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Tuesday Evening Busniess Brief

May 8, 2012, 6:19 PM

Tuesday Evening Busniess Brief

Stocks settled with losses at the closing bell. The key averages managed to rally off their worst levels of the session because of concern about the outlook for Europe. The Dow lost 76 points, or 0.6 percent, to 12,932. The S&P fell 6 points, while the Nasdaq shed 11.

  • Senate Republicans have blocked a Democratic bill to preserve low interest rates for millions of college students' loans. The 52-45 vote to begin debating the legislation fell eight votes short of the 60 needed to proceed and stalled work on an effort both parties expect will ultimately produce a compromise, probably in a few weeks or less.
  • Homeowners with a Bank of America mortgage have reason to check their mailbox. The lender says it has begun mailing out letters to customers who may qualify to have their home loans reduced as part of a multistate settlement over alleged foreclosure abuses.
  • Chase is launching a new prepaid card designed to be an alternative to a checking account as banks try to recoup fees they've lost under recent regulatory changes. The New York company says the reloadable Chase Liquid card is available at 200 branches, and will expand nationwide this summer. Consumers will pay a $5 monthly fee for the reloadable card.
  • Rising sales are behind Ford's decision to add a week of production at 13 North American factories so the company can make another 40,000 vehicles this year. Ford says it will cut in half the normal two-week summer shutdown at six assembly plants and seven engine and parts plants. Auto plants normally close for two weeks around the July 4 holiday as they switch over to make vehicles for the next model year.

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