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  • Country duo performs in Peoria

    Toby Keith’s I Love This Bar & Grill and 102.5 KNIX welcome country music duo Love and Theft.The three-time CMA “Vocal Duo of the Year” nominees will bring their Night That You’ll Never Forget tour to Peoria at 8 p.m. Dec. 11.Love and Theft consists of singers and songwriters Stephen Barker Liles and Eric Gunderson. They first hit the scene with their Top 10 single, “Runaway,” and followed it up with their No. 1 platinum single, “Angel Eyes.” Love and Theft debuted their latest single, “Whiskey On My Breath” this week, with an album release planned in February.Tickets range from $10 to $15. Advanced tickets may be purchased at http://tobykpeoria.tunestub.com/event.cfm?id=169970.Toby Keith’s I Love This Bar & Grill is at 9824 W. Northern Ave., Suite 1840, Peoria.

  • UPDATE: Peoria man arrested in killing of estranged wife

    PHOENIX (AP) — A man accused of gunning down his estranged wife told investigators he staked out her Glendale house and killed her after trying unsuccessfully to follow her boyfriend when he left the home, police said Tuesday. Edward Littleton McCauley, 58, of Peoria was arrested Monday in the shooting death of 45-year-old Dawn McCauley in front of her home. She was found in the cab of her truck by officers who responded to a shots-fired call just after midnight Sunday. A journal later found by detectives at Edward's McCauley's residence expressed hatred for his wife and indicated he had planned for a month to kill her, authorities said. Detectives investigating the killing learned that McCauley had given away his truck, gun collection and some money. He was sitting in a rental car parked outside a restaurant when he was taken into custody Monday afternoon, police said in a statement filed in court. Police say McCauley acknowledged killing his wife and told detectives he had first followed her boyfriend after he left the home Sunday night. "Edward tried to follow the truck but was stopped at a light and he decided to return to Dawn's house to wait for her to come outside," police said in the statement. If they had come out of the house together, "they would both 'be done,'" said the statement, which did not identify the boyfriend. The statement also said Dawn McCauley's relatives said she feared her husband and considered getting an order of protection against him but didn't because she feared he would still be able to find her. Edward McCauley did not have a lawyer during an initial court appearance Tuesday. He remained jailed in lieu of $1 million bond.

  • Dozens of cats found in Glendale home, police say

    GLENDALE - Police are investigating a home where more than 50 cats were found living in poor conditions in Glendale.Glendale police say a welfare check was conducted on a property located near 43rd Avenue and Maryland after police received a call about a bad smell coming from the home.Police and fire officials found at least 50 cats inside the home that they say is unfit to live in because of feces in the home and reports of dead animals. A HAZMAT crew is also on scene in order to get the cats.The man who lives in the home is giving up rights to his cats. They were not abused, but are not healthy, police say.

  • Liberty Buick hands Ameriprise 1st loss

    Liberty Buick knocked Ameriprise from the undefeated ranks Monday during Sun Cities Central softball at Liberty Field in Sun City West.Liberty Buick (6-2) downed Ameriprise 14-11 and moved one game behind the league leaders. The Daily News-Sun and Ameriprise share first place with 7-1 marks.Liberty Buick 14Ameriprise 11John Doherty had four hits to lead Liberty Buick’s 26-hit attack.Case Grintjes had three hits in the win.

  • Professional artist shares tips with Sun West Art Club

    Professional artist Michael Rose presented a program, using a variety of slides on the multistep method used to paint in the style of classical realism, at the Sun West Art Club meeting on Nov. 10.This is the method used by famous masters such as Rembrandt and Vermeer.Classical realism is a process where the artist builds a painting using seven to 30-plus layers of paint, which is very time consuming.One picture, whether oils or watercolor, may take three months to complete. However, the final product produces a detailed painting with unusual color depth and richness.Rose demonstrated how his highly detailed sketches were necessary to the final product. His works were complex and full of light.By presenting these programs at their general meetings, the Sun West Art Club provides its members the opportunity to study the manner in which different artists develop their ideas and create their masterpieces.

