PRESS DIGEST- New York Times business news - July 31

July 31 Thu Jul 31, 2014 2:20am EDT

July 31 (Reuters) - 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.

* Argentina failed to make payments on its government bond, and a court-appointed mediator said that it would "imminently be in default." (nyti.ms/1lZn9es)

* Energy companies executives are now acknowledging that the escalating tensions could sharply hurt companies with major investments in Russia. (nyti.ms/1tvYcPH)

* Bitcoin has found another taker. On Wednesday, the Wikimedia Foundation, the nonprofit organization that operates Wikipedia, announced that it would allow people to make donations using bitcoin, becoming the latest adopter of the virtual currency as a payment option. (nyti.ms/1uJdsKk)

* In an escalation of the confrontation between the United States attorney in Manhattan, Preet Bharara, and Andrew Cuomo over the governor's cancellation of his own anti-corruption commission, Bharara has threatened to investigate the Cuomo administration for possible obstruction of justice or witness tampering. (nyti.ms/1xCDgUJ)

* Nordstrom plans to announce on Thursday that it has agreed to purchase Trunk Club, a five-year old website that sells about 100 brands of men's apparel, for an undisclosed amount. It is the latest sign that men are not the only ones taking their sartorial habits seriously. (nyti.ms/1oOii4G)

* Industry trade groups quickly signaled their intention to ask the federal courts to overturn a ruling that holds McDonald's liable for the actions of its franchisees. (nyti.ms/1tw0qi0)

* Bank of America and federal prosecutors have accelerated their negotiations to resolve an investigation into the bank's sale of toxic mortgage securities before the financial crisis. (nyti.ms/1s5U0mB)

* AMC Networks, the home of AMC, SundanceTV and IFC channels, is in talks to acquire close to a 50 percent stake in BBC America, the United States television network owned by the commercial arm of the BBC, according to people briefed on the discussions. (nyti.ms/WOam9i)

* When Snapchat spurned takeover interest from the likes of Facebook and Google, investors scoffed at the audacity of the photo messaging service. But the start-up may have the last laugh. Snapchat has held talks to sell a stake to the Alibaba Group IPO-BABA.N, the Chinese Internet giant, people briefed on the matter said on Wednesday. (nyti.ms/1zxRYiG) (Compiled by Supriya Kurane in Bangalore)