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Today in business: 5 things you need to know
Chrysler has a "not so glorious quarter," home values rise, and more in our roundup of business stories that are making news and driving opinion
Chrysler is not exactly gleaming today...
Chrysler is not exactly gleaming today... Scott Olson/Getty Images

1. CHRYSLER HAD A "NOT SO GLORIOUS QUARTER"
Chrysler group announced that it earned $166 million in the first three months of 2013, down 64 percent from the first quarter of 2012. Chrysler attributes the dip to product change-over — essentially, the one-time costs of retooling factories for the launch of the 2014 Jeep Cherokee, along with new Ram heavy-duty pickup trucks and a new Jeep Grand Cherokee. Chrysler CEO Sergio Merchionne called it a "not so glorious quarter," and said he knew the company was "going to be limping in the quarter ... (we) just didn't think it was going to limp that much." [USA Today]

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2. HOME VALUES ARE ON THE RISE
Residential home prices shot up in February by the largest year-over-year margin since May 2006. The S&P Case-Shiller Index of 20 U.S. cities shows a 9.3 percent rise in home prices from February 2012 to February 2013, and a 1.2 percent rise on a seasonally adjusted basis just from this January to February, topping forecasts for both figures. While rising home values are a good sign for broader economic recovery, some analysts are warning against too much optimism. Home prices are still down 28 percent since their peak in 2006. [CNN]

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3. FARMERS PLANT CHICKPEAS AS DEMAND FOR HUMMUS RISES
Sabra Dipping Co., a product of PepsiCo Inc. and Israel's Strauss Group, is providing funds for chickpea research at Virginia State University, with the hopes of finding a chickpea variety suitable for planting in Virginia's humid climate. Sabra's research is part of growing trend toward hummus production, spurred by ballooning demand. Sabra's hummus sales clocked in at about $315 million last year, up about 18 percent. [Wall Street Journal]

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4. BLACKBERRY CEO IS NOT IMPRESSED BY TABLETS 
At the Milken Institute Conference Monday, BlackBerry CEO Thorsten Heins said, "In five years I don't think there'll be a reason to have a tablet anymore," adding that "tablets themselves are not a good business model." BlackBerry's tablet, the PlayBook, has had a pretty unimpressive run since its spring 2011 launch. The company has shipped a total of 2.4 million PlayBooks in two years. Last quarter, Apple shipped 19.5 million iPads. [MarketWatch]

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5. COMING OUT COULD BOOST ENDORSEMENTS FOR JASON COLLINS
Besides being a watershed cultural moment, NBA center Jason Collins' coming out in Sports Illustrated could prove to be lucrative, too. Collins' only current endorsement deal is with Nike, which was quick to support his decision. "We admire Jason's courage and are proud that he is a Nike athlete. Nike believes in a level playing field where an athlete's sexual orientation is not a consideration," the company said. Many marketing experts believe that Collins — who would never have won big endorsements based solely on his workmanlike performance on the court — is likely to be tapped to appear in ads now. [CNN]

Carmel Lobello is the business editor at TheWeek.com. Previously, she was an editor at DeathandTaxesMag.com.

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