Company News: Facebook, Twitter, Fiat, AT&T, Rite Aid, CVS, Apple, Regal Entertainment, AMC Entertainment
• “Sell” was the status update as Facebook and Twitter released shaky earnings reports. The social media platforms met financial targets, but Wall Street still found reason to worry. At Facebook, costs rose 41 percent as it added 1,200 employees. At Twitter, growth in active users slowed. Within a day, shares of Facebook slid about 6 percent, and Twitter stock fell 10 percent.
• Fiat announced plans to spin off Ferrari just weeks after longtime Ferrari Chairman Luca Cordero di Montezemolo quit over clashes with Fiat CEO Sergio Marchionne. Some 10 percent of the new company will be sold to the public; the remaining shares will be distributed to Fiat shareholders.
• The Federal Trade Commission sued AT&T for allegedly slowing Internet speeds for customers with unlimited data plans. The FTC said the company “throttled” downloads for 3.5 million customers by almost 90 percent. AT&T called the complaint baseless and said it informed customers before reducing speeds.
• Pharmacy chains Rite Aid and CVS rejected Apple’s mobile payment platform within a week of its rollout. The companies disabled the service as well as those of Google and Softcard. Wal-Mart Stores also declined to accept iPhone payments. All three retailers are supporting a competing system that will let them avoid credit card fees and provide them with more consumer data.
• Combined third-quarter revenue at Regal Entertainment and AMC Entertainment, the two largest U.S. cinema companies, declined 12 percent, to $1.3 billion. Only a few of the season’s most-hyped movies became blockbusters. Regal hired Morgan Stanley to explore a possible sale.
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