The numbers: The number of people who applied for jobless benefits in mid-February fell sharply and returned near post-recession lows, suggesting the U.S. labor market is still going strong and keeping the economy on firm footing.
Big picture: The U.S. is still adding new jobs at a rapid clip to keep the unemployment rate near the lowest level in decades. A tight labor market is also forcing companies to pay workers more.
January saw a surprising surge of 22,000 more apprehensions of illegal immigrants at southwest border crossings over January 2018, prompting a key predictor to suggest that border officers will make over 600,000 apprehensions this year.
The year-over-year increase was 84 percent, from 25,975 in January 2018 to 47,893 last January, according to U.S. Customs and Border Protection.
Rohlfing says he did not use his PayPal account to receive donations, receive payments, or otherwise conduct business as a reporter, but simply used it to expedite payments and increase security on various websites. Still, PayPal said in its email to Rohlfing notifying him of his account’s termination that the decision was based on his “activities” and relating to his “usage of PayPal services.”
The email also instructed him to remove all mention of PayPal as a payment processor from his website, even though Rohlfing has no website.
North Carolina’s elections board Thursday ordered a new election in the nation’s last undecided congressional race after the Republican candidate conceded his lead was tainted by evidence of ballot-tampering by political operatives working for him.
The Democrat in the race, Dan McCready, hailed the board decision as “a great step forward for democracy in North Carolina.”
Joaquin Guzman Lopez, 34, and Ovidio Guzman Lopez, 28, are charged in a single-count indictment that was unsealed last week in Washington.
Prosecutors allege the two brothers conspired to distribute cocaine, methamphetamine and marijuana into the U.S. from Mexico and elsewhere in the world from 2008 to 2018. They are both believed to be living in Mexico and remain fugitives.
U.S. Border Patrol agents from the Eagle Pass Station arrested a group of illegal aliens near Eagle Pass, Texas. A Honduran female in the group stated she was kidnapped in Mexico before entering the United States.
On Feb. 20, at approximately 1 p.m., Eagle Pass Station Border Patrol agents arrested a Honduran woman shortly after she made an illegal entry by crossing the Rio Grande River. During initial processing, the woman claimed to have been kidnapped while in Nuevo Laredo, Tamaulipas, Mexico and held against her will at a stash house. The woman was told she was to be held captive until her family met the smuggler’s ransom demands. After three days, she was able to escape and eventually travelled to Piedras Negras, Coahuila, Mexico, where she made her illegal entry into the United States.
"As you stand before me we presume you're innocent but the state read me a proffer that is outrageous. If true, the noose conjures up [the] greatest evil in this country," Cook County Judge John Fitzgerald Lyke Jr. told Smollett.
The 36-year-old actor said little other than giving his name at the beginning of Thursday's hearing. His attorney, who said the actor denies all charges against him, asked the judge to release Smollett on his own recognizance. However, the judge said that would be inappropriate.
Saudi crown prince Mohammed bin Salman on Wednesday joined Prime Minister Narendra Modi in condemning the Pulwama attack in the “strongest terms” even as India and Saudi Arabia agreed on the need to put pressure on countries that back terror and called on such states to dismantle terrorism infrastructures.
Apart from the specific reference to Pulwama, the joint statement called on “all states to reject the use of terrorism against other countries, dismantle terrorism infrastructures where they happen to exist and to cut off any kind of support and financing to terrorists perpetrating terrorism from all territories against other states”.
United States President Donald Trump threatened on Wednesday to impose tariffs on European automobiles if he does not reach an agreement with the European Union (EU) to reform the bilateral trade relationship.
"We are trying to reach an agreement. It is very difficult to reach an agreement with them, with the EU. If we do not reach an agreement, we will do the tariffs," Trump told reporters at the beginning of his meeting with Kurz.
Federal prosecutors, under former Miami U.S. Attorney Alex Acosta, broke the law when they concealed a plea agreement from more than 30 underage victims who had been sexually abused by wealthy New York hedge fund manager Jeffrey Epstein, a federal judge ruled Thursday.
While the decision marks a victory for crime victims, the federal judge, Kenneth A. Marra, stopped short of overturning Epstein’s plea deal, or issuing an order resolving the case. He instead gave federal prosecutors 15 days to confer with Epstein’s victims and their attorneys to come up with a settlement. The victims did not seek money or damages as part of the suit.
A new study has found that transplanting the bone marrow of young laboratory mice into old mice prevented cognitive decline in the old mice, preserving their memory and learning abilities. The findings support an emerging model that attributes cognitive decline, in part, to aging of blood cells, which are produced in bone marrow.
In the study, published in the journal Communications Biology, 18-month-old laboratory mice received bone marrow transplants from either 4-month-old mice or mice their own age. Six months later, both transplanted groups underwent standard laboratory tests of activity level and learning, plus spatial and working memory. Mice that received young bone marrow outperformed mice that received old bone marrow. They also outperformed a control group of old mice that did not get transplants.
Port Richey, Florida, Mayor Dale Massad is charged with attempted murder after shooting at a Pasco County SWAT team Thursday morning.
“I used to be up in the DC area. They had Marion Barry up there. This is Port Richey’s version. An individual that you wouldn’t believe should be in office and this is what happened," said Pasco County Sheriff Chris Nocco. “He shot at our members. He’s lucky he’s not dead.”
Now, Massad has been charged with attempted murder.
Putin specifically threatened deployment of hypersonic missiles on ships and submarines which could enter US territorial waters without detection if American intermediate-range missiles move into Europe.
On Wednesday afternoon, agents working at the Falfurrias Checkpoint referred a vehicle to the secondary inspection area after a Border Patrol K-9 alerted. During the inspection, agents located over 45 pounds of methamphetamine, worth an estimated $1.4M, inside the vehicle. Agents arrested the driver and turned the case over to the Drug Enforcement Administration.
Throughout the day, agents working in the Rio Grande Valley Sector seized over 740 pounds of marijuana worth nearly $600K.
Americans For Prosperity, a free-market advocacy group funded in part by the Koch network, has offered to help House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., pass legislation that would limit President Trump's ability to unilaterally impose new tariffs.
"[W]e hope to work with your office to advance legislation to require congressional approval of any proposed tariffs," said AFP chief government affairs officer Brent Gardner and Freedom Partners Chamber of Commerce executive vice president Nathan Nascimento told Pelosi in a letter sent Friday and made public Wednesday.
“Clearly the 21-year-old me who oversaw the book and that page didn’t understand how offensive the photo was. I wish I had,” Carroll said in a statement. “Today’s 51-year-old me of course understands and is crushed by this mistake. It is horrible, and of course the photo should not have been published.”
The image was discovered as part of a review of 900 yearbooks at 120 schools across the nation by USA Today and other Gannett-chain newspapers. Reporters collected around 200 examples of racist or offensive material at schools in 25 states, according to the Arizona Republic, where Carroll was editor in chief before heading USA Today.
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