August 20th, 2010
09:52 PM ET

The day's most popular stories

The five most popular stories during the last 24 hours, according to NewsPulse:

"Extreme case of neglect": Police responding to a call of a domestic dispute at a Marietta, Georgia, house on Monday encountered a shocking scene: A 5-year-old girl weighing nearly 160 pounds, her teeth rotting, her skin covered in spider bites. Her 4-year-old sister was lying on a filthy mattress, wearing only a urine-soaked diaper. The children are now in state custody. The parents are in trouble.

10 'vices' that do you good: Admit it, you thought that daily cup of Joe was killing you, right? Turns out it may help with lowering the risks for dementia and Alzheimer's. How cool is that? Well, it depends on how you feel about the other nine good "vices."

"Fagetaboutit" may be a great password: You know that nonsensical eight-letter password that you thought was so ingenious and hacker-proof ? Fagetaboutit.  The 12-character era of online security is upon us, says a report published this week by Georgia Tech.

Florida officials probe maritime whodunit: A $550,000 gold bar that had been on display in a maritime museum for 25 years vanished in a matter of minutes Wednesday as two thieves grabbed it and walked out, authorities say. Police and FBI officials in Key West, Florida, are trying to identify the two men, captured on video, who walked into the Mel Fisher Maritime Museum gallery room.

Egg recall reaches half billion: The number of eggs recalled in a nationwide salmonella scare has grown to more than half a billion. Iowa egg producer Hillandale Farms is voluntarily recalling some 170.4 million eggs distributed to stores and companies that service, or are located in, 14 states, a spokeswoman at the Egg Safety Center said on Friday.

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Filed under: Crime • Health • Most Popular • Technology • Web Pulse
August 20th, 2010
08:58 PM ET

Dow and S&P post second week of losses

  • A look at highlights from the day's business news:

    Dow, S&P down for second straight week

    Stocks ended mostly lower Friday as investors continued to react to the week's downbeat economic reports that have raised concern about a double-dip recession.

    The Dow Jones industrial average lost 58 points, or 0.6 percent, to close at
    10,213 and the S&P 500 fell 4 points, or 0.4 percent, to close at 1,072, according to early tallies. It was the second straight week of losses for the two indexes.

    Meanwhile, the tech-heavy Nasdaq composite gained less than a point to 2,180, up slightly overall for the week.

    "When the area of great concern in the marketplace [jobs] gets a dismal
    report and the bright spot in the economy [manufacturing] gets whacked into oblivion, fear came back into the marketplace," Phil Flynn, a senior market analyst with PFG Best, said in a note to investors. "Some call it the risk aversion trade but I say that's a polite way of saying people are scared."

    Treasury yields end rough week higher

    Treasury yields rebounded Friday after hovering near yearly lows in earlier trading, as stocks trimmed losses.

    The yield on the benchmark 10-year note rose to 2.62 percent from 2.57 percent late Thursday. But this was down from 2.68 percent, where the yield closed last Friday.

    The yield on the 30-year bond edged up to 3.66 percent from 3.65 percent, while the
    yield on the 2-year note ticked up to 0.50 percent from 0.49 percent. The 5-year note yielded 1.46 percent, up from 1.40 percent on Thursday.

    Despite Friday's turnaround, which came as stocks ended lower but pared some losses, Treasury yields have been stuck at yearly lows nearly every day this week.

    As worries about an economic slowdown persist and stocks tumble, investors have been shying away from riskier assets and flocking
    to the safety of the bond market.

    'Historically bad week' for oil

    It's been a dismal week for the economy all around, with an abundance of gloomy data pummeling recovery hopes. The oil market felt the brunt of the blows.

    Crude prices struggled to hold above $75 a barrel this week, after
    reports showed jobless claims shot up to 500,000 last week.

    Additionally, a glut of oil supplies topped the highest figures on record.
    "This really is a historically bad week for the oil market," said Phil
    Flynn, a senior market analyst with PFG Best.

    Prices had briefly broken the $80 mark earlier this month, but they began falling last week and fell further this week. Prices settled at $73.46 a barrel Friday.

