Stocks slip after hitting record; banks in focus

NEW YORK - Stocks fell modestly Tuesday as investors took a breather from a market that notched yet another record high the day before.

Banking stocks were mostly higher after investors got some clarity on new regulations. Regulators voted to approve the Volcker Rule, which bars banks from betting on the market with their own money. The rule will go into effect by July 2015 for the nation's largest banks.

The Dow Jones industrial average fell 52.40 to close at 15,973.13. The S&P 500 lost 5.75 to 1,802.62. The Nasdaq lost 8.26 to 4,060.49.

New perks needed if Boeing 777 goes to Ala.

Gov. Robert Bentley says the Legislature will have to approve money for new industrial incentives if Alabama lands Boeing's new aircraft plant.

Tuesday was the deadline for states to submit their offers for the 777X plant. Alabama got its offer in ahead of the deadline. It's one of about 15 states competing for the project.

Bentley says Alabama needs more incentive funding than it has now to recruit a plant that could provide up to 8,500 jobs.

Boeing is looking at the Huntsville area as a possible site. Its competitor, Airbus, is building a plant in Mobile.

US job openings reach 5-year high in October

U.S. employers advertised the most job openings in more than five years in October, and the number of people quitting also reached a five-year high. The figures are an encouraging sign for the unemployed.

The Labor Department says job openings rose 1 percent to a seasonally adjusted 3.93 million. That is the highest figure since March 2008, three months after the Great Recession began.

And the number of workers who quit rose 2.5 percent to 2.39 million, the most since October 2008. A rising number of workers quitting can signal a healthy job market, because it means most of these people likely either have a new job or are confident they can find one.

Total hiring, though, slipped 2.6 percent to 4.5 million after reaching a five-year high in September.

Pacific trade zone talks cease without any deal

The U.S. and 11 other nations negotiating a free trade zone stretching from Chile to Japan failed to reach a final agreement at talks in Singapore, but indicated they were closing in on a landmark deal.

The U.S.-led agreement is a major part of President Obama's foreign policy shift toward Asia but has been snagged by disagreements between countries on market access, especially for agricultural products, environmental protections and intellectual property.

Washington had said it hoped the trade agreement would be completed by the end of the year. Deborah Elms, a professor at Singapore's Nanyang Technological University, who follows the negotiations, said she expected a deal to be finalized in March. Others have predicted similar.

BMW is on course for a full-year sales record

Car maker BMW AG says its sales were up 2.7 percent in November compared with a year earlier, putting the company on course for a record year thanks to strong demand in China and the U.S.

The company said Tuesday that the BMW Group, which also includes the Mini and Rolls-Royce brands, sold 174,996 cars worldwide last month. Between January and November, it sold nearly 1.78 million cars - a 6.8 percent gain over the first 11 months of 2012.

While sales in Europe slipped 0.3 percent in the January-November period, they rose 19.7 percent in China and 9.2 percent in the U.S. BMW sold 1.85 million cars in 2012, a record figure. The company's South Carolina plant is major customer for the Port of Charleston.

Staff and wire reports