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Judge rules against Kodak on copyright allegations

Eastman Kodak lost a ruling in a two-year legal fight against Apple and Research In Motion over a patent for digital image-preview technology, a decision that may hurt the value of assets Kodak is selling.

RIM and Apple didn't violate Kodak's rights because the patent is invalid, U.S. International Trade Commission Judge Thomas Pender said in a notice posted on the agency's website. Kodak said it will appeal the findings with the six-member commission in Washington, which has the power to block imports of products that infringe U.S. patents.

Kodak, which filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in January, contends Apple already owes it more than $1 billion in damages for infringement of this and other digital capture patents, according to a bankruptcy court filing this month. -- Bloomberg News


JPMorgan buyback on hold

NEW YORK (AP) -- JPMorgan Chase is suspending plans to buy back its own stock, a little over a week after the bank posted a large trading loss.

The largest U.S. bank by assets disclosed the $2 billion trading loss May 10 in a hastily called conference call with investors and journalists.

The loss from an ill-timed trade on so-called credit derivatives has rattled investor confidence in JPMorgan Chase, leading to a 20 percent decline in the value of the stock since the disclosure, lopping off $30 billion of market value.

The loss has also hurt the reputation of CEO Jamie Dimon, who has since apologized to investors several times.

Dimon said JPMorgan will continue to pay its quarterly dividend of 30 cents a share. Also Monday, the head of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission says the agency has begun an investigation into the ill-timed bet on complex financial instruments that led to the trading losses.


Lowe's reduces forecast

MOORESVILLE, N.C. (AP) -- Lowe's Cos.' first-quarter profit climbed 14 percent as warmer weather helped boost sales earlier in the quarter. But the world's second-biggest home-improvement company lowered its full-year earnings forecast Monday, saying it's still cautious because of the weak housing market and other economic conditions.

Lowe's shares fell $2.88 per share, or a little more than 10 percent, to close at $25.60 on Monday.

Lowe's results mirror the uneasiness shoppers feel in the uncertain economy. While Americans are spending, they continue to do so gingerly.


Bonuses for freezers, fridges

National Grid is offering to pick up old refrigerators and freezers and recycle them for free.

The utility company will pay consumers a bonus of $30 for each extra unit, up to two units.

The program is an attempt to get older, less-efficient appliances off the grid.

National Grid said 95 percent of each appliance's parts and materials will be recycled for use in new products.

To schedule an appointment for pickup, call (877) 691-0021.