December 26, 2013 / 6:14 AM / 4 years ago

PRESS DIGEST - Wall Street Journal - Dec 26

Dec 26 (Reuters) - The following are the top stories in the Wall Street Journal. Reuters has not verified these stories and does not vouch for their accuracy.

* Turkey Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan shuffled his cabinet after an old ally pressed him to resign, in the latest fallout from a corruption case. ()

* Republican leaders and their corporate allies have launched an array of efforts aimed at diminishing the clout of the party’s most conservative activists and promoting legislation instead of confrontation next year. ()

* A last-minute influx of enrollees prompted the Obama administration and some states to keep the rolls open for Jan. 1 coverage. ()

* The U.S. National Security Agency is drowning in useless data, which harms its ability to conduct legitimate surveillance, claims a former employee who created some of the computer code used to snoop on Internet traffic. ()

* The end of the year is the peak trash season across America, a superlative earned by all the eating, parties and gift giving that people do, and by the growing use of package deliveries from online purchases. ()

* A pick-up in business investment and robust new-home sales point to an economy on stronger footing heading into the new year. Orders for U.S. durable goods -- big-ticket items such as cars and aircraft designed to last more than three years -- rose 3.5 percent last month, reversing a decline in October, the Commerce Department said on Tuesday. ()

* Municipal bonds are on track to post their worst annual performance in nearly two decades as 2013 ushered in more financial woes for U.S. cities. Municipal debt is down 2.58 percent so far this year after handing investors a 6.78 percent return in 2012 and a 10.70 percent return in 2011, according to Barclays’s municipal-bond index. ()

* U.S. colleges and universities are starting to unwind decades of administrative bloat and back-office waste that helped push up costs and tuition. ()

* Sherritt International Corp is facing pressure from an activist shareholder amid plans to sell its coal business and focus on its nickel and oil operations. ()

* Sony Corp and Panasonic Corp have decided to end a development venture that would produce technology to make big and ultrathin televisions, underscoring the challenges of bringing next-generation TVs to the mass market. ()

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