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VOL. 43 | NO. 1 | Friday, January 4, 2019

Public pressure pushes health care to top priority

It’s GOP’s issue to solve with new governor, supermajorities

Bill Lee waltzes into the governorship later this month with more goodwill on his side than most politicians have the right to expect.

Democrats map plan to stay relevent in new session

With new leadership in both the House and Senate, Tennessee Democrats are trying to stay relevant in the face of supermajorities in both houses of the General Assembly.

JOE ROGERS: MY TAKE

Re-establishing Nashville residency will take some work

WHEREAS, the writer has recently returned after two decades of exile in Yankeeland, and

Local Weather
Currently
Nashville, TN
73.0°F
A Few Clouds
Wind: South at 4.6 mph
Humidity: 38%

EVENTS

Gallatin Chamber 101. An opportunity to learn about the benefits of being a member, expand your network and grow your business. Gallatin Area Chamber, 118 West Main Street, Gallatin. Wednesday, 10-11 a.m. Fee: Free. Register to attend. Information

more events »

RICHARD COURTNEY: REALTY CHECK

Another strong sales year? Watch out for rates, politics

With 2018 in the books, the real estate community can set its sights on the year ahead, which should rank in the top three years of all time in terms of units sold in the area.

REAL ESTATE

US average mortgage rates fall; 30-year at 4.51 percent

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. long-term mortgage rates fell this week, starting the year with an inducement to prospective homebuyers.

TENNESSEE TITANS

Mariota’s future more like McNair or Locker?

The Tennessee Titans head into an offseason full of questions after Sunday night’s elimination loss to the Indianapolis Colts.

NFL Playoff matchups

The first round of the NFL playoffs begin Saturday, beginning with a matchup of two Titans' division opponents, the Colts and Texans. Here's how the first round looks:

UT SPORTS

Vols’ signee uses hoops to escape Buffalo violence

The basketball court had always been a safe space for Davonte Gaines. It was a way to escape the violence and keep him from running with the wrong crowd.

NEWSMAKERS

Stites & Harbison welcomes Schwegler

Michael Schwegler has joined Stites & Harbison’s Real Estate & Banking Service Group as a member of the firm.

BRIEFS

Franklin Synergy opens new location

Franklin Synergy Bank will open its newest branch in Franklin, 5040 Carothers Parkway, Suite 109 in the Carothers Crossing development.

BEHIND THE WHEEL

How much car can you get for $399 a month? Plenty

The average monthly payment for a new car is hovering around $530, the most recent Experian auto finance report reveals. The average lease payment is $430. While these payments will fit some budgets, they’re painfully steep for others.

BUSINESS BOOK REVIEW

O’Rourke takes comical look at the business of business

It doesn’t make sense. It doesn’t make cents, either, how your workload and your banking account can be so far apart, monetarily. Each payday, your check does a disappearing act almost before you’ve seen it, and you’d like to know why. In “None of My Business,” P.J. O’Rourke tries to explain, but it’s complicated.

CAREER CORNER

Resolve to tackle you job hunt like it’s your profession

Happy 2019! I think we can all agree that 2018 was a tricky year. But, it’s time to start fresh. It’s time to refocus on an awesome New Year’s resolution: finding a new job.

GUERRILLA MARKETING

Repeatable sales process essential for scalable growth

For many business-to-business (B2B) companies, the ability to grow correlates directly with the ability to effectively expand the sales team.

PREDATORS

Forsberg leads Predators past Blackhawks 4-3

CHICAGO (AP) — Nashville's top line is back together again, and that's a big deal for the surging Predators.

VANDERBILT SPORTS

Hammonds' big finish leads Georgia past Vanderbilt, 82-63

ATHENS, Ga. (AP) — After missing each of his four shots in a scoreless first half, Rayshaun Hammonds found a positive attitude.

REAL ESTATE

US average mortgage rates fall; 30-year at 4.45 percent

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. long-term mortgage rates continued to fall this week, reaching their lowest levels in nine months.

