DOJ to Sue Apple, Publishers for E-Book Pricing: Hot Trends

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Popular searches on the Internet Thursday include Apple ( AAPL) as the U.S. Justice Department has warned the tech titan and five U.S. publishers that it plans to sue them for allegedly colluding to raise the price of electronic books, according to The Wall Street Journal.

Publishers facing potential suit include CBS' ( CBS) Simon & Schuster, Hachette Book Group, Macmillan, Pearson's ( PSO) Penguin Group, and HarperCollins Publishers of News Corp ( NWSA).

The Journal, citing people familiar with the matter, said several of the parties involved have attempted to avoid going to court by holding to talks to settle the case. If the Justice Department sues Apple and the publishers successfully, it could lead to cheaper e-books on the market.

Chrysler is another hot topic after the company announced its CEO Sergio Marchionne received no salary or stock awards in 2011.

Marchionne declined a salary and a bonus for the second year in a row. In the same year, Chrysler repaid the U.S. government over $7 billion in loans from its bankruptcy restructuring.

Marchionne has been CEO of Chrysler since it came out of bankruptcy in 2009. He has been credited with turning the company around, much like Ford ( F) CEO Alan Mulally, who just received $34.5 million in bonus stock awards that vested just this week.

Chrysler's value increased to $7.5 billion at the end of last year, a 56% climb from its value of $4.8 billion in 2010.

Marchionne is also CEO of Fiat, which paid him €3.5 million in 2010.

Solar storm is trending as a strong geomagnetic storm from the Sun is headed for Earth.

The storm was generated by two solar flares on the Sun and consists of a big cloud of charged particles. It took off from the Sun at an estimated 4.5 million miles per hour and is expected to hit Earth Thursday. Experts are calling it most likely the strongest event of its kind in nearly six years. It could affect power grids, airplane routes and satellite navigation systems in space.

According to scientists, the Sun, which is on an 11-year cycle of solar activity, is on the ascendant phase now, with the peak of activity expected next year.

The chatter on Main Street (a.k.a. Google, Yahoo! and other search sites) is always of interest to investors on Wall Street. Thus, each day, TheStreet compiles the stories that are trending on the Web, and highlights the news that could make stocks move.

-- Written by Brittany Umar.
Brittany joined TV in November 2006 after completing a degree in Journalism and Media Studies at Rutgers College. Previously, Brittany interned at the local ABC affiliate in New York City WABC-TV 7 where she helped research and produce On Your Side, a popular consumer advocacy segment.

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