  • Free class tackles anxiety, depression

    Renovare Wellness By Design in Peoria will host a free class on natural solutions to anxiety, depression and addiction.The session is scheduled at 6 p.m. Dec. 2.Renovare Wellness By Design is located at 18969 N. 83rd Ave., Suite 1.Dr. Timothy Gerhart and Dr. John Duff will lead the class, which will reveal how each person with anxiety, depression and addiction has a unique set of root causes.The doctors will discuss natural approaches designed to offer pain relief and the return of high level energy, vitality and wellness.To make a reservation, go to www.renovarewellnessbydesignpro.com or call 623-776-0206.

  • New FDA rules will put calorie counts on menus

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Whether they want to or not, consumers will soon know how many calories they are eating when ordering off the menu at chain restaurants, picking up prepared foods at supermarkets and even eating a tub of popcorn at the movie theater. The Food and Drug Administration announced long-delayed calorie labeling rules Tuesday, requiring establishments that sell prepared foods and have 20 or more locations to post the calorie content of food "clearly and conspicuously" on their menus, menu boards and displays. Companies will have until November 2015 to comply. The regulations will also apply to convenience stores, bakeries, coffee shops, pizza delivery, amusement parks and vending machines. The idea is that people may pass on that bacon double cheeseburger if they know it has hundreds of calories — and, in turn, restaurants may make their foods healthier to keep calorie counts down. Beverages are included in the rules, and alcohol will be labeled if drinks are listed on the menu. "Americans eat and drink about one-third of their calories away from home and people today expect clear information about the products they consume," FDA Commissioner Margaret Hamburg said. The effort is just one way Americans can combat obesity, she added. The menus and menu boards will tell diners that a 2,000-calorie diet is used as the basis for daily nutrition, noting that individual calorie needs may vary. Additional nutritional information beyond calories, including sodium, fats, sugar and other items, must be available upon request. The rules deal a blow to the grocery and convenience store industries, which have lobbied hard to be left out since the menu labels became law in 2010 as a part of the health care overhaul. Even before the new rules were announced, some Republicans in Congress had expressed concern that they would be too burdensome for businesses. The law came together when the restaurant industry agreed to the labeling in an effort to dodge a growing patchwork of city and state rules. But supermarkets, convenience stores and many other retailers that sell prepared food said they wanted no part of it. The restaurant industry pushed to include those outlets, as they increasingly have offered restaurant-like service. The FDA issued proposed rules in 2011 that included supermarkets and convenience stores but excluded movie theaters. The final rules being released Tuesday include all of them. Representatives for the supermarket industry have said it could cost them up to a billion dollars to put the labels in place — costs that would be passed on to consumers. They said the rules could cover thousands of items in each store, unlike restaurants, which typically have fewer items. To assuage some of their concerns, FDA excluded prepared foods that are typically intended for more than one person to eat and require more preparation, like deli meats, cheeses or bulk deli salads. But a sandwich for sale at the same counter would have to have a calorie label nearby, and many prepared foods in the grocery store will have to be labeled — from the salad bar to the hot food bar to cookies and birthday cakes in the bakery. In some cases foods will have to be labeled in one area but not in another — cut fruit would be labeled on a salad bar, for example, but not in a container for sale, because that is generally meant to take home and eat over a period of time. Leslie G. Sarasin, president and CEO of the Food Marketing Institute, said the group is extremely disappointed in the rules, which she said will affect stores' offerings of "fresh, minimally processed, locally produced items" such as cut cantaloupe, mixed salads, or steamed seafood. Hamburg acknowledged that the regulations seem complicated but said standards are necessary as supermarkets are selling more restaurant foods. The FDA says the idea is to label calories of foods that are meant to be eaten in the store, as a customer is walking away or soon after they arrive at another location. "The grocery store questions are some of the hardest ones, but it is very clear that the grocery store of today is different than it was 10, 20 years ago," Hamburg said. The pizza industry, led by delivery giant Domino's, has also vigorously fought the rules, saying there are millions of ingredient combinations possible. The FDA attempted to mollify some of their concerns by allowing pizza restaurants to label pizza calories by the slice, as they had requested, but would still force the labeling on menu boards in takeout restaurants. The delivery pizza industry had asked to post information online instead, saying only a small percentage of customers walk into their stores and about half order online. As in the proposed rules, the final version still exempts airplanes, trains, food trucks and other food served on forms of transportation. The point of menu labeling is to make sure that customers process the calorie information as they are figuring out what to eat. Many restaurants currently post nutritional information in a hallway, on wrappers or on their website. The new law will make calories immediately available for most items. New York City was the first in the country to put a calorie posting law in place, and other cities and states have followed since then. Several restaurant chains such as McDonald's are already putting calorie labels on menus and menu boards nationwide. ___ Follow Mary Clare Jalonick on Twitter at http://twitter.com/mcjalonick

