Economy Briefs: Elevated jobless stats blamed on superstorm

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The number of people seeking U.S. unemployment aid remained elevated for a second straight week because Superstorm Sandy forced many people to seek temporary benefits.

The Labor Department said Wednesday that first-time applications for benefits fell by 41,000 last week to a seasonally adjusted 410,000. That offset only part of the previous week’s surge.

AUTOS

Toyota recalls trucks over spare tires

DETROIT — Toyota is recalling about 150,000 Tacoma midsize pickups because the spare tires can fall from beneath the trucks.

The recalled trucks from the 2001 to 2004 model years were sold or registered in 20 cold-weather states and Washington, D.C.

HELICOPTERS

Danes to buy $686M worth of U.S. choppers

COPENHAGEN — Denmark’s Defense Ministry says it will purchase nine Sikorsky Sea Hawk naval combat helicopters for $686 million.

Defense Minister Nick Haekkerup said in a statement Wednesday that the MH-60R Sea Hawk helicopters built by Sikorsky-Lockheed Martin will be delivered from 2016 to 2018. The company is a division of Lockheed Martin, which is based in Bethesda, Md.

SOCIAL MEDIA

Facebook moves to end voting on privacy issues

NEW YORK — Facebook is proposing to end its practice of letting users vote on changes to its privacy policies. The company says it will continue to let users comment on proposed updates.

The world’s biggest social media company plans to announce Wednesday that its voting mechanism, which is triggered only if enough people comment on proposed changes, has become a system that emphasizes the quantity of responses over the quality of discussion.

EUROPE

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