AP Business NewsBrief at 4:11 a.m. EST
(Associated Press Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) Cyprus lawmakers work on economy-saving planNICOSIA, Cyprus (AP) _ Cypriot authorities are trying to cobble together a plan they hope will convince international lenders to provide the money the country needs to avoid bankruptcy within days. Lawmakers on Friday are meeting to decide the fate of the country's second largest lender Laiki which was hardest hit from its exposure to bad Greek debt.
Crisis in Cyprus threatens EU role and legitimacyBERLIN (AP) _ By rejecting an EU bailout and turning to Russia for help, Cyprus is exposing growing frustration and dwindling solidarity within a bloc that was meant to bring the continent closer together after World War II. The chaos over the rescue plan, which the Cypriot parliament roundly rejected Tuesday, has renewed many of doubts about the legitimacy of the European project _ notably over perceived German dominance and threats to national sovereignty. The extraordinary spectacle of an EU member seeking salvation from the old Cold War enemy has raised deep questions about how far Europe can and will go to take care of its own.
Deal to sell Dell may be about to face competitionSAN FRANCISCO (AP) _ Is Michael Dell's attempt to gain more control over his company about to turn into a financial tug-of-war The answer could come Friday. That's the end of a 45-day period that Dell Inc.'s board of directors set to allow for offers that might top a Feb. 5 deal to sell the personal computer maker to CEO Michael Dell and a group of investors for $24.4 billion.
SKorea misidentifies China as cyberattack originSEOUL, South Korea (AP) _ South Korean investigators say they were wrong when they identified a Chinese Internet address as the origin of a cyberattack that paralyzed tens of thousands of computers at six South Korean companies this week. But they still believe the attack originated from somewhere abroad. Seoul's Korea Communications Commission said Friday that an Internet Protocol address linked to Wednesday's attack actually belonged to a computer at one of the South Korean companies that were hit.
Lion takes on AirAsia with record jet ordersKUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia (AP) _ Indonesia's top discount carrier, which catapulted into the global aviation spotlight with record deals to buy Airbus and Boeing planes, is taking the battle for Asia's budget-minded travelers to the backyard of the airline that helped pioneer low cost flights in the region. Lion Air, hardly known beyond Indonesia until giving Boeing and Airbus their biggest orders ever, made its first foray outside its home market with the launch Friday of Malindo Air in Malaysia. That's the base of AirAsia, which dominates cheap travel in the region.
Asian markets muted amid Cyprus uncertaintyHONG KONG (AP) _ Japanese stocks tumbled Friday as investors were disappointed by a lack of specifics from the new central bank chief on boosting the economy while other Asian markets fluctuated because of uncertainty over Cyprus' troubled bank restructuring. Japan's benchmark Nikkei 225 fell 1.5 percent to 12,446.27 and Hong Kong's Hang Seng lost 0.4 percent to 22,130.08. South Korea's Kospi edged up 0.1 percent at 1,953.16.
What makes SKorea cyberattacks so hard to trace NEW YORK (AP) _ The attacks that knocked South Korean banks and media outlets offline this week appear to be the latest examples of international "cyberwar." But among the many ways that digital warfare differs from conventional combat: There's often no good way of knowing who's behind an attack. South Korean authorities said Thursday that the attack, which shut down scores of cash machines and hampered business, had been traced to an "Internet Protocol" address in China. But that doesn't mean the attack was launched from there. The general assumption in South Korea is that the attack originated in North Korea.
Senate Democrats on track to pass budgetWASHINGTON (AP) _ Democrats controlling the Senate appear on track to pass their first budget in four years, promising a second, almost $1 trillion round of tax increases on top of more than $600 billion in higher taxes on the wealthy enacted in January. The nonbinding but politically symbolic measure would protect safety-net programs for the poor and popular domestic priorities like education, health research and federal law enforcement agencies from cuts sought by House Republicans, who adopted a far more austere plan on Thursday morning.
Google exec urges Myanmar to embrace free speechYANGON, Myanmar (AP) _ Google executive chairman Eric Schmidt on Friday urged Myanmar's government to allow private businesses to develop the country's woeful telecommunications infrastructure, emphasizing the importance of competition and free speech. "Try to keep the government out of regulating the internet," he said to a round of applause from a group of students at a technical university in Yangon. "The answer to bad speech is more speech. More communication. More voices," he said. "If you are a political leader you get a much better idea of what your citizens are thinking about."
Sierra Club blasts new plan to improve frackingPITTSBURGH (AP) _ The Sierra Club and some other environmental groups are harshly criticizing a new partnership that aims to create tough new standards for fracking. The criticism Thursday came a day after two of the nation's biggest oil and gas companies made peace with some national and regional environmental groups, agreeing to go through an independent review of their shale oil and gas drilling operations in the Northeast.
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