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Congress reaches deal on 5-year transportation bill

Joan Lowy, Associated Press  |  Posted  Dec 1st - 5:10pm

The House and Senate have reached agreement on a 5-year, $281 billion transportation bill that would increase spending to address the nation's aging and congested highways and transit systems — a legislative feat that lawmakers and President Barack Obama have struggled throughout his administration to achieve.

Demand for farm loans surges amid low crop, cattle prices

Roxana Hegeman, Associated Press  |  Posted  Dec 1st - 4:20pm

The nation's net farm income is the lowest since 2002, and with another year of low commodity prices, demand for agriculture loans is surging as farmers struggle to make ends meet.

Texas governor makes little progress on Cuba business trip

Michael Weissenstein, Associated Press  |  Posted  Dec 1st - 3:10pm

Gov. Greg Abbott enjoyed dinner and a private concert in Havana but made little progress in finding opportunities for Texas businesses on the second day of a three-day trip to Cuba.

Brazil's economic downturn deepens with further GDP drop

Adriana Gomez Licon, Associated Press  |  Posted  Dec 1st - 3:10pm

Latin America's largest economy has shrunk even more than expected, increasing fears about the well-being of a nation hammered by falling commodity prices and a massive corruption scandal.

Stocks advance in solid start to December trading

Ken Sweet, Associated Press  |  Posted  Dec 1st - 2:50pm

Stocks started off December on a strong note, helped by improving economic data from Japan and Europe as well as hopes that the European Central Bank will expand its stimulus program. Trading remained relatively quiet ahead of the release later this week of the U.S. government's monthly jobs survey and a Federal Reserve meeting later this month.

Cybersecurity bill would add secrecy to public records laws

Tami Abdollah, Associated Press  |  Posted  Dec 1st - 2:10pm

A proposed law meant to encourage companies to share information about cyberthreats with the U.S. government includes measures that could significantly limit what details, if any, the public can review about the program through federal and state public records laws.

Report: Drug maker was focused on profits, not patients

Ricardo Alonso-Zaldivar, Associated Press  |  Posted  Dec 1st - 2:00pm

The makers of a breakthrough hepatitis drug put profits before patients in pricing the $1,000 pill that's become a symbol of the excessive cost of medications, Senate investigators said Tuesday.

Volkswagen brand US sales fall nearly 25 percent in November

Dee-Ann Durbin, Associated Press  |  Posted  Dec 1st - 1:51pm

Volkswagen's emissions-cheating scandal took a serious bite out of the company's U.S. sales last month.

The Cosmopolitan casino-resort agrees to union contract

Kimberly Pierceall, Associated Press  |  Posted  Dec 1st - 5:10pm

Five years after workers first sought union representation and two years after angry labor protests led to arrests, the Culinary Union has brokered a deal with The Cosmopolitan Las Vegas to represent the casino-resort's more than 2,000 workers.

Digital rights group alleges Google invades student privacy

The Associated Press  |  Posted  Dec 1st - 5:10pm

Google is being accused of invading the privacy of students using laptop computers powered by the Internet company's Chrome operating system.

Swift Communications buys Park City newspaper in Utah

The Associated Press  |  Posted  Dec 1st - 5:00pm

Swift Communications is buying The Park Record newspaper in Utah.

AP Interview: UAW exploring new strategies at Volkswagen

Erik Schelzig, Associated Press  |  Posted  Dec 1st - 5:00pm

Frustrated in past attempts to organize its first foreign automaker in the South, the United Auto Workers union is taking a new approach at Volkswagen's plant in Tennessee.

Here is the latest Utah news from The Associated Press

The Associated Press  |  Posted  Dec 1st - 4:10pm

A man accused of kidnapping and killing a 6-year-old girl will be sent to the state mental hospital rather than stand trial in her death. A judge in West Jordan ruled today that 44-year-old Terry Lee Black is not mentally competent for trial, though the court is expected to review the decision in about a year.

IRS: Won't use phone-tracking technology without warrant

Tami Abdollah, Associated Press  |  Posted  Dec 1st - 4:00pm

Internal Revenue Service criminal investigators will not continue to use cellphone-tracking technology without first seeking a warrant, the IRS commissioner told Congress in a letter made public Tuesday.

The Latest: Jury recesses without verdict ex-coal CEO trial

The Associated Press  |  Posted  Dec 1st - 3:20pm

The latest in the federal trial of Don Blankenship, former CEO of Massey Energy. All times local:

Gulf oil spill: Judge fines minority owner $159M

The Associated Press  |  Posted  Dec 1st - 3:10pm

A federal judge says a minority owner of the well that spewed 130 million gallons of oil into the Gulf of Mexico in 2010 must pay $159.5 million in Clean Water Act fines.

Nevada agency left Social Security data vulnerable

Michelle Rindels, Associated Press  |  Posted  Dec 1st - 2:11pm

The Nevada agency that ensures mobile homes are safe has been collecting Social Security numbers even though it's not allowed to, and hasn't been encrypting them or taking other precautions against hackers and thieves, according to state auditors.

Gold down, silver up

The Associated Press  |  Posted  Dec 1st - 1:51pm

The December gold contract on the New York Mercantile Exchange closed today at $1063.80 an ounce -- down $2.00.

Grain mixed livestock lower

The Associated Press  |  Posted  Dec 1st - 1:51pm

Grain futures were mostly higher Tuesday on the Chicago Board of Trade.