Jan 21 The following are the top stories on the New York Times business pages. Reuters has not verified these stories and does not vouch for their accuracy.
* Europe lacks a vibrant market for corporate bonds issued by smaller, riskier companies, making European companies more dependent on bank credit than American businesses. ()
* The World Economic Forum, for which the cost of membership and a ticket to the annual meeting is more than $70,000, is both admired and derided as a velvet-rope club for the 1 percent of the 1 percent. However, the leaders of some of the largest and most transformative companies are demonstrating, with their absence, the difficulty of convening a global conversation with all the main stakeholders. ()
* Royal Dutch Shell said on Monday that it would sell its minority interest in an Australian liquefied natural gas project to the Kuwait Foreign Petroleum Exploration Company for about $1.1 billion. ()
* Waste Control Specialists has a monopoly: as aging nuclear reactors retire, their most radioactive steel, concrete and other components must be shipped for burial somewhere.
* Account information stolen during the Target security breach is now being divided up and sold off regionally, a South Texas police chief said on Monday following the arrest of two Mexican citizens who the authorities say arrived at the border with 96 fraudulent credit cards. ()
* Bixi, the Canadian company that designs and builds bicycles and supporting technology for bike-sharing systems around the world, including those in New York and London, sought bankruptcy protection on Monday. ()
* Weixin, a fast-growing social messaging app from the Chinese Internet company Tencent, is no mere copy of any existing service, and its success may thwart Facebook'S ambitions in China. Weixin, a highly addictive social networking tool that allows smartphone users to send messages and share news, photos, videos and web links, much like America's WhatsApp, or Line, a Japanese communications and messaging app.()
* Hotels are competing with one another to create luxury suites for the extremely wealthy, who are willing to pay five-figure nightly rates. In New York, the race to capture the highest end of the market continues. In November, the Mandarin Oriental, New York, opened a 3,300-square-foot suite that includes floor-to-ceiling windows and a dining room that seats 10; its rate is $28,000 a night. ()
* A 60-second Chobani commercial - in the first Super Bowl appearance for the No. 1 brand of Greek yogurt - is scheduled for the third quarter. Two brands of Greek-style yogurt, Chobani and Dannon Oikos, have bought commercial time during the game.()
* Some farmers are raising their pigs more humanely in wide open spaces, instead of tight quarters, and selling them to restaurants and grocers increasingly interested in how animals are treated. ()