  • Sheriff's Office: Ariz. legislator accused of DUI

    PHOENIX (AP) — Authorities say an Arizona legislator has been arrested and accused of driving while intoxicated. The Navajo County Sheriff's Office says state Rep. Albert Hale was arrested Sunday by the state Department of Public Safety. According to sheriff's Chief Deputy Jim Molesa, Hale was booked into the county jail in Holbrook and released the same day after an initial court appearance. Details on the arrest are not immediately available. DPS spokesman Tim Case said he could not immediately locate information on the arrest. Hale did not immediately respond to emails and phone messages. The 64-year-old Hale is a Democrat from St. Michaels, a Navajo Nation community in Apache County. Hale was appointed to fill a state Senate vacancy in 2004 and he served in that chamber until 2010.

  • Feds favor expansion of endangered wolf territory

    FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. (AP) — Federal officials have proposed more than tripling the current number of endangered Mexican gray wolves in the Southwest and greatly expanding the area they can roam. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service said Monday it would finalize a decision in January for changes to a reintroduction program that has stumbled through legal battles, illegal shootings, politics and other programs. The agency said its favored proposal aims to increase the genetic diversity of the wolves, and lessen impacts to ranchers and potential prey on tribal lands. The wolves currently roam about 7 million acres of federal, tribal and private land in far eastern Arizona and western New Mexico. The proposal increases the number of sites where wolves could be released and eventually will allow the animals to disperse throughout Arizona and New Mexico south of Interstate 40 to the U.S.-Mexico border. Ranchers and community leaders in rural areas have opposed expansion efforts, saying that wolves that don't find deer and elk to feed on could turn to livestock and domestic animals instead, said Caren Cowan, executive director of the New Mexico Cattle Growers Association. "It's cruel to the animals because there is no prey base," she said. "They are doomed to failure." Under the Fish and Wildlife proposal, livestock owners could kill any wolf that is biting, wounding or killing livestock on federal land. Pet owners could do the same on on-federal land. Deer and elk on tribal lands also would be protected. Sherry Barrett, Mexican wolf recovery coordinator for the Fish and Wildlife Service, said the proposal creates a balance between growing the wolf population and the impacts that wolves might have on local communities. The last count of wolves showed there are a minimum 83 in the wild. Wildlife officials said they would work toward managing a population of 300 to 325 wolves under the proposal that increases the habitat suitable for wolves by nearly four times what's available now. If the population exceeds that number, wolves could be relocated to Mexico, be placed in captivity or killed as a last resort, Barrett said. "We have several options available," she said. The target population likely will go up once the Fish and Wildlife Service develops a recovery plan, Barrett said. A coalition of environmental groups recently sued the agency for not crafting and implementing a valid recovery plan with measurable goals for recovery of the wolves in the Southwest. The proposal to expand the territory for wolves was welcomed by environmentalists who said that wildlife managers need to do more to help the wolves repopulate. But it falls short of including the territory they wanted around the Grand Canyon and in the Southern Rocky Mountains, and short on the target population, said Michael Robinson of the Center for Biological Diversity. "Putting them at 325 is still going to put them in grave danger," he said. "There's no science behind that."

  • Arizona revenue again below anticipated level

    PHOENIX (AP) — Arizona's gloomy state budget picture isn't getting any help from revenue collections. Legislative budget analysts report that October marked the seventh straight month in which tax collections fell below the forecast levels used when the current state budget was approved by legislators and Gov. Jan Brewer last spring. According to the Joint Legislative Budget Committee staff, October revenue collections totaled just under $712 million, or a bit over $7 million below the forecast amount. General fund collections so far in the current fiscal year are 3.6 percent above the last year's corresponding level but nearly $72 million below the forecast. The budget analysts project a $520 million shortfall in the nearly $9.7 billion state budget by the end of the fiscal year.

