News In Brief

DURING THE DAY, THEY'RE FINE

Attention: distributors of timing devices. A new sales opportunity has opened up. OK, so it's in a small town in Scotland, but a church there may need one just to keep harmony. On the complaint of Holman Kingdon, who lives only a few yards away, St. Andrew's in Blairgowrie is silencing its chimes. They weren't working when he moved in. But now, he says he turns down jobs for lack of sleep because the bonging sounds "like Big Ben" every quarter-hour. Other Blairgowrie residents, however, may appeal because they find the chimes "a comfort." With a timer, church officials say, the noise could stop between 11 at night and 7 in the morning.

UPSTAIRS, DOWNSTAIRS

In Rio de Janeiro, three armed men escaped with the entire $54,000 payroll that was to be paid to the staff of a branch bank. One floor above, as the robbery was taking place, the president of Brazil's Central Bank addressed a gathering of executives in his industry. The subject: financial risk.

Amazon.com ranks as the most-recognized 'etailer'

Increasingly, analysts are predicting the demise of e-commerce. They point to the failure of major online retailers - such as Amazon.com - to turn a profit. Recent data, however, show consumers spent about $1 billion more online in the second quarter of 2000 than in the first. Part of the short-term turnaround, experts suggest, is due to growing name recognition of e-commerce sites. And in a survey of 100,000 people by the HarrisInteractive research group, Amazon.com was mentioned most often by respondents who were asked which online retailer first comes to mind. The top 10 finishers and the percentage who thought of them first:

1. Amazon.com 24.1%

2. eBay.com 16.1%

3. Yahoo.com 4.9%

4. priceline.com 2.7%

5. buy.com 1.9%

6. Barnesandnoble.com 1.8%

7. CDNow.com 1.3%

8. AOL.com 1.1%

9. Egghead.com 1.0%

10. Iwon.com 0.9%

(c) Copyright 2000. The Christian Science Publishing Society

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