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AP Financial News Summary at 11:45 p.m. EDT

May 19, 2006

Dow Ends Down 77, Nasdaq Closes Down 15

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NEW YORK (AP) _ Wall Street extended its losses Thursday, a day after an inflation scare sent the Dow Jones industrial average on its biggest one-day drop in three years and put the Nasdaq composite index in the red for 2006.

Enron Jurors End 1st Day of Deliberations

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HOUSTON (AP) _ Jurors in the fraud and conspiracy trial of Enron Corp. founder Kenneth Lay and former Chief Executive Jeffrey Skilling finished their first full day of deliberations Thursday in the premiere case to emerge from one of the biggest corporate scandals in U.S. history.

Greenspan Says Housing Boom Over

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NEW YORK (AP) _ Former Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan said Thursday that Americans’ consumption could taper off somewhat now that the U.S. housing market’s ``extraordinary boom″ has ended.

Study: Vioxx Risks Started Within Months

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TRENTON, N.J. (AP) _ Unpublished data from the Merck & Co. study that led the drugmaker to halt sales of Vioxx appear to show the blockbuster painkiller raised the risk of heart attack and stroke within just a few months _ not after at least 18 months’ use, as Merck has consistently argued.

Dell to Use AMD Microprocessors; Shares Up

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DALLAS (AP) _ Dell Inc. said Thursday it will start using microprocessors from Advanced Micro Devices Inc. in some of its high-end servers, sending shares of the world’s largest PC maker higher Thursday even as it reported an 18 percent drop in quarterly profit.

Gap 1Q Profit Drops 17 Percent to $242M

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SAN FRANCISCO (AP) _ Gap Inc.’s first-quarter profit fell by 17 percent, dragged down by a deepening sales slump that has underscored the clothing retailer’s inability to keep up with fickle fashion tastes.

Economic Indicators Index Falls in April

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WASHINGTON (AP) _ An important gauge of the country’s future economic activity dipped in April, suggesting slower growth ahead.

Natural Gas Prices Slide to 15-Month Low

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WASHINGTON (AP) _ With the price of natural gas at a 15-month low, the industry that supplies this mostly domestic fuel has a message to consumers: don’t get used to it.

Oil Prices Rebound After Two-Day Decline

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WASHINGTON (AP) _ Oil prices climbed Thursday, reversing a two-day decline that was prompted by concerns about weakening demand.

Japanese Economy Grows 1.9 Percent

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TOKYO (AP) _ Japan’s economy grew at a better-than-expected 1.9 percent annual rate in the first quarter, marking the fifth straight quarter of expansion driven by continued consumer spending, solid company investment and booming exports.

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