September 17, 2008 / 6:18 AM / 10 years ago

PRESS DIGEST - New York Times business news - Sept 17

Sept 17 (Reuters) - The following were the top stories in The New York Times business pages on Wednesday. Reuters has not verified these stories and does not vouch for their accuracy.

* Fearing a global financial crisis, the U.S. Federal Reserve reversed course and agreed to an $85 billion bailout that would give the government control of the troubled insurance giant American International Group Inc (AIG.N).

* AIG and its assortment of businesses run the gamut from aircraft leasing to life insurance for Indians to retirement plans for elementary schoolteachers. The great assortment of assets reflects the determination of Maurice Greenberg, the man who built AIG into an empire spanning the globe.

* As the Bush administration has lurched from pillar to post in the financial crisis, some lawmakers and experts were considering a longer-term legislative solution that would create a new agency to dispose of the mortgage-related assets at the core of Wall Street’s woes.

* Federal Reserve policy makers kept their benchmark lending rate unchanged at 2 percent, highlighting the conflicting pressures of an epic financial crisis and nagging inflation.

* Goldman Sachs Group Inc (GS.N) posted quarterly profit that beat analysts’ expectations, while Morgan Stanley (MS.N) reported profit that was even stronger than Goldman’s.

* In a new sign of market turbulence, managers of a multibillion-dollar money market fund said that customers might lose money in the fund, a type of investment that has long been considered as safe and risk-free as a bank savings account.

* Two days after British bank Barclays Plc (BARC.L) failed to reach a deal that would have salvaged Lehman Brothers LEH.P, it moved closer to its prize on Tuesday, striking a tentative agreement to buy the broken investment firm’s core capital markets businesses for $1.75 billion.

* Gasoline prices eased a bit as oil companies reported that the damage from Hurricane Ike to production platforms and refineries appears to be relatively minor.

* Consumer prices posted the first decline in nearly two years in August as Americans got some relief from surging energy prices.

* Computer maker Dell Inc DELL.O cautioned that slumping demand for technology equipment across the globe was affecting its business.

* Accusers say the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration pressured subordinates to approve a new model of airplane prematurely, and transferred employees who raised safety concerns that might have delayed the approval.

* Executives from General Motors Corp (GM.N) and the Ford Motor Co (F.N) pressed their case on Tuesday for $25 billion in federal loans in a series of high-level meetings with lawmakers in Washington.

* Porsche (PSHG_p.DE) raised its stake in Volkswagen (VOWG.DE), a fellow German automaker, to more than 35 percent in a move that gave it effective control over Europe’s biggest carmaker.

* Swiss banking giant UBS AG UBSN.VX was sued by one of its former top private-banking clients, Igor Olenicoff, as a federal investigation into its offshore services unfolds.

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