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Yum feeds hungry forecast; Stocks dip

posted 6 Feb 2012, 15:54 by Mpelembe   [ updated 6 Feb 2012, 15:55 ]

Summary of business headlines: Wall Street ends lower; Yum Brands exceeds Wall Street's appetite; Boeing discovers 787 problem; Google, Facebook face Indian censorship.

USA-USCLOSE -Wall Street drifted lower without any catalyst to push stocks higher after blue chips closed near a four-year high last week.

Earnings are not as typically strong as they have been - giving investors another reason to pause.

But after the bell, Yum Brands released tastier-than-expected results. The parent company of KFC, Taco Bell and Pizza Hut beat sales and profit forecasts led by record store growth in China.

Boeing shares were grounded after it said it discovered a problem with the newly launched 787 Dreamliner.The plane maker says it will fix a support structure on the body of the plane, but there is no immediate safety risk. Some investors are worried this will delay a ramp-up in production of a plane that was already three years behind schedule.

First Google had trouble in China, now it's India. Google removed content from its Google search, YouTube and Blogger sites that may be considered religiously offensive. Facebook took a similar step. Both are among the 21 companies ordered by an Indian court to come up with ways to block material considered offensive to Hindus, Muslims, and Christians, or face a crackdown "like China."

Looking at market action: The Dow, S&P500 and the Nasdaq each posted modest losses.

In Europe -the new week began, where the old ended - without a debt renegotiation deal for Greece. Public and private sector unions are planning a massive strike against bailout talks on Tuesday.

As for European equity trading: minor losses for major markets.

Conway Gittens, Reuters