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Thursday, January 31, 2013 - 02:08

Jan. 30 - Summary of business headlines: Ad gains lift Facebook above forecasts; BlackBerry gets new devices and name; Boeing keeps full-year target; Fed signals slowdown as economy shrinks in fourth quarter. Conway G. Gittens reports.

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Wall Street backs down as the U.S. economic recovery muddles along. The Dow, the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq each fell for the second time this week. After the bell, advertising revenues surged 41 percent at Facebook leading to better-than-expected quarterly earnings and sales. Meanwhile, the new BlackBerry 10 finally makes a long-delayed debut. Gone is Research in Motion as the company name - replaced by the well known BlackBerry moniker. There are a lot of positive early reviews but the question remains - can the brand be revived? Avi Greengart of Current Analysis: SOUNDBITE: AVI GREENGART, RESEARCH DIRECTOR, FOR CONSUMER DEVICES, CURRENT ANALYSIS (ENGLISH) SAYING: "We've been waiting and waiting for this product and it is going on sale tomorrow in the U.K. There will be people around the world who watch this launching get excited and go out and buy, but not here." That's because the phone won't go on sale in the U.S. until sometime in March. Boeing is sticking to its full-year forecast and sticking with the troubled battery technology behind the grounding of its 787 Dreamliner. Here's a look at how each stock fared: Facebook -up a bit ahead of their results, U.S. listed shares of the company formerly known as Research in Motion - down 12 percent, Boeing up slightly on higher-than-expected profits. On to the Federal Reserve now, policymakers concluded their two-day meeting admitting the economy has stalled. And that comes on the back of new data showing the economy shrank at the end of last year, the first contraction since the 2007-2009 recession. The main drain - mandated cuts of at least $50 billion annually at the Department of Defense. Stephen Fuller, economist and professor at George Mason University. SOUNDBITE: STEPHEN FULLER, ECONOMIST/PROFESSOR, GEORGE MASON UNIVERSITY (ENGLISH) SAYING: "They are laying off their temporary workers. They are not continuing with certain contracts. They are not renewing other contracts, so DOD is already pulling back." Pull back was also the theme in Europe as stocks fell on those weak numbers out of the U.S.

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Thursday, January 31, 2013 - 02:08

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