House of Representatives leader says US should be open to second economic stimulus

House of Representatives majority leader, Steny Hoyer said U.S. leaders should be open to the possibility of a second stimulus package to help the economy get out of the recession and back on track as the current recession continues to cause job losses. Last month employers shed some 467,000 jobs, which sent the unemployment rate up to 9.5 percent, the highest in nearly 26 years.

U.S. credit card delinquencies reach all-time high following soaring job loss numbers

Consumers are increasingly failing to meet credit card payments as they battle high unemployment rates and a shrinking economy which has left many cash strapped. Delinquencies on the value of all card debt soared to a record 6.60 percent from 5.52 percent in the fourth quarter.

Missing Rio Tinto sales team arrested in China

For iron ore sales people from Australian mining company Rio Tinto were arrested in China, an unidentified Australian source told the Sydney Morning Herald on Monday in a report published today. The Herald confirmed with Australia’s Department of Foreign Affairs that an Australian man had been detained since Sunday and that his family had been informed. No reason for the arrests was given. The other three people held Chinese passports, according to the report. A spokesman for Australia’s government told the Financial Times its embassy in Beijing is trying to confirm the reports and is “seeking urgent consular access to him.”

China automaker sees big role for Opel on Mainland

There is no official announcement yet, but details of a Chinese automaker’s plans to acquire General Motors’ Opel brand have been seen by several media outlets. Reuters and the Wall Street Journal reported today that Beijing Automotive’s (BAIC) non-binding offer last week would use the Opel brand to sell nearly half a million cars in China and become a major player in China by 2015, according to Reuters. It also proposes a plant closure in Germany. BAIC would have a 51 percent stake and GM would have a 49 percent stake in the new company.

Microsoft Is Said to Be in Talks to Settle EU Cases

Microsoft Corp., which has been fined 1.68 billion euros ($2.34 billion) in European Union antitrust cases, is in preliminary talks to settle two additional probes before EU Competition Commissioner Neelie Kroes leaves office, four people familiar with the negotiations said, according to Bloomberg.

World leaders clash with India and China on goal to cut greenhouse gas emissions

Leaders from the members of the Major Economies Forum held in La Maddalena, Italy, tried to persuade China and India today to agree to a common goal to cut greenhouse gas emissions - linked to climate change - by 2050 but the nations have opposed the idea.

Energy prices to rise: EIA

Crude oil prices are forecasted to increase to an average of nearly $70 per barrel in 2009 compared to their current prices, according to a July short-term energy outlook report from the Energy Information Administration. Last year, oil was priced at an average of $99.57 per barrel in 2008. The EIA expects gasoline prices will average $2.36 per gallon this year.

U.S antitrust regulators approve Nokia-Nortel deal

U.S. antitrust regulators have approved a Nokia Siemens bid for a portion of Canada's bankrupt Nortel Networks Inc, the Federal Trade Commission said on Tuesday.

Gmail and other Google apps finally leave 'beta' after 5 years

Google Calendar, Google Docs and Google Talk were all stripped of their beta tags on Tuesday as Google upgraded the pieces of its Google Apps Premier Edition (GAPE) suite to the status of a finished product.

Hospital industry avoids deeper cuts, reaches $155 billion cost savings deal with White House

The White House on Wednesday will announce a deal with the hospital industry to cut costs by $155 billion over 10 years, an unidentified health care lobbyist familiar with the negotiations told Bloomberg. An anonymous government official confirmed the announcement to Bloomberg adding that by negotiating, the industry avoided deeper cuts that the administration wanted.