New rules take aim at "too big to fail" banks, and BlackBerry fights to stay alive. Those and more are what's making business news Wednesday
The major averages posted a fourth straight gain yesterday. The Dow industrials (^DJI) rose 75 points, the S&P 500 (^GPSC) gained 11 and the Nasdaq (^IXIC) rose 19. The S&P is back within one percent of its all-time high, and the Nasdaq closed at its highest level since November of 2000.
Federal regulators are proposing stricter rules on the nation's largest banks to prevent the taxpayer from having to step in with another huge bailout. These banks would be required to double the amount of capital they hold in reserve. JPMorgan Chase (JPM), Morgan Stanley (MS), Citigroup (C) and Goldman Sachs (GS) would feel the biggest effects.
Separately, regulators have designated American International Group (AIG) and General Electric's (GE) GE Capital as the first nonbank financial firms to face greater oversight under the Dodd-Frank financial law.
BlackBerry's CEO, Thorsten Heins, told shareholders that he's open to partnerships and alliances, but didn't elaborate. However, Heins said management needs more time to complete its turnaround. Last month, BlackBerry (BBRY) disappointed investors by posting another loss because of weak demand for its new smartphone. The Canadian company also made official its name change -- to BlackBerry from Research in Motion.
Apple (AAPL) has dropped a lawsuit against Amazon.com (AMZN) over the rights to the name "app store." Apple had claimed that Amazon had infringed on its trademark. Amazon countered by saying the app store name had become generic.
Walt Disney (DIS) might write down $100 million or more on "The Lone Ranger" movie. The Johnny Depp film had a disappointing open and is now expected to fall far short of its production costs.
Tribune Co. says it plans to spin off its struggling newspaper unit into a separate company, to focus on its television business. It owns the Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune and six other daily papers.
And keep an eye on what happens right after 2 p.m. Eastern time. That's when the Federal Reserve releases minutes of its policy meeting from last month.
-Produced by Drew Trachtenberg