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Briefs

Google ties new rollout to Kit Kat

Gimme a break, Google. Break me off a piece of that Kit Kat bar.

The tech giant, known for nicknaming its Android mobile operating systems for smartphones and tablets after desserts, has for the first time chosen a brand-name candy for its 4.4 Android version that’s expected to launch this fall: Kit Kat.

That’s right, the new version shares a name with the chocolate candy bar with the well-known “Gimme a Break” jingle. Kit Kat packaging will show Android’s green robot mascot breaking a Kit Kat bar.

Financial terms weren’t disclosed for the sweet deal between Google and Hershey Co., which makes Kit Kat. But the deal shows that naming a stadium or sponsoring a TV show can be seen as old school. The latest marketing craze may be to slap a brand name on a tech product.

Kodak says it has exited bankruptcy

Kodak’s trip through bankruptcy is now a memory for the scrapbook. Kodak said it finished its restructuring and exited Chapter 11 on Tuesday.

The company says it’s now a commercial imaging company serving business markets such as packaging and graphics. Chairman and CEO Antonio Perez says it’s on track for profitable growth.

Kodak filed for bankruptcy protection last year, brought down by increasing competition, digital photography, and debt. Since then it has sold off many of its businesses and patents, while shutting down the camera manufacturing unit that made it famous.

It spun off its personal imaging and document imaging units to its pension plan.

Kodak said its old stock is canceled as of Tuesday. Creditors are getting shares in the reorganized company.

Home prices climb 12.4 percent in July

U.S. home prices jumped 12.4 percent in July from a year earlier, reflecting a housing market that’s increasingly favoring sellers amid a tight supply of available homes for sale.

Real estate data provider CoreLogic said Tuesday that home prices in every state but Delaware climbed on annual basis in July.

Ninety-nine of the 100 largest cities reported annual price gains. Home prices grew 27 percent in Nevada, to lead all states.

CoreLogic also says prices rose 1.8 percent from June, the 17th straight month-over-month increase.

Construction spending up 0.6 percent in July

Spending on U.S. construction projects rose in July, led by strong gains in housing and nonresidential projects.

Construction spending increased 0.6 percent in July, compared with June when activity was unchanged, the Commerce Department reported Tuesday. The June performance represented an upward revision from an initial estimate that spending had fallen 0.6 percent.

Total construction activity rose to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $900.8 billion in July, the strongest performance since June 2009.

The July gain reflected a 0.6 percent rise in housing construction with both single-family and apartment construction posting gains. In June, housing had fallen 0.9 percent.

Government projects fell 0.3 percent in July with state and local spending down 0.4 percent. That drop more than offset a 1.1 percent rise in the smaller federal category.

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