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August 03, 2012 06:03 AM

Friday Morning Business Brief

Wall Street would like to break out after four straight losing days. Stocks slumped again yesterday after European leaders failed to offer detailed plans for tackling the region's debt crisis. The Dow Jones industrial average lost 92 points to close at 12,879. The Standard & Poor's 500 index fell 10 points to 1,365. The Nasdaq also lost 10 points, ending the day at 2,910. Futures trading suggests gains this morning.

  • Asian stock markets fell today but shares in Europe rebounded from big falls yesterday after the European Central Bank's policy meeting failed to deliver on bold promises of action to overcome the region's prolonged debt crisis. Benchmark crude oil rose above $88 a barrel. The dollar fell against the euro but was little changed against the yen.
  • Slower economic growth and an uncertain outlook could make for a sluggish jobs report this morning when the government releases July data. Economists forecast that employers added 100,000 jobs last month, according to a survey by FactSet. The unemployment rate is expected to remain at 8.2 percent.
  • Spain's borrowing costs increased today as investors showed their disappointment with the European Central Bank's warning that it would only help the country if it applied for rescue aid. The interest rate, or yield, on Spain's benchmark 10-year bond rose 0.14 percentage points to 7.21 percent in the first hour of trading although it later edged back to 7.19 percent. Such rates are unsustainable over the long term and could likely push Spain to seek a bailout.
  • Toyota raised its sales target for this year to a record 9.76 million vehicles and reported a strong recovery in quarterly profit today, underlining its bounce back from a disaster plagued 2011. Toyota said April-June profit zoomed to $3.7 billion. Its new sales target would represent a 23 percent increase from the 7.95 million vehicles sold in 2011.
  • Business
  • Economy/Stocks
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