Employers also added 203,000 jobs to payrolls in November, according to the latest report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The largely positive data could build anticipation that the Federal Reserve might move to taper its stimulus program.
"A major icing event is forecast through Friday across portions of the southern Great Plains toward the Lower Ohio Valley," the National Weather Service says. Some are saying an ice storm Friday and Saturday will be the nation's worst since 2009.
From his childhood as a herd boy, Nelson Mandela went on to lead the African National Congress' struggle against South Africa's racially oppressive apartheid regime. For his efforts, he spent 27 years behind bars as a political prisoner. In 1994, he became his country's first elected black leader. Mandela died on Thursday. He was 95.
House and Senate negotiators are meeting to reconcile their two different versions of a new farm bill. If they don't reach agreement, the nation faces going over "the dairy cliff" – a reversion to 1949 farm policy that would cause a big spike in milk prices.
To forecast sudden global catastrophe — and, perhaps, head it off — we should be spying on the climate at least as closely as we spy on each other, an expert panel warns. Yet the primary global monitoring network has been cut by 30 percent.
The largest municipal bankruptcy in U.S. history took a step forward Tuesday when a judge said the city can go forward with its Chapter 9 bankruptcy case. Now a manager will work to cut pension costs and make deals with creditors. Detroit is $18.5 billion in debt.
Another tech boom has brought an influx of money and new residents to San Francisco, and people who have long called the city home are being evicted from their apartments. Tenants and community organizers are demanding that the city do something to stop residents from being pushed out.
At a restaurant in Indiana, three men added $10,000 to their bar bills. In other places, hundreds and thousands have been added to checks. In recent months, the anonymous benefactors have given away about $54,000. They say they're doing the Lord's work, "one tip at a time."
CEO Jeff Bezos told 60 Minutes that the giant online retailer is looking at reducing its delivery times to 30 minutes or less in a few years. But the drones would have to overcome safety concerns and public perception.
Six same-sex couples got married in Hawaii shortly after midnight Monday morning, taking advantage of a new law in the first hours of its first day in effect. The state's Legislature approved the Hawaii Marriage Equality Act in a recent special session.
At least four people are dead after a Metro-North Railroad train derailed in New York Sunday morning. This past summer, a freight train carrying trash derailed on the other side of the curve. And in May, two Metro-North trains collided in Connecticut, injuring more than 70 people.
The technological trials for the online health insurance exchanges have turned an enrollment period that was supposed to be a leisurely three-month stroll into a last-minute sprint for millions of Americans. People who want coverage that starts at the beginning of 2014 need to sign up no later than Dec. 23.
Scientists agree that teenagers naturally go to bed late and sleep late, too. But high school start times are traditionally very early. Proponents of later start times say they're finally getting traction. The result, they say, will be happier kids who do better in school.