AUTO INDUSTRY

Nissan's ex-chair Ghosn runs fever while in detention

TOKYO (AP) — Nissan's former chairman Carlos Ghosn, who is being held on charges of falsifying financial reports, was ill with a fever, his lawyer Motonari Ohtsuru said Thursday.

Fiat Chrysler to pay around $650M in emissions cheating case

WASHINGTON (AP) — Fiat Chrysler will pay more than $650 million to settle allegations that it cheated on emissions tests involving more than 104,000 Jeep SUVs and Ram pickup trucks, a person with the knowledge of the settlement told The Associated Press on Wednesday.

Ford to shake up European business, cut jobs

FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) — Ford Motor Co. said Thursday it is cutting jobs in Europe as it reshapes its business to focus on more profitable commercial trucks and SUVs while shifting production to electric cars over the longer term.

Ford revamps Explorer SUV for 1st time since 2011 model year

DETROIT (AP) — Ford's aging Explorer big SUV is getting a major revamp as it faces growing competition in the market for family haulers with three rows of seats.

UK media says Jaguar Land Rover to cut 5,000 jobs

LONDON (AP) — Jaguar Land Rover said Thursday it will cut 4,500 jobs as the carmaker addresses slowing demand in China and growing uncertainty about the U.K.'s departure from the European Union.

HEALTH CARE

Physicians criticize state lawsuits over pelvic mesh

SEATTLE (AP) — Doctors who specialize in female pelvic medicine say lawsuits by four states, including Washington and California, over products used to treat pelvic floor disorders and incontinence might scare patients away from the best treatment options — or maybe even push the products off the market.

Liberal lawmakers challenge Trump with drug cost legislation

WASHINGTON (AP) — Challenging the Trump administration on a top consumer issue, leading congressional liberals are proposing legislation that would radically reduce U.S. prescription drug bills by linking prices to lower costs in other countries.

Scientists seek ways to finally take a real measure of pain

WASHINGTON (AP) — Is the pain stabbing or burning? On a scale from 1 to 10, is it a 6 or an 8?

NATIONAL/INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS

American Airlines shares tumble on more cautious 4Q outlook

FORT WORTH, Texas (AP) — Airline stocks are falling as American Airlines says fourth-quarter revenue and full-year profit will be lighter than expected.

Weak holiday sales at department stores catch many off guard

NEW YORK (AP) — Unemployment hasn't been so low in years, wages are rising, consumer confidence is high and gasoline is cheap, all creating high expectations for department stores this holiday season.

Off the Charts: More blowout earnings. What comes next?

NEW YORK (AP) — Forget about "What have you done for me lately?" The big question investors will be asking companies this upcoming earnings season is: What will you do next?

US, China leave next steps for trade talks unclear

BEIJING (AP) — The United States and China gave no indication of their next step after wrapping up talks aimed at resolving a tariff fight that threatens to chill global growth.

Global airlines association warns of potential Brexit impact

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — Disruptions to air travel are possible if Britain leaves the European Union in March without a deal, the head of the leading association for airlines around the world warned Thursday.

Davos authorizes youth protest against Trump at Davos forum

GENEVA (AP) — Officials in Davos have authorized a protest by a Socialist youth group against U.S. President Donald Trump and other expected attendees of the annual World Economic Forum in the Swiss ski resort this month.

NATIONAL POLITICS

Trump's border visit comes as shutdown talks fall apart

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump is taking the shutdown battle to the U.S.-Mexico border, seeking to bolster his case for the border wall after negotiations with Democrats blew up over his funding demands.


WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 9
STATE GOVERNMENT

Gov.-elect Bill Lee announces blind trust

NASHVILLE (AP) — Tennessee Gov.-elect Bill Lee is giving up control of his heating, cooling, plumbing and electric business that generates $225 million a year and placing his company holdings in a blind trust.

Tennessee lawmakers re-elect treasurer, comptroller

NASHVILLE (AP) — Tennessee lawmakers have re-elected the state treasurer and comptroller to their sixth two-year terms.

Lee appoints judge to be senior adviser

NASHVILLE (AP) — Gov.-elect Bill Lee has announced he's appointed Tennessee's only female Court of Appeals judge to serve as one of his senior advisers.

