Among the stories for Tuesday from The Associated Press:
BRUSSELS â¿¿ Record unemployment and fraying social welfare systems in southern Europe risk creating a new divide in the continent, the European Union warns. Joblessness across the 17 EU countries that use the euro hit a new high of 11.8 percent in November. By Raf Casert and Don Melvin.
â¿¿ EUROPE-ECONOMY-GLANCE â¿¿ A glance at Europe's unemployment rates.
PYONGYANG, North Korea â¿¿ Students at North Korea's premier university showed Google's executive chairman how they look for information online: they Google it. But surfing the Internet that way is the privilege of only a very few in North Korea, whose authoritarian government imposes strict limits on access to the World Wide Web. Google's Eric Schmidt got a first look at North Korea's limited Internet usage when an American delegation he and former New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson are leading visited a computer lab at Kim Il Sung University in Pyongyang. By Jean H. Lee.
AP photos, video
MARKETS & ECONOMY
FRANKFURT, Germany â¿¿ The widening income gap between the rich and poor and burgeoning government deficits are the risks most likely to have a global impact over the next decade, according to experts surveyed by the World Economic Forum, followed by climate change, water shortages and aging populations. By David McHugh.
â¿¿ SMALLBIZ-SMALL BUSINESS OPTIMISM â¿¿ Small business owners were slightly more optimistic at the end of 2012 even as they awaited the outcome of negotiations in Congress over the "fiscal cliff."
NEW YORK â¿¿ U.S. stocks are falling as traders await the start of U.S. corporate earnings season. By Daniel Wagner.
â¿¿ OIL PRICES â¿¿ Oil prices rise to near $94 per barrel.
LUBBOCK, Texas â¿¿ Attention, bread shoppers: A Texas company could have the answer to some consumers' unwelcome discovery that just-purchased loaves contain mold. MicroZap claims its technology using microwaves allows bread to stay mold-free for 60 days. The process could eliminate bakers' need for preservatives and ingredients used to mask preservatives' flavor, the company says. Researchers at Texas Tech University also see using the technology in bread made in developing countries, where there are fewer food safety standards and spoilage is a problem. By Betsy Blaney.