  • Phoenix is ready to become more bicycle friendly

    PHOENIX (AP) — Phoenix is about to become more bike friendly. The city is rolling out its new bike share program called Grid Bike Share on Tuesday. The program has 100 bikes at 27 different locations in and around Phoenix's central corridor. The green-colored street bikes can be found in places next to the light rail and bus stops along with major entertainment and business centers. The cost to rent one is $5 per hour. There are also monthly and yearly plans. Bikes can be rented at kiosks located at some bike stations, online or through an app.

  • Thanksgiving trumps Black Friday for deals

    NEW YORK (AP) — Thanksgiving could be the best day to shop all year. An analysis of sales data and store circulars by two research firms contradicts conventional wisdom that Black Friday is when shoppers can get the most and biggest sales of the year. Turns out, shoppers will find more discounted items in stores that are open on Thanksgiving. For example, there are a total of 86 laptops and tablets deeply discounted as door buster deals at Best Buy, Wal-Mart and others on the holiday compared with just nine on Black Friday, according to an analysis of promotions for The Associated Press by researcher Market Track. And on the Web, discounts will be deeper on the holiday. Online prices on Thanksgiving are expected to be about 24 percent cheaper compared with 23 percent on Black Friday and 20 percent on Cyber Monday, according to Adobe, which tracks data on 4,500 retail web sites. The data is the latest proof that retailers are slowly redefining the Black Friday tradition. It's been the biggest shopping day of the year for decades, mostly because it's traditionally when retailers pull out their best sales events. But in the last few years, retailers like the Gap, Target and Toys R Us have started opening their stores and offering holiday discounts on Thanksgiving to better compete with online rivals. "I was surprised, but it really shifted one day," said Tamara Gaffney, principal analyst at Adobe, which is based in San Jose, California. Shoppers already are noticing the deals on Thanksgiving. Corey Grassell, 34, of Appleton, Wisconsin, said he plans to shop for deals on Thanksgiving and bypass Black Friday. That's after he grabbed bargains last year on the holiday, including a washer-dryer combination at Sears for about $800, a 50 percent discount. "I feel guilty for going out on Thanksgiving, but the deals are so much more attractive to me than on Black Friday," he says. But some industry watchers fear others won't shop on Thanksgiving, choosing to keep the day sacred. Those who wait instead to shop on Black Friday could wind up being disappointed with the leftover deals, they say. In fact, according to Deloitte Research's recent survey of shoppers, about two-thirds say they're not motivated to go out to stores Thanksgiving because it's important to be with family and friends. "Shoppers could be disappointed and find that the hot items on their list are not in stock on Black Friday because of the early push by retailers," says Traci Gregorski, Market Track's vice president of marketing. She says she's conducting a survey of shoppers after the holiday shopping weekend to see how retailers fared. "We want to get shoppers' perception of these deals," she says. Most big retailers acknowledge that they're starting to offer deals on Thanksgiving that previously were reserved for Black Friday. Jeff Haydock, a spokesman at Best Buy, the nation's largest consumer electronics chain, said the best deals become available Thanksgiving when its doors open at 5 p.m. For example, one of Best Buy's Thanksgiving specials is a $899 55-inch LED Smart TV, the lowest price it has ever offered on a Samsung ultra-high definition TV of this size. That will be available on Friday —if supplies last. "Naturally, more of the deals are being pulled into Thursday because our stores are open," says Haydock. Brian Hanover, a spokesman at Sears, which is opening at 6 p.m. Thursday, also says Thanksgiving specials spill into Black Friday. But the quantities for the 1,000 door busters are limited. They include Nordic Track treadmills for $699.99, or an $800 discount, and a 36 percent savings on a Whirlpool laundry machine, regularly priced at $549.99. "It probably behooves the customer to shop earlier on Thanksgiving," he says. For its part, Wal-Mart, the world's largest retailer, says it's spreading out discounts online and in the store. But Gregorski, of Market Track's says its "evident" in Wal-Mart's circular that "the best deals are on Thanksgiving." To be sure, for its two sales events on Thanksgiving, Wal-Mart devotes 36 pages of its circular to discounted TVs, computers and other items. On Black Friday? Wal-Mart has four pages of deals.

