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Stocks build on gains...Home sales drop...Airbus delivers new wide-body jet

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NEW YORK (AP) — Stocks are building on last week's gains to open this short trading week. The Dow, S&P 500 and the Nasdaq are all solidly higher in the early going. European and Asian markets also rose today on hopes that some stability is emerging in oil markets. Oil prices are down this morning, with benchmark U.S. crude trading around $56 a barrel.

WASHINGTON (AP) — Fewer Americans bought homes last month. The National Association of Realtors says sales of existing homes fell 6.1 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.93 million. That's the slowest pace in six months. The combination of higher home prices and relatively stagnant incomes has reduced affordability and restrained buying activity.

UNDATED (AP) — The nation's largest pharmacy benefits manager is throwing its weight into a fight over the high cost of treating hepatitis C. Express Scripts says it will cover a drug from AbbVie, but it will no longer cover treatments from Gilead Sciences and Johnson & Johnson starting Jan. 1, except under limited circumstances. The treatments traditionally can run close to $100,000 per patient.

PARIS (AP) — Airbus has delivered its first A350 jet. The European aircraft-maker handed over the wide-body plane to Qatar Airways after years of delays and a multibillion-dollar redesign. Airbus is trying to catch up in a long-haul market dominated by rival Boeing's 777 and 787. Airbus revamped the original A350 design to make it more fuel-efficient and marketable.

MOSCOW (AP) — A Russian deputy prime minister says he's expecting the ruble to extend its recent gains and the government is not planning to introduce currency controls on Russian companies. Igor Shuvalov oversees the economy. He tells Russian news agencies that the government "opposes" currency controls as a way to tackle the ruble crisis. The ruble has been the worst performing currency this year along with the Ukraine's, having lost half of its value.

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