Facebook gets ready to join Standard & Poor’s 500 Index

Facebook’s fourth straight quarter of positive net income settles one of the final conditions for the 29th-biggest U.S. stock to join the benchmark Standard & Poor’s 500 Index 17 months after its trading debut.

The world’s largest social-networking service reported third-quarter profit of $425 million Wednesday as advertisers boosted spending on promotions targeting mobile-device users.

Gaining entry to benchmark gauges provides companies with a guaranteed shareholder base from funds that follow the indexes.

Facebook would join Google Inc., EBay Inc. and Yahoo! Inc. in the Internet software and services sub-sector, which makes up about 2.5 percent of the S&P 500, according to data provided by Howard Silverblatt of S&P Dow Jones Indices.

The Container Store doubles share price in market debut

Shares of The Container Store more than doubled in their market debut Friday.

The retailer, which specializes in shelving, storage bins, boxes and related organizational items, priced its initial public offering of 12.5 million shares at $18 apiece. This was above the projected price range of $14 to $16 per share.

Shares jumped immediately and ended the session at $36.20.

Container Store Group Inc. raised $225 million in the IPO. The Dallas company is unprofitable, but its revenue is growing again after taking a hit during the recession. Sales have increased 28 percent over the past five fiscal years.

MasterCard network poised to further outperform Visa

MasterCard, the second-biggest U.S. payments network, is poised to further outperform bigger rival Visa amid a 3 percent gain by the euro this year and signs that European consumer spending is picking up.

MasterCard could gain another 15 percent in two years as the European debt crisis eases, said Jason Kupferberg, an analyst at Jefferies Group LLC.

The company does more business in Europe than Visa. MasterCard, based in Purchase, N.Y., has gained 46 percent this year, outpacing Foster City, Calif.-based Visa’s 30 percent advance.

Price of crude oil reaches lowest level in four months

The price of oil fell to the lowest level in more than four months Friday as concerns over high supplies continued to discourage investors.

Benchmark U.S. crude for December delivery dropped $1.77 to close at $94.61 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

The 1.8 percent drop to start November follows a nearly 6 percent decline in the price of oil in October.

Ample supplies of crude have weighed on the price in recent weeks. The Energy Department said this week that U.S. supplies increased 4.1 million barrels last week.

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