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By Compiled from wire service reports by Ross Atkin / January 12, 2007



US Sen. Christopher Dodd (D) of Connecticut, an outspoken critic of the Iraq war who's served on Capitol Hill for 26 years, declared his presidential candidacy Thursday, becoming the fifth Democrat to formally announce his intentions.

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Toyota Motor Corp. is looking into the possibility of building five new North American assembly plants over the next 10 years, according to a Bloom-berg.com report Thursday that cites unidentified sources familiar with the plans. The Japanese automaker already has six North American plants and one under construction. Toyota enjoyed a 13 percent surge in US sales last year.

Cisco Systems sued Apple Inc. Wednesday in a dispute over which company can use "iPhone" as a product name. Since 2000, Cisco has held a trademark on the name used for its line of Internet-enabled phones. This week, however, Apple came out with its version of iPhones, a sleek new iPod- cellular phone combination.

The minimum-wage bill passed this week by the House moved on to the Senate Thursday. There, Democrats were expected to add billions of dollars of tax breaks to legislation that raises the federal wage floor from $5.15 an hour to $7.25 over 26 months to make it more palatable to businesses.

Residents of Florida's oceanfront Briny Breezes trailer park voted to sell the 43-acre community Wednesday to a Palm Beach developer for $510 million. Through a distribution formula, most of the 488 shareholders of the park, which was incorporated as a town in 1963, are set to become millionaires.

Jobless claims fell sharply last week to their lowest level in almost six months, the Labor Department reported Thursday. The number of newly laid-off workers filing for unemployment benefits dropped 26,000 to 299,000 on a seasonally adjusted basis.

San Francisco Giants slugger Barry Bonds failed a test for amphetamines last season and originally blamed the outcome on a teammate, The Daily News of New York reported Thursday. The team and Bonds's agent refused to comment. Major League Baseball does not publicly identifiy a player after a first positive test.

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