|The Associated Press|
This would be the year when the global economy finally regained its vigor. At least that's what many had hoped.
It didn't happen.
The three largest economies _
The tech world dueled over smartphones and tablets and saw
Least surprisingly, perhaps, another gallery of rogues brought investigative scrutiny to
The achingly slow global economic recovery was chosen as the top business story of the year by business editors at The Associated Press. The U.S. presidential election came in second, followed by the
1. THE GLOBAL ECONOMY: Worldwide growth was slack again in 2012. The global economy grew just 3.3 percent, down from 3.8 percent in 2011 and 5.1 percent in 2010, the
2. U.S. PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION: Obama vaulted to a re-election victory over
Yet he won despite the highest unemployment rate of any president seeking re-election since
3. OBAMA HEALTH CARE PLAN UPHELD:
4. THE FISCAL CLIFF: A dreaded package of tax increases and deep spending cuts to domestic and defense programs loomed over the economy in the year's final months. Negotiators struggled to forge a budget deal to avert those measures. If they failed, the tax increases and spending cuts would kick in
6. HOUSING RECOVERY: After a six-year slump that sent more than 4 million homes into foreclosure and shrank home prices about one-third nationwide, the U.S. housing market began to recover in mid-year. Modest job gains and record-low mortgage rates fueled demand. And the supply of available homes sank. By June, prices began rising. And builders broke ground on the most homes in four years. Housing boosted economic growth this year for the first time since 2005.
7. THE RETURN OF BIG OIL: Domestic crude oil production achieved its biggest one-year gain since 1951, driven by output in
8. BANKS BEHAVING BADLY: It was a banner year for bank drama.
9. MOTHER NATURE: There wasn't enough rain in much of the nation. Then, suddenly there was much too much. The nation suffered its worst drought since the 1950s, covering 80 percent of U.S. farmland. Grain and food prices soared. Then a storm so destructive it was dubbed a "superstorm" walloped the Northeast. Sandy blasted coastal
10. MOBILE-GADGET WARS: Competition in mobile technology intensified. Apple maintained its worldwide dominance. But the use of
AP Business Writers
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