  • Country duo performs in Peoria

    Toby Keith’s I Love This Bar & Grill and 102.5 KNIX welcome country music duo Love and Theft.The three-time CMA “Vocal Duo of the Year” nominees will bring their Night That You’ll Never Forget tour to Peoria at 8 p.m. Dec. 11.Love and Theft consists of singers and songwriters Stephen Barker Liles and Eric Gunderson. They first hit the scene with their Top 10 single, “Runaway,” and followed it up with their No. 1 platinum single, “Angel Eyes.” Love and Theft debuted their latest single, “Whiskey On My Breath” this week, with an album release planned in February.Tickets range from $10 to $15. Advanced tickets may be purchased at http://tobykpeoria.tunestub.com/event.cfm?id=169970.Toby Keith’s I Love This Bar & Grill is at 9824 W. Northern Ave., Suite 1840, Peoria.

  • Choraliers sing songs of season in 2 concerts

    The Choraliers, led by director Jane Brambilla, will perform two holiday concerts in Sun City that are free and open to the public.This mixed chorus of 30-plus men and women will sing traditional as well as swing, jazz and contemporary Christmas and Hanukkah music accompanied by piano, bass and percussion.They will perform at 6 p.m. Dec. 4 at United Church of Sun City, 1250 N. 107th Ave.; and American Lutheran Church, 17200 N. Del Webb Blvd., at 3 p.m. Dec. 14. The choir will also perform at Olive Branch Dec. 1, Casa Del Rio Dec. 2, Palos Verdes Dec. 3, Glencroft Dec. 5, Freedom Plaza Dec. 7, Royal Oaks on Dec. 11 and for the Sportsmen’s Club Dec. 13 and Lakeview United Methodist Church on Dec. 18.The club welcomes new members. Call Carol at 623-933-7202 for information about auditions or concerts.

  • Katy Perry to perform at Super Bowl halftime show

    NEW YORK (AP) — Will Katy Perry be a firework at the Super Bowl? Will she show them what she's worth? Will she let her colors burst? NFL announced late Sunday — after rumors swirled for week — that the pop star will headline the Pepsi Super Bowl halftime show Feb. 1 at the University of Phoenix Stadium in Arizona. It will air on NBC. Perry, 30, has dominated the Billboard charts since releasing her debut in 2008, including nine No. 1 hits on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. Her sophomore effort, 2010's multiplatinum "Teenage Dream," matched the record Michael Jackson set with "Bad" for most songs from a single album to hit No. 1 with five. Perry released "Prism," another platinum effort, last year. It includes the No. 1 smashes "Roar" and "Dark Horse." The Grammy-nominated star's upcoming performance is the fourth consecutive halftime show to display the NFL's push to include younger acts on its large stage: Bruno Mars had a show-stopping set at this year's Super Bowl at the MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey; Beyoncé electrified in 2013 in New Orleans; and there was Madonna, with Nicki Minaj and M.I.A., and the Black Eyed Peas in 2012 and 2011, respectively. Other halftime performers in the last decade have included the Rolling Stones, Prince, Tom Petty, Bruce Springsteen and the Who. Perry is currently on her Prismatic World Tour. Her other hits include "I Kissed a Girl," ''California Gurls," ''Firework" and "Wide Awake." Online: http://www.nfl.com/superbowl/49 http://www.katyperry.com/

