Feds sue Bank of America over 2008 mortgage bonds

The U.S. government has accused Bank of America of civil fraud, saying the company failed to disclose risks and mislead investors in its sale of $850 million of mortgage bonds during 2008.

The Justice Department filed a civil suit against the bank and two of its subsidiaries Tuesday. The Securities and Exchange Commission filed a related suit against Bank of America.

The authorities say Bank of America lied to investors about the risk of the mortgages underlying the investment. Bank of America disputed the allegations.

Report says cruise ships brought $45 million to Maine

A new report says the cruise ship industry contributed $45 million to Maine’s economy last year while generating more than 800 jobs.

An independent study commissioned by the Cruise Lines International Association concludes that cruise line companies and their passengers and crew contributed more $42 billion to the U.S. economy last year, a nearly 5 percent increase from 2011.

The 120-page study says that cruise lines had a $45 million economic impact in Maine, a figure that includes cruise line spending on goods and services, passenger and crew spending, and other expenditures such as air travel, wages to cruise line employees, travel commissions paid by cruise lines and related expenses.

LePage calls for support for the state’s microbusinesses

Gov. Paul LePage says Maine needs to provide more support to its small businesses, which are a vital part of the state’s economy.

The Republican governor met with about 20 owners of microbusinesses at the Blaine House on Tuesday to discuss challenges they face and ideas for making their businesses run more easily.
Microbusinesses have five or fewer employees.

The state says Maine has more than 133,000 microenterprises.

Nicole Snow owns Darn Good Yarn, a yarn fiber importer and retail company in Piscataquis County’s Sebec. She says one of the ideas the group discussed was to have consultants travel throughout the state to help small businesses in rural Maine with things like Internet connectivity.

Disney earnings stay steady as revenues enjoy a boost

Earnings at The Walt Disney Co. were nearly unchanged in the latest quarter, while revenue increased 4 percent thanks to a boost from Disney’s theme parks and resorts business and cable networks such as ESPN.

Disney said Tuesday that it earned $1.85 billion, or $1.01 per share, in the fiscal third quarter, which ended June 29. That compares with $1.83 billion, or $1.01 per share, a year earlier. Excluding one-time items, earnings were $1.03 per share in the latest quarter, surpassing Wall Street’s expectations. Revenue was $11.6 billion, up from $11.1 billion.

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