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PARIS (AP) ⿿ The French government has promised ⿬20 billion ($25 billion) in tax credits to businesses as part of a "competitiveness pact" that it hopes will spark innovation and lower unemployment, but falls short of calls in a recent report for a "shock" to the economy.

The announcement of the plan Tuesday came a day after a government-commissioned report â¿¿ by Louis Gallois, former head of Airbus parent EADS â¿¿ said the country's ailing economy needed a big kick to stay globally competitive.

Prime Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault said the government's plan, which includes a ⿬500 million fund to help struggling small businesses, would put the country "back at the heart of the world economy."


By The Associated Press(equals)

The Dow Jones industrial average rose 133.24 points to close at 13,245.68. The Standard & Poor's 500 index rose 11.13 points to 1,428.39, while the Nasdaq composite index gained 12.27 points to 3,011.93.

Benchmark crude rose $3.06, or 3.6 percent, to finish at $88.71 in New York. Brent crude, used to price international varieties of oil, surged $3.34, or 3.1 percent, to $111.07 in London.

Wholesale gasoline rose 8 cents to $2.70 a gallon. Heating oil rose 7 cents to $3.05 a gallon. Natural gas rose 6 cents $3.62 per 1,000 cubic feet.

Copyright 2011 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
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Chart of I:DJI
DOW 17,841.82 +121.90 0.69%
S&P 500 2,095.50 +15.09 0.73%
NASDAQ 5,143.8840 +35.2180 0.69%

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