More rural residents adopting broadband
The broadband gap between rural residents and the statewide average is shrinking, according a report out Friday from Connect South Carolina, Closing the Digital Divide in South Carolina. The gap improved by 6 percentage points between 2010 and 2012, according to the report, released in conjunction with the South Carolina Economic Developers’ Association’s midyear meeting. In 2010, the adoption of broadband by rural residents was 46 percent, compared with 62 percent statewide. Last year, the gap narrowed as 56 percent of rural residents and 66 percent of state residents adopted broadband. Areas that showed an increased gap between 2010 and 2012 were low-income households and those with no college education, suggesting a need to focus on bringing options to those groups.
Google seeks to share your reviews with businesses
Google wants your permission to use your name, photo and product reviews in ads that it sells to businesses. The Internet search giant is changing its terms of service starting Nov. 11. Your reviews of restaurants, shops and products, as well as songs and other content bought on the Google Play store could show up in ads that are displayed to your friends and connections when they search on Google. You can opt out of sharing. Google’s move follows a similar proposal by Facebook. The social network in August said it would show users’ faces and names in ads about products they clicked to “like.” That proposal was criticized by privacy groups.
Wells Fargo reports 13 percent profit increase
Wells Fargo & Co. says its third-quarter profit jumped 13 percent as a decline in revenue from mortgage lending was offset by reduced expenses and fewer soured loans. The biggest U.S. mortgage lender reported Friday that its net income increased to $5.6 billion in the July-September period from $4.9 billion a year earlier. On a per-share basis, earnings were 99 cents, beating the 97 cents forecast by Wall Street. Third-quarter revenue dipped to $20.5 billion from $21.2 billion, coming in below the analysts’ forecast of $21.1 billion. Interest rates on U.S. mortgages rose sharply in the spring and summer, and that had an impact on Wells Fargo’s mortgage business. The San Francisco-based bank controls nearly a third of the U.S. mortgage market.
JPMorgan reports quarterly loss
JPMorgan Chase, the biggest U.S. bank by assets, reported a rare quarterly loss after setting up a big reserve for legal expenses. The bank had to absorb a reserve for litigation expenses of $9.2 billion in the July-to-September period, pushing the lender to a loss of $380 million compared with a profit of $5.7 billion a year earlier. The bank posted a loss of 17 cents per share in the latest quarter, compared with net income of $1.40 per share a year earlier. Excluding charges, however, its adjusted earnings beat Wall Street expectations. Excluding the litigation expense, it earned $5.8 billion, or $1.42 a share, in the quarter.
Kristy Eppley Rupon and The Associated Press contributed.