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News Wrap: Wall Street Stocks Rise on New Jobs Numbers

October 4, 2012 at 12:00 AM EST
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HARI SREENIVASAN: Wall Street rallied today on the latest labor market data.

Stocks rose after first-time claims for unemployment benefits were up less than expected. The Dow Jones industrial average gained more than 80 points to close at 13,575. The Nasdaq rose 14 points to close at 3,149. And oil prices in New York shot back up over $91 a barrel on rising tensions between Syria and Turkey.

A major Medicare fraud investigation has reeled in 91 suspects, including a hospital president, doctors and nurses. Members of a federal strike force said today they uncovered nearly $430 million in false billings. The investigation focused on alleged fraud in seven cities.

Sensitive U.S. documents still aren’t fully secured at the burned-out American Consulate in Benghazi, Libya, three weeks after it was attacked. The Washington Post reported today the papers detailed weapons collection operations, personnel records, and the schedule for U.S. Ambassador Christopher Stevens, who died in the attack.

In Washington today, State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland acknowledged only two private guards are protecting the site.

VICTORIA NULAND, State Department: We have had some challenges securing the site. We are continuing to talk to the Libyan side about that. But this wasn’t based on what we have seen any kind of breach of classified information.

HARI SREENIVASAN: Meanwhile, the FBI confirmed a team of agents visited Benghazi yesterday, for the first time. Until now, the group had stayed away due to security concerns.

A longstanding battle over Google’s book-scanning project was settled today. Authors and publishers filed suit against the company back in 2005, saying it violated their copyrights. Google launched the project a year earlier, making digital copies of books from major research libraries. In all, more than 20 million books have been scanned. Now publishers will get to choose which books are included. A lawsuit with authors is still ongoing.

Facebook now has one billion users. The number-one social media site announced today that it reached the milestone in September. It said the median age of users is 22 and the five top markets are Brazil, India, Indonesia, Mexico, and the United States. Despite the rising customer base, Facebook stock has lost 40 percent of its value since the company went public in May.

Those are some of the day’s major stories.