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  • WASHINGTON-- A storm of heavy rain and wind may knock out electricity to hundreds of thousands of customers in the Washington D.C. region. Officials at Pepco Holdings Inc., the utility that serves D.C. and parts of Maryland, say customers may be without power for days because sustained winds may prevent crews from doing immediate repair work.

  • DETROIT-- Chrysler doesn't need big discounts to sell more cars _ but it soon might. After a white-hot start this year, the company's U.S. sales growth has been curbed by a resurgent Honda and Toyota.

  • Sam Brownback and fellow Republicans in the Legislature on Friday unveiled a proposed "property tax transparency" law designed to keep such taxes from rising automatically when a property values rise.

  • MEXICO CITY, Oct 26- Mexico's central bank said it could tighten monetary policy soon if inflation shocks persist, but left the benchmark interest rate unchanged on Friday, as expected.

  • SANTA FE, N.M.-- An oil refinery in New Mexico will pay a $400,000 fine in a settlement over safety violations stemming from an explosion that killed two employees and injured two others.

  • NEW YORK, Oct 26- Gold rebounded on Friday after data showed U.S. economic growth picked up in the third quarter, but the metal was heading for its first three-week losing streak in over a year on uncertainty over the future of the U.S.

  • BATON ROUGE, La.-- First-time claims for unemployment insurance in Louisiana for the week ending Oct. 20, decreased from the previous week's total. The state labor department figures released Friday show the initial claims decreased to 2,891 from the previous week's total of 2,909. For the comparable week a year earlier, there were 3,231 initial claims.

  • NEW YORK-- Shares of Constant Contact Inc. plunged to their lowest price in four years Friday after the online marketing company struggled to convert trial users into customers in the third quarter. THE SPARK: Constant Contact reported its quarterly results Thursday.

  • *Adjusted EPS $0.95 vs est $0.89. *To target $300- $400 mln annually on acquisitions. Oct 26- Aon Plc's quarterly profit beat analysts' estimates as investments aimed at increasing margins at its human resources services unit helped boost profit, and the company said it planned a series of small acquisitions.

  • GROWTH INCREASES: The U.S. economy grew at a 2 percent annual rate from July through September, buoyed by higher consumer and government spending. That was better than the April-June rate of 1.3 percent, but not fast enough to rapidly boost job creation.

  • NEW YORK-- Standard& Poor's Ratings Services lowered Abbott Laboratories Inc.' s credit rating Friday as the company prepares to split in two. Standard& Poor's lowered its rating to `A+' from `AA' because Abbott Laboratories will have smaller cash flows and less business diversity after separating the pharmaceutical business into a separate company.

  • Although data showed a pick-up in U.S. economic growth in the third quarter, gloomy earnings and outlook statements from major global companies such as Apple and Amazon, South Korea's Samsung and Renault and Ericsson in Europe corroded hopes of a recovery in the global economy.

  • Stocks are closing mostly lower after another batch of weak earnings reports weighs on the market. Poor earnings from Goodyear, Verisign, Interpublic and other companies disappointed investors. Three stocks fell for every two that rose on the New York Stock Exchange.

  • BOSTON, Oct 26- Massachusetts fined Citigroup $2 million to settle charges that two bank analysts improperly released confidential information about Facebook's financials before the technology company went public. Citi said its top Internet analyst, Mark Mahaney, who was involved in the Facebook matter, is no longer at the company.

  • NASSAU, Oct 26- Slow-moving Hurricane Sandy, a late season Atlantic storm unlike anything seen in more than two decades, slogged toward the U.S. East Coast on Friday after killing at least 31 people on a trail of destruction across the Caribbean.

  • HARRISBURG, Pa.-- The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission was ordered Friday by a state judge to stop reviewing or challenging municipal ordinances that affect natural gas drilling, the same day the agency admitted to miscalculating how much money some municipalities will receive from the booming drilling industry.

  • SANTA ANA, Calif.-- A Stern Agee analyst reaffirmed his "Buy" rating on Ingram Micro on Friday, a day after the technology products company reported that its net income more than doubled in the third quarter as sales increased in North America, Latin America and the Asia Pacific region.

  • Oct 25- Verisign Inc's third-quarter results modestly beat estimates, but the company that assigns Internet protocol addresses said the Commerce Department may not complete its contract review before it expires on Nov. 30, sending its shares down 15 percent after market.

  • Oct 26- Interpublic Group of Cos, home to advertising agencies McCann Erickson and Draftfcb, missed revenue estimates for the second quarter in a row, with the company warning that growth will slow further this year as clients hold back on spending. Interpublic shares fell 5 percent in late morning trade to $10.04 on the New York Stock Exchange.

  • NEW YORK-- The price of oil rose slightly Friday as data showed the U.S. economy is muddling along while the East Coast prepares for a potentially damaging storm. On the New York Mercantile Exchange:. Benchmark crude rose 23 cents to finish at $86.28 per barrel.