  • Thanksgiving trumps Black Friday for deals

    NEW YORK (AP) — Thanksgiving could be the best day to shop all year. An analysis of sales data and store circulars by two research firms contradicts conventional wisdom that Black Friday is when shoppers can get the most and biggest sales of the year. Turns out, shoppers will find more discounted items in stores that are open on Thanksgiving. For example, there are a total of 86 laptops and tablets deeply discounted as door buster deals at Best Buy, Wal-Mart and others on the holiday compared with just nine on Black Friday, according to an analysis of promotions for The Associated Press by researcher Market Track. And on the Web, discounts will be deeper on the holiday. Online prices on Thanksgiving are expected to be about 24 percent cheaper compared with 23 percent on Black Friday and 20 percent on Cyber Monday, according to Adobe, which tracks data on 4,500 retail web sites. The data is the latest proof that retailers are slowly redefining the Black Friday tradition. It's been the biggest shopping day of the year for decades, mostly because it's traditionally when retailers pull out their best sales events. But in the last few years, retailers like the Gap, Target and Toys R Us have started opening their stores and offering holiday discounts on Thanksgiving to better compete with online rivals. "I was surprised, but it really shifted one day," said Tamara Gaffney, principal analyst at Adobe, which is based in San Jose, California. Shoppers already are noticing the deals on Thanksgiving. Corey Grassell, 34, of Appleton, Wisconsin, said he plans to shop for deals on Thanksgiving and bypass Black Friday. That's after he grabbed bargains last year on the holiday, including a washer-dryer combination at Sears for about $800, a 50 percent discount. "I feel guilty for going out on Thanksgiving, but the deals are so much more attractive to me than on Black Friday," he says. But some industry watchers fear others won't shop on Thanksgiving, choosing to keep the day sacred. Those who wait instead to shop on Black Friday could wind up being disappointed with the leftover deals, they say. In fact, according to Deloitte Research's recent survey of shoppers, about two-thirds say they're not motivated to go out to stores Thanksgiving because it's important to be with family and friends. "Shoppers could be disappointed and find that the hot items on their list are not in stock on Black Friday because of the early push by retailers," says Traci Gregorski, Market Track's vice president of marketing. She says she's conducting a survey of shoppers after the holiday shopping weekend to see how retailers fared. "We want to get shoppers' perception of these deals," she says. Most big retailers acknowledge that they're starting to offer deals on Thanksgiving that previously were reserved for Black Friday. Jeff Haydock, a spokesman at Best Buy, the nation's largest consumer electronics chain, said the best deals become available Thanksgiving when its doors open at 5 p.m. For example, one of Best Buy's Thanksgiving specials is a $899 55-inch LED Smart TV, the lowest price it has ever offered on a Samsung ultra-high definition TV of this size. That will be available on Friday —if supplies last. "Naturally, more of the deals are being pulled into Thursday because our stores are open," says Haydock. Brian Hanover, a spokesman at Sears, which is opening at 6 p.m. Thursday, also says Thanksgiving specials spill into Black Friday. But the quantities for the 1,000 door busters are limited. They include Nordic Track treadmills for $699.99, or an $800 discount, and a 36 percent savings on a Whirlpool laundry machine, regularly priced at $549.99. "It probably behooves the customer to shop earlier on Thanksgiving," he says. For its part, Wal-Mart, the world's largest retailer, says it's spreading out discounts online and in the store. But Gregorski, of Market Track's says its "evident" in Wal-Mart's circular that "the best deals are on Thanksgiving." To be sure, for its two sales events on Thanksgiving, Wal-Mart devotes 36 pages of its circular to discounted TVs, computers and other items. On Black Friday? Wal-Mart has four pages of deals.

