More Spending, Lower Deficit: Gordhan Silences Sceptics – Budget deficit projected at 4,8%, below forecast of 5,5%, with tax breaks of R9,5bn and a new Treasury push to restrain public sector wages. [businessday]
Budget Broadly Welcomed – Political parties and others have broadly welcomed Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan’s proposed 2012/13 Budget tabled in the National Assembly on Wednesday. It exceeds R1 trillion – R1.06 trillion – for the first time ever, with the bulk of spending, R615.7bn, earmarked for social services. Revenue is expected to be about R904.8bn. [fin24]
Apple Defends Rights To iPad Name In Shanghai Court – Apple Inc. defended itself in a local court here Wednesday against allegations that it does not own rights to the iPad trademark in China, a challenge that threatens to prevent the company from selling one of its most popular products in one of its fastest growing markets. [nytimes]
Why Are Retailers Shutting Their Facebook Stores? – Eager to monetize the large followings they had built on Facebook, many large brands set up shop on the social network for the first time last year. Now many of those Facebook stores are closing. A Bloomberg report this weekend pointed out that Gap, J.C. Penney, Nordstrom and GameStop have all opened and closed shops on Facebook within the past year. [mashable]
Veteran War Reporter Killed In Syria – She was instantly recognizable for the eye patch that hid a shrapnel injury — a testament to Marie Colvin’s courage, which took her behind the front lines of the world’s deadliest conflicts to write about the suffering of individuals trapped in war. After more than two decades of chronicling conflict, Colvin became a victim of it Wednesday, killed by shelling in the besieged Syrian city of Homs. [huffers]
Man Does Cocaine In Same Room As Obama – Comedian David Cross has fessed up to rumors that he snorted cocaine at the White House Correspondents’ Dinner in 2009. However, while reports have said that Cross was 40 feet from Barack Obama at the time, Cross corrects that the proximity has been exaggerated. [nypost]
Dow Jones Hits 13,000 – The Dow Jones industrial average crested 13,000 points for the first time since before the financial crisis, but failed to reach the milestone at Tuesday’s close. The blue chip index’s latest surge has been driven by a stream of evidence signaling that the U.S. economy is on the mend. The Dow has risen 20% since Oct. 3. [latimes]
Strauss-Kahn “Pimping” Allegations Gain Momentum – Former IMF chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn has been held in police custody overnight over allegations that he took part in orgies in Paris and Washington with prostitutes paid for by businessmen. Prosecutors said he would be detained on suspicion of “abetting aggravated pimping by an organised gang” and “misuse of company funds.” Nice! [theaus]
Microsoft Whinging About Motorola And Google – Microsoft lodged a formal complaint with the European Union’s competition regulator against Motorola Mobility and its soon-to-be owner, Google, saying Motorola’s aggressive enforcement of patent rights against rivals breaks competition rules. [seattlebiz]
Kruger Buffalo Kills Poacher – A suspected poacher was killed by a buffalo in the Kruger National Park, park authorities said on Wednesday. “A person was killed by a buffalo just north of Punda Maria last night. Apparently there were three men and two of them ran away,” spokesperson William Mabasa said. [news24]
US And North Korea Re-Open Talks – The U.S. and North Korea reopen nuclear talks Thursday that will provide a glimpse into where Pyongyang’s opaque government is heading after Kim Jong Il’s death and test its readiness to dismantle nuclear programs for much-needed aid. [huffpo]
Kate Lets Royal Dog Name Slip – The newest addition to the royal family last December, a dog for Prince William and Kate Middleton, was not the addition that everyone had been hoping for. The black cocker spaniel puppy with big floppy ears first seen publicly trotting next to the royal couple on the shores of North Wales in early January is named Lupo, derived from the Latin word for wolf. Rad! [abcnews]
Plastic Surgery Gives You 10 Years – Advertised as a way to take years off your age, it appears plastic surgery actually does what it claims. Scientists say a nip and tuck could make you seem more than seven years younger. [dailymail]
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