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Business Highlights

A soaring deficit puts added pressure on President Barack Obama and Congress to seek a budget deal in the coming weeks.

The Treasury Department said Tuesday that the October deficit â¿¿ the gap between the government's tax revenue and its spending â¿¿ was 22 percent higher than the same month last year.


US regulators urge SEC to propose fund changes

WASHINGTON (AP) â¿¿ A group of federal regulators is urging the Securities and Exchange Commission to adopt stricter rules for money-market mutual funds.

The Financial Stability Oversight Council issued the recommendations Tuesday. The panel is led by Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner.

Among the recommendations are requirements for funds to hold capital reserves against losses â¿¿ there are none right now â¿¿ and limits on how quickly investors can withdraw their money.


Home Depot 3Q results edge up, beat Street's view

NEW YORK (AP) â¿¿ Home Depot Inc.'s net income rose slightly in the third quarter, as glimmers of a housing market recovery and storm preparation added to sales and offset costs related to closing stores in China.

Results beat expectations and the company also raised its forecast for the year. Shares rose nearly 4 percent.

Home improvement companies have long been under pressure due to the weak housing market, as consumers cut back on large-scale renovation projects. But they stand ready to benefit as evidence mounts that the housing market is slowly improving.


Cisco's 1Q earnings rise 18 percent

NEW YORK (AP) â¿¿ Cisco Systems Inc. says earnings rose 18 percent in the latest quarter as it gained more solid footing after warning earlier this year of an abrupt slowdown in technology spending.

Cisco made $2.1 billion, or 39 cents per share, from August to October, its fiscal first quarter. That compares with $1.8 billion, or 33 cents per share, in the same period a year ago. Excluding the cost of stock-based compensation and certain other items, Cisco would have earned 48 cents per share. On that basis, Cisco's earnings were 2 cents above the average analyst estimate, according to FactSet.

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