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Tuesday Afternoon Business Brief

March 4, 2014, 1:55 PM

Tuesday Afternoon Business Brief

Stock markets around the world have been sharply higher today, as investors express relief that Russia has pulled troops back from its border with Ukraine. On Wall Street, the rally has erased yesterday's steep losses. The Dow is more than 200 points higher in afternoon trading, while the S&P 500 index has moved back into record territory, up about 25 points. The Nasdaq composite was nearly 70 points higher.

  • President Barack Obama has sent Congress a $3.9 trillion budget. Obama is pitching it as "a roadmap for creating jobs," with money for road building, education and other programs aimed at bolstering the economy. House Speaker John Boehner says Obama is offering "perhaps his most irresponsible budget yet." Election-year pressures and partisan gridlock on Capitol Hill all but ensure that many of Obama's proposals will go nowhere.
  • Chrysler says it will take steps to build new cars and minivans in Ontario without incentives from the Canadian government. Chrysler has been talking to officials about financial aid to offset higher wages in Canada. But the company says it is withdrawing its requests, because the projects have become a political football. Chrysler says it will start upgrading the factories in Windsor and Brampton with its own capital, but adds that spending the money will depend on Canada's competitiveness with other global factories.
  • Media reports say Facebook is looking to make another acquisition. CNBC and the blog Techcrunch are reporting that Facebook is in talks to buy the solar drone company Titan Aerospace. The purchase could fit the goals of CEO Mark Zuckerberg's project, which aims to provide Internet access to remote parts of the world. Neither company is commenting on the reports.
  • Dove is scrapping its plans for a billboard in New Jersey that tells residents to embrace being called "The Armpit of America." The ad was intended to promote a new line of Dove deodorants, but it sparked complaints after the New York Times published a story about it last week. The brand's parent company said today, it won't be putting up the billboard this summer after all.

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