Nov 14 (Reuters) - The following were the top stories in The Wall Street Journal on Wednesday. Reuters has not verified these stories and does not vouch for their accuracy.
* Early signs of an easing in global demand growth and swings by Wall Street traders are pushing oil away from the historic $100-a-barrel mark, at least for now. After rising as high as $98.62 a barrel a week ago, the benchmark oil-futures price on the New York Mercantile Exchange hit a low of $90.13 Tuesday.
* Aggressive markdowns this holiday season aren’t guaranteed, as retailers have taken steps to cut costs and inventories.
* Bank of America Corp’s (BAC.N) write-down of $3 billion in collateralized debt obligations offered fresh evidence of how much financial giants are struggling to assess the value of investments long thought to be secure.
* Detroit’s big three auto makers —General Motors Corp (GM.N), Ford Motor Co (F.N) and Chrysler LLC — still lag behind Japanese and European rivals when it comes to predicted resale value, a leading vehicle-price resource said.
* Former publisher Judith Regan filed a $100 million lawsuit against her former employers, News Corp NWSa.N and HarperCollins Publishers, over her firing. Regan was fired late last year for allegedly making anti-Semitic remarks during a conversation with a lawyer employed by HarperCollins.
* The New York Stock Exchange, which is operated by NYSE Euronext NYX.N, has imposed new limits on odd-lot trades — typically trades of fewer than 100 shares — to combat abuses after specialist firms complained to regulators.
* The fallout from Citigroup Inc’s (C.N) subprime exposure continued as the bank restructured its capital-markets division, resulting in a new unit and two executives moving to other posts.
* The U.S. is sending Deputy Secretary of State John Negroponte to Pakistan this week to try to heal the rift between Pakistani President General Pervez Musharraf and Benazir Bhutto.
* The recent surge in the yen against other major currencies threatens the healthiest segment of Japan’s economy: its exporters. That is raising fears of a long-term slowdown in the world’s second-largest economy.
* The euro-zone economy appears to have done well in the third quarter, but the surging euro, financial-market turmoil and a U.S. slowdown should dent expansion in the last quarter and in 2008.
* Triarc Cos Inc TRY.N submitted a bid to buy Wendy’s International Inc WEN.N for less than it had originally indicated it would pay.
* The European Union’s antitrust regulator opened a full-scale review of Google Inc’s (GOOG.O) proposed $3.1 billion purchase of online-advertising-services company DoubleClick Inc, citing concerns the search titan would amass too much control over the market for online ad sales.
* Yahoo Inc YHOO.O settled a lawsuit with the families of two Chinese dissidents who were jailed after the Internet giant provided information to authorities about their online activities.
* Hours after vetoing an education, labor and health-care appropriations bill, U.S. President George W. Bush assailed Democrats’ fiscal credentials and called for action on energy legislation and a patch of the Alternative Minimum Tax.
* Shareholders of Sirius Satellite Radio Inc (SIRI.O) and XM Satellite Radio Holdings Inc XMSR.O voted to approve the proposed merger of the satellite-radio rivals as expected.
* After years of debate, the head of the Federal Communications Commission proposed a relatively modest change in media-ownership rules that appeared tailored to ensure the completion of Tribune Co’s TRB.N deal with real-estate magnate Sam Zell.