Afternoon intel: Libyan hijackers surrender, consumer sentiment up, possible iPad delay

• The two hijackers who forced a Libyan passenger jet to land in Malta and threatened to blow up the plane are now being questioned by Maltese authorities, CNN reports. All passengers and crew were released by the hijackers. 

• The University of Michigan’s closely watched consumer sentiment survey showed consumer confidence rose 4.7% from last month to a 13-year high, the Wall Street Journal reports. A new WSJ/NBC News poll found that 42% of respondents say they believe the economy will get better over the coming year.

The Electronic Frontier Foundation and other tech advocacy groups asked the Supreme Court yesterday to strike down a North Carolina law banning social media use by registered sex offenders. The groups argue the law is a violation of free speech. 

Digitimes reports that the company making chips for next year’s iPads, TSMC, has hit problems churning out enough chips that pass performance and reliability tests. This, the report says, might delay Apple’s launch, which is rumored to be next March.

• The Atlantic has a fun and timely read about the Frank Capra holiday favorite It’s a Wonderful Life, and its portrayal of “good” and “bad” banking.MS