SC business notebook, Feb 7

February 7, 2014 

Stock market rebounds

The stock market had its best day this year, nearly erasing the steep losses from early this week. The gains came after encouraging news on the U.S. job market and Disney and other companies reported solid earnings. The Dow Jones industrial average jumped 188 points, or 1.2 percent, to close at 15,628 Thursday. The Standard & Poor’s 500 index rose 21 points, also 1.2 percent, to 1,773. It was the best gain for both indexes since Dec. 18. Both are still down about half a percent for the week following a steep drop on Monday. The Nasdaq composite gained 45 points, or 1.2 percent, to 4,057. Disney jumped 5 percent after the media company reported earnings that beat analysts’ estimates, thanks partly to its box-office hit “Frozen.”

New safety rules for infant formula

The Food and Drug Administration is laying out new requirements to ensure the safety of infant formula. The rules announced Thursday are designed to make sure that formula manufacturers test their products for salmonella and other pathogens before they are distributed. They would also require formula companies to include specific nutrients, including proteins, fats and vitamins. Most formula manufacturers follow these practices already, but the rules will ensure that new formulas on the market also comply with the requirements. The FDA’s Michael Taylor says the rules are intended to ensure that formula is safe and supports normal growth in babies. The agency said breastfeeding is strongly recommended for newborns but that 25 percent of infants start out using formula. By three months, two-thirds of infants rely on formula.

The Associated Press contributed.

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