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Business Highlights

Toyota sold nearly 9.75 million vehicles last year

TOKYO (AP) â¿¿ Now it's official: Toyota is once again the world's top automaker.

Toyota Motor Corp. released its tally for global vehicle sales for last year Monday at a record 9.748 million vehicles â¿¿ a bigger number than the estimate it gave last month of about 9.7 million vehicles.

It was already clear Toyota had dethroned General Motors Co. as the Detroit-based automaker fell short, selling 9.29 million vehicles.

GM had been the top-selling automaker for more than seven decades before losing the title to Toyota in 2008.

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Crucial, long-overdue BlackBerry makeover arrives

TORONTO (AP) â¿¿ The maker of the BlackBerry smartphone is promising a speedier device, a superb typing experience and the ability to keep work and personal identities separate on the same phone. It's the fruit of a crucial, long-overdue makeover for the Canadian company.

Thorsten Heins, chief executive of Research In Motion Ltd., will show off the first phone with the new BlackBerry 10 system in New York on Wednesday. A marketing campaign that includes a Super Bowl ad will accompany the long-anticipated debut. Repeated delays have left the once-pioneering BlackBerry an afterthought in the shadow of Apple's trend-setting iPhone and Google's Android-driven devices.

Now, there's some optimism. Previews of the software have gotten favorable reviews on blogs. Financial analysts are starting to see some slight room for a comeback. RIM's stock has nearly tripled to $16.18 from a nine-year low in September, though it's still nearly 90 percent below its 2008 peak of $147.

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US durable goods orders rise 4.6 percent on aircraft

WASHINGTON (AP) â¿¿ U.S. demand for long-lasting manufactured goods rose sharply in December on strong gains in volatile aircraft orders. But companies slowed their orders of goods that signal investment plans, indicating manufacturing could stay choppy in 2013.

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