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Economy Briefs: Global regulators reach deal on asset-holding rules

BERLIN — International banking regulators agreed Sunday on global rules meant to ensure that banks keep enough cash in hand to survive market crises.

The rules will require banks to hold enough cash, and assets such as equities, corporate and government bonds that can easily be sold, to tide them over during an acute 30-day crisis.

The body that oversees the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision, which sets international rules, said Sunday that it will have to hold 60 percent of that amount when the rules start being phased in on Jan. 1, 2015. That will increase by 10 percentage points every year until the standards take full effect at the beginning of 2019.

HOLLYWOOD

HBO, Universal continue deal on exclusive online rights

NEW YORK — HBO on Sunday extended its deal with Universal Pictures to be the exclusive pay-TV provider of the studio's movies for another decade, the companies said. Financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

HBO, part of Time Warner Inc., and Universal Pictures, which also has a Focus Features specialty unit, have had an agreement in place since 2003. Current films from the studio include "This is 40" and "Les Miserables." It owns such classics as "E.T.," "Jaws" and "Scarface."

The deal is key for HBO, which faces a threat from streaming movie providers such as Netflix Inc. Since it is an exclusive agreement, Universal movies won't be able to be streamed on Netflix or other competitors until 2022 at the earliest.

AUTOS

Toyota trims back plans for building factories

TOKYO — Japan's Toyota Motor Corp. has decided to halt the construction of factories for the next three years in a shift from its policy of building new plants almost annually, reports said Sunday.

The company, which hopes to regain the top spot in the global auto market, will concentrate its capital investment on existing factories, the Nikkei business daily said. The new policy will basically shelve through the end of the 2015 fiscal year all plans for building factories other than those already announced, the paper said.

The company will announce the decision officially in a management plan to be released in coming months, Jiji Press said. Japan's largest automaker now has about 50 overseas plants and almost 30 domestic ones.

FINANCIAL

Convicted finance swindler can appeal case as an indigent

INDIANAPOLIS — A federal judge says a former Indiana financier doesn't have to pay to appeal his conviction for swindling investors out of more than $200 million.

U.S. District Judge Jane Magnus-Stinson issued an order last week granting Timothy Durham's request to proceed with his case as an indigent.

Durham said last month that he had no money to file an appeal with the 7th U.S. Circuit of Appeals in Chicago because his multimillion-dollar home is in foreclosure and his financial assets are tied up in bankruptcy proceedings of the companies he used to control.

The 50-year-old Durham was sentenced to 50 years in prison in November after a jury convicted him of securities fraud, conspiracy and 10 counts of wire fraud in the collapse of Akron, Ohio-based Fair Finance.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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