Business news briefs
to lucky school
ZAGG, a Utah company that makes and sells accessories for mobile devices, has presented a $25,000 technology package to Old Center Elementary School in Nashville. The school, chosen at random from 700,000 entries, was the winner of ZAGG's first Tech for Schools Giveaway. The donation consisted of items for an updated technology lab, including cameras and iPad 2s.
KeyBank drive to
aid Road Home
KeyBank Utah is inviting its clients and community members to bring donations of warm clothing and personal hygiene products to its Salt Lake area branches until Dec. 19. The donations will be used to support The Road Home and its efforts to help Utah's homeless. The bank will deliver the donations to The Road Home during its annual Holiday Radio-a-Thon on Dec. 20.
U.S. Bancorp debt
U.S. Bancorp, the parent of U.S. Bank Utah that operates 70 branches in the state, saw its senior debt downgraded by Moody's Investors Service as record-low interest rates pressure its earnings. The senior debt rating was lowered to A1 from Aa3, reflecting "the inescapable challenges that even a well-managed and diverse banking franchise faces,"Moody's said.
UN: Worker wage
The U.N. labor office said workers' wages are growing at levels well below those before the global financial crisis, and actually fell in developed countries last year. The International Labor Organization says global monthly wages grew 1.2 percent in 2011, down from 3 percent in 2007, a year before the global financial crisis that led governments to bail out banks and take over insolvent companies.
Investor to acquire
Aston Martin stake
Aston Martin, the British maker of the sports cars featured in James Bond movies, will sell a 37.5 percent stake to private equity fund Investindustrial to shore up its finances. Investindustrial will buy the stake in the automaker for $246 million. The agreement implies an enterprise value of $1.22 billion for the car maker.
Fed probe roils
Big Lots stock
Big Lots Inc. said it received a grand jury subpoena from a U.S. Attorney requesting information on trades by CEO Steven Fishman. The Wall Street Journal said the FBI and prosecutors were reportedly looking at whether Fishman sold $10.3 million in stock based on an insider's knowledge of a coming negative corporate announcement. Shares fell 5.7 percent Friday, to $28.18.
U.S. retail sales of new video-game hardware, software and accessories fell 11 percent in November. It was the 12th straight month of declining sales. But last month represented the smallest decrease so far this year, helped in part by the launch of Nintendo's new console, the Wii U. Research firm NPD Group says sales slipped to $2.55 billion from $2.87 billion a year ago.