Posted: 12/01/2013 - 2 in horse-drawn Amish buggy killed in Pa. crash... Villagers rush to aid rural Alaska crash survivors... Trinity network: Televangelist Paul Crouch dies... Thanksgiving takes more Black Friday sales... White House: On track for health care website goal... Pioneering offshore wind project faces deadlines... You can trust us on this, but you probably won't - Only 2 percent say they trust the government to do what's right nearly all of the time...
By Richard Cowan and David Lawder WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A bipartisan budget deal announced in the U.S. Congress on Tuesday, though modest in its spending cuts, would end three years of impasse and fiscal instability in Washington that culminated in October with a partial government shutdown. While praised by the Republican leadership of the U.S. House of Representatives, including Speaker John Boehner and Majority Leader Eric Cantor, the agreement faces a challenge from some House conservatives and will require support of the minority Democrats to pass. The backing of President Barack Obama, who also hailed the agreement as "a good first step," should help round up votes of his fellow Democrats. He urged Congress to quickly pass it.
By Annika Breidthardt and John O'Donnell BRUSSELS (Reuters) - Euro zone countries edged toward agreeing a plan to tackle ailing banks on Tuesday but divisions remain about key parts of the reform that is needed to underpin confidence in the bloc's lenders. After a financial storm that toppled banks and dragged down states from Ireland to Spain, countries are considering a fresh blueprint outlining what to do when a bank fails, a critical second pillar of a wider reform dubbed banking union. Sealing a deal ahead of next week's meeting of EU leaders will allow Germany's Chancellor Angela Merkel and her peers to trumpet an important overhaul of banking although their readiness to share the costs of failed lenders, a central tenet of banking union, may fall short of what was hoped. A draft plan, circulated among EU ministers at a meeting in Brussels, spells out how a new agency may close failing banks chiefly in the euro zone and, crucially, how the cost can be shared out among different national funds in the scheme.
By Emily Stephenson and Douwe Miedema WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. banks will no longer be able to make big trading bets with their own money after regulators finalized on Tuesday a rule shutting down what was a hugely profitable business for Wall Street before the credit crisis. The measure known as the Volcker rule was a late addition to the 2010 Dodd-Frank Wall Street reform law and seeks to ensure that banks can't make speculative trades that are so large and risky that they threaten individual firms or the wider financial system. Former Federal Reserve Chairman Paul Volcker had promoted the restriction on proprietary trading as a simple measure to reduce risk, and U.S. officials acknowledged the final version was not as streamlined as they had hoped. Large banks such as Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley have already wound down parts of their trading desks in anticipation of the rule.
By Ben Klayman DETROIT (Reuters) - General Motors Co CEO Dan Akerson will step down next month and be replaced by GM "lifer" and global product chief Mary Barra, a sign that the development of new vehicles will be the paramount focus of the company that emerged from bankruptcy four years ago. The appointment of Barra, 51, is at once groundbreaking - she will be the first woman to lead a global automaker - and yet also very traditional. Her father is a long-time GM employee and Barra has spent her entire 33-year career at the No. 1 U.S. automaker. Barra's ascension also marks the re-emergence of an engineer at the helm of GM, a company long dominated by financial executives who were sometimes criticized by investors as lacking experience on the product side of the business.
By Rodrigo Campos NEW YORK (Reuters) - Stocks slipped on Tuesday, a day after a record close on the S&P 500, with traders looking ahead to next week's Federal Reserve meeting in the absence of market-moving economic data. Healthcare stocks were among the most active after company news while utilities was the worst performer of the 10 industry groups on the S&P 500. There's no reason to think this is anything different than that," said Paul Zemsky, head of asset allocation at ING Investment Management in New York. But stronger economic data of late, including a drop in the unemployment rate to a five-year low, helped ease investors' angst over a pullback in the Fed's stimulus.