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Macro chatter: Dow hits 4-year high, Facebook eyes May 18 IPO

Around the world today in business and economics. Need to know, want to know, and strange but true.
Kodak theaterEnlarge
Tourists take snapshots outside the Kodak Theatre on May 1, 2012 in Hollywood, California, the venue that hosts the annual Oscars show which was renamed the Dolby Theatre on May 1, 2012, after the audio pioneer gained naming rights previously held by the bankrupt camera company Kodak. (Robyn Beck /AFP/Getty Images)

Need to know:
The Dow Jones Industrial Average is partying like it’s 2007. 

The Dow on Tuesday closed at its highest level in more than four years, lifted by a strong set of US manufacturing data and by big gains for Sears, Bank of America and American Express.

The strong day comes after a tough April but has brought the Dow within about 6 percent of its all-time high reached in October 2007.

Want to know:
Facebook’s big day might be just around the corner.

Facebook is hitting the road to pitch its stock to investors next week and will likely hold its IPO around May 18, the Wall Street Journal reported.

Facebook also is trying to promote organ donation, an idea Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg told ABC News was inspired by his girlfriend. 

Dull but important:
Unemployment in the Euro zone has hit a fresh record.

Unemployment among euro area countries rose to 10.9 percent in March, the latest data from Europe show.

While Spain and Greece remain two of the worst countries in Europe for job seekers, Austria, the Netherlands, Luxembourg and Germany are among the best. 

Just because:
Rupert Murdoch has been called “not a fit person”
to run an international company.

The UK’s lower house of parliament in a scathing report said the media mogul exhibited a “willful blindness” to bad behavior by News Corp. publications and nurtured an environment that allowed phone hacking to flourish.

Some speculate the report’s findings could impact whether BSkyB, a broadcaster owned in big part by Murdoch’s News Corp., is fit to hold a UK broadcasting license. Murdoch already is feeling the pressure from shareholders who want him off his company’s board of directors. 

Strange but true:
Next year, you’ll be watching the Academy Awards from the Dolby Theater.

Dolby Laboratories bought the naming rights to the theater formerly known as Kodak where the awards are held, the Wall Street Journal reported.

Dolby is paying more than the $4 million a year Kodak was paying to have its name on the theater where some of Hollywood’s biggest and brightest stars have gotten used to picking up their Academy Awards over the past decade.

Kodak gave up its naming rights to the theater when it filed for bankruptcy.  

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatches/globalpost-blogs/macro/macro-chatter0502