No income tax for 47 percent of U.S. households
In 2009, roughly 47 percent of all U.S. households, or 71 million, will owe no federal income tax. Most of the households that pay no taxes earn less than $30,000 a year.
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U.S. auto sales slip by 23 percent
Reflecting the end of the cash-for-clunkers program, U.S. auto sales fell 23 percent in September. GM’s sales slipped by 45 percent, while Chrysler’s were down 42 percent.
The Wall Street Journal
"Ancillary revenue” for U.S. airlines up by 276 percent
The top 10 U.S. airlines collected $670 million in checked-baggage fees in the second quarter of 2009, a 276 percent increase from the prior year. The world’s airlines took in $10.3 billion in such “ancillary revenue” last year.
Sales of smart phones show 15 percent rise
Sales of conventional mobile phones fell 10 per-cent in this year’s second quarter, but sales of so-called smart phones such as the BlackBerry and iPhone helped pick up the slack, rising 15 percent.
Wal-Mart to expand Bodega Express stores
Wal-Mart de Mexico, already Latin America’s largest retailer, is extending its lead thanks to its Bodega Express stores. The small shops, located in poor neighborhoods in 250 cities and towns, spurred a 12 percent earnings gain in the latest quarter, to $268 million. Wal-Mart plans to open about 200 more Bodega Express stores this year.
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