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June 24, 2010 01:14 PM

Afternoon Business Brief

Investors continue to worry about the strength of the economic recovery.
The key stock market averages have been losing ground today.
  • A federal judge in New Orleans has refused to delay his decision to strike down a six-month moratorium on deepwater drilling imposed after the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. The Justice Department had asked the judge to stay his ruling while it appeals the decision.
  • Republicans in the Senate appear likely to kill legislation to provide continued unemployment checks to millions of people and provide states with billions of dollars to avert layoffs. That would mark a defeat for President Barack Obama and Democratic lawmakers, who have been trying to advance the measure for months.
  • The Supreme Court has narrowed the scope of a federal fraud law frequently used to target suspected white-collar crime suspects. The decision could benefit former Enron CEO Jeffrey Skilling and a host of politicians who face charges or have been convicted of "honest services" fraud.
  • German airline Lufthansa and its pilots say they have settled a pay dispute through arbitration. That fends off the prospect of further strikes.