    Earlier in the week, the Energy Information Administration said supplies rose to 1.13 billion barrels last week.

    "There's no other way to cut it: We have too much oil in this country,"
    Flynn said. "[The oversupply is] a terrible sign for prices, at a time when
    investors are already shaky."
    In fact, the inventory report may have pushed prices even lower, "if the
    market weren't already oversupplied across the globe," Flynn said.

    – reporters Blake Ellis, Julianne Pepitone and Annalyn Censky contributed to this report.

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    Filed under: Economy • Jobs
    August 20th, 2010
    02:40 PM ET

    Another egg producer announces recalls

    Hillandale Farms in Iowa is voluntarily recalling shell eggs distributed to 14 states because of salmonella fears, the Egg Safety Center said.

    This marks the second Iowa egg producer to announce recalls after Wright County Egg of Galt announced it was recalling 380 million eggs last week.

    The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said 1,953 cases of salmonella enteritidis had been reported between May and July, but it couldn't say how many cases were attributable to this particular outbreak.

    In a news release, the Egg Safety Center said the recall affected Arkansas, California, Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, South Dakota, Texas and Wisconsin.

    The eggs are sold under the brands, Hillandale Farms, Sunny Farms, Sunny Meadow, Wholesome Farms and West Creek.


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    Filed under: Iowa • On the Radar • Uncategorized
    August 20th, 2010
    01:02 PM ET

    Friday's intriguing people

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    The former Senate majority leader and current U.S. envoy to the Middle East may not only get Israel and the Palestinians talking, but he also led the special investigation over steroid use in Major League Baseball that contributed to the indictment of Roger Clemens.

    According to an extensive profile from The Washington Post’s Whorunsgov website, Mitchell stepped down as Senate majority leader in 1995 to secure universal health care. Previously he had turned down an offer for a Supreme Court nomination from President Clinton. He did, however, accept Clinton’s offer to be a special envoy to Northern Ireland in 1996. He later described the process as “700 days of failure, and one day of success.”

    Mitchell was then asked to lead the special investigation into performance-enhancing drugs in Major League Baseball. The 400-plus-page report cast light on the so-called epidemic among players and led to Senate hearings that included testimony by Clemens, who was indicted Thursday. Why Mitchell matters


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    Filed under: Anna Nicole Smith • Baseball • Bill Clinton • Environment • Gaza • Health Care • Israel • Most Intriguing People • New York • North Korea • On the Radar • Supreme Court
    August 20th, 2010
    11:26 AM ET

    Furloughs close Calif. agencies

    Closed signs went up at California agencies Friday as a mandatory furlough went into effect for government employees in an effort to resolve the state's $19 billion budget deficit.

    Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, according to the governor's office, ordered state workers to take three unpaid days off per month until a new budget is in place and the Department of Finance certifies that California has enough cash to meet its financial obligations through the end of the fiscal year.

    The furloughs were to have started August 1 but were temporarily blocked by a lower court decision. But Wednesday, the state Supreme Court allowed the furloughs to resume.


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    Filed under: California • Economy • U.S.
    August 20th, 2010
    11:24 AM ET

    Clinton: Israel, Palestinians returning to table

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    "Enemies of peace" may try to derail negotiations between Israel and the Palestinian Authority, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said in announcing that the two sides will hold direct talks.

    The talks, slated for September, will be the first since 2008, when negotiations broke down over Israel's three-week offensive against Hamas in Gaza.

    President Obama is inviting both sides to Washington next month, and the parties have agreed to finish the talks within a year, sources said. Obama has also invited Russia, Egypt, Jordan, the European Union and the U.N. to participate.


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    Filed under: Uncategorized
    August 20th, 2010
    10:57 AM ET

    Arrest made in slaying of Mexican mayor

    Police have made an arrest in the abduction and killing of a Mexican mayor this week, Gov. Rodrigo Medina de la Cruz said.

    Santiago Mayor Edelmiro Cavazos Leal was found Wednesday, two days after his abduction in the border state of Nuevo Leon, just over the Texas border.

