Chevron expects 4Q profit to beat 3Q
SAN RAMON (AP) — Chevron Corp. expects fourth-quarter earnings to be "notably higher" than third-quarter profit.
The company said Thursday that its fourth-quarter results will be helped by bigger gains on asset sales and more oil and gas production.
Chevron is the nation's second-biggest oil company, and it earned $5.25 billion, or $2.69 per share, in the third quarter.
Analysts expect the company to report earnings of $3.03 per share when it posts fourth-quarter results on Feb. 1.
December video game retail sales drop 22%
NEW YORK (AP) — U.S. retail sales of video games and gaming systems fell 22 percent in December, capping a year of declining sales for the industry.
Research firm NPD Group said Thursday that overall sales fell to $3.21 billion from $4.1 billion in December 2011. NPD estimates that sales of new game hardware, software and accessories account for about half of what consumers spend on gaming.
Sales of video games themselves, excluding PC titles, tumbled 26 percent to $1.54 billion. Sales of hardware — gaming systems such as the Xbox 360 and the Wii U — fell 20 percent to $1.07 billion.
Ford's dividend may could lure new investors
DETROIT (AP) - Ford may get a longer look from curious investors after rolling out a more muscular, souped-up dividend on Thursday.
The nation's No. 2 automaker is doubling its quarterly payout to 10 cents, just nine months after paying its first dividend in more than five years.
The dividend increase marks another milestone in Ford's comeback. It has strengthened its image with customers along with its balance sheet. Ford is expected to report its fourth consecutive annual profit when it releases earnings in a few weeks. In 2011, the company posted its largest profit since 1998.
. Ford shares rose 2.7 percent to $13.83 Thursday, their highest closing price since July 2011.