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Banking & Finance

Source: Obama seeks bigger banking restrictions

WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama, eager to harness and redirect voter anger over bank bailouts, is ramping up his war on Wall Street. Building on his own proposals and the work of the House, the president wants new federal government powers to limit the size and complexity of large financial institutions and to limit their ability to engage in high-risk ...

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Bank of America posts $5.2B loss

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Bank of America Corp. said Wednesday it lost $5.2 billion during the final three months of 2009 as consumers struggled to make mortgage and credit card payments and the bank repaid its government bailout money. Bank of America said its loss, which reflected the payment of preferred dividends, compared with a loss of $2.4 billion a year ...

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Renasant reports better quarter

TUPELO — Renasant Corporation saw net income for 2009 of $18.518 million, compared to $24.052 million for 2008. Basic and diluted earnings per share were $0.88 and $0.87, respectively, for 2009, compared to basic and diluted earnings per share of $1.15 and $1.14, respectively, for 2008. For the fourth quarter of 2009, net income was $4.031 million, compared to $232,000 ...

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Housing showing some positives

WASHINGTON — Construction of new homes dipped unexpectedly last month as bad weather hit much of the country. Applications for future projects, however, soared in a sign the industry is ramping up after a debilitating bust. The Commerce Department said today construction of new homes and apartments fell 4 percent in December to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 557,000 ...

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Morgan Stanley reports big loss

NEW YORK — Morgan Stanley said today it earned $617 million during the last three months of 2009 as its investment banking operations profited from its Smith Barney joint venture. The results gave Morgan Stanley its second straight profitable quarter following a year of losses. The bank said it earned 29 cents a share on $6.8 billion in revenue. That ...

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First M&F posted loss last year

KOSCIUSKO — First M&F Corp. reported preliminary results for 2009 of a net loss of $44.048 million attributable to common shareholders, or $4.86 basic and diluted earnings per share, compared to earnings of $522,000, or $0.06 basic and diluted earnings per share, for 2008. The company’s final results are pending the completion of a review for potential impairment of goodwill ...

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State's bankruptcies soar

ACROSS MISSISSIPPI — The 12 months of the worst part of the national recession translated into sharply higher numbers of Mississippi residents and businesses filing for federal bankruptcy after losing track of debt in the face of increased joblessness, The Associated Press reports. According to the Administrative Office of the United States Courts, 14,454 individual and business bankruptcies were filed ...

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EU watching Greece closely

BRUSSELS, Belgium — Could Greece drag down Europe? EU finance ministers are pressing their indebted and riot-prone Balkan member to embrace a massive austerity plan and plug its debilitating deficit. But with markets skeptical and the appetite for more bailouts at a low, there are deepening concerns that a Greek meltdown could deal a severe blow to the very European ...

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Canada holds interest rate

TORONTO, Canada — Canada’s central bank is holding its key interest rate at a record low 0.25 percent and is reiterating its expectation that it will keep the rate there until the middle of this year. The Bank of Canada said today that while a global economic recovery is under way it continues to depend on exceptional monetary and fiscal ...

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Citigroup loses $7B-plus in a quarter

NEW YORK — Citigroup said today it lost $7.58 billion during the final three months of 2009 as U.S. consumers still struggled to repay loans and the bank repaid its government bailout money. Citigroup said $6.2 billion of the loss was tied to paying back $20 billion in money it received from the federal government. The New York-based bank set ...

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