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FHA to provide early relief to homeowners

Evidence of such behavior is necessary under Swiss law, and a 1996 treaty with the United States, for Switzerland to lift its strict banking secrecy rules and provide information on foreign clients to other governments.

The Internal Revenue Service said Friday that it expects the Swiss to honor the agreement.

It is unclear how the ruling, which cannot be appealed, will affect the remaining files awaiting transfer to U.S. authorities.

-- Associated Press

ALSO IN BUSINESS

-- Private-sector union membership shrinks: Local, state and federal government workers make up 51.5 percent of all union members -- becoming the majority of organized labor for the first time, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported.

-- Five U.S. banks fail: Regulators shut down banks in Florida, Missouri, New Mexico, Oregon and Washington, bringing to nine the number of bank failures in 2010, following 140 closures last year.

The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. took over Charter Bank, based in Santa Fe, N.M.; Miami-based Premier American Bank; Bank of Leeton in Leeton, Mo.; Columbia River Bank, based in the Dalles, Ore.; and Seattle-based Evergreen Bank. The closures will cost the FDIC's insurance fund an estimated $531.7 million.

-- News services


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