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Nov. 13, 2012 at 2:33 PM
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U.S. markets rise as foreign markets fall

NEW YORK, Nov. 13 (UPI) --

U.S. stocks turned higher Tuesday following simultaneous slumps in Asia and Europe, technology stocks hung back.

In early afternoon trading, the Dow Jones industrial average added 39.86 points or 0.31 percent to 12,854.94.

The Nasdaq was flat, off just 1.88 points or 0.06 percent to 2,902.38.

The Standard and Poor's 500 gained 5.31 points or 0.38 percent to 1,385.34.

The benchmark 10-year treasury was off 1/32, yielding 1.595 percent.

The euro rose to $1.2711 from Monday's $1.2709. Against the yen, the dollar was 79.40 from 79.49 yen.

In Tokyo, the Nikkei 225 index lost 0.18 percent, 15.39 points, to 8,661.05.

In London, the FTSE 100 index recovered lost ground late in the day, adding 18.98 points, 0.33 percent, to 5,786.25.

Business group says uncertainty running high

WASHINGTON, Nov. 13 (UPI) -- Uncertainty among small business owners in a survey taken before the national election hit an all-time high in October, a U.S. trade group said.

The National Federation of Independent Business said the monthly Optimism Index rose 0.3 points in October to 93.1, a slight increase. But the monthly survey of the trade group's members found the percentage of owners "uncertain about whether business conditions will be better or worse in six months was at a record high of 23 percent," the group said.

The mark "eclipsed the pre-recession record of 15 percent," which was set during the Carter administration, which was in 1977-1981, the NFIB said.

The monthly survey included 2,029 responses.

The survey found 22 percent of business owners cited weak sales as a problem, making it the No. 1 problem among small business owners. The net percent of owners reporting higher sales in the past three months is negative 15 percent, the trade group's monthly report said.

Among the respondents, 11 percent reported adding an average of 2.7 workers per firm while 10 percent reduced workers by an average 2.9 workers per firm. The bulk of the respondents indicated no change in their payrolls, the NFIB said.

Canada's Sun Media to cut 500 jobs

MONTREAL, Nov. 13 (UPI) -- Canada's largest newspaper publisher, Sun Media Corp., announced a restructuring Tuesday that will cut about 500 jobs and close two printing plants.

In a statement, Chief Executive Officer Pierre Karl Peladeau said the move was a difficult decision.

"This restructuring is regrettable but warranted by changes in our industry which force us to align our cost structure with the new reality," he said. "We very much regret the impact that this has on employees who are departing our organization and would like to thank them for their contribution."

The company, a subsidiary of Quebecor Media Inc., said it would be closing two printing plants in Ottawa and Kingston, both in Ontario.

Sun Media's website said it is Canada's largest newspaper publisher based on circulation of paid and free newspapers.

It publishes more than 15 million copies each week that include 36 paid-circulation daily newspapers and six free dailies in nine of the 10 largest urban markets in Canada, the site says. It also runs nearly 200 community newspapers as well as English and French television networks.

Sinofsky to depart Microsoft

SEATTLE, Nov. 13 (UPI) -- Microsoft Corp. announced Windows division President Steven Sinofsky would leave the U.S. technology giant effective immediately.

In praise that was less than exuberant, Microsoft Chief Executive Officer Steve Ballmer wrote in a memo to employees he was "grateful for the many years of work that Steven contributed to the company."

The New York Times reported Sinofsky, after 23 years with Microsoft, was often thought to be next in line to replace Ballmer. There were two major glitches in that line of thinking, however. One is that Ballmer has not given any indication that he will retire soon. Secondly, Sinofsky was often seen as an alienating figure in the company, who had difficulty working with others.

In the past year, revenues at the company's lucrative Windows business fell 3 percent, which meant Sinofsky was only paid 60 percent of his 2012 bonus, the Times said.

Forbes Magazine said Tuesday that Julie Larson-Green, program manager for development of Windows 7 and Windows 8, will take Sinofsky's place at the head of the Windows division.

Tami Reller, meanwhile, will keep her position as the firm's chief financial officer and chief marketing officer. She will absorb the responsibilities of the business end of the Windows division, Microsoft said.

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