Microsoft sees end to Nokia losses, shares rise after hours

A shadow of a man using his mobile phone is cast near Microsoft logo at the 2014 Computex exhibition in TaipeiBy Bill Rigby SEATTLE (Reuters) - Microsoft Corp said it aims to get its loss-making Nokia phone unit to break even within two years, helping its stock rise in after-hours trade. Microsoft's chief financial officer said in a call with analysts that the company plans to take $1 billion in costs out of the Nokia operation and stop its losses by fiscal 2016 - which ends in June 2016 - following massive job cuts announced last week. "The expense guidance around Nokia was much better than feared," said Daniel Ives, an analyst at FBR Capital Markets. "While there is still some heavy lifting ahead, it appears brighter days are on the horizon for Microsoft after a decade of pain and frustration." Microsoft shares hit new 14-year highs over the past week, and were up 1.1 percent at $45.33 after hours.



Perdue defeats Kingston in Georgia Senate runoff

A sign greets voters before they step up to cast their ballot at a polling site, Tuesday, July 22, 2014, in Atlanta. Voters head to the polls on Tuesday to decide the U.S. Senate GOP runoff between Jack Kingston and David Perdue. The winner will face Democrat Michelle Nunn in November. In addition to the high-profile GOP U.S. Senate runoff, voters in Georgia on Tuesday will cast ballots in a number of other races, including four U.S. House runoffs and state school superintendent. (AP Photo)ATLANTA (AP) — Businessman David Perdue has defeated longtime Rep. Jack Kingston in the Republican runoff for Georgia's U.S. Senate nomination, setting up a matchup against Democratic nominee Michelle Nunn that will help determine which party controls the Senate for the final years of the Obama administration.



Abbas-led Palestinian body backs Hamas truce demands in Gaza

Palestinians evacuate a building after what witnesses said were warning Israeli air strikes next to their homes in Gaza CityBy Nidal al-Mughrabi and Dan Williams GAZA/JERUSALEM (Reuters) - The Palestinian decision-making body led by U.S.-backed President Mahmoud Abbas on Wednesday endorsed demands by Hamas for halting Gaza hostilities with Israel, a closing of ranks that may help Egyptian-mediated truce efforts. With Israeli and U.S. encouragement, Egypt has tried to get both sides to hold fire and then negotiate terms for protracted calm in the Palestinian enclave where officials said 624 people, mostly civilians, have been killed in 15 days of fighting. Hamas, the Gaza Strip's dominant Islamists, and other armed factions had baulked at Cairo's offer, saying they wanted assurances of relief from an Israeli-Egyptian blockade and other concessions. The dispute was further complicated by distrust between Egypt under President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi and Hamas.



CEO: Clippers coach to quit if Sterling stays

FILE - In this June 15, 2009, file photo, Richard Parsons, then Chairman of Citigroup, speaks at Time Warner's headquarters in New York. Parsons, the interim CEO of the Los Angeles Clippers, is is expected to be called as a witness Tuesday, July 22, 2014, to support Shelly Sterling's bid to sell the NBA basketball team for $2 billion to former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan, File)LOS ANGELES (AP) — The interim CEO of the Los Angeles Clippers testified Tuesday that coach Doc Rivers told him he will quit if Donald Sterling remains the owner of the team.



A's agree to 10-year lease to stay in Oakland

Oakland Athletics' Josh Donaldson (20) is welcomed after hitting the game-winning three-run home run off Baltimore Orioles' Zach Britton in the ninth inning of a baseball game Friday, July 18, 2014, in Oakland, Calif. Oakland won 5-4. (AP Photo/Ben Margot)OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) — The Athletics have agreed to a 10-year lease extension to stay in Oakland, the team and city officials announced Tuesday.





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