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AP Financial News Summary at 12:53 p.m. EDT

May 22, 2006

NYSE Offers $10.2 Billion for Euronext

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NEW YORK (AP) _ The New York Stock Exchange, seeking to beat rival Nasdaq Stock Market Inc. in the race to become the first trans-Atlantic stock market, offered $10.2 billion in cash and shares Monday for European exchange operator Euronext NV.

Falling Commodities Push Stocks Down

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NEW YORK (AP) _ Wall Street joined other stock markets around the world in a sharp decline Monday as investors sold off energy and metals stocks in response to a continuing slide in commodities prices.

FTC: Some Gas Price Gouging After Katrina

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WASHINGTON (AP) _ The Federal Trade Commission on Monday said it found 15 examples of gasoline price gouging after Hurricane Katrina, though the agency said it has not identified any widespread effort by the oil industry to illegally manipulate the marketplace.

Lowe’s Quarterly Profit Jumps 44 Percent

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CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) _ Lowe’s Cos., the nation’s second-largest home improvement chain, said Monday its first-quarter profit rose 44 percent as the company continued to expand offerings.

Cedar Fair Buying Paramount Parks

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NEW YORK (AP) _ Cedar Fair LP, an Ohio-based amusement park operator, is buying the Paramount Parks business from CBS Corp. for $1.24 billion in cash, the companies announced Monday.

Asian Stocks Tumble; India Drops 4.2 Pct.

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HONG KONG (AP) _ Key stock markets across Asia tumbled Monday as recent drops in the price of oil and metals caused investors to dump commodity stocks that have surged in recent months. Japanese shares fell to two-month lows and Hong Kong took its biggest dive in five years.

Campbell Soup 3Q Profit Rises 14 Percent

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CAMDEN, N.J. (AP) _ Campbell Soup Co., known for its namesake soups as well as Pepperidge Farm and other brands, on Monday reported third-quarter profit grew nearly 14 percent on strong U.S. sales of soup, sauces and beverages.

Deal May Be Near for Philadelphia Papers

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PHILADELPHIA (AP) _ A group of local investors that includes a public-relations executive and a luxury-home builder is close to a deal to buy Philadelphia’s two major daily newspapers, according to published reports.

Lay’s Bank-Fraud Trial in 2nd Day

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HOUSTON (AP) _ A personal accountant to Enron Corp. founder Kenneth Lay testified Monday she felt ``very pressured″ by a prosecutor when she told a grand jury that Lay always decided which lines of credit he would use to make investments.

Oil Futures Fall Almost $1 a Barrel

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VIENNA, Austria (AP) _ Crude oil prices fell nearly $1 a barrel Monday in a selloff prompted by weakness in the commodities market and concerns that high oil prices are hurting demand.

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