Yahoo! Inc. and Google Inc. agreed to delay an Internet-advertising partnership while U.S. regulators investigate whether the deal will hurt competition.
The companies agreed to a “brief” delay while discussions with the Justice Department continue, Yahoo and Google said today in e-mailed statements. Google Chief Executive Officer Eric Schmidt said in August that the partnership would start in early October.
Competitors, consumer advocates and customers questioned whether the partnership would give Google too much control over Web advertising and information. Scrutiny by regulators could limit Google's growth, said Ben Schachter, an analyst at UBS AG. Bloomberg News.
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The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission is investigating the origin of a false report on a CNN citizen journalist Web site that Apple Inc. Chief Executive Officer Steve Jobs had a heart attack and was hospitalized.
The agency is trying to determine whether the iReport.com posting was intended to push down the company's stock price. CNN is cooperating with the SEC's probe, network spokeswoman Jennifer Martin said. The report is “not true,” Apple spokesman Steve Dowling said.
Concern about Jobs's health weighed on shares this year, contributing to a 51 percent drop. The stock swing caused by the erroneous report drew renewed calls for Apple, which has said Jobs's health is a “private matter,” to be more forthcoming, said Jeffrey Sonnenfeld, senior associate dean at Yale University's School of Management. Bloomberg News
Levi Strauss & Co., the world's largest jeans maker, is slimming down the look of its Dockers casual pants after losing touch with the changing tastes of American men.
“We've been keeping the same fits in the marketplace for too long,” Chief Executive Officer John Anderson said in an interview yesterday after San Francisco-based Levi reported U.S. demand for Dockers fell in the nine months through Aug. 24. The brand's new mantra: “Regardless of your shape, we can make you look good,” he said.
Levi plans to emphasize slimmer-fitting styles of Dockers khakis in 100 U.S. stores this year as part of a revamp of the 22- year-old brand, which accounts for about a fifth of annual revenue. The company wants to win back customers from Columbia Sportswear Co. and other rivals. Bloomberg News
Microsoft Corp., the world's largest software maker, will change hiring plans for the year after a review prompted by the U.S. economic slowdown.
“Given the current environment, we are taking the prudent step of reviewing our hiring plans and will make some adjustments as appropriate,” spokesman Lou Gellos said in an e-mailed statement. Redmond, Wash.-based Microsoft still intends to add thousands of new jobs, he said.
Chief Executive Officer Steve Ballmer said last week that demand for software might be hurt by the U.S. financial crisis and that companies may need to rein in spending. Microsoft added 12,694 employees in the year ended June 30, reaching a total of 91,259. Bloomberg News