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Thursday Evening Business Brief

December 19, 2013, 7:00 PM

Thursday Evening Business Brief

Stock indexes are ending up pretty much where they started this morning, a day after a powerful surge. The Standard & Poor's 500 fell a point, or 0.06 percent, to 1,809 today. The Dow Jones industrial average edged up 11 points, or 0.07 percent, to 16,179. The Nasdaq composite fell 12 points, or 0.3 percent, to 4,058.

  • The price of oil is up 1 percent today. Stockpiles are declining and there are new indications demand is rising in the U.S. Benchmark crude for January delivery rose 97 cents to close at $98.77 a barrel today in New York. Meanwhile, the average retail price for a gallon of gasoline fell less than a penny today to $3.21 per gallon. The price has dropped four cents in the past week.
  • Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew is telling Congress he will have only a few weeks after Feb. 7 to avoid an unprecedented default on the nation's debt. He says Congress should act quickly next year to raise the borrowing limit. As part of the agreement that ended the 16-day partial government shutdown in October, Congress suspended the debt limit until Feb. 7.
  • A panel reviewing a proposed pipeline to the Pacific Coast that would allow Canada's oil to be shipped to Asia is recommending the Canadian government approve the project. But there is fierce environmental and aboriginal opposition and court challenges are expected. The prime minister became a staunch supporter of the pipeline after the U.S. delayed a decision on TransCanada's Keystone XL pipeline that would take oil from Alberta to the U.S. Gulf Coast.
  • Katie Couric is calling it quits on her weekday syndicated talk show as she heads to Yahoo. Couric and The Walt Disney Co. say the "Katie" show will wrap after this season. They say shuttering the show after its second season was a mutual decision. "Katie" will continue to air through next summer. Couric will serve as Yahoo's global anchor.

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