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Thursday Afternoon Business Brief

April 12, 2012, 1:15 PM

Thursday Afternoon Business Brief

Stocks are rising for a second straight day. The Dow has been up as many as 150 points, or more than 1 percent.

  • Goldman Sachs has agreed to pay $22 million to settle regulators' charges that its analysts shared confidential research with favored clients. Regulators alleged that Goldman analysts had weekly "huddles" from 2006 to 2011 where they discussed confidential research on stocks with the firm's traders and then passed on the ideas to a select group of top clients.
  • The Obama administration's consumer financial watchdog agency is backing off a plan to limit big upfront fees on credit cards. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau says its proposal would increase costs for cardholders and allow banks to charge more in fees.
  • International Monetary Fund chief Christine Lagarde says the lending agency might not need as large a boost in financial resources as first thought to address Europe's debt crisis. She says it is hoped the issue is resolved when the so-called lender of last resort holds its spring meeting in Washington next week.
  • The California Supreme Court says employers are under no obligation to ensure that workers take legally mandated lunch and rest breaks. The ruling came despite arguments from workers' attorneys that abuses are widespread when companies aren't required to issue direct orders to take breaks.

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