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NEW YORK (AP) – Can the S&P 500 index post an eighth straight week of gains? In addition, can the Dow Jones industrial average reverse course after suffering a second straight weekly loss. On Friday, indexes ended the day more or less, where they started as investors held back ahead of a meeting of global finance ministers and central bankers in Moscow. The Dow edged up 8 points to 13,981, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 edged down 1 1/2 points to 1,519. The NASDAQ composite lost 6 1/2 points.


(Copyright 2012, The Associated Press, All Rights Reserved)


Features & Entertainment


MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) – Guess they don’t see many Ohio State Buckeyes in Tennessee. A Texas couple was stopped by a sheriff’s deputy, who saw a buckeye leaf sticker on their car. Bonnie and Guido Jonas-Boggioni tell The Commercial Appeal newspaper of Memphis, the deputy thought it was a pot leaf sticker. The Buckeye leaf is five-pointed, while the illegal weed has a seven-pointed leaf. The couple says they’re laughing about it now. After they explained the fine points of the Ohio State symbol to the deputy, the couple continued their trip on I-40.


WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) – New Zealand’s government wants to get even tougher against smoking by making tobacco companies remove their logos from cigarette packs. The country already has become one of the strictest anti-smoking countries by increasing taxes and making retailers hide packs below the counter. The new plain-packaging legislation would be similar to an Australian law that took effect in December. However, Associate Minister of Health Tariana Turia says New Zealand will wait until a trade challenge in Australia plays out before introducing the new law. That would be next year at the earliest. Tobacco companies oppose packaging changes but lost a legal challenge in Australia’s highest court last year. Some tobacco-growing countries have mounted another challenge through the World Trade Organization.


(Copyright 2012, The Associated Press, All Rights Reserved)






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