Aug 17 (Reuters) - The following were the top stories in the Wall Street Journal on Friday. Reuters has not verified these stories and does not vouch for their accuracy.
* Facebook Inc’s stock price plumbed a new low on Thursday as early investors were freed to sell some of their stakes, leaving the once-prized stock down nearly 50 percent from its debut and forcing executives of the young internet giant to pump up morale.
* Apple Inc’s vision for a new device that can be used as a set-top box includes features designed to simplify accessing and viewing programming and erase the distinction between live and on-demand content, people briefed on Apple’s plans said.
* Verizon Wireless won Justice Department approval of its $3.9 billion deal to acquire airwaves from Comcast Corp and other cable companies while agreeing to some relatively light conditions on the deal.
* In a statement, Eastman Kodak Co said discussions with buyers are active and that it isn’t ready to announce a result. The company added that it might decline to sell some or all of the patents, depending on how the auction progresses.
* Barrick Gold Corp said it is in talks to sell a big chunk of its African assets to China National Gold Group Corp in a deal that analysts say could fetch as much as about 2.5 billion pounds ($3.94 billion) -the latest move by the world’s largest gold miner to boost shareholder value.
* International Business Machines Corp said it would buy closely held Texas Memory Systems Inc for undisclosed terms.
* Best Buy Co Inc founder Richard Schulze pushed his takeover offer for the electronics retailer with a letter to the board requesting permission to form a group and conduct due diligence in order to present a fully financed offer for the company.
* Wal-Mart Stores Inc reported a 5.7 percent increase in second-quarter earnings on strong sales in its U.S. and international markets, but the discount retailer continues to see tough economic conditions around the globe.
* Gap Inc fiscal second-quarter earnings rose a better-than-expected 29 percent as the casual-apparel retailer reported stronger sales in North America and improved margins.
* Oracle Corp paid $2 million to settle Securities and Exchange Commission accusations that an Indian subsidiary of the company violated U.S. laws designed to prevent bribery overseas.
* The United States Food and Drug Administration ordered St. Jude Medical Inc to launch new studies gauging the scope of heart-device failures that have plagued the company for months.
* Former partners from defunct law firm Dewey & LeBoeuf LLP have agreed to give back at least $50 million in past earnings in exchange for immunity from lawsuits relating to the New York firm’s demise.