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Thursday Morning Business Brief

October 11, 2012, 5:33 AM

Thursday Morning Business Brief

Stocks are down so far this week, with the key averages down about 2 to 3 percent. In the latest session, the Dow fell 129 points, or 1 percent to 13,345. The S&P dropped 9 points, while the Nasdaq shed 13 points. Futures trading suggest modest gains at this morning's opening.

  • International stock markets are mixed today with Europe posting modest gains in early trading while Asia slumped after Spain, the fourth-largest euro economy, was slapped with a two-notch credit downgrade. Benchmark crude oil rose to near $92 per barrel. The dollar rose against the euro but fell against the yen.
  • On today's economic calendar, the Labor Department releases weekly jobless claims. Also on tap, the Commerce Department's international trade figures for August.
  • U.S. Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner is talking about the economy with some optimism and says an Obama administration goal is to resolve the impasse with Congress that threatens to impose a so-called "fiscal cliff" of tax increases and deep spending. Geithner is attending a financial conference in Tokyo.
  • The unemployment rate in Greece rose to 25.1 percent in July, from 24.8 percent the month before, as the financial crisis continued to destroy jobs. Greece's statistical authority says in a statement today that in the worst-affected 15-24 age group, unemployment was 54.2 percent.

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