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Stocks flat...Consumer spending declines...Dell board backs founder's takeover bid

Friday - 5/31/2013, 12:00pm  ET

NEW YORK (AP) -- Stocks are little changed in early trading on Wall Street, following news that Americans cut back on spending last month for the first time in almost a year. The Dow Jones industrial average is up 3.3 percent this month and on track to record its first gain in May since 2009. The Standard & Poor's 500 is up 3.5 percent and is heading for its seventh straight monthly gain, the longest winning streak since 2009.

WASHINGTON (AP) -- The Commerce Department says consumer spending declined in April for the first time since last May, falling a seasonally adjusted 0.2 percent. A drop in gas prices likely lowered overall spending. Adjusted for inflation, spending ticked up 0.1 percent last month. Still, that was the smallest gain since October. Income was unchanged last month.

UNDATED (AP) -- The board at Dell is urging shareholders to approve a takeover bid led by the company's founder and CEO. Dell directors unanimously recommended an offer from Michael Dell and the investment firm Silver Lake Partners to take the company private for $24.4 billion, or $13.65 per share, according to filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Billionaire investor Carl Icahn and others want shareholders to reject the offer, saying the price is too low.

BLOOMFIELD HILLS, Mich. (AP) -- One of the country's biggest homebuilders is planning to move its headquarters to Atlanta from the suburbs of Detroit next year. Pulte (PUL'-tee)Group says the relocation will put it closer to its customers and a bigger portion of its investment portfolio. PulteGroup's operations in the Southeast, from northern Virginia to Florida, made up 37 percent of its home closings last year.

BERLIN (AP) -- The European Union is urging its 27 member states to test certain wheat shipments from the United States after unauthorized genetically modified grains were found on a U.S. farm. The recommendation comes a day after Japan halted imports of some types of wheat from the U.S. following the discovery of an experimental strain in Oregon that was tested by Monsanto but was never approved.


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