure. Fannie and Freddie lost more than $30 billion, much of which came from taxpayers. The suits are expected to be filed sometime in the next week. Read more atThe New York Times.
On Thursday, after a high-profile copyright trial against SAP AG (NYS: SAP) , the judge threw out a $1.3 billion verdict against Oracle (NAS: ORCL) . The decision is expected to result in a new trial to determine damages unless Oracle takes the $272 million suggested by the judge.
The trial began when Oracle sued SAP over allegedly developing a master plan to steal patents and for ducking a subpoena. Four weeks into the trial, SAP admitted one of its subsidiaries, TomorrowNow, illegally downloaded Oracle's software. The jury then came up with the $1.3 billion verdict based on how much SAP would have had to pay if it had bought the patents from Oracle. The judge considered the reasoning illogical and the amount too high for the evidence.
The judge's repeal is Oracle's second piece of bad news this week. As reported by The Wall Street Journal, the company is being looked into by U.S. authorities on anti-bribery suspicions in some of the deals it did overseas. Read more atThe Wall Street Journal.
Even if AT&T (NYS: T) wins the lawsuit with the Department of Justice over its $39 billion deal to buy T-Mobile, its obstacles may not end there. AT&T would still have to face the Federal Communications Commission, which has also been critical of the union. Though the two agencies are different entities, the FCC worked with the Department of Justice to bring the initial lawsuit. While the Justice Department examines competition issues, the FCC will evaluate if the deal is in the consumer's best interest. Though analysts are skeptical the deal will go through, they have taken into account AT&T's alliances in Washington. In 2010, the company spent $15 million on lobbying and $11.7 million so far this year. Read more atThe Wall Street Journal.
So there you have it, the top financial stories for this afternoon. If you are interested in getting all the news and commentary on these stocks sign up to My Watchlisthere-- it's free!
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At the time this article was published Michelle Zayed doesn't own any stocks mentioned.The Motley Fool owns shares of Bank of America, Oracle, and JPMorgan Chase.Motley Fool newsletter serviceshave recommended buying shares of AT&T. Try any of our Foolish newsletter servicesfree for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe thatconsidering a diverse range of insightsmakes us better investors. The Motley Fool has adisclosure policy.