PRESS DIGEST - Wall Street Journal - Nov 17

Mon Nov 17, 2014 1:17am EST
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Nov 17 (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.

* A sales tax increase pushed Japan's economy into a recession in the third quarter, setting the stage for Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to postpone a second increase in the sales tax. (

* Bank of North Dakota, the United State's state-owned bank which has one branch and no automated teller, is more profitable than Goldman Sachs Group Inc, has a better credit rating than JPMorgan Chase & Co and has not seen profit growth drop since 2003. The bank has been one of the biggest beneficiaries of the boom in Bakken shale-oil production from hydraulic fracturing. (

* Sony Corp investors could get a look in the coming week at whether the hard-nosed approach of finance chief Kenichiro Yoshida is producing an impact on the company's outlook. Sony Chief Executive Kazuo Hirai, Yoshida and other executives are expected to talk up plans to rebuild around Sony's entertainment businesses, which include the videogame division and Hollywood studio arm. (

* Actavis Plc is nearing a deal to acquire Allergan Inc in a tie-up that would likely be the year's largest and could help shield Botox maker Allergan from a hostile suitor Valeant Pharmaceuticals International Inc. The boards of Actavis and Allergan are expected to meet in coming days to review a cash-and-stock takeover, sources said. (   Continued...