  • U.S. stocks jump after surprise rate cut from China

    U.S. stocks rose in midday trading Friday, on pace to extend their record highs from a day earlier. News of an interest rate cut in China and the possibility that Europe's central bank will do more to stimulate economic growth drove the rally. Investors also pored over a mixed bag of corporate earnings. KEEPING SCORE: The Standard & Poor's 500 index gained 12 points, or 0.6 percent, to 2,064 as of 12:03 p.m. Eastern time. The Dow Jones industrial average rose 113 points, or 0.6 percent, to 17,832. The Nasdaq composite added 22 points, or 0.5 percent, to 4,723. The Dow and S&P 500 are at record highs. SECTOR VIEW: Eight of the 10 sectors in the S&P 500 index rose, with materials stocks climbing the most. Design software company Autodesk led the gainers, adding $4.33, or 7.4 percent, to $62.77. Utilities and telecommunication stocks declined. EARNINGS SURPRISES: Investors bid up shares in several companies that reported better-than-expected earnings. Software maker Splunk rose $3.72, or 5.7 percent, to $68.66. Sporting goods retailer Hibbett Sports gained $3.70, or 8.1 percent, to $49.63. EARNINGS MISSES: Shares in Aruba Networks fell 11.6 percent after the wireless communications company's outlook fell short of financial analysts' expectations. The stock shed $2.52 to $19.28. Retailers The Gap and GameStop also reported quarterly financial results that fell short of forecasts. GameStop tumbled $5.52, or 12.7 percent, to $38.02. The Gap shed $2.20, or 5.5 percent, to $37.94. GOING, GOING, GONE: Sotheby's added 8.3 percent a day after CEO William Ruprecht announced he will step down and that the New York auction house's board has started a search for its next chief executive. Shares rose $3.26 to $42.49. BOARDROOM DEAL: Dow Chemical agreed to add four new members to its board of directors after pressure from hedge fund activist Daniel Loeb's Third Point. The stock rose $1.46, or 2.8 percent, to $52.94. CHINA RATE CUT: China's central bank cut the interest rate on its one-year loans to financial institutions by 0.4 percentage point to 5.6 percent. The surprise reduction comes in the wake of recent figures showing that the country's annual growth rate slowed to a five-year low of 7.3 percent last quarter. Many analysts think a key motivation behind the rate cut is the recent steep decline in the value of the Japanese yen, which is likely to impact on China's exports. DRAGHI ALSO MOVES MARKETS: European Central Bank President Mario Draghi also caused a stir in markets when he told a conference in Frankfurt, Germany, that the bank is willing to "step up the pressure" and increase its efforts to stimulate Europe's struggling economy. His comments sent the euro lower and stocks higher. If current efforts do not achieve the desired effect, Draghi said the ECB could "broaden even more the channels through which we intervene." For many in the markets, that's a clear hint that the bank could soon starting buying government bonds. OVERSEAS MARKETS: In Europe, Germany's DAX jumped 2.6 percent, while the CAC-40 in France rose 2.7 percent. The FTSE 100 index of leading British shares rose 1.1 percent. In Asia, Japan's Nikkei index rose 0.3 percent, while Hong Kong's Hang Seng rose 0.4 percent. Seoul's Kospi added 0.3 percent. ENERGY: The price of crude oil fell. Benchmark U.S. crude slipped 7 cents to $75.78 a barrel in New York. BONDS: U.S. government bond prices rose. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note fell to 2.33 percent from 2.34 percent late Thursday.

  • Ariz. Gains 24,700 jobs in Oct

    PHOENIX -- Arizona gained 24,700 private-sector jobs last month, enough to push the state's seasonally adjusted jobless rate down a tenth of a point, to 6.8 percent.But all indications are many of these aren't necessarily the best jobs in the world.A new report by the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis, also released Thursday, finds that per-capita personal income in Arizona grew between 2012 and 2013 at a rate just 1.0 percent. That takes the average up to $36,983.And the prior year's growth was 3.1 percent.By contrast, the BEA lists national average per capita income for 2013 figure at $44,765, an increase of 1.3 percent in 2013 and 4.4 percent the year before that.And if there's any doubt that the trend is continuing, the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics recently released its own figures of wage growth in the major metropolitan areas between this past September and a year earlier. It found just a 1.2 percent increase in wages and salaries for the Phoenix metro area, versus 2.3 percent nationally.

