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AP Executive Morning Briefing19 hours agoThe top business news from The Associated Press for the morning of Thursday, June 25, 2009:Toyota president says product lineup under reviewTOKYO (AP) — Akio Toyoda promised a nimbler Toyota that will be more responsive to regional needs in his first public appearance as head of the Japanese automaker his grandfather founded.

Toyoda, the automaker's first president from the founding family in 14 years, said Thursday the company's entire product lineup will be reviewed to better focus its offerings to each global region.___Ericsson names new CEO as Svanberg goes to BPSTOCKHOLM (AP) — Swedish wireless equipment company L.M.

Ericsson on Thursday said its financial chief Hans Vestberg will become the new chief executive when Carl-Henric Svanberg moves to head the board of BP Group PLC.

Vestberg, 44, will take over the position on Jan.

1.

He has worked with Ericsson since 1991 and has been the company's CFO since 2007.___Bernanke to face hostile questioning on BofA dealWASHINGTON (AP) — Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke likely will face hostile questions from a House committee investigating whether he and other government officials pressured Bank of America Corp.

into a "shotgun wedding" with Merrill Lynch that cost taxpayers $20 billion.

The House Oversight and Government Reform Committee has scheduled a hearing Thursday as it probes whether federal officials urged Bank of America CEO Kenneth Lewis to keep quiet last fall about Merrill Lynch's financial problems and stick with the plan to combine the two financial powers.___Asia markets gain as Fed underpins recovery hopesBANGKOK (AP) — Asian stock markets advanced Thursday after the U.S.

Federal Reserve said the world's largest economy is shrinking at a slower pace and scotched fears of an inflation threat, underpinning investor hopes for recovery.

Benchmarks in Japan and Hong Kong gained 2 percent or more in the wake of the U.S.

central bank's much anticipated policy statement but trading volume was thin, reflecting doubts that the massive rally in global markets since March can be sustained.___Poor countries want greater role in world economyUNITED NATIONS (AP) — Developing countries have joined U.N.

officials in calling for more money and a greater role in regulating the world economy in the wake of the worst global financial crisis since the Great Depression, which has taken a disproportionate toll on poor nations.

At Wednesday's opening of a three-day U.N.

financial summit, country after country laid blame for the crisis on financial liberalization and deregulation in the United States and other rich nations and said it was time to reform the world financial system under the auspices of the United Nations.___China accuses Google of spreading pornographyBEIJING (AP) — China's government accused Google Inc.

on Thursday of spreading pornography after Chinese Internet users were temporarily unable to gain access to the U.S.

search giant's main Web site or China-based service.

"We have found that the English version of google.com has spread lots of pornographic, lewd and vulgar content, which is in serious violation of Chinese laws and regulations," said foreign ministry spokesman Qin Gang.

He said authorities "summoned representatives of Google.com in China and urged them to remove the content immediately."___Oil hovers above $69 amid mixed crude demand signsSINGAPORE (AP) — Oil prices hovered just above $69 a barrel Thursday in Asia amid mixed signals about crude demand from a weekly U.S.

inventory report.

Benchmark crude for August delivery rose 38 cents to $69.05 a barrel by late afternoon Singapore time in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

On Wednesday, it lost 57 cents to settle at $68.67.___Japan auto production tumbles again in MayTOKYO (AP) — Global production at Japan's top automakers tumbled in May, hit by a lingering slump in demand and uncertainty over a recovery in the battered industry.

Toyota Motor Corp., the world's biggest carmaker, said Thursday its worldwide output dropped 38.8 percent from a year earlier to 442,621 vehicles — the 10th straight monthly decline.___Indicted billionaire to appear in court in TexasHOUSTON (AP) — For months, billionaire R.

Allen Stanford has denied allegations he swindled investors out of $7 billion.

On Thursday, the 59-year-old Texas financier was expected to have a chance to formally declare in court he is innocent of charges his international banking and financial empire was really just a Ponzi scheme.___Australian welcomes IMF policy endorsementCANBERRA, Australia (AP) — The government, criticized for sinking Australia too deep into debt with spending to boost the economy, on Thursday welcomed an International Monetary Fund endorsement of its quick response to the global economic slump.

The IMF said Wednesday the downturn in Australia "has been milder than in most advanced countries." It predicted a 0.5 percent contraction of the 1.1 trillion Australian dollar ($900 billion) economy in 2009 followed by 1.5 percent growth next year.___Japan MarketsTOKYO (AP) — Japanese shares rallied Thursday, lifted by gains in exporters on the back of a softening yen, while investors welcomed the Federal Reserve's statement that the U.S.

economic contraction is slowing.

The benchmark Nikkei 225 stock average gained 205.76 points, or 2.2 percent, to 9,796.08.

The broader Topix index rose 1.9 percent to 919.77.___Dollar-YenTOKYO (AP) — In currencies, the dollar rose to 96.38 yen Thursday from 95.67 yen in New York late Wednesday.A service of The Associated Press.

Copyright 2009 All rights reserved.Copyright © 2009 The Associated Press.

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