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AP Financial News Summary at 12:55 a.m. EDT

June 9, 2006

Cathay Pacific to Buy Out Dragon Airlines

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HONG KONG (AP) _ Cathay Pacific Airways Ltd. said Friday it will acquire full ownership of Hong Kong Dragon Airlines Ltd. and double its stake in Air China in a deal aimed at giving Cathay a huge competitive boost in the world’s fastest growing aviation market.

Oil Prices Rise Slightly After 3-Day Drop

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SINGAPORE (AP) _ Oil prices rose slightly Friday morning as traders cautioned against reading too much into the death of al-Qaida’s leader in Iraq, stressing that Iran and the upcoming hurricane season still make for an uncertain supply outlook.

Fewer Laid Off Workers File Jobless Claims

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WASHINGTON (AP) _ The number of laid off workers filing claims for unemployment plunged last week by the largest amount in eight months, but it might have been a statistical fluke.

White House Upbeat About Economic Growth

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WASHINGTON (AP) _ The White House, in a slightly more optimistic forecast, predicted Thursday the economy will log solid growth and unemployment will dip this year.

Sharper Image 1Q Loss Widens to $12.6M

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SAN FRANCISCO (AP) _ Sharper Image Corp.’s losses nearly tripled during the first quarter, further underscoring the challenges facing the gadget retailer as it tries to win back estranged shoppers.

Japanese Stocks Mixed; Dollar Down vs. Yen

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TOKYO (AP) _ Japanese stocks turned mixed Friday morning after showing signs of recovery in early trade on buying in insurance and brokerage shares. The dollar was lower against the yen.

U.S. Seeks to Recover Fannie Mae Bonuses

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WASHINGTON (AP) _ The government will pursue some Fannie Mae executives to recover bonus money they reaped in an accounting scheme _ if the mortgage giant itself fails to do so.

Dow Closes Up 8, Nasdaq Finishes Down 6

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NEW YORK (AP) _ Wall Street recovered from an earlier plunge to finish narrowly mixed Thursday as investors attempted to rally from a week of losses fueled by concerns that higher interest rates will strain the global economy.

Del. Court Upholds Disney-Ovitz Decision

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WILMINGTON, Del. (AP) _ The Delaware Supreme Court on Thursday upheld a lower court’s ruling that Walt Disney Co. directors did not violate their duties over a $140 million severance package paid Michael Ovitz at the end of his brief stint as president of the entertainment company.

Stocks Tumble in Asian, European Markets

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TOKYO (AP) _ Stock markets in Asia tumbled to their lowest levels in months Thursday and European shares also declined amid anxiety that interest rates hikes in both Europe and the United States will slow global economic growth.

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