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 September 29, 2003
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Dollar drops, gold gains...Oil prices spurt...Dynegy pleas changed
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New York-AP -- The dollar declined in New York against most of its major rivals as investors reacted to a mixed bag of economic news and international events. The dollar remained higher against the Swiss franc, but slipped back against the yen, euro and sterling.

The price of gold rose on the New York Commodity Exchange, closing at 349 dollars and 60 cents an ounce -- up 40 cents.

(New York-AP) -- Crude oil futures posted solid gains in New York, closing at levels not seen since just before the war in Iraq.

Light, sweet crude oil futures for September delivery climbed 38 cents, to 32 dollars and 22 cents a barrel.

The rise followed news of a car bombing in Indonesia, which occurred against a backdrop of tight inventories, slow progress in restarting Iraqi oil exports and OPEC's policy of keeping supplies tight.

Traders also said technical indications of strength again played a part in the rally.

(Washington-AP) -- Critics say the Bush administration shares the blame for rising oil prices.

Some economists and congressional Democrats say the administration's decision to buy oil for the government's emergency reserve is contributing to tight supplies and higher prices.

The Energy Department has purchased nearly eleven (m) million barrels since the beginning of May, but officials there are discounting the impact on oil markets.

A number of analysts see other possible reasons for the decline in supplies, including the problems in getting Iraqi oil to flow again.

(Houston-AP) -- Two former Dynegy executives have each pleaded guilty to a conspiracy charge.

It's related to a scheme to disguise a 300 (m) million dollar debt as cash flow, which helped burnish the energy trader's books.

Gene Shannon Foster and Helen Christine Sharkey appeared for re-arraignment on charges related to an April 2001 deal dubbed "Project Alpha."

The scheme booked debt as cash flow and recorded an invalid tax benefit.

(Washington-AP) -- Sprint shares have fallen on word that the federal government might suspend business with the telecommunications giant.

Sprint says the General Services Administration inspector general wants the agency to consider barring new contracts with Sprint because it overcharged the Justice Department more than two (m) million dollars.

Sprint would be the second major telecommunications contractor barred from federal business. Last week the G-S-A barred M-C-I, formerly known as WorldCom, from new federal contracts.

Copyright 2003 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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