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U.S. watchdog suspects leaks at ratings agency

WASHINGTON — The internal procedures of one of the world’s top three ratings agencies appear to allow leaks of its decisions, according to a report by the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). At one of the larger agencies, “the procedures for disseminating a pending rating action appeared to allow…

Bachmann warns of Hezbollah ‘missile sites’ in Cuba

Republican presidential candidate Michele Bachmann said Monday that it would be “foolish” to normalize trade with Cuba because Hezbollah could soon have “missile sites” there. “Why would you normalize trade with a country that sponsors terror?” the candidate asked a crowd of supporters in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. “There is reports…

Humanitarian spending at record high despite financial crisis: report

LONDON (AlertNet) – Global spending on humanitarian aid hit a record $16.7 billion in 2010 despite the financial crisis, but devastating disasters and rising delivery costs meant almost 40 percent of needs still went unmet, new data showed on Wednesday. Governments poured $12.4 billion into emergency relief, up 6 percent…

China firms have ‘widespread weaknesses’: agency

Ratings agency Fitch warned Monday of “widespread weaknesses” in Chinese corporate governance and a lack of “quality information” for shareholders after a spate of accounting scandals overseas. Chinese companies were at “above average” risk of being accused of fraud — sometimes wrongly — which could hamper their attempts to raise…

Japan wins World Cup after beating U.S. on penalties

FRANKFURT (Reuters) – Japan won the women’s World Cup after beating United States 3-1 on penalties following a 2-2 draw in extra-time on Sunday. The U.S. dominated the final for long periods and were twice ahead but their confidence crumbled when it came to the spotkicks. (Editing by Mark Meadows)…

Report: Warren to be passed over as nominee to head Consumer Bureau

Bloomberg News is reporting as of Friday evening that President Obama has chosen somebody other than Elizabeth Warren to be nominated as director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. According to the report, which is based on an anonymous source, an unidentified individual who already works at the agency will…

Men more likely to die from cancer: U.S. study

Men are more likely than women to die of most types of cancer, according to a new US study. The report published Tuesday in the journal “Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention,” analyzed the survival rate at five years for 36 different types of cancer. It found the greatest gender gap…

U.S. holding back Pakistan military aid

WASHINGTON — The United States is holding back some military aid to Pakistan, President Barack Obama’s chief of staff confirmed on Sunday, after a New York Times report said $800 million was being withheld. “They’ve taken some steps that have given us reason to pause on some of the aid…

Strauss-Kahn lawyers to meet prosecution: report

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – New York prosecutors are scheduled to meet with the lawyers for former IMF chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn on Wednesday to discuss whether the sexual assault case against him can be resolved through a dismissal or a plea agreement, The New York Times reported. The next scheduled court appearance…

North Korean cyber attacks against U.S. and South Korea ‘a test run’

SAN FRANCISCO — Cyber attacks on US and South Korean military websites in March may have been a test by North Korea or sympathizers, according to a report released Tuesday by computer security firm McAfee. “The combination of technical sophistication juxtaposed with relatively limited execution and myopic outcome is analogous…

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