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January 12, 2015 05:37 AM

Monday Morning Business Brief

European stock markets were higher in early trading today while Asian markets fell as investors digested another slide in the price of oil and strong hiring in the U.S. Futures point to opening gains today on Wall Street. Benchmark U.S. crude oil slipped below $48 a barrel and is down 44 percent in the past three months. The dollar gained against the yen and the euro.

  • WASHINGTON (AP) - There are no major government economic reports due out today. But tomorrow, the Labor Department will release its job openings and labor turnover survey for November and the Treasury Department will report on the federal budget for December. Also on Tuesday, CSX Corp. will report quarterly results after the closing bell.
     
  • BERLIN (AP) - Volkswagen says it sold more than 10 million vehicles last year for the first time. Volkswagen AG says it delivered 10.14 million cars and trucks in 2014, up from 9.73 million the previous year. In December, Volkswagen sold 857,600 vehicles, a 2.7 percent increase compared with a year earlier. The company's brands include Audi, Skoda and Seat.
     
  • MOSCOW (AP) - The Russian ruble is edging further down amid a continuing slump in oil prices. The currency was down about 2 percent in morning trading in Moscow, floating around 62.8 rubles per dollar. The ruble has been plunging under a combined blow of slumping oil prices and Western sanctions over Ukraine. Last week, Fitch Ratings downgraded Russia to the lowest investment grade, citing a worsening economic outlook.
     
  • BEIJING (AP) - Volvo Cars, the Chinese-owned Swedish automaker, says it plans to export cars made in China to the United States. A public relations manager for Volvo, Chen Yu, says the cars would be exported from Volvo factories in China. Chen said she had no details on when shipments would start or a sales target. China's domestic automakers export to Latin America, the Middle East and other emerging markets. A handful of vehicles have been exported to the United States but Chinese automakers have yet to satisfy U.S. emissions and safety standards for mass-market sales.
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