Consumers’ confidence fell in October to the lowest it’s been since March 2009 when the U.S. was in the middle of a deep recession, according to a report by a private research group released on Tuesday. The New York-based Conference Board said that its Consumer Confidence Index dropped more than six points to 39.8 in October, down from a revised 46.4 in September. October’s reading marked the lowest point since March 2009 when it was at 26.9. Economists surveyed by FactSet had expected a reading of 47. A reading above 90 indicates the economy is on solid footing.
Delta’s small profit pushes down stock
Higher fuel prices and weak passenger traffic caused Delta to post a smaller-than-expected profit in the third quarter. The results pushed down the Atlanta-based company’s stock price 4 percent in late morning trade Tuesday. Delta expects high fuel prices and economic uncertainty to continue next year. It will cut capacity by as much as 5 percent in the last three months of 2011. Delta Air Lines Inc. reported net income of $549 million, or 65 cents per share, up 50 percent from $366 million, or 43 cents, a year earlier. Revenue rose 10 percent to $9.8 billion.
Netflix shares tank amid backlash
Netflix shares plunged 35 percent Tuesday after the one-time Wall Street favorite revealed a massive departure of subscribers angered by price increases and other questionable changes at the rental service that was created to make entertainment a snap. Netflix revealed late Monday that it ended September with 23.8 million U.S. subscribers. That’s down about 800,000 from June and worse than what the company had hinted at before. In September, the company predicted it will lose about 600,000 U.S. customers. Netflix said it expects more defections in coming months.
Costco declares quarterly dividend
Costco Wholesale Corp. announced on Tuesday that its board of directors declared a quarterly cash dividend on Costco Wholesale common stock of 24 cents per share. It’s payable Nov. 25 to shareholders of record at the close of business on Nov. 11. Costco currently operates 594 warehouses.
Google under pressure to hand over user info
Google is dealing with more government demands to turn over information about its users as more people immerse themselves online. Google received more than 15,600 requests in the January-June period, 10 percent more than the final six months of last year, the company revealed in a report Tuesday. The breakdown provides a country-by-country capsule of Google’s legal sparring with authorities during the first six months of the year. Google included the total number of user accounts targeted, instead of just the number of requests made by police, prosecutors and courts.
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