TENNESSEE TITANS

Titans hire Boston College's Piraino as head strength coach

NASHVILLE (AP) — The Tennessee Titans have hired Frank Piraino away from Boston College as their new strength and conditioning coach.

UT SPORTS

Tennessee hires Georgia's Chaney as offensive coordinator

KNOXVILLE (AP) — Jim Chaney is returning to Tennessee for a second stint as the Volunteers' offensive coordinator after spending the last three seasons at Georgia.

AUTO INDUSTRY

Nissan unveils new Leaf car after Ghosn's arrest delays it

YOKOHAMA, Japan (AP) — Nissan is showing the beefed up version of its hit Leaf electric car as the Japanese automaker seeks to distance itself from the arrest of its star executive Carlos Ghosn.

NATIONAL/INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS

Fed minutes: Growing risks make rate hike path less clear

WASHINGTON (AP) — Federal Reserve officials expressed increasing worries when they met last month, as they grappled with volatile stock markets, trade tensions and uncertain global growth. The threats, they said, made the future path of interest rate hikes "less clear."

UK lawmakers rebuff May as she tries to salvage Brexit deal

LONDON (AP) — Britain's battle over Brexit turned into political trench warfare between Parliament and the government Wednesday, as Prime Minister Theresa May brought her little-loved EU divorce agreement back to lawmakers who appear determined to thwart her plans.

US, China end talks on tariff battle with no word on outcome

BEIJING (AP) — Three days of U.S.-Chinese talks aimed at ending a costly tariff battle wrapped up Wednesday in an optimistic atmosphere after President Donald Trump said they were "going very well!"

Stocks post 4th consecutive gain as hopes build on China trade

NEW YORK (AP) — Stocks cinched their fourth consecutive gain Wednesday as indexes around the world build on their early 2019 rally. The gains for U.S. indexes faded slightly after President Donald Trump and Democratic leaders said Trump cut short a meeting on ending the partial shutdown of the federal government.

NATIONAL POLITICS

Trump stalks out of shutdown session with Dems -- 'Bye-bye'

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump stalked out of his negotiating meeting with congressional leaders Wednesday — "I said bye-bye," he tweeted soon after — as efforts to end the 19-day partial government shutdown fell into deeper disarray over his demand for billions of dollars to build a wall on the U.S.-Mexico border. Hundreds of thousands of federal workers now face lost paychecks on Friday.

AP source: Rosenstein expected to leave Justice in weeks

WASHINGTON (AP) — Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, who appointed special counsel Robert Mueller and remains his most visible Justice Department protector, is expected to leave his position soon after William Barr is confirmed as attorney general, a person familiar with the plans said Wednesday.

Democrats: Trump using misinformation, malice in wall debate

WASHINGTON (AP) — Top congressional Democrats said President Donald Trump "has chosen fear" in his drive to build a southern border wall and called on him to reopen the government shuttered because of the standoff over his demand for money for the barrier.

Trump pleads on TV for wall money; Dems say he stokes 'fear'

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump urged congressional Democrats to fund his long-promised border wall in a somber televised address that was heavy with dark immigration rhetoric but offered little in the way of concessions or new ideas to break the standoff that has left large swaths of the government shuttered for 19 days.

AP FACT CHECK: Trump and the disputed border crisis

WASHINGTON (AP) — In his prime-time speech to the nation, President Donald Trump declared a border crisis that's in sharp dispute, wrongly accused Democrats of refusing to pay for border security and ignored the reality of how drugs come into the country as he pitched his wall as a solution to varied ills.

Democrats worry over AG nominee's view of presidential power

WASHINGTON (AP) — William Barr once advised that a president didn't need Congress' permission to attack Iraq, that his administration could arrest a foreign dictator and that the FBI could capture suspects abroad without that country's consent.

Manafort accused of sharing 2016 election data with Russians

WASHINGTON (AP) — Former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort shared polling data during the 2016 presidential campaign with a business associate accused of having ties to Russian intelligence, and prosecutors say he lied to them about it, according to a court filing .


