Consumer Business Recap: Ford Love Higher Gas, News Corp Disclosure

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Motor pools of the state agencies in China are no longer approved to include purchases of foreign automobiles, this regulation appearing in a preliminary list. Accordingly, shares of Chinese automakers soar, as previously non-Chinese vehicles comprised 80 percent of the official pool. GM (NYSE:GM), Toyota (NYSE:TM), and others will thus suffer as local brands benefit in the 80B yuan ($12.7 bilion) market.

Investing Insights: GM, Ford and Toyota Snubbed in China.

A New York federal court decision found for Monsanto (NYSE:MON) as it dismissed a suit against it, saying that the plaintiffs transparently tried to create a fake controversy. Plaintiffs had claimed that Monsanto might file patent-infringement lawsuits over farmers who grew crops cross-pollinated with its own modified crop traits.

Soaring gas prices are intensifying demand for cars that are more fuel-efficient, and Ford (NYSE:F) says that it thus projects sales of its Focus hatchback to double year-over-year in February to over 20 thousand units. Further, small SUVs such as the Ford Escape and Buick Encore are expected by Ford to become a significant area for the industry’s growth over the current decade.

Don’t Miss: Office Depot and Scientific Games Earnings Reports on Deck.

In a disclosure that could negatively impact News Corp. (NASDAQ:NWSA), a press ethics investigation has revealed that, though aware that their actions were criminal journalists at Britain’s Sun newspaper paid large sums of money to corrupt public officials. The danger to News Corp is that U.S. agencies such as the FBI and others, who are seeking illegalities by Rupert Murdoch’s media empire, might find ways to use the Sun case against it.

Investing Insights: Linmania for Retailers.

To contact the reporter on this story: Mark Lawson at staff.writers@wallstcheatsheet.com

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Damien Hoffman at editors@wallstcheatsheet.com

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