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Dec. 14, 2012 at 2:22 PM
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U.S. stocks mostly lower in afternoon trading

NEW YORK, Dec. 14 (UPI) -- U.S. stocks were mostly lower Friday in New York.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average was down up 1.31 points, 0.01 percent, to 13,172.03 in midafternoon trading.

The Standard and Poor's 500 index was down 2.07 points, 0.15 percent to 1,417.38.

The tech-heavy Nasdaq composite index was down 14.79 points, or 0.49 percent, to 2,977.37. Concern about Apple's growth weighed on technology shares, analysts said.

The U.S. Labor Department said the cost of living fell 0.3 percent in November, slightly higher than forecasts. The Federal Reserve said U.S. industrial production was up 1.1 percent last month, also higher than expected, factories resumed production following Hurricane Sandy.

London's FTSE 100 was down 7.85 points, 0.13 percent, to 5,921.76.

Japan's Nikkei average closed down 5.17 points, 0.05 percent, to 9,737.56.

The benchmark 10-year U.S. Treasury note was up 5/32 to yield 1.717 percent.

The yen was trading at 83.42, down from Thursday's 83.65. The euro rose to $1.3158 from Thursday's $1.3077.

CPI declines 0.3 percent for November

WASHINGTON, Dec. 14 (UPI) -- The Consumer Price Index declined 0.3 percent in November on a seasonally adjusted basis, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics said Friday.

The gasoline index fell 7.4 percent in November, which more than offset increases in other indexes.

The energy index fell 4.1 percent in November despite increases in the indexes for natural gas and electricity. The food index rose 0.2 percent, with the food-at-home index increasing 0.3 percent, the same increases as in October.

The index for all items minus food and energy increased 0.1 percent in November after a 0.2 percent increase in October. The indexes for shelter, household furnishings and operations, airline fares, recreation, new vehicles and medical care all increased in November while the indexes for apparel and used cars and trucks declined.

Industrial production rises post-Sandy

WASHINGTON, Dec. 14 (UPI) -- Industrial production rose 1.1 percent in November after having fallen 0.7 percent in October, the Federal Reserve said Friday.

The gain in November is estimated to have largely resulted from a recovery in production for industries that had been negatively affected by Hurricane Sandy in late October.

Manufacturing output increased 1.1 percent in November after having decreased 1.0 percent in October. The Fed said a sizable rise in the production of motor vehicles and auto parts contributed to the boost in factory output in November.

The output of utilities advanced 1.0 percent, and production at mines rose 0.8 percent. At 97.5 percent of its 2007 average, total industrial production in November was 2.5 percent above its year-earlier level.

Best Buy gives more time for buyout bid

MINNEAPOLIS, Dec. 14 (UPI) -- Best Buy says it will give founder Richard Schulze additional time to prepare his bid to buy the struggling U.S. electronics retailer.

Best Buy's board of directors, which in August gave Schulze a Dec. 16 deadline to come up with a fully financed deal, said Friday it has agreed to extend the deadline to Feb. 28.

"Both parties believe that allowing Mr. Schulze to bring his offer after the holiday season and fiscal year end is in the best interests of shareholders and provides Mr. Schulze and his potential partners with an opportunity to include the company's full year results as part of their due diligence review.," Best Buy said in a statement.

The board will have 30 days to review any offer made by Schulze.

Shares of Best Buy, which rallied Thursday ahead of reports of an imminent bid, tumbled 15 percent Friday morning after the announcement was made. Analysts are now wondering if Schulze is having problems finding private equity partners to support a bid, CNN Money said.

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