TUESDAY, JANUARY 8
STATEWIDE

Mackler announces Dem bid for Tennessee's open Senate seat

NASHVILLE (AP) — Democratic Nashville attorney and former Army helicopter pilot James Mackler is the first candidate to announce a 2020 bid for the seat Republican U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander will leave after his term.

NASHVILLE AREA

Sun Country adds flights to L.A., Portland, Providence

Sun Country Airlines is adding three seasonal nonstop routes from Nashville International Airport to its growing network, including Los Angeles, Portland, and Providence with fares as low as $69 one-way.

MUSIC INDUSTRY

Childish Gambino, Post Malone, Cardi B to play Bonnaroo fest

NASHVILLE (AP) — The 2019 Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival will feature Childish Gambino, Post Malone, Cardi B, the Lumineers and multiple sets from Phish.

STATE GOVERNMENT

Tennessee lawmakers sworn in, elect top leaders

NASHVILLE (AP) — Tennessee lawmakers have officially voted in their top legislative leaders to oversee the House and Senate for the next two years.

Tennessee Legislature to convene today

NASHVILLE (AP) — Tennessee lawmakers are preparing to kick off the 111th General Assembly, ushering with it a new governor and a booming freshman class poised to tackle the state's most high-profile issues while also setting the budget.

PREDATORS

Rinne notches 3rd shutout of season, Predators top Leafs 4-0

TORONTO (AP) — Toronto coach Mike Babcock said the Maple Leafs got schooled by Nashville.

TENNESSEE TITANS

LaFleur accepts offer to become Packers coach

NASHVILLE (AP) — The Green Bay Packers are turning to fast-rising offensive whiz Matt LaFleur to aid Aaron Rodgers and end a two-year absence from the postseason.

AUTO INDUSTRY

Nissan's ex-chair Ghosn appears in court, asserts innocence

TOKYO (AP) — The former chairman of Japan's Nissan Motor Co., Carlos Ghosn, denied any wrongdoing and proclaimed his loyalty to the company at a court hearing in Tokyo on Tuesday.

HEALTH CARE

US medical marketing reaches $30B, drug ads top surge

Ads for prescription drugs appeared 5 million times in just one year, capping a recent surge in U.S. medical marketing, a new analysis found.

NATIONAL/INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS

Stocks rise again as investors hope for trade breakthrough

NEW YORK (AP) — Stocks climbed for the third day in a row Tuesday as the latest round of trade talks between Washington and Beijing continued. It's the longest winning streak for U.S. indexes since late November.

World Bank cuts forecast for world economic growth in 2019

WASHINGTON (AP) — The World Bank is downgrading its outlook for the global economy this year, citing rising trade tension, weakening manufacturing activity and growing financial stress in emerging-market countries.

US consumer borrowing grew $22.1B in November

WASHINGTON (AP) — Americans slowed their pace of borrowing slightly in November, but it still grew by a robust $22.1 billion. Solid auto and student loans offset some of the decline in the category that covers credit cards.

US job openings fell in November to still-strong 6.9 million

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. job openings fell in November from the previous month, but the number of available positions remained healthy.

Sears gets another reprieve from liquidation

NEW YORK (AP) — Sears received another lifeline Tuesday when the company's chairman and largest shareholder promised to line up the necessary financing to keep the struggling department store chain afloat.

Samsung, like Apple, feels sting of slowing global growth

NEW YORK (AP) — Samsung expects its quarterly operating profit to fall 29 percent compared with last year, potentially unsettling a tech sector already skittish about slowing global economic growth.

What air travelers should know about the government shutdown

DALLAS (AP) — The partial government shutdown is starting to affect air travel. Over the weekend, some airports had long lines at checkpoints, apparently caused by a rising number of security officers calling in sick while they are not getting paid.

No word on progress after 2nd day of China-US trade talks

BEIJING (AP) — Talks between the U.S. and China on ending their tariff war were ending their second day Tuesday without word on whether they've made any progress, as an official newspaper warned not to push Beijing too hard.

