Bernanke touts interest rates
Chairman Ben Bernanke said Monday the Federal Reserve’s low-interest-rate policies are helping to boost growth around the world and have created markets for products made in developing nations.
In a speech at the London School of Economics, Bernanke staunchly defended the policies and similar stimulus efforts by other central banks since the 2008 financial crisis. Some critics have argued that the low-interest-rate policies could feed a global currency war, which is lowering currency values to make products more competitive on global markets.
Bernanke said the current efforts should support stronger trade flows by boosting growth in major economies so that they could buy more goods from developing countries.
T-Mobile changing approach
T-Mobile USA, the struggling No. 4 cellphone company, is ditching plans centered on familiar two-year contracts in favor of selling phones on installment plans.
T-Mobile is the first major U.S. carrier to break from the contract model. The company changed its website over the weekend to begin selling the new plans. It plans to lay out the rationale for the change on Tuesday at an event in New York.
T-Mobile has been losing subscribers from its contract-based plans for more than two years, chiefly to bigger competitors Verizon Wireless and AT&T. T-Mobile has done better with contract-less, prepaid plans, but those aren’t as profitable for the company.
Glucose meter recalled
Johnson & Johnson has announced a voluntary recall for all its OneTouch VerioIQ blood glucose meters in the U.S. because they do not provide a warning when a diabetic’s blood sugar level is dangerously high. Instead, the meters turn off.
The meters are made by J&J’s LifeScan unit, which will issue a free replacement meter to all patients.
The company says the meters shut down when a patient’s blood sugar hits 1,024 milligrams per deciliter. That’s an extremely high level requiring immediate medical attention.
Johnson & Johnson, based in New Brunswick, N.J., said patients with one of the meters should contact LifeScan’s customer service at 800-717-0276 to arrange for a replacement meter or ask questions.
The recall is J&J’s latest in a string of about three dozen since 2009.