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MOOD TO SPEND — The store isn't dead for Home Depot. Or Kohl's. Or Target. Many kinds of chains have posted strong sales, both online and at stores, and are raising their outlooks for the year. What's driving it? A booming economy that has shoppers spending more freely, companies' own efforts to make their stores more pleasant and updates to their websites and delivery to make everything faster. But is it the beginning of a real retail renaissance or a short-term blip? We look at five main trends right now. By Anne D'Innocenzio. SENT: 710 words, photos.

SMALLBIZ-SMALL TALK-DISASTER RECOVERY — As small business owners in Hawaii and California start cleaning up after a hurricane and wildfires, they'll find there's no one formula for recovery. The same disaster can devastate businesses in divergent ways. Here are stories of how business owners did it. By Joyce M. Rosenberg. SENT: 1,340 words, photos.

ECONOMY-GDP — The U.S. economy grew at a strong 4.2 percent annual rate in the second quarter, the best showing in nearly four years, as growth stayed on track to produce the strongest gain in more than a decade. Strength in business investment offset slightly slower consumer spending. By Martin Crutsinger. SENT: 760 words, photos.


FINANCIAL MARKETS — After a shaky start, U.S. stocks are rising as technology companies continue to climb. Consumer-focused companies are up as Amazon jumps, but retailers including Dick's Sporting Goods, Express and Chico's FAS are falling. By Marley Jay. SENT: 800 words, photos. UPCOMING: Will be updated through 5 p.m.

PENDING HOME SALES — Fewer Americans signed contracts in July to buy homes in July compared to the previous month, as real estate sales are slipping even though economic growth is solid. By Josh Boak. SENT: 190 words, photos.

TRADE WAR-WASHINGTON — The trade war with China is making life difficult for many farmers across Washington. The state's 1,900 wheat growers, who export the vast majority of their crop, are particularly hurt. But so are cherry growers who just harvested their highly perishable crop. By Nicholas K. Geranios. UPCOMING: 540 words.


ON THE MONEY-MEDICAL DEBT — A collections agency can come calling and calling over unpaid medical bills that might cost less than a week's worth of groceries. A recent study found that trouble with medical debt can hit sooner than patients might think. Here's a look at the issue. By Health Writer Tom Murphy. SENT: 640 words, photos.

BEHIND THE WHEEL-LABOR DAY — Edmunds highlights some of the best car bargains you'll find this Labor Day weekend. These vehicles get good reviews, are widely available and have deep discounts. By Matt Jones of Edmunds. SENT: 930 words, photos.


TUNA REBOUND — An iconic species of tuna appears to be slowly recovering in the Atlantic Ocean, leading to requests for more commercial catch from fishermen and calls for a more conservative approach from environmentalists. By Patrick Whittle. SENT: 920 words, photos, video.

BRITAIN-ASTON MARTIN — Aston Martin, the maker of James Bond's favorite sports car, said Wednesday it may sell shares for the first time as it seeks to attract more wealthy buyers with an expanded product range including sedans, sports utility vehicles and even submarines. SENT: 260 words.

CHINA-GOOGLE-CENSORED SEARCH — More than a dozen human rights groups have sent a letter to Google urging the company not to offer censored internet search in China, amid reports it is planning to again provide the service in the giant market. By Christopher Bodeen. SENT: 510 words, photos.

TEXAS EMPLOYER-IMMIGRATION RAID — Federal immigration agents have arrested 160 workers following a raid at Texas company that manufactures trailers. SENT: 120 words, photos, video.

CANADA-NEWSPAPER TARIFFS — The U.S. International Trade Commission has nullified the tariffs put into place for imported newsprint by finding American producers weren't harmed by imports from Canadian paper mills. By Kevin Freking. SENT: 380 words.

PIPELINE PROTESTS-SENTENCES — The first people to be sent to jail for protesting the Dakota Access oil pipeline in North Dakota have lost their appeals to the state's Supreme Court. SENT: 130 words.

