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August 12, 2010 01:28 PM

Afternoon Business Brief

Stock prices continue to weaken amid gathering economic clouds.
The Dow has been down today, but not as dramatically as was seen yesterday.
  • Ed Whitacre says he's stepping down as CEO of General Motors on Sept. 1. The announcement came as the automaker reported its second straight quarterly profit. He's to be replaced by GM board member Daniel Akerson.
  • There's no sign of improvement in the job market. The Labor Department says first-time claims for unemployment benefits rose by 2,000 last week to a seasonally adjusted 484,000. Analysts had been looking for a drop.
  • If you can qualify, this is a good time to look into a mortgage. Freddie Mac says mortgage interest rates have sunk to the lowest level in decades. The average for 30-year fixed loans this week was 4.44 percent, down from 4.49 percent last week.
  • Shares of Indian travel agency MakeMyTrip have risen as much as 80 percent in their market debut on the Nasdaq exchange, even as the broader markets declined. It could be the best first-day performance for an IPO this year.

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