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Egypt drops Bechtel Corp. as nuclear reactor consultant

Cairo (AP) — Egypt’s Electricity Ministry dropped U.S. construction giant Bechtel Corp. as a consultant for the country’s first nuclear reactor.

The state-run news agency quoted a ministry statement on Sunday as saying it has chosen Australia’s WorleyParsons for the 10-year consultancy.

In December the ministry said it had picked Bechtel for the $181 million project. It did not give details but local reports suggest that the deal stalled over terms of operation.

Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak has announced plans for the nuclear power project to diversify Egypt’s energy resources and preserve the country’s oil and gas. He said Egypt would not seek a nuclear bomb.

The entire project is expected to cost between $1.5 billion and $1.8 billion.

Wells Fargo asked to raise money after stress test shows its weakness

Washington (AP) — Regulators have told Wells Fargo & Co. to shore up its finances after government “stress tests” showed the bank would have trouble surviving a deeper recession.

Wells Fargo is one of several banks that regulators will force to hold larger buffers to protect them against possible future losses, according to two people familiar with the matter who spoke on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the process.

Representatives from San Francisco-based Wells Fargo did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Wells Fargo holds billions of dollars in mortgage, construction and credit card loans. The stress test treated those loans as especially vulnerable since borrowers would face trouble repaying their debts in a much worse economy.

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