Standard & Poor's Monday boosted its expectations for losses on risky loans backing U.S. mortgage securities to as much as 40 percent, suggesting a darkened outlook for the troubled housing market. According to a S&P report the more dire assessment is likely to significantly impact bonds originally carrying AAA ratings.

Less profitable skies as airlines report dropping June traffic
Airlines in the U.S. saw traffic slip in June compared with last year as the tough economy continues to hit airlines. American, United, American Eagle, AirTran, Alaska Airlines, Horizon, and Canada’s WestJet reported falling figures for revenue passenger miles ranging from 2.6 percent to 8.1 percent.

Judge approves sale to New GM
A Federal bankruptcy judge on Sunday evening has approved a sale to the U.S. government, and some smaller stakeholders that will let Old GM sell only its best assets to New GM, opening up the way for a smaller General Motors Corp. to emerge from bankruptcy. The decision had been opposed by some investors in GM, however the judge said the only other option would have been to liquidate all the assets of the firm.

 DOJ may bust up AT&T's exclusive deal with Apple's iPhone
The Department of Justice has begun an initial review of the U.S. telecommunications industry to determine whether the two dominant players - AT&T and Verizon, which together control 90% of the U.S.'s landlines and 60% of its 270 million wireless subscribers - are abusing the market power they have amassed in recent years.

Fitch cuts California's government bond rating
California's long-term general obligation bonds had their rating cut by Fitch Ratings on Sunday from A- to BBB due to state's budget and cash flow crisis. California faces a $26.3 billion budget deficit for its fiscal year that began on July 1.

Ex-Goldman programmer bail set at $750,000
Federal police are holding a former Goldman Sachs computer programmer accused of stealing secret trading codes from the investment bank. His bail is set at $750,000.

Facebook 2009 revenue pegged at $500 Million
Netscape founder Marc Andreessen said in an interview that he expects Facebook's revenue to be in excess of $500 million in 2009, and estimates that in five years, it'll be well into the billions.

Microsoft warns of serious computer security hole
Microsoft Corp. has taken the rare step of warning about a serious security vulnerability it hasn't fixed yet. It affects Internet Explorer users whose computers run the Windows XP or Windows Server 2003 operating software, the company said Monday.

Rio Tinto sells food packaging division for $1.2 billion
Mining giant Rio Tinto sold its food packaging business to Bemis Co for $1.2 billion, a move which comes just after the miner completed a $15.2 billion rights offering to raise funds to pay off debts. The sale of Alcan Packaging Food Americas comes as Rio Tinto looks to shrink the number of assets it acquired when it bought Alcan Inc. last year. Rio Tinto has announced $3.7 billion in divestments so far this year.