Roundup: Pennsylania AG Kane warns of tax scam; Another year, another $1 for Google co-founders; more
Pa. AG warns of tax scam
Attorney General Kathleen Kane warned consumers of potential tax-return scams, especially one involving calls from people claiming to represent the Internal Revenue Service. Kane's advisory, roughly two weeks before the IRS' April 15 filing deadline, said scammers have claimed in phone calls that taxpayers could be arrested or deported unless they settle their debt using a pre-paid debit card. “The IRS typically contacts citizens by mail about unpaid taxes and will not ask for payment with a pre-paid debit card or wire transfer. They will never ask for a credit card number over the phone,” the advisory stated.
Google co-founders $1 richer
Google paid co-founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin their customary $1 salaries last year, while Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt's compensation more than doubled to $19.3 million. Most of Schmidt's raise stemmed from stock grants valued at $11.4 million. Google issued them to make up for an administrative error in the handling of a large award given to Schmidt in February 2011, according to regulatory documents filed on Friday. If not for the mix-up, Schmidt's pay package last year would have risen 4 percent from the $7.6 million that he got in 2012. Page, Google's CEO, and Brin, a top executive, capped their salaries at $1 annually since Google Inc. went public nearly a decade ago. It's a symbolic gesture that many other Silicon Valley executives have made after amassing fortunes through the stock that they held in their respective companies. Page, 41, and Brin, 40, each own Google stock worth about $26 billion.
S&P downgrades Target to ‘A'
Standard & Poor's Ratings Services lowered its rating on Target Corp. in response to weaker-than-expected fourth-quarter results that were dragged down by an extensive data breach and a disappointing foray into Canada. The rating agency said Friday that it lowered its ratings one notch down to “A” from “A+.” The rating is four grades above speculative or junk status. S&P said the outlook is still “Stable,” implying further changes are not imminent. “The downgrade reflects our expectations for limited recovery of credit metrics given continued operating losses at the Canadian division as well as potential costs related to the data breach,” said S&P's credit analyst Ana Lai.
H&M withdraws vest over anti-Semitism controversy
Fashion retailer H&M has pulled a vest from its shelves worldwide in response to accusations that its design, which featured a menacing skull in the center of a Star of David, was anti-Semitic. The Swedish company said in a statement on Friday that it is sorry if the print offended anyone and that it was not its intention to provoke such a reaction. European Jewish Congress President Moshe Kantor welcomed the garment's withdrawal, calling it a “thoughtless and insensitive design.” The menswear item was on sale in stores worldwide, including in Israel, where the retailer has 14 stores.
BlackBerry revenue falls below $1 billion
BlackBerry reported a steep drop in profit and revenue on Friday as it transitions from a smartphone company to a software business under its new chief executive. The Canadian company lost $423 million, or 80 cents per share. Adjusted for one-time items, it lost 8 cents per share, much better than the losses of 56 cents per share that analysts expected, according to FactSet. Revenue fell to $976 million from $2.7 billion, the first time the company's revenue has dropped below $1 billion since late 2007. That was short of the $1.1 billion analysts had projected. It is the second quarterly report under CEO John Chen, who is de-emphasizing the hardware business since last year's debut of the BlackBerry 10 failed to spark a turnaround.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Starkey: Kang story of the year for Pirates
- Penguins GM Rutherford ‘wouldn’t make’ Despres trade today
- Healthy defensive back Mitchell eager for 2nd season with Steelers
- Body found during search for missing man on Youghiogheny
- Steelers notebook: Blake gets outside shot in nickel
- IRS cybersecurity breach touches lives of homebuyers, others
- Judge lashes UPMC, Highmark in consent decree violation hearing
- Penn Hills teenager charged in New Kensington shooting
- Tenant charged in fire that destroyed Latrobe apartment house
- Plum teacher, held for trial, vows to fight witness intimidation charge
- Pirates use big 7th inning to sweep Marlins, stretch winning streak