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Tuesday Afternoon Business Brief

December 11, 2012, 1:40 PM

Tuesday Afternoon Business Brief
  • Stocks are in rally mode. The Dow has gained more than 100 points, on track for its biggest gain this month.
  • House Speaker John Boehner says President Barack Obama is taking a go-slow approach in negotiations aimed at avoiding the "fiscal cliff". The White House and leading Democrats have been quick to take issue with the assertion.
  • Britain's financial regulator says it is taking steps to force HSBC to improve its legal compliance after the bank agreed to pay $1.9 billon to settle a U.S. money laundering probe. The Financial Services Authority says that HSBC must establish a board committee with a mandate to oversee matters relating to anti-money laundering and terrorist financing.
  • The Michigan Legislature has given final approval to a bitterly contested right-to-work plan limiting the power of unions, a devastating and once unthinkable defeat for organized labor in a state considered a cradle of the movement. Despite Democrats' pleas and protests, the House approved two final bills, sending them on to Republican Gov. Rick Snyder.
  • The Federal Reserve is expected to announce a revamped bond-buying plan tomorrow to maintain its support for the U.S. economy. The Fed's goal would be to keep downward pressure on long-term interest rates and encourage individuals and companies to borrow and spend. If it succeeds, the Fed might at least soften the blow from tax increases and spending cuts that will kick in in January if Congress can't reach a budget deal.

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