PRESS DIGEST- New York Times business news - Oct 29


Oct 29 (Reuters) - The following are the top stories on theNew York Times business pages. Reuters has not verified thesestories and does not vouch for their accuracy.

* President Obama was poised to order a ban on spying onheads of allied states in response to a deepening diplomaticcrisis over reports that the National Security Agency had foryears targeted the cellphone of Chancellor Angela Merkel ofGermany. ()

* Microloans, born of anti-poverty efforts in developingcountries, is attracting American clients who do not qualify forcredit cards or traditional bank loans. ()

* Consol Energy Inc, the largest coal producer inthe eastern United States, said on Monday that it was sellingfive highly automated mines - about half of its productioncapacity - to focus instead on natural gas and on mines thatproduce coal for export. ()

* Apple Inc now has more product offerings. AndApple now sells its products in more places. But for the thirdconsecutive quarter, Apple does not have more profit. ()

* New ways to monitor students around the clock raisequestions about whether educators can or should legallydiscipline children for online outbursts. ()

* In a shift away from robots made to perform in factories,designers are putting the "human" into humanoids so that theycan safely interact in public. ()

* Governor Rick Snyder of Michigan, in testimony on Monday,forcefully defended Detroit's bankruptcy filing as a last-ditcheffort to stem the city's decades-long financial decline. ()

* Marilyn Tavenner, who runs the Centers for Medicare andMedicaid Services, will testify on Tuesday before a House panelon the problems with the health care website. ()

* A federal judge on Monday sentenced former RepresentativeRick Renzi to three years in prison for convictions on publiccorruption, money laundering and other charges, capping acorruption case prosecutors said began more than a decade ago.()

* The autobiography of the pop star Morrissey, which hasbecome a quick sensation in Britain, has found an Americanpublisher. G.P. Putnam's Sons, an imprint of Penguin RandomHouse, acquired the memoir, two people involved in thenegotiations said on Monday. ()

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