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Palm Inc. unveils new Treo phone

SAN JOSE -- In its biggest global push yet, Palm Inc. on Tuesday unveiled a new Treo smart phone for Europeans.

The Treo 750v, based on Microsoft Corp.'s Windows Mobile 5.0 operating system, will be first available through Vodafone Group PLC, Europe's largest mobile phone operator.

The new smart phone, part of a growing breed of advanced cell phones that combine voice and data features, will be available in Austria, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Netherlands, Spain, Switzerland, the United Kingdom and other regions by the end of the year, Palm said.

Best Buy profits beat expectations

MINNEAPOLIS -- Strong sales of high-definition TVs at Best Buy Co. Inc. helped fuel second-quarter profits that rose 22 percent and beat Wall Street expectations on Tuesday.

Best Buy shares leapt more than 9 percent. The nation's largest consumer electronics retailer also said it would add more television installers and boost advertising spending to keep the momentum going, even though the picture for consumer spending is murky.

Its shares rose $4.37, or 9.1 percent, to close at $52.14 on the New York Stock Exchange.

The strong results were tempered by uncertainty about the future of the economy, as all retailers are watching to see whether higher interest rates and a cooling housing market prompt consumers to hold back. Best Buy said the housing market has already affected appliance sales, which dipped 2.6 percent at stores open more than 14 months.

Goldman Sachs doing better

NEW YORK -- Goldman Sachs Group Inc., the No. 3 U.S. securities firm, said its third-quarter profit fell less than expected as a robust investment banking performance helped offset a summer trading slump

The results released Tuesday, which were stronger than analysts projected, raised expectations that other Wall Street firms reporting in the coming days will also show resilience amid an economic slowdown. The industry has seen not just a market decline, but also a dearth of merger and initial public offering deals.

Lloyd Blankfein, in his first quarter since taking over as chairman and chief executive after Henry Paulson became Treasury Secretary in June, led Goldman to its third-highest quarterly earnings per share and revenue performance.

Oil prices fall by almost 3 percent

WASHINGTON -- Oil prices fell by almost 3 percent Tuesday, dipping below $64 a barrel as worldwide demand and supply threats ease. After a seven-day selloff, crude futures are at their lowest level since late March.

Falling oil prices are not uncommon at this time of year, when gasoline consumption traditionally tapers off and winter fuels demand has yet to ramp up.

The market has been especially weak lately, falling roughly 18 percent since mid-July, because fears of a powerful Atlantic hurricane season have so far proved unwarranted and because traders are increasingly skeptical that a diplomatic standoff between the United Nations and Iran will lead OPEC's No. 2 producer to pull supplies from the market.
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Title Annotation:Business
Publication:Daily News (Los Angeles, CA)
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Sep 13, 2006
Words:494
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