MARIJUANA-STONER STEREOTYPES — Michelle Janikian, who writes about marijuana for publications like Herb, Playboy and Rolling Stone, says after she tells someone what she does for a living, she usually spends the rest of the conversation "trying to act so friendly and mainstream" so they don't think she's stoned. By John Rogers and Krysta Fauria. SENT: 1,040 words, photos, video.

MICRON EXPANSION — One of the world's largest semiconductor companies is making a $3 billion investment in northern Virginia to expand its manufacturing facility and add 1,100 jobs. SENT: 140 words.


EARNS-BROWN-FORMAN — Spirits company Brown-Forman Corp. said that its first-quarter net income rose sharply, fueled by strong overseas sales, but the maker of Jack Daniel's Tennessee Whiskey cautioned it's bracing for a period of uncertainty regarding tariffs on its products in some key markets. By Bruce Schreiner. SENT: 720 words, photos.


ACC-TV NETWORK — The Atlantic Coast Conference is a year away from the launch of its own TV channel in partnership with ESPN. By Aaron Beard. SENT: 1,130 words, photos.

BRITAIN-BIRTH CONTROL APP — Britain's advertising regulator says a birth control app's Facebook advertisement contained misleading claims that breached the country's advertising code. SENT: 140 words, photos.

TRUMP-GOOGLE — President Donald Trump is accusing Google and other U.S. tech companies of rigging search results about him "so that almost all stories & news is BAD" — and though he is offering no evidence, a top adviser says the White House is "taking a look" at whether Google should face federal regulation. By Darlene Superville and Barbara Ortutay. SENT: 1,040 words, photos, video.

CHINA-GOOGLE-CENSORED SEARCH — More than a dozen human rights groups are urging Google not to offer censored internet search in China, amid reports it is planning to again provide the service in the giant market. By Christopher Bodeen. SENT: 550 words, photos.


BLANKENSHIP-SENATE — The state Supreme Court has heard a last-chance bid by former coal CEO Don Blankenship to get his name on the ballot in November's U.S. Senate race in West Virginia. SENT: 140 words, photos.

AMERICAN LEGION-WILKIE — The new secretary of veterans affairs pledged to the American Legion on Wednesday that he won't privatize his agency's health care services even as it increases options for veterans to seek care in the private sector. By Steve Karnowski. SENT: 610 words.


CHINA COMMERCE BRIEFING — Vice Commerce Minister Wang Shouwen briefs press on the 20th China International Fair for Investment and Trade. Wang recently headed China's delegation to the US for ongoing trade talks which yielded no results.

EGYPT-ECONOMY — An international credit rating agency has raised Egypt's credit outlook to positive from stable, citing progress in its ambitious economic reform plan backed by the International Monetary Fund. SENT: 140 words.

ISRAEL-TYCOON SENTENCED — Israel's Supreme Court has sentenced one of the country's most prominent businessmen to three years in prison for securities fraud. SENT: 140 words, photos.

RUSSIA-PENSION REFORM — In a rare televised address Wednesday, Russia's President Vladimir Putin offered some concessions to a package of pension reforms that have hit his approval ratings. By Nataliya Vasilyeva. SENT: 860 words, photos.

FRANCE-SCALLOP SKIRMISH — French maritime authorities are appealing for calm after fishermen from rival French and British fleets banged their boats in ill-tempered skirmishes over access to the scallop-rich waters off France's northern coast. Maritime official Ingrid Parrot described a muscular confrontation between 35 French boats and five British ones in international waters on Tuesday morning as "very dangerous," although there were no injuries. By John Leicester. SENT: 480 words, photos.

BREXIT — The U.K. and the European Union may not meet their self-imposed October deadline for a divorce deal, Britain's Brexit minister said. By Jill Lawless. SENT: 510 words, photos.



Making strides

Shoe Carnival shares notched their biggest gain since May after the footwear retailer reported strong quarterly results and raised its annual forecasts.


Eye on FireEye

Security firm FireEye has emerged as a key player in the fight against state-sponsored disinformation campaigns on social media services such as Facebook and Twitter.

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