NATIONAL POLITICS

Court won't block subpoena that may be part of Russia probe

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Supreme Court on Tuesday refused to block a grand jury subpoena that may be part of special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation. The subpoena for information was issued to an unidentified company owned by a foreign government.

Pelosi, Schumer will give Dem response to Trump

WASHINGTON (AP) — House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer will give the Democratic response to President Donald Trump's remarks to the nation Tuesday on his proposed wall on the U.S.-Mexico border.

Trump to take his case to build wall to prime-time audience

WASHINGTON (AP) — With no breakthrough in sight, President Donald Trump will argue his case to the nation Tuesday night that a "crisis" at the U.S.-Mexico border requires the long and invulnerable wall he's demanding before ending the partial government shutdown. Hundreds of thousands of federal workers face missed paychecks Friday as the shutdown drags through a third week.

The reality on the border: How much would a wall really help?

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump says there is a security crisis at the U.S.-Mexico border that can be addressed only by spending $5.7 billion on a wall.

AP FACT CHECK: Do ex-presidents back Trump wall? They say no

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump's recent claim that his predecessors endorsed his idea of a wall at the Mexican border got no support from the ex-presidents' club.

AP FACT CHECK: Trump's mythical terrorist tide from Mexico

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump and his officials persist in promoting the discredited notion that terror suspects are pouring into the U.S. from Mexico by the thousands.

AP Explains: Can Trump declare emergency to build his wall?

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Trump administration is weighing using a national emergency declaration to circumvent Congress and the budget stalemate and force construction of the president's long-promised southern border wall.

Senate GOP's 1st bill on Israel boycotts divides Democrats

WASHINGTON (AP) — Senate Republicans' first bill of the new Congress aims to insert the legislative branch into President Donald Trump's Middle East policy — but also tries to drive a wedge between centrist and liberal Democrats over attitudes toward Israel.


MONDAY, JANUARY 7
STATEWIDE

Tennessee governor renames state park for Alexander

FLAG POND (AP) — Gov. Bill Haslam has renamed a state park to honor Tennessee's senior U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander.

AUTO INDUSTRY

Son of ex-Nissan head Carlos Ghosn predicts court surprises

PARIS (AP) — The son of former Nissan chairman Carlos Ghosn said in an interview published Sunday that people will be surprised when his father, detained since Nov. 19 for allegedly falsifying financial reports, recounts his version of events to a Tokyo court on Tuesday.

Tesla breaks ground on factory in Shanghai

BEIJING (AP) — Tesla Inc. broke ground Monday for a factory in Shanghai, its first outside the United States.

COURTS

Haslam grants clemency to woman convicted as teen

NASHVILLE (AP) — A woman who says she was a 16-year-old sex trafficking victim when she killed a man in 2004 was granted clemency Monday by Tennessee's governor and soon will be released from prison.

Ginsburg missing Supreme Court arguments for 1st time

WASHINGTON (AP) — Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg is missing arguments for the first time in more than 25 years as she recuperates from cancer surgery last month, the Supreme Court said.

Judge rips attorney as 'unprofessional' in Russia probe case

WASHINGTON (AP) — A federal judge on Monday reprimanded an attorney for a Russian company accused of interfering in the 2016 presidential election, saying his references to Looney Tunes and "Animal House" in recent court filings are inappropriate.

NATIONAL/INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS

Stocks climb on trade talks and encouraging economic report

NEW YORK (AP) — Stocks rose again Monday, led by gains in retailers and smaller companies after a report showed strong orders last month for service-sector companies, where most Americans work. Investors were also encouraged by the resumption of trade talks between the U.S. and China.

Amazon emerges as most valuable US firm amid market turmoil

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Amazon, which is opening an operation center and adding 5,000 high-paying jobs in Nashville this year, has eclipsed Microsoft as the most valuable publicly traded company in the U.S. as a see-sawing stock market continues to reshuffle corporate America's pecking order.

World Bank President Jim Yong Kim announces his departure

WASHINGTON (AP) — Jim Yong Kim, the president of the World Bank, announced Monday he is resigning at the end of January.

