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Oil up, stocks down on Egypt worries...Jobless claims, mortgage rates, other gauges due today

Wednesday - 7/3/2013, 7:40am  ET

NEW YORK (AP) -- Upbeat economic news continues to boost stocks, but political turmoil in Egypt undercut it yesterday. The major indexes turned lower late in the session on news that Egypt's military had drawn up plans to suspend the country's constitution, dissolve its legislature and set up an interim government. The Dow finished down 42 and a-half points, while the S&P and the Nasdaq each lost about one point. The markets close at 1 p.m. Eastern today, ahead of July Fourth and futures trading augurs opening losses.

BANGKOK (AP) -- International stock markets slumped today as Egypt's unfolding political crisis pushed the price of oil to its highest level in more than a year, adding to an uncertain global economic outlook. Benchmark crude oil rose to nearly $102 a barrel. The dollar rose against the euro and slipped against the yen.

WASHINGTON (AP) -- This morning is going to feel a little like a Thursday, with some of the weekly reports coming day early thanks to the Fourth of July holiday. The Labor Department releases its weekly jobless claims numbers, while Freddie Mac issues its look at mortgage rates. Also today, the government reports U.S. trade figures for May. And the Institute for Supply Management releases its gauge of the service sector for June.

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Protests from homeowners facing higher flood insurance premiums are inspiring their lawmakers to press for a delay in changing the federal program. The new system is designed so taxpayers won't have to keep subsidizing the program, but homeowners would no longer get below-cost rates. Louisiana homeowner Robert Taylor says that would mean his $400 a-year premium would skyrocket to $28,000 a year.

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) -- Tea party activists in Ohio are turning the tables and trying to use the Internal Revenue Service as an ally against hospitals in the fight against expanding Medicaid. One leader tells The Associated Press the idea is to invoke an IRS provision that allows challenges of executive salaries and the nonprofit statuses of charitable hospitals. Activists say hospitals are big backers of the expansion.

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