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Federal Reserve extends comments on Volcker rules

WASHINGTON (AP) -- The Federal Reserve and other bank regulators announced Friday they will give the public an extra month -- until Feb. 13 -- to comment on a proposed regulation aimed at limiting the kind of risky trading that made the 2008 financial crisis worse.

The proposed rule, named for former Federal Reserve Chairman Paul Volcker, has triggered opposition by financial service firms who say the draft measure is confusing and will be hard to implement.

The rule is part of a sweeping overhaul of financial regulations passed by Congress in 2010. It is aimed at prohibiting banks from trading in stocks, bonds or derivatives that they own.


Intel trial postponed

DOVER, Del. (AP) -- A federal judge in Delaware has canceled a February trial in New York's antitrust lawsuit against chip-maker Intel Corp.

The judge says he is halting the case while attorneys discuss a schedule for submitting papers on outstanding issues, including Intel's motion for summary judgment and New York's motion to dismiss the case.

Lawyers for the New York attorney general's office said in papers filed Thursday that they want to have the federal case in Delaware dismissed so they can pursue their claims in New York state court.


Oil nears $100 a barrel

NEW YORK (AP) -- Oil prices rose above $100 a barrel Friday as worries over global security issues outweighed weak economic data in the U.S.

Benchmark crude ended the day at $99.68 per barrel in New York, up 15 cents. It rose as high as $100.23 during the session. Brent crude finished 7 cents higher at $107.96 a barrel in London.

Tensions between Iran and western nations, along with unrest in Syria, Bahrain, Kazakhstan and Iraq have raised worries that oil supplies could be disrupted.

Even small disruptions in oil supplies can send prices dramatically higher.


Somalia protests money ban

MOGADISHU, Somalia (AP) -- Somali officials said Friday they are pleading with U.S. authorities to persuade banks to reconsider a decision to block money transfers from Minnesota's Somali community to relatives in this Horn of Africa nation, where anarchy has given safe haven to an al-Qaida linked terror group.

The institution that handles the bulk of money transfers from Minnesota to Somalia -- Sunrise Community Banks -- has said it will discontinue the service at the end of December over fears it could be at risk of violating government rules intended to clamp down on the financing of terror groups.

The bank issued a statement Friday saying that without legal and regulatory relief, it must stand by its decision to close its accounts with those money service businesses on Dec. 30.

"Money remittances from the U.S.-based Somali Diaspora through the U.S. banking system must have a new solution to satisfy the important legal and regulatory requirements currently in place across this nation," the bank said in its statement.


Bank of America sheds risk

Bank of America Corp. Chief Executive Officer Brian T. Moynihan told employees in a year-end letter that he bolstered the firm against risk and will make more improvements in 2012.

The bank is "simplifying our business model and organization, continuing to shed non-core assets and businesses, and reducing risk-weighted assets," he wrote to employees. "2012 will be a year for continued improvement in risk-management practices across the company."

Moynihan, 52, plans to trim about $5 billion in annual costs by 2014 to combat stagnant revenue and a sagging stock price. Shares of the bank dropped 58 percent this year amid rising mortgage-related costs and concern that the European debt crisis will derail the global economic recovery.