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Goldman Sachs dials back rating for Apple

Wed., April 3, 2013

NEW YORK – Goldman Sachs has taken Apple off its list of most highly recommended stocks, joining other analysts in dialing back its expectations for the company.

Goldman analyst Bill Shope said in a client note that the iPhone 5, introduced last fall, hasn’t sold as well as he expected. He says the company now needs some real “hits” among the products it rolls out during the second half of the year.

Shope took the company off Goldman’s “Americas Conviction List,” a list Apple Inc. had been on since December 2010. But he keeps a “Buy” rating for the company.

After a heady decade, Apple’s sales growth is slowing down. It hasn’t unveiled a revolutionary new product since the iPad in 2010.

Gun buyers hit stores across Connecticut

NEWINGTON, Conn. – Customers are packing gun stores around Connecticut, concerned about a bipartisan gun-control agreement reached by state lawmakers that will ban the sale of large-capacity ammunition magazines and more than 100 new types of guns.

The parking lot at Hoffman’s Gun Center and Indoor Range in Newington was full Tuesday morning. Some drivers had to park on the lawn. Inside, customers waited in long lines to purchase what was left.

Nick Viccione, a gun owner from Wallingford, says people are loading up on ammunition and buying “anything semi-automatic.”

The General Assembly is to vote Wednesday on a wide-ranging bill that addresses the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre. In a state with a rich gun manufacturing history, companies say they feel they’re being made into scapegoats. One is considering offers to relocate.

Russian officials must close foreign accounts

MOSCOW – President Vladimir Putin has given Russian officials a three-month deadline to close their foreign bank accounts or face dismissal.

Putin’s decree released Tuesday by the Kremlin obliges officials to file their income declarations by July 1. Putin’s chief of staff, Sergei Ivanov, said they will have to close their bank accounts by that time. Those who have real estate abroad will be required to explain how they could make the purchase, and those who fail will face being ousted.

Putin spokesman Dmitry Peskov emphasized there will be “no untouchables.”

Putin first announced the measure in his state-of-the nation address in December as part of efforts to fight corruption, but the corresponding bills got bogged down in the Kremlin-controlled lower house, so Putin ended up ordering the move by decree.

New Mexico protects space travel companies

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez has signed legislation aimed at saving the state’s quarter-billion-dollar spaceport and retaining Virgin Galactic as its anchor tenant.

Martinez says the new law protecting commercial space travel companies will prevent lawsuit abuse and make it easier for the industry to thrive in New Mexico.

Officials at Virgin Galactic and Spaceport America have been fighting for years to get the legislation enacted, saying commercial space companies have passed over New Mexico in favor of states with more lenient liability exemptions.

Virgin Galactic had hinted last year that it might abandon plans to launch its $200,000-per-person space flights from New Mexico if the bill failed again.


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