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AP Top Business News At 12:50 p.m. EDT

Stocks rise, helped by Chinese data, Apple results
NEW YORK (AP) -- U.S. stock indexes rose Tuesday, putting the market on track for a fourth gain in a row, following an encouraging report on the Chinese economy as well as strong quarterly results from Apple and other big companies. Stocks continued to recover from last week's plunge....

Unemployment rates fall in 31 US states last month
WASHINGTON (AP) -- Unemployment rates fell in 31 U.S. states in September, including in many where incumbent governors and senators face tough re-election campaigns. The report is the final data on state unemployment before the Nov. 4 elections....

New efforts to ban tobacco farm child labor
WASHINGTON (AP) -- Two years after the Obama administration backed off a rule that would have banned children from dangerous agriculture jobs, public health advocates and lawmakers are trying anew to get kids off tobacco farms....

McDonald's CEO outlines changes as sales slide
NEW YORK (AP) -- McDonald's CEO Don Thompson said Tuesday the company hasn't been keeping up with the times and that changes are in store for its U.S. restaurants....

US existing home sales rise in September
WASHINGTON (AP) -- U.S. homes sold in September at their fastest clip this year, a sign that the housing market is shaking off a slowdown that began in the middle of 2013....

Rural areas seek piece of subprime-loan settlement
Long seen as having devastated Sun Belt cities, the subprime mortgage crisis unleashed turmoil on Ohio and other rural areas. Now federal officials are pledging regulatory attention and financial help....

New rules on banks' risk in mortgage bonds eased
WASHINGTON (AP) -- New U.S. rules aimed at getting banks to take on more of the risk when they package and sell mortgage securities are being relaxed with an eye to spurring broader home lending....

Kimberly-Clark to cut up to 1,300 jobs
DALLAS (AP) -- Kimberly-Clark plans to eliminate up to 1,300 jobs as part of restructuring efforts aimed at reducing costs and making its business more efficient....

Total CEO killed in Moscow runway crash
MOSCOW (AP) -- Christophe de Margerie, the charismatic CEO of Total SA who dedicated his career to the multinational oil company, was killed at a Moscow airport when his private jet collided with a snowplow whose driver was drunk, Russian investigators said Tuesday....

Oil CEO in sad toll of famed plane crash victims
PARIS (AP) -- Christophe de Margerie, the charismatic CEO of Total SA whose silver handlebar earned him the nickname "Big Mustache," died late Monday at a Moscow airport when his private jet collided with a snowplow whose driver was drunk, according to Russian investigators....

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McDonald's CEO outlines changes as sales slide

Stocks rise, helped by Chinese data, Apple results

Unemployment rates fall in 31 US states last month

US existing home sales rise in September

US stocks gain in midday trading; Apple, Harley up

Dallas tycoon Wyly files for bankruptcy protection

Big slump is no cause to ditch stock market

Kimberly-Clark to cut up to 1,300 jobs

Coke to slash costs as soda sales remain flat