PRESS DIGEST-New York Times business news - Dec 13

Thu Dec 13, 2012 1:54am EST

Dec 13 (Reuters) - The following are the top stories on the New York Times business pages on Thursday. Reuters has not verified these stories and does not vouch for their accuracy.

* The Federal Reserve made it plain on Wednesday that job creation had become its primary focus, announcing that it planned to continue suppressing interest rates so long as the unemployment rate remained above 6.5 percent. ()

* The release of a new Google Inc Maps app for the iPhone may help Apple Inc customers find their way, but it will not relieve Apple of the pressure to improve its own service. ()

* John McAfee, the antivirus software pioneer, arrived in the United States on Wednesday night after being deported from Guatemala, where he had sought to evade police questioning in the killing of a man in neighboring Belize. ()

* SolarCity, which installs solar panels for homeowners, has priced its initial public offering at $8 a share, well below its earlier estimates, a person briefed on the matter said on Wednesday. ()

* A new and extensive analysis of 2.4 million loans insured by the Federal Housing Administration in recent years shows a pattern of risky lending that could generate $20 billion in losses and harm thousands of the nation's most vulnerable borrowers. ()

* Canada said Wednesday that it would reconsider plans to buy 65 F-35 fighter jets after an independent audit found that the sophisticated stealth planes would cost substantially more than the government had promised. ()

* Politicians remain locked in a rancorous debate over impending tax increases and spending cuts, and it remains unclear if a deal will be reached by the end of the year. But investors are already betting that lawmakers will do enough to avoid heading over the so-called fiscal cliff. ()

* With some board members still skeptical about authorizing smartphone apps to hail yellow cabs, the New York City Taxi and Limousine Commission's chairman said Wednesday that the panel was instead likely to consider a pilot program to allow the products for a trial period. ()

* House Republicans warned the Federal Communications Commission on Wednesday against "giving away" scarce airwaves that they said could produce up to $19 billion in proceeds if they were instead auctioned to telecommunications companies for use in mobile broadband networks. ()

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