Starbucks to close 7 Maryland stores
Starbucks Coffee Company said this week it is closing 195 stores across the country, including seven in Maryland, as consumers worried about the economy continue to cut back on luxuries such as gourmet coffee. In the Baltimore area, the Seattle-based company will close a store at Westfield Annapolis mall as well as the location at 300 N. Charles St. in downtown Baltimore. Starbucks has more than 200 stores in Maryland.
Andrea K. Walker
China's reserves at $1.9 trillion
BEIJING : China's central bank says its foreign exchange reserves rose 16 percent year-on-year to $1.954 trillion by the end of March. In a notice on its Web site Saturday the bank said reserves increased by $7.7 billion in the first quarter, $146.2 billion lower than the same period last year. Analysts believe China holds up to 70 percent of its foreign reserves in U.S. dollar-denominated assets, including Treasury securities.
Microsoft, Yahoo reportedly in talks
SEATTLE : The chief executives of Microsoft Corp. and Yahoo Inc. met recently to discuss possible business deals, news reports said Friday. Under one possible scenario, Microsoft would sell Yahoo's search ads while Yahoo would manage Microsoft's display ads. The meeting marks one of the most significant moves toward a new deal since Yahoo walked away from Microsoft's unsolicited $47.5 billion buyout offer last year. At the time, Microsoft hoped a combined company would be better at competing with Google Inc. for Web searches and the online advertising dollars they generate.
Banks in N.C., Colorado fail
NEW YORK: Federal regulators shut down two more banks Friday, raising the number of bank failures this year to 23. Cape Fear Bank in Wilmington, N.C., is the first North Carolina bank to fail in nearly 16 years. New Frontier Bank of Greeley, Colo., is the second Colorado bank this year to collapse. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. took over both banks Friday after their respective state regulators closed them down.