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FILE - In this Nov. 5, 2020 file photo, a Target employee places a curbside pickup purchase into the trunk of a customer in Jackson, Miss. The nation’s largest retail trade group says Friday, Jan. 15, 2021,  that holiday sales soared 8.3%, far exceeding its forecast even as the coronavirus kept shoppers away from physical stores.  (AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis, File)

Retail group: holiday sales up 8.3% amid big spending shift

Jan. 15, 2021 3:07 PM EST

NEW YORK (AP) — The nation’s largest retail trade group said Friday that holiday sales soared 8.3%, far exceeding its forecast even as the coronavirus kept shoppers away from physical stores. The National Retail Federation had expected growth in a range of 3.6% to 5.2% for the November and December...

FILE - In this Nov. 23, 2020 file photo, stone sculptures adorn the New York Stock Exchange.  Stocks are pulling lower again on Friday, Jan. 15, 2021,  after reports showed the pandemic is deepening the hole for the economy, as Washington prepares to throw it another lifeline.   (AP Photo/Seth Wenig, File)

Stocks fall as economy's pain deepens, head for weekly loss

Jan. 15, 2021 2:45 PM EST

NEW YORK (AP) — Stocks are pulling lower on Friday after reports showed the pandemic is deepening the hole for the economy, as Washington prepares to throw it another lifeline. The S&P 500 was down 0.5% in afternoon trading, with stocks of companies that most need a healthier economy taking the...

FILE - In this Jan. 6, 2021, file photo, Trump supporters try to break through a police barrier at the Capitol in Washington. There is increasing concern for the safety of journalists covering protests at state capitals across the U.S., and in Washington. Packing a gas mask and helmet has become the new normal. It's starting to look, just a bit, like what foreign correspondents face in the world's conflict zones. (AP Photo/John Minchillo, File)

Ex-foreign correspondent reflects on risks for US reporters

Jan. 15, 2021 2:13 PM EST

SALEM, Ore. (AP) — In the summer of 2000, I was among a group of foreign correspondents, photographers and video journalists who went to England to attend a hostile environment-first aid training course. The trainers, all former Royal Marine commandos, taught us how to gingerly probe our way out of a...

Oil giant Total withdraws from US energy lobbying group

Jan. 15, 2021 1:57 PM EST

PARIS (AP) — French oil and gas company Total said it has decided to withdraw from energy association American Petroleum Institute because it disagrees on climate-related policies. Total said in a statement Friday it would not renew its membership for 2021 following an analysis of API's position on climate...

FILE - In this July 9, 2018, file photo, an advertisement for Xiaomi is displayed at a subway station in Hong Kong. The U.S. government has blacklisted Chinese smartphone maker Xiaomi Corp. and China’s third-largest national oil company for alleged military links, heaping pressure on Beijing in President Donald Trump’s last week in office. The Department of Defense added nine companies to its list of Chinese companies with military links, including Xiaomi and state-owned plane manufacturer Commercial Aircraft Corp. of China (Comac). (AP Photo/Vincent Yu, File)

US blacklists Xiaomi, CNOOC, Skyrizon, raising heat on China

Jan. 15, 2021 12:38 PM EST

HONG KONG (AP) — The U.S. government has blacklisted Chinese smartphone maker Xiaomi Corp. and China’s third-largest national oil company for alleged military links, heaping pressure on Beijing in President Donald Trump’s last week in office. The Department of Defense added nine companies to...

A sale sign is displayed near the entrance of a Hallmark store Tuesday, Jan. 12, 2021, in Orlando, Fla.  Retail sales fell for a third straight month, as a surge in virus cases kept people away from stores and restaurants during the holiday shopping season.     The report released Friday is yet another sign that the pandemic is slowing the U.S. economy. Last month, the country lost jobs for the first time since the spring.(AP Photo/John Raoux)

U.S. retail sales fell in December for 3rd straight month

Jan. 15, 2021 12:29 PM EST

NEW YORK (AP) — Americans cut back on spending in December for the third-straight month as a surge in virus cases kept people away from stores during the critical holiday shopping season. The U.S. Commerce Department said Friday that retail sales fell a seasonally adjusted 0.7% in December from the month...

Missouri nuclear plant shut down for third time in 9 months

Jan. 15, 2021 12:10 PM EST

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — Ameren Corp.'s nuclear plant in mid-Missouri has halted operations because of a non-nuclear issue involving the generator, the utility company said. The shutdown announced Thursday was the third time in nine months the plant about 30 miles north of Jefferson City has halted...

In this photo released Friday, Jan. 15, 2021, by the Imamedia a suicide drone approaches the target during a drill. Iran's paramilitary Revolutionary Guard conducted a drill Friday that saw

Iranian Guard drones in drill mirror those in Saudi attacks

Jan. 15, 2021 11:10 AM EST

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — Iran's paramilitary Revolutionary Guard conducted a drill Friday that saw “suicide drones” crash into targets and explode, triangle-shaped aircraft that strongly resembled those used in a 2019 attack in Saudi Arabia that temporarily cut the kingdom's oil...

Hurricane-force winds cause extensive damage in North Dakota

Jan. 15, 2021 10:28 AM EST

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — A weather system packing hurricane-force wind gusts has caused extensive damage and power outages in western and central North Dakota. The National Weather Service reported wind gusts of 77 mph at Garrison, 81 mph in Hettinger County and 93 mph in Williston on Thursday. The weather...

FILE-In this Oct. 5, 2011 file photo, the cooling tower of the Davis-Besse Nuclear Power Station looms over an adjacent farm in Oak Harbor, Ohio. Across the nation, a handful of nuclear plants unable to compete with natural gas and renewable energy have shut down within the last two years, taking away steady and lucrative sources of tax money for schools, roads and libraries. The uncertainty surrounding the future of both Ohio plants, Davis-Besse near Toledo and Perry near Cleveland, has created plenty of nervousness in their hometowns that have found themselves caught in the middle of the scandal-tainted bailout. (AP Photo/Amy Sancetta, File)

2 nuke plants, 1 bribery scandal, no answers: Towns on edge

Jan. 15, 2021 9:25 AM EST

TOLEDO, Ohio (AP) — For much of the past four years, the residents of a pair of villages along Lake Erie have been on edge over the fate of their nuclear plants, which generate enough tax money to pay for nicer schools than their neighbors. Like many U.S. nuclear plants struggling to compete with with...