US service firms grew at slower pace in December

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. service firms grew in December at the slowest pace in five months, a possible indication that various headwinds from turbulent markets to trade tensions could be having an impact on economic activity.

No words: Mastercard to drop its name from logo

NEW YORK (AP) — What's in a name? For MasterCard, not enough to keep it in the logo.

Britain testing 'no-deal' scenario as Brexit vote nears

LONDON (AP) — Britain is testing how its motorway and ferry system would handle a "no-deal" Brexit by sending a stream of trucks from a small local airport to the port of Dover — even as some legislators try to pressure the government to rule out the scenario.

NATIONAL POLITICS

Trump, Democrats ramp up pressure as shutdown hits 3rd week

WASHINGTON (AP) — With no weekend breakthrough to end a prolonged partial government shutdown, President Donald Trump is standing firm in his border wall funding demands and newly empowered House Democrats are planning to step up pressure on Trump and Republican lawmakers to reopen the government.

Analysis: Trump's unpredictable negotiating style faces test

WASHINGTON (AP) — The partial government shutdown is spotlighting the limitations of President Donald Trump's erratic negotiating style.

AP FACT CHECK: Trump claims innocence in probe; wall myths

WASHINGTON (AP) — Feeling the pressure of investigations and a partial government shutdown, President Donald Trump is playing loose with the facts regarding hush payments made by his former attorney Michael Cohen to two women and is changing his story on his promise to build a concrete border wall paid for by Mexico.


FRIDAY, JANUARY 4
STATE GOVERNMENT

Questar to bid for new testing contract with Tennessee

NASHVILLE (AP) — The company that administers Tennessee's problem-plagued student assessment testing program says it still plans on throwing its hat in the ring to secure a new state contract so they can continue overseeing the same service in the fall.

Tennessee GOP leaders: Shelby Co. skirting new immigration law

NASHVILLE (AP) — Tennessee's top Republican lawmakers say the state's biggest county, which includes Memphis, isn't following a new law that prohibits local authorities from requiring a warrant or probable cause before complying with federal immigration detainers.

COURTS

Pringles lawsuit claims it overpaid Tennessee taxes by $2M

NASHVILLE (AP) — Pringles says it erroneously overpaid its Tennessee taxes by $2.1 million and the company known for its potato chips is suing the state to recoup the money.

REGION

Utility: 2018 was wettest year for Tennessee Valley

NASHVILLE (AP) — A federal utility that serves parts of seven southeastern states says 2018 was the wettest year on record in the Tennessee Valley.

HEALTH CARE

Dem-led House moves to join health care law case

WASHINGTON (AP) — The new Democratic-controlled House has moved toward defending former President Barack Obama's health care law against a federal court ruling that the statute is unconstitutional, part of the party's effort to use the issue to embarrass Republicans.

Sign-ups steady as health law case goes to appeals court

WASHINGTON (AP) — Democratic attorneys general on Thursday appealed a federal court ruling that the Affordable Care Act is unconstitutional, as new enrollment numbers underscored the staying power of the Obama-era law.

AUTO INDUSTRY

US new-vehicle sales in 2018 rise slightly to 17.27 million

DETROIT (AP) — Sales of new vehicles in the U.S. rose slightly in 2018, defying predictions and highlighting a strong economy.

General Motors' product development chief named president

DETROIT (AP) — General Motors has promoted product development chief Mark Reuss (Royce) to company president.

TECHNOLOGY

Fewer affected in Marriott hack, but passports a red flag

BETHESDA, Md. (AP) — Fewer Marriott guest records than previously feared were compromised in a massive data breach, but the largest hotel chain in the world confirmed Friday that approximately 5.25 million unencrypted passport numbers were accessed.

With slump in iPhone sales, are we post Peak Smartphone?

NEW YORK (AP) — Behind Apple's disconcerting news of weak iPhone sales lies a more sobering truth: The tech industry has hit Peak Smartphone, a tipping point when everyone who can afford one already owns one and no breakthroughs are compelling them to upgrade as frequently as they once did.

NATIONAL/INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS

Stocks swing to huge gains after jobs report, trade talks

NEW YORK (AP) — Global stocks soared Friday and reversed the big losses they suffered just a day earlier. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rallied 746 points in the latest twist in a wild three months for markets.

