Comcast and Credit Suisse report positive third-quarter results, but Eli Lilly sees depressed numbers. Jobless claims rise slightly, and another man gets onto the White House lawn. Here are the top news stories for Oct. 23, 2014.
Jobless Claims Remain Low
A slight increase in jobless claims last week was reported by the Labor Department, which noted that the total number remains well below the 300,000 mark, which is an indication of a healthy labor market. Claims for state unemployment benefits increased 17,000 to a seasonally adjusted total of 283,000 for the week ended Oct. 18. Prior to last week, claims had dropped for three consecutive weeks. The four-week moving average of claims fell 18,260 to 281,000, the lowest level for that statistic since May of 2000. The number of people still receiving benefits after an initial claim fell 38,000 to 2.35 million for the week ended Oct. 11.
Another White House Jumper
Wednesday night, a 23-year-old man from Maryland climbed the fence protecting the front of the White House but was quickly apprehended on the North Lawn by Secret Service agents and their K-9 units. The man named Dominic Adesanya of Bel Air, Maryland went over the fence after 7 p.m. Easter time Wednesday but was swiftly corralled by uniformed agents and security dogs. Adesanya was unarmed. President Barack Obama was in the White House when the incident took place. Two dogs required treatment for injuries sustained during the incident.
Credit Suisse Tops Projections
Zurich-based Credit Suisse Thursday reported third-quarter net profit well above the forecasts of analysts thanks to increase revenue. Profit for the quarter ending Sept. 30 was 1.025 billion Swiss francs, which translates to $1.073 billion, against a projection of 810 million francs analysts had predicted. The company was coming off a steep loss in the second quarter as a result of a large fine paid to the United States.
Comcast Has Good Show
Revenues for Comcast increased to $16.79 billion in the third quarter, a per-share earnings of 73 cents, up from 65 cents a share one year earlier. Revenues increased $640 million over one year ago. Comcast awaits a decision by the Federal Communications Commission on its proposed merge with Time Warner cable, as the FCC tries to determine what to do with highly confidential documents related to the agreement between the two companies. The FCC is also holding on to its decision about a merger between AT&T and DirecTV.
Eli Lilly Earnings Depressed
U.S. drugmaker Eli Lilly reported quarterly earnings dropped 58 percent due to special charges and generic competition against its depression drug Cymbalta. Earnings for the third quarter were $501 million, or 47 cents a share, compared to $1.20 billion, or $1.11 a share, last year. During the reporting quarter, sales fell 16 percent to $4.88 billion, but did top Wall Street predictions of $4.83 billion in sales.
Drugmakers seek Legal Ebola Protections
The World Health Organization Thursday will consider a request from officials of the world’s largest drugmakers to offer indemnity to the companies for possible problems stemming from the use of experimental Ebola vaccines. The meeting in Geneva is expected to seek information about whether governments can protect drug companies from legal issues related to the use of swiftly manufactured vaccines against the Ebola disease. The WHO meeting will include industry executives, representatives from member countries as well as countries affected by the Ebola outbreak, as well as drug regulators. There is no proven vaccine against Ebola, but drug companies have been urged by WHO to get experimental treatments on line to see if they have an effect on the disease.