Today's Intel

Friday, Sept. 30, 2011

BLOOMBERG

Anwar al-Awlaki, a U.S.-born Islamic cleric who masterminded the attempted bombing of a Detroit-bound airplane in 2009 with explosives hidden in underwear, has been killed in Yemen, the Defense Ministry said.

Former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney anticipates taking in between $13 million and $14 million in the third quarter for his presidential campaign.

Solyndra, the solar-panel maker that filed for bankruptcy protection two months after executives extolled its prospects, is being investigated by the FBI for accounting fraud, an official said.

With the European Commission now expecting the overhauled 440 billion-euro ($594 billion) European Financial Stability Facility in place by mid-October, euro finance chiefs will next week discuss accelerating enactment of a permanent rescue fund that provides more capital and a tool for managing defaults.

Toyota Motor Corp. and Honda Motor Co.'s return to full production this month is boosting U.S. auto sales back near the pace reached before Japan's earthquake.

Confidence among U.S. consumers rose to 59.4 in September (higher than forecast) from 55.7 in August, the lowest level since November 2008, as pessimism about the economy eased.

Consumer spending in the U.S. slowed in August as incomes unexpectedly dropped for the first time in almost two years, forcing households to use up savings. Purchases rose 0.2 percent after a 0.7 percent increase the prior month.

Medvedev and Putin ended years of speculation about which of them will run for president by agreeing last week to swap places after presidential elections in March. The president, who was asked by Putin to lead the ruling United Russia party into December parliamentary elections, said he was prepared to head the government should the party perform well in the Dec. 4 vote.

AP Top Stories

Tens of thousands of protesters took to the streets across Syria on Friday demanding the removal of President Bashar al-Assad, as fighting continued between loyalist forces and insurgents in the center of the country.

Mexico City lawmakers want to help newlyweds avoid the hassle of divorce by giving them an easy exit strategy: temporary marriage licenses. The minimum marriage contract would be for two years and could be renewed if the couple stays happy. The contracts would include provisions on how children and property would be handled if the couple splits.

JPMorgan Chase & Co and Bank of America Corp were hit with new lawsuits by investors seeking to recover losses on $4.5 billion of soured mortgage debt, expanding the litigation targeting the two largest U.S. banks.

Morgan Stanley shares dropped 7 percent on Friday on worries about its exposure to European banks.

The rock-bottom price of the new Kindle Fire tablet computer is raising questions about Amazon.com Inc's ability to keep up with demand and the device's effect on the company's already razor-thin profit margins. Amazon's billionaire Chief Executive Jeff Bezos unveiled the Fire at a lower-than-expected price of $199.

Inflation jumped to a startling 3.0 percent in September in the 17 countries that use the euro, a surprise increase that makes it less likely the European Central Bank will cut interest rates next week to head off a possible recession.

China's manufacturing remained stagnant in September due to sluggish demand both at home and abroad, according to a survey released Friday.

BBC

Chinese internet stocks dive in New York trading as the US Department of Justice considers launching a fraud investigation.

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez denies reports he was rushed to hospital with kidney failure, telling state TV his recovery from cancer is going well.

WorldNetDaily

An Arizona man has filed a federal lawsuit against some of the state's top judges, claiming they're taking away his freedom of speech and right to own firearms, all because someone didn't like what he wrote on his blog.

Just 38 percent of his own party says things are going along fine in the United States, and only 9 percent of independents have that opinion. Even among blacks, 48 percent say the nation is on the wrong track, according to a new poll. So what does it mean for Obama's campaign for another four-year lease on the Oval Office?

Americans are reporting a slight uptick in how they feel about their lives, futures and freedoms, just as the approval numbers for Barack Obama are plunging and there seems to be serious doubt about whether he'll be able to pull off winning a second term. Overall, the Freedom Index, a survey of Americans' feelings about a number of different issues regarding the Constitution and freedom, inched upward to 47.1 in September, up from 45.9 measured three months earlier, in June.

A teacher in Texas who last week sparked an in-school suspension for a student after the pupil simply told a classmate he believes homosexuality is wrong because of his Christian faith now has been placed on leave.

Pa. -- A mother in Ellwood City is demanding justice from police and her son's school after she said her son was bullied and forced to drink urine.

Christians are telling Barack Obama to start leaning on Iran, to convince the radical Muslims in charge to prevent the possible execution of a Christian pastor who has refused to renounce his beliefs.

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