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Thursday Morning Business Brief

December 5, 2013, 5:35 AM

Thursday Morning Business Brief

Investors are showing concern that more signs of a growing U.S. economy could mean the Federal Reserve begins pulling back on its stimulus sooner than expected. The stock market fell for fourth straight day yesterday, its longest losing streak in more than two months. The Dow dropped 25 points. The S&P 500 fell two. But the Nasdaq edged up nearly a point. Futures point to lackluster trading at this morning's opening.

  • Asian stock markets are in the red today after strong U.S. economic data renewed fears that the Federal Reserve may start cutting its monetary stimulus this month. European markets were muted in early trading ahead of European Central Bank and Bank of England policy meetings. Benchmark crude oil rose to near $97.50 a barrel. The dollar was little changed against the euro and fell against the yen.
  • The government releases its weekly report on new unemployment claims today. There are two other economic reports due out as well. The Commerce Department reports the third-quarter gross domestic product and factory orders for October. Also, Freddie Mac releases weekly mortgage rates and Kroger reports quarterly financial results before the bell.
  • South Korea's economy expanded at its fastest clip in nearly two years during the third quarter as construction and capital expenditure offset weak growth in exports. The Bank of Korea says the economy grew 3.3 percent in the July-September period over a year earlier. South Korea is Asia's fourth-largest economy.
  • The venerable Ford Mustang is celebrating its 50th birthday with a new design and plans to go global. Ford will reveal the 2015 Mustang today at events in New York, Los Angeles, Shanghai, Sydney, Barcelona and its hometown of Dearborn, Mich. The car goes on sale next fall in North America and later in Europe and Asia. The new car has plenty of cues from the old, but it also has some new features, including a roof that tapers dramatically in the front and rear and narrower, more menacing headlights.

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