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LOS ANGELES Japanese stocks saw their opening gains vanish in early Friday trading, with the Nikkei Stock Average down 0.2% at 9,385.92 after rising 1% the previous day, and the Topix also off 0.2%. A slightly stronger yen helped limit gains, while a better-than-expected result for October industrial production offered little help. Many blue-chip electronics and industrial names saw losses, with TDK Corp. down 1.3%, Pioneer Corp. 2.6% lower, and Renesas Electronics Corp. dropping 2%. On the upside, Hitachi Ltd. rose 2.4%, and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd. gained 1.9%, after the two companies announced a deal to merge their thermal-power [...]

Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp is expected to announce this week that it will acquire a 49 stake in the YES Network from the New York Yankees baseball team and its partners, in a deal that would value the sports channel at $ 3 billion, a person with knowledge of the talks told Reuters. The deal is structured to allow News Corp to eventually acquire control of the channel, which broadcasts Yankees baseball and Brooklyn Nets basketball games to 15 million subscribers, said the person, who spoke on condition of anonymity because the deal has not been announced. News Corp will [...]

Goldman Sachs Group Inc is due to name new partners on Wednesday, but the benefits of receiving the title are not what they used to be. Goldman is the only major Wall Street bank to retain this relic from its private partnership days, when senior investment bankers owned the firm, contributing capital and taking home their share of profits. Employees with the “partner” title still get a bigger portion of the bonus pool than other employees, and more say in Goldman’s strategic direction. But changes to the compensation structure have made the partner paycheck less lucrative, because more of their [...]

MELBOURNE Shareholders in Consolidated Media Holdings Ltd voted in favor of a A$ 2 billion ($ 2.07 billion) takeover offer from Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp, giving News Corp a greater share of Australia’s pay-TV market. The deal will double the stake of News Corp’s Australian unit in dominant pay-TV operator Foxtel to 50 percent and give it 100 percent of content provider Fox Sports, boosting its pay-TV exposure at the same time as it cuts back print operations. The board of Consolidated Media had backed the offer. (Reporting by Victoria Thieberger; Editing by John Mair)

The headquarters of News Corporation in Manhattan, New York.News Corp has approached Pearson about a possible cash offer for its Penguin books businessThreatens to derail talks about an all-share merger between Penguin and Random House division(Financial Times) — News Corp has approached Pearson about a possible cash offer for its Penguin books business, threatening to derail talks about an all-share merger between Penguin and Bertelsmann’s Random House division.Bertelsmann, News Corp and Pearson, which owns Penguin and the Financial Times, declined to comment. One person familiar with the situation said an approach had been made “at the highest level” of Pearson, [...]

Microsoft Corp (MSFT) is launching its own news operation as part of its new-look MSN website when Windows 8 launches later this month. The world’s largest software company is making a “big, multi-million dollar investment” to create a “decent-sized media operation,” said Bob Visse, general manager, MSN Product Management Group. Microsoft sold its 50 percent stake in news website MSNBC.com in July to longtime partner NBCUniversal, now majority-owned by Comcast Corp. MSNBC’s newsroom at Microsoft’s campus in Redmond, Washington is being wound down, while MSN builds up a news team at its nearby Bellevue offices. MSN will chiefly aggregate news [...]

LONDON Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp has hired a senior official from the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and a former federal prosecutor to lead new compliance units, the Financial Times reported on Monday. Gerson Zweifach, News Corp’s general counsel and new chief compliance officer, is set to announce five appointments on Monday, the FT said. They include John McCoy, the associate regional director of the SEC’s enforcement arm in Los Angeles, and Brian Michael, a former federal prosecutor for the U.S. Attorney’s Office in New York. News Corp had moved to a more centralized compliance structure with five officers reporting [...]

SAN FRANCISCO Shares of Audience Inc. crashed Friday morning, losing more than two-thirds of their value to fall to $ 6.16 following a warning by the company that Apple will not be using its voice-processing chip technology in its next iPhone, which is expected to be announced next week. Audience, which went public in May at $ 17 per share, was downgraded by J.P. Morgan, Credit Suisse, Deutsche Bank and Pacific Crest on the news. All four brokers underwrote the IPO. “This news comes as a surprise to us, with the likely launch of the iPhone 5 only a week [...]

LOS ANGELES Japanese stocks moved higher early Wednesday, with deal news helping some shares. The Nikkei Stock Average added 0.2% to 9,055.40, with the Topix up 0.3%. Sharp Corp. jumped 4.7% as Kyodo News reported Taiwan’s Hon Hai Precision Industry Co. would finalize its investment in the company this week, and as Sharp said it would offer voluntary retirement to about 2,000 workers. Hon Hai also helped more shares of NEC Corp. , which added 4.7% after Hon Hai chief Terry Gou said his company had a deal to purchase some patents from the Japanese firm. Meanwhile, shares of Renesas [...]

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