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Microsoft uncovers more Russian hacking ahead of midterms

Microsoft says it's discovered new Russian hacking efforts targeting U.S. political groups ahead of the midterm elections. The company said Tuesday that a hacking group tied to the Russian government created fake internet domains that appeared to spoof two conservative organizations: the Hudson Institute and the International Republican Institute. There's no sign the hackers were successful in getting anyone to click on the fake websites.

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How Microsoft become the internet cop

Intentionally or not, Microsoft is emerging as a kind of internet cop thanks to its efforts to thwart Russian hackers. Not only is it virtually alone among tech companies in its aggressive approach using U.S. courts to fight computer fraud, but some question whether it is taking on a role more suited to government than a private company.

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EPA moves to dramatically cut regulation of coal power

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Trump administration has come out with new rules scaling back Obama-era constraints on coal-fired power plants. The move strikes at one of the Obama administration's legacy programs to rein in climate-changing fossil-fuel emissions. The Trump plan broadly increases the leeway given states to decide how and how much to regulate coal power plants.

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US adds to growing list of sanctions on Russia

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Trump administration has added to its growing list of sanctions against Russia as U.S. lawmakers call for tighter economic restrictions on Moscow. Britain's top diplomat is also urging the European Union to make sure its sanctions against Russia are comprehensive after the poisoning of a former Russian spy on British soil.

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Ranks of most valuable companies shifted during bull market

NEW YORK (AP) — When the current bull market began more than nine years ago, many of the most valuable companies were concentrated in areas that investors considered safe. Today, companies concentrated in technology dominate the market, reflecting how much the stock market and the economy have changed.

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Debate over longest bull market centers on rounding

NEW YORK (AP) — While some market experts, including those who compile the benchmark S&P 500 index, say the current bull market about to become the longest in history, others contend it has almost three years to go to set the record. The debate centers around whether a downturn in 1990 should be considered a bear market, and the familiar mathematical concept of rounding.

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With push from PETA, animal crackers bust out of their cages

NEW YORK (AP) — After more than a century behind bars, the beasts on boxes of animal crackers can now roam free. The parent company of Nabisco has redesigned its packaging in response to pressure from PETA, which has been protesting the use of animals in circuses for more than 30 years. PETA wrote a letter to the company in 2016, describing the depictions of the caged animals as outdated. The new boxes of free-roaming animals are now on U.S. store shelves.

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'Crazy Rich Asians' hoopla elicits mixed feelings in Asia

SINGAPORE (AP) — The craze for "Crazy Rich Asians" is hitting Asia, with a premiere in Singapore to be followed by openings in several neighboring countries later this week. Much of the movie was set in the wealthy city-state and the red carpet premiere Tuesday night for the over-the-top romantic comedy was expected to draw an enthusiastic crowd after its box-office bonanza in the U.S. Critics say its satirical portrayal of an uber rich Singaporean Chinese family fails to showcase the city's ethnic diversity.

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Effort to help monarch butterflies gets boost in marketplace

MONTREAL (AP) — An initiative to market milkweed to help monarch butterflies is getting a boost from a Canadian parka company. Quartz Co. is renewing its commitment to sell coats made with milkweed floss. A cooperative of farmers in Quebec and Vermont is growing milkweed to help restore the monarch population and serve the demand for the fiber as a high-end clothing insulation. Montreal-area Quartz says that after a few years of trial runs, it's close to having a major product with milkweed parkas.

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S&P 500 touches all-time high as earnings drive stock gains

NEW YORK (AP) — The S&P 500 index briefly traded at an all-time high just as the U.S. stock market's bull run came closer to becoming the longest on record. The market's benchmark index eked out a slight gain, closing a little below the high mark it set in January. The rally pushed the Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks to a record high. The current bull market, which began in 2009, is on track to become the longest in history on Wednesday, surpassing the bull run of the 1990s.

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The S&P 500 rose 5.91 points, or 0.2 percent, to 2,862.96. The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 63.60 points, or 0.2 percent, to 25,822.29. The Nasdaq composite added 38.17 points, or 0.5 percent, to 7,859.17. The Russell 2000 picked up 19.35 points, or 1.1 percent, to 1,718.05.

U.S. benchmark crude rose 1.4 percent to settle at $67.35 per barrel in New York. Brent crude, the standard for international oil prices, gained 0.6 percent to close at $72.63 per barrel in London. Heating oil rose 0.5 percent to $2.12 a gallon. Wholesale gasoline gained 0.1 percent to $2.02 a gallon. Natural added 1.3 percent to $2.98 per 1,000 cubic feet.