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Best of the Blogs, Consumer: What Does the Apple Patent Verdict Mean for Customers?


Plus, high gas prices boost sales of fuel-efficient cars. Oh, and the government earned $18 billion from the AIG bailout.

This column highlights the most interesting and useful business and financial commentary on consumer stocks and companies from around the Web.
Washington Post
Link: Apple's Patent Victory Spells Changes in Smartphones for Consumers
"Apple's (AAPL) big court victory against Samsung on Friday is expected to trickle down to consumers, affecting the creation of future mobile technology and potentially raising prices for devices, analysts and patent experts say.

"A jury's decision to award Apple $1.05 billion after finding Samsung violated six patents will make rivals think twice about smartphones and tablets that too closely resemble Apple products."

Time Moneyland
Link: Yet Again, High Gas Prices Boost Sales of Small, Fuel-Efficient Cars
"August 2012 is shaping up as another strong month for car sales, with the total number of new vehicles sold up nearly 19% compared to the same time last year. But some categories of vehicles are experiencing hotter sales than others, and it's not much of a mystery why."

Consumer News
Link: Why the MyFord Touch Control System Stinks
"We've never liked MyFord Touch, Ford's (F) high-tech control design that is spreading to more models across the company's lineup. Our recent experiences have convinced us it's high time to detail how the system works and why it's so distracting.

"Despite some recent updates, MyFord Touch still frustrates us like few other control systems in any other brand's automobiles. (Although our Fisker Karma has even worse controls.) And worse, it is influencing competitors, such as GM, with its Cadillac CUE system."

Consumerism Commentary
Link: American Express Credit Card Customers Are Most Satisfied
"For this sixth year in a row, American Express (AXP) has topped the results of a customer satisfaction survey conducted by J.D. Power & Associates. With a score of 807 out of 1,000 points, consumers who hold American Express credit cards are satisfied with their experience more than customers with cards from all other issuers. This survey has only been conducted for six years, and American Express has been the victor every year."

Link: Fed Turns AIG Bailout Into $18 Billion Profit
"The Federal Reserve finally has wiped its hands clean of AIG (AIG) and turned a nearly $18 billion profit for taxpayers in the process.

"Now it's up to the Treasury Department to sell the rest of the US government's stake in the insurance giant.

"The Federal Reserve Bank of New York announced Thursday that it had sold the last of its securities related to the AIG bailout. The portfolio, known as Maiden Lane III, consisted of collateralized debt obligations, or CDOs -- highly complex financial instruments that bundle various kinds of debt. The Maiden Lane III sales earned $6.6 billion."

CNBC Consumer Nation
Link: Back-to-School Has Been 'Terrific': Tanger CEO
"American consumers have been flocking to the outlet stores in search of bargains, Tanger Factory Outlet Centers (SKT) CEO Steven Tanger told CNBC on Thursday.

"This has been a terrific back-to-school season," the REITs' CEO said. "Across the country our traffic has been trending up 4 to 5% . Sales are about the same, trending up 4 to 5%."
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