    According to the news agency Notimex, Cavazos' blindfolded and handcuffed body was found on the side of a road leading to a tourist attraction.

    Nuevo Leon has been the site of frequent drug violence, especially around the capital, Monterrey. More than 28,000 people have been killed since President Felipe Calderon announced a crackdown on cartels in December 2006.

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    Filed under: Crime • Drug violence • Mexico
    August 20th, 2010
    09:36 AM ET

    On the Radar: Boys' funeral, Wyclef Jean, clairvoyant croc

    Ja'Van, left, and Devean Duley will be laid to rest Friday.
    Ja'Van, left, and Devean Duley will be laid to rest Friday.

    Toddlers to be laid to rest - A funeral will be held for Ja'Van, above, left, and Devean Duley, the 1- and 2-year-olds found dead in the Edisto River near Orangeburg, South Carolina. The boys' mother, Shaquan Duley, 29, is accused of smothering them, putting them into car seats and sinking the car into the river.

    "This Just In" editor Mallory Simon and associate producer Sean O'Key are on the ground in Orangeburg. The pair went to the Trumps Inn and took a look at Room 31, where the boys were allegedly killed. Motel manager Renu Patel, a mother herself, told Simon the room hasn't been cleaned since police searched it. Patel and her staff can't bear to go inside, she said.

    'Clef for prez? - Hip-hopper Wyclef Jean will learn Friday if he eligible to run for president of Haiti. Jean said even if he is not permitted to run, he will continue to rally Haiti's youth for education reform. On Thursday, President Rene Preval met with Jean to discuss threats made against the entertainer since he declared his candidacy.

    Aussies to cast ballots - Pollsters are predicting a dead heat in Saturday's elections to determine the next Australian leader. Prime Minister Julia Gillard of the left-of-center Labor Party told a local television station there is "a very, very real risk" her conservative opponent, Tony Abbott, could win.

    Meanwhile, a clairvoyant saltwater crocodile named Harry, who picked Spain to win the World Cup, indicates Gillard will keep her seat.

    Mideast peace talks could resume - U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is expected to announce that the Palestinian Authority is prepared to return to the table with Israel. Sources said President Obama could invite both parties to Washington next month. The peace talks have been deadlocked since December 2008 after Israel launched a military offensive against Hamas in Gaza.

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    Filed under: Animals • Australia • Gaza • Hillary Clinton • Israel • On the Radar • South Carolina • Wyclef Jean
    August 20th, 2010
    07:54 AM ET

    Friday's live video events

    10:00 am ET - Biden speaks at DNC event - Vice President Joe Biden is the headline speaker for today’s session of the Democratic National Committee’s summer meeting in St. Louis.

    11:00 am ET - Gulf oil disaster briefing - Retired Coast Guard admiral and National Incident Commander Thad Allen discusses the Gulf oil disaster at Washington’s National Press Club.


    Filed under: On today
    August 20th, 2010
    06:54 AM ET

    World update: One year since Lockerbie bomber release

    An update from the CNN newsdesk in London on some of the stories we're following on Friday:

    Al Megrahi anniversary - It’s been a year since the convicted Lockerbie bomber, Abdelbeset Ali Mohmed al Megrahi, was released from a Scottish prison on humanitarian grounds, with doctors saying he had terminal cancer and only three months to live. One year later, that decision, made by the Scottish government, is under intense scrutiny, and U.S. senators want to launch an investigation into claims that BP and British business interests had a bearing on that decision.

    Iran nuclear power - Iran's first nuclear power plant at Bushehr will be officially opened on Saturday at 0200 ET.   The Russian agency building the reactor says that means this is the physical launch, and the construction site becomes a nuclear installation. It will still be months before the plant is fully operational. 


    August 20th, 2010
    12:28 AM ET

    Arizona fugitive couple caught at campground

    Authorities have captured an Arizona prison escapee and an alleged accomplice who have been on the run since late last month, the Arizona Department of Corrections said late Thursday.


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    Filed under: Arizona • Crime