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AP Financial News Summary at 12:40 a.m. EST

March 27, 2006

Gas Prices Jump Nearly 15 Cents Per Gallon

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CAMARILLO, Calif. (AP) _ Retail gas prices across the country climbed an average of nearly 15 cents in the past two weeks, according to a survey released Sunday.

Legal Fees Rack Up for Delta, Northwest

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As Delta and Northwest press employees to take deep pay and benefit cuts, their lawyers and consultants are asking bankruptcy court judges to approve $59 million in fees and expenses for 3 1/2 to 4 1/2 months of work.

Airbus Evacuation Drill Causes 33 Injuries

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HAMBURG, Germany (AP) _ Thirty-three people suffered minor injuries Sunday during a crucial evacuation drill for the new Airbus A380 superjumbo jet.

Japanese Gobble Australian Beef

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TOKYO (AP) _ Like many other Japanese, Kenji Miyoda, savoring one of his favorite lunches _ a bowl of rice topped with beef from Australia, raw egg and spicy sauce _ feels Australian beef is far safer than American beef.

Life Insurance Offered to Cancer Survivors

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HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) _ The Hartford Financial Services Group Inc. will make life insurance coverage more accessible to men with prostate cancer, recognizing rising survival rates with early detection.

TiVo Suit Vs. EchoStar to Begin This Week

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DALLAS (AP) _ In a case beginning this week, a Texas jury will be asked to decide whether satellite-TV giant EchoStar Communications Corp. stole TiVo Inc.’s technology that lets viewers skip the commercials.

Is Housing Market Strong? Ask the 8 Ball

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NEW YORK (AP) _ With all the economic reports that the government and private agencies produce, sometimes it seems a Magic 8 Ball would do just as good a job in helping investors predict the Federal Reserve’s next move.

Course Educates Docs on Malpractice Issues

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) _ Except for a crop of gray hair, the enrollees in Sean Byrne’s malpractice course at the University of Richmond Law School look like normal students. They sip Starbucks coffee and tap out notes on their laptop keyboards. And with lumpy hair and bleary eyes, a few looked like they rolled out of bed after a few hours of sleep.

Causey Stays on Sidelines in Enron Trial

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HOUSTON (AP) _ Enron Corp.’s former chief accounting officer was bound for trial alongside company founder Kenneth Lay and former CEO Jeffrey Skilling until he cut a plea deal just weeks before jurors were chosen.

Winemakers Pitch Macho Merlot for Men

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HEALDSBURG, Calif. (AP) _ They’re making macho merlot in California wine country. Hot on the stiletto heels of last year’s wines-for-women trend, new releases from Ray’s Station Vineyards in Sonoma County are being pitched to the Y-chromosome set as ``Hearty Red Wines for Men.″

Defense Contract May Boost S.D. Tribe

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MISSION, S.D. (AP) _ It’s the sort of operation one could easily overlook in a big city: 15 to 30 people making and testing circuit boards for a Defense Department contractor. But for the Rosebud Sioux Indian Reservation, home to some of the poorest people in America and a staggering unemployment rate, the planned facility could be the seed that blooms into economic development and new opportunities for the young.

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