Featured columns

  • Tips for year-end gifts to charity

    Many people give to charity each year during the holiday season. Remember, if you want to claim a tax deduction for your gifts, you must itemize your deductions. There are several tax rules that you should know about before you give. Here are six tips from the IRS that you should keep in mind:1. Qualified charities. You can only deduct gifts you give to qualified charities. Remember that you can deduct donations you give to churches, synagogues, temples and also government agencies.2. Monetary donations. Gifts of money include those made in cash or by check, electronic funds transfer, credit card and payroll deduction. You must have a bank record or a written statement from the charity in order to deduct any gift of money on your tax return. This is true regardless of the amount of the gift. The statement must show the name of the charity and the date and amount of the contribution. Bank records include canceled checks, or bank, credit union and credit card statements. If you give by payroll deductions, you should retain a pay stub, a Form W-2 wage statement or other document from your employer. It must show the total amount withheld for the charity, along with the pledge card showing the name of the charity.3. Household goods. Household items include furniture, furnishings, electronics, appliances and linens. If you donate clothing and household items to charity, they generally must be in at least “good used” condition to claim a tax deduction. If you claim a deduction of more than $500 for a specific item, it doesn’t have to meet this “good used” standard if you are going to include a Qualified Appraisal of this item with your tax return.4. Records required. You must get a written acknowledgment from a charity for each and any deductible donation (either money or property) of $250 or more. Additional rules apply to the statement for gifts of that amount. This statement is in addition to the records required for deducting cash gifts. However, one statement with all of the required information may meet both requirements. See this link for further info concerning written acknowledgments from charities: www.irs.gov/charities-&-non-profits/Substantiating-Charitable-Contributions. In addition, you will find a link to IRS’s “Select Check Tool” that lists most charitable organizations that are registered with the IRS and are therefore eligible to receive your tax deductible contributions.5. Year-end gifts. You can deduct contributions in the year you make them. If you have charged your donation to a debit or credit card before the end of the year, it will still count for 2014. This is true even if you don’t pay the credit card bill until 2015. Also, a personal check will count for 2014, but only as long as the check you mail is postmarked by Dec. 31, 2014.

  • OPINION: A cheer for Obama’s record

    Candidates in the 2014 races all were blaming President Obama for the state of the state and the union. I agree. President Obama is to blame.  He is to blame for the Dow Jones Index being almost 18,000 when it was less than 8,000 in 2009 when he became president.It is his fault that unemployment in the U.S. is now 5.8 percent instead of 7.8 percent in 2009. We should blame him for the GDP being 3.5 percent today instead of -5.4 percent when he took over. The deficit GDP percent is now 2.9 percent when it was 9.8 percent in 2009.Whose fault is that?  President Obama’s.It must be his fault that gas prices have dropped, and the U.S. is now exporting, rather than importing, oil. Surely, it is his fault that consumer confidence is almost three-times higher than in 2009.We can’t credit the Congress for progress over the past four years as they have done less than any Congress in the history of the U.S.During his first two years in office, with help from a Democratic Senate and House, a health care bill passed that Democrats have worked toward since FDR was president. Under the new ACA, the number of people without healthcare insurance has dropped.  Republicans keep trying to repeal it but what will be their replacement? I doubt people with healthcare insurance will be willing to give it up. I don’t know about your insurance plan, but the costs of mine have gone down.

  • Travelers stuff roads, skies this Thanksgiving

    Travelers will be making more pilgrimages than ever this Thanksgiving, according to AAA’s annual travel forecast.More than 888,000 Arizonans will travel over the Thanksgiving holiday, an increase of 3.4 percent over last year. Nationwide, 46.3 million Americans will travel, a 4.2 percent jump over the 43.4 million people who traveled last year, according to the full-service travel agency.  “Arizonans and the nation are experiencing the highest growth rate in travel since July 2012, thanks to increasing consumer confidence and falling gas prices,” said Amy Moreno, senior travel manager for AAA Arizona. “As a travel expert, we predict a very busy holiday travel season.” Three trends from AAA’s 2014 Thanksgiving forecast among Arizonans include:• Falling prices fuel trips. Almost nine out of 10 Arizona travelers will drive to their destination. With a current statewide average of $2.798, drivers will pay the lowest gas prices for the Thanksgiving holiday since 2009.• Air apparent. Though road trips rule over the Thanksgiving holiday, air travel rose 3 percent in the state and nation and has increased for the third consecutive year. Fun facts: Top frustrations of air travelers included nearly half (48 percent) believing passengers should not be able to use their cellphones during flights. And apparently, there’s little need for the Knee Defender, which prevents air travelers from reclining their seats. More air travelers report they are more likely to leave the seat-back up during most or all of their flight (52 percent) than to recline (29 percent).

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