Powell says he would reject any Trump request to resign

WASHINGTON (AP) — Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell said Friday that he will not resign if asked to do so by President Donald Trump, and that he is prepared to be patient in deciding when to raise interest rates again.

US employers added a stellar 312,000 jobs in December

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. employers dramatically stepped up their hiring in December, adding 312,000 jobs in an encouraging display of strength for an economy in the midst of a trade war, slowing global growth and a partial shutdown of the federal government.

China says US envoys due in Beijing for talks on trade fight

BEIJING (AP) — American envoys are due in Beijing for talks Monday in a tariff battle over Chinese technology ambitions that threatens to hobble global economic growth.

With Brexit 12 weeks away, uncertainty squeezing UK economy

LONDON (AP) — With Britain just 12 weeks away from the day it is meant to leave the European Union, one thing is becoming clear — uncertainty over what Brexit will mean is hurting the economy.

Waning iPhone demand highlights Chinese consumer anxiety

BEIJING (AP) — Apple's $1,000 iPhone is a tough sell to consumers in China unnerved by an economic slump and the trade war with the U.S.

US factories expanded at slowest pace in more than 2 years

WASHINGTON (AP) — American factories grew last month at the slowest pace in more than two years, with some manufacturers complaining about the impact of President Donald Trump's contentious trade policies.

Survey: US firms added a strong 271,000 jobs in December

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. businesses added a robust 271,000 jobs in December, according to a private survey.

NATIONAL POLITICS

Schumer: Dem says Trump threatened 'years' for shutdown

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump told congressional leaders he'd keep the government closed "for a very long period of time, months or even years." That's according to Democratic leader Chuck Schumer, who was among those meeting with Trump at the White House on Friday.

Watchdog group urges probe of Ivanka Trump tax break role

WASHINGTON (AP) — An ethics watchdog group asked the Justice Department on Friday to investigate whether President Donald Trump's daughter Ivanka violated federal conflict-of-interest law by promoting an Opportunity Zone tax break program from which she could potentially benefit.

Signs of GOP unease over shutdown as White House talks start

WASHINGTON (AP) — For the second time in three days, congressional leaders arrived at the White House Friday for talks with President Donald Trump amid signs of growing Republican unease over the prolonged partial government shutdown.

Impeachment? Trump says he's too successful for that

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump is pushing back on talk by some House Democrats of impeaching him.

House Democrats urge sweeping reforms to boost voting access

WASHINGTON (AP) — House Democrats are unveiling a comprehensive elections and ethics reform package that targets what they call a "culture of corruption in Washington" and aims to reduce the role of money in politics.

Newly empowered House Dems pass funding plan without wall

WASHINGTON (AP) — On their first day in the majority, House Democrats have passed a plan to re-open the government without funding President Donald Trump's promised border wall.

Trump refers to many walls as he fights for border money

WASHINGTON (AP) — Everywhere President Donald Trump looks, he sees a wall.

AP-NORC Poll: Immigration among the top concerns in 2019

As much of the U.S. government remains shut down over President Donald Trump's insistence on funding for his border wall, nearly half of Americans identify immigration as a top issue for the government to work on this year.

New Congress gavels in with nod to history, warning to Trump

WASHINGTON (AP) — The House and Senate have convened for the 116th Congress with the most diverse class of lawmakers in history.

What to watch for as the new Congress begins

WASHINGTON (AP) — They've got the keys to the offices, new paint inside and parties to attend. But on Thursday, the work was beginning when 535 members of the 116th Congress solemnly swear to govern the divided nation.

Day 13: New Congress, same old impasse over Trump's wall

WASHINGTON (AP) — The partial government shutdown entered a 13th day Thursday with House Democrats prepared to pass their plan to reopen government and President Donald Trump accusing them of playing politics with an eye on the 2020 election.

Pelosi poised to become House speaker, making history

WASHINGTON (AP) — Nancy Pelosi knew this moment would come, even if others had their doubts — or worked to stop her.

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