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Economy Briefs: Facebook launches iPhone camera app
Question of the Day
NEW YORK — Facebook’s rocky initial public offering hasn’t stopped life at the world’s biggest online social network. On Thursday, the company unveiled a camera app for the iPhone.
The app can be downloaded from Apple’s App Store and works like most other camera applications for smartphones. To take a photo, you tap a camera icon in the upper left corner of your screen, aim and shoot. You can then add filters, crop or tilt your photo, and share it on Facebook.
The new app is similar to Instagram, the photo-sharing app Facebook is in the process of buying for $1 billion. The acquisition, however, has not yet been completed.
Facebook didn’t give details on when it might release a version of the app for phones that run on Google’s Android operating system.
Schilling video-game firm lays off all workers
PROVIDENCE — Former Boston Red Sox pitcher Curt Schilling’s faltering video-game company has laid off its entire staff after accepting state subsidies to move to Rhode Island.
An email sent by the 38 Studios company to workers and obtained by the Associated Press says they were notified of the “non-voluntary and non-disciplinary” layoffs Thursday.
38 Studios moved from Massachusetts in 2010 after Rhode Island offered a $75 million loan guarantee officials said would bring jobs and tax revenue. The company was late this month on a $1.1 million payment to the state economic development agency.
The state could be responsible for paying some of 38 Studios’ debts should it collapse. Messages left with Mr. Schilling on Thursday were not immediately returned. Mr. Schilling also pitched for Baltimore, Houston, Philadelphia and Arizona.
Repsol reports big oil find off Brazil’s coast
SAO PAULO — Spanish oil company Repsol says an offshore block near Brazil’s coast contains at least 1.2 billion barrels of oil equivalent, one of the globe’s largest finds this year.
The company said that testing confirms the potential of the well.
Repsol Sinopec Brasil is the operator of the well. Norway’s Statoil has a 35 percent stake and Brazil’s Petrobras owns 30 percent.
Repsol says the estimated resources in the block amount to more than 700 million barrels of light crude and 3 trillion cubic feet of gas, the latter being equivalent to 545 million barrels of oil.
Brazil’s offshore oil fields contain some of the world’s biggest finds in the last 30 years, with estimates of at least 50 billion barrels of oil.
Bank chief ousted in no-confidence vote
VATICAN CITY — The president of the Vatican bank was effectively ousted Thursday after receiving a unanimous vote of no-confidence from bank overseers for having leaked documents and failing to do his job at a critical time in the Holy See’s efforts to show transparency in its finances, the Vatican and officials said.
Ettore Gotti Tedeschi has been a polarizing figure in the Vatican ever since he was named president of the bank, known as the Institute for Religious Works, in 2009. He is being investigated on suspicion of money laundering by Italian magistrates, but the investigation isn’t believed to have factored into the decision since the Vatican considers the investigation to be motivated by outside political interests.
In a statement, the Holy See said the vote was taken because of Mr. Tedeschi’s failure to fulfill the “primary functions of his office.” He himself has told prosecutors that he barely paid attention to the bank’s works, showing up only two days a week while tending to his primary position as head of Spain’s Banco Santander’s Italian unit.
• From wire dispatches and staff reports
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