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BRIEFLY IMF adds China’s yuan to basket of top currencies

BRIEFLY IMF adds China’s yuan to basket of top currencies

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Chinese yuan will join a basket of the world's leading currencies, the International Monetary Fund announced Monday.

The yuan will joins the U.S. dollar, euro, Japanese yen and the British pound as one of the currencies used for the global organization's Special Drawing Rights, which serves as a standard for dealing with the financial reserves of its 188 member governments.

Currency traders and economists say the move should encourage the government in Beijing to deliver on promises to make the yuan freely tradable and to open up its financial system. The country has historically pegged its currency to the dollar, giving it an advantage in exporting goods to the United States.

Federal Reserve moves to no longer grant bailouts of failing firms

WASHINGTON (AP) — Federal Reserve officials have moved to prevent the central bank from bailing out failing companies, a power it exercised during the 2008 financial crisis.

The Fed governors voted 5-0 Monday at a public meeting to downsize the Fed's emergency lending powers.

Only broad lending programs designed to revive frozen markets — not loans to individual firms — will be allowed. The Fed spent about $2 trillion on such a program to ease a credit crunch during the financial meltdown, aiming to spark lending to consumers and small businesses.

Ford to book $600M 4Q expense for new labor contract

DETROIT (AP) — Ford Motor Co. will book a $600 million charge in the fourth quarter for signing bonuses paid to union workers under a new four-year contract.

But the company said Monday that the deal with the United Auto Workers limits labor cost increases to 1.5 percent per year and is consistent with its full-year financial guidance. Ford is forecasting a pretax profit of between $8.5 billion and $9.5 billion this year.

Group funded by Coke to fight obesity disbanding

NEW YORK (AP) — A group funded by the Coca-Cola Co. to combat obesity says it is disbanding following revelations about the beverage maker’s involvement with the nonprofit.

The Global Energy Balance Network says on its website Monday night that it is “discontinuing operations due to resource limitations.” The decision was effective immediately.

The group had previously said that it received an “unrestricted gift” from Coke and that the Atlanta-based soft drink giant had “no input” into its activities.

Last week, The Associated Press reported on emails showing that Coke helped with the selection of group leaders and suggested content for its website. And Coke CEO Muhtar Kent acknowledged there wasn’t enough transparency regarding the company’s involvement.

How can people safely take control from a self-driving car?

LOS ANGELES (AP) — New cars that can steer and brake themselves risk lulling people in the driver’s seat into a false sense of security.

Researchers put Stanford University students in a simulated self-driving car to study how they reacted when their robochauffer needed help. In the Stanford experiment, reading or watching a movie helped keep participants awake.

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