PRESS DIGEST - Wall Street Journal - Sept 20

Sept 20 Fri Sep 20, 2013 1:01am EDT

Sept 20 (Reuters) - The following are the top stories in the Wall Street Journal. Reuters has not verified these stories and does not vouch for their accuracy.

* Less than two weeks before the launch of insurance marketplaces created by the federal health overhaul, the government's software can't reliably determine how much people need to pay for coverage, according to insurance executives and people familiar with the program. ()

* Pope Francis has warned that the Catholic Church's focus on abortion, contraception and gay marriage risked overshadowing its pastoral mission, threatening to bring down the church "like a house of cards." ()

* As German Chancellor Angela Merkel leads polls ahead of her Sunday re-election bid, the business community and others are calling for her to move more quickly to confront simmering domestic problems. ()

* The SEC is still investigating a number of JPMorgan Chase officials in connection with the "London whale" trading debacle, even as the bank agreed to pay about $920 million in fines over the matter. ()

* A former Halliburton manager was charged with destroying evidence following the 2010 Gulf oil spill, a case that coincides with a guilty plea to a related charge by the Houston-based oilfield services company. ()

* A glitch at the U.S. Treasury's bidding system last week blocked Goldman Sachs's multibillion-dollar order for three-month Treasury bills, altering prices in the U.S. debt market. ()

* Sales of previously owned homes rose unexpectedly in August to the highest level since 2007 as buyers rushed to lock in deals before mortgage rates increased further. But the industry's trade group warned that home sales could slow in the coming months due to higher borrowing costs and prices. ()

* Departing Nokia Corp Chief Executive Stephen Elop is set to receive a compensation package estimated by the Finnish company to be about 18.8 million euros ($25.4 million), as a result of the $7.2 billion sale of Nokia's devices business to Microsoft Corp. ()

* New York Times Co will restore a dividend payment to company shareholders that was eliminated four years ago, putting to use cash raised through a string of recent divestitures. ()

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