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By Jonathan Stempel NEW YORK (Reuters) - A federal judge on Wednesday ordered Bank of America Corp to pay $1.27 billion of damages after a federal jury found the second-largest U.S. bank liable for fraud over defective mortgages sold by its Countrywide unit. U.S. District Judge Jed Rakoff in Manhattan ruled nine months after jurors found Bank of America and former Countrywide executive Rebecca Mairone liable for defrauding government-controlled mortgage companies Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac through the sale of shoddy loans by the former Countrywide Financial Inc in 2007 and 2008. The case centered on a mortgage lending process known as "High Speed Swim Lane," "HSSL" or "Hustle," and which ended before Bank of America bought Countrywide in July 2008.
RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — The former first family of Virginia flew on a chief executive's private jet, vacationed at his lake house and received other perks, such as passes to a Ritz Carlton beach club, the businessman's assistant said Wednesday.
DETROIT (AP) — Sporadic gunfire isn't an unusual sound in the Brewster Homes public housing complex in Detroit, but booming noises that shook Tenesha Higgins early Wednesday morning were way too close.
DENVER (AP) — A storm system in Colorado that flooded streets and stranded drivers up and down the Front Range is being blamed for the death of a man on the southeastern plains.
LOS ANGELES (AP) — A ruptured 93-year-old water main left the UCLA campus awash in 8 million gallons of water in the middle of California's worst drought in decades, stranding people in parking garages and flooding the school's storied basketball court less than two years after a major renovation.
ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) — A New Jersey detective was acquitted Wednesday of first-degree murder and other charges in the shooting of a driver during a case of road rage in Maryland.
SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — A police officer who was at the scene of the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing says he saw surveillance cameras at the federal building that may have recorded the attack.
A unit of Barry Diller's IAC, the publicly traded website holding company, announced Tuesday that it will acquire The Princeton Review, a Natick-based test prep company. Tutor.com, which IAC acquired last year for about $40 million, will acquire The Princeton Review for an undisclosed sum from Boston-based private equity firm Charlesbank Capital Partners. "We are very proud of what we accomplished during our partnership with Charlesbank," said Deborah Ellinger, chairman and CEO of The Princeton…
By Michael Flaherty and Jason Lange WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The Federal Reserve on Wednesday upgraded its assessment of the U.S. economy, taking note of a decline in the jobless rate and signaling more comfort that inflation was moving up toward its target. Still, after a two-day meeting, Fed policymakers reiterated concerns about slack in the labor market and reaffirmed that it is in no rush to raise interest rates. "Labor market conditions improved, with the unemployment rate declining further," the Fed said in a statement. "However, a range of labor market indicators suggests that there remains significant underutilization of labor resources." U.S. stocks turned modestly higher after the statement was released, while government bond prices extended earlier losses that had been spurred by a stronger-than-expected reading on economic growth.
A formal ground breaking is scheduled for next Thursday for the Gloucester Premium Outlets. The project is being constructed in a joint venture with Simon Property Group and Pennsylvania Real Estate Investment Trust. It will consists of 375,000 square feet on 55 acres at Route 42 and the Black Horse Pike. The property cost about $13 million, according to property records. Of that amount, PREIT contributed $3.2 million, according to its quarterly report. PREIT owns 25 percent of the venture and…
WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. economy has rebounded with vigor from a grim start to 2014 and should show renewed strength into next year.
WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. economy has rebounded with vigor from a grim start to 2014 and should show renewed strength into next year.
Pennsylvania State Police say they arrested two juveniles after the pair allegedly broke into a home and got busy baking marijuana brownies.
UNITED NATIONS (AP) — Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon condemned the attack on a U.N. school in Gaza that killed at least 16 people early Wednesday as "outrageous" and "unjustifiable," and demanded an immediate humanitarian cease-fire in the war between Israel and Hamas.
By Caroline Valetkevitch NEW YORK (Reuters) - The S&P 500 turned higher while the Dow pared losses on Wednesday after the Federal Reserve raised its assessment of the U.S. economy while reiterating it is in no hurry to increase interest rates. Financial shares bounced, with the S&P financial index helping to lead the S&P 500 higher. "We got the taper as expected and the real viewpoint of the committee is they can keep monetary policy accommodative even after we reach our inflation and employment goals," said Art Hogan, chief market strategist at Wunderlich Securities in New York. The Dow Jones industrial average fell 3.75 points or 0.02 percent, to 16,908.36, the S&P 500 gained 3.43 points or 0.17 percent, to 1,973.38 and the Nasdaq Composite added 25.13 points or 0.57 percent, to 4,467.83.
FirstBank Holding Co. reported Wednesday that its net income was up 5 percent in the first six months of this year, increasing to $82.69 million from $81.58 million in the first half of 2013. As of June 30, Lakewood-based FirstBank’s total deposits were $12.53 billion, up 7 percent from June 30, 2013. The bank’s total assets 2343 $13.94 billion, up 6 percent from the same time last year. The bank’s total loans grew 13 percent to $7.58 billion as of June 30. FirstBank, the largest locally…
Officials tell The Associated Press that a nonpartisan investigative report concludes that management failures by the Obama administration set the stage for the computer problems that paralyzed the HealthCare.gov website last fall.
By Victoria Cavaliere SEATTLE (Reuters) - The last of four Ethiopian athletes, who came to the United States for a track meet in Oregon and then failed to fly home with teammates, has been located and is safe after disappearing in a possible asylum bid, authorities said on Wednesday. Zeyituna Mohammed, 18, was found staying at the home of an acquaintance in neighboring Washington state, according to the University of Oregon Police Department.  She was the last of four Ethiopian athletes to be located after slipping away from teammates on Saturday during the International Association of Athletics Federations World Junior Championships, hosted at the university in Eugene.
Steven Curtis was arrested on Monday after police in the Cleveland suburb of Brecksville said he placed his hands over the mouth and nose of his father, Roy Curtis, 86, at The Oaks of Brecksville Nursing Home. The father died a few hours after the incident.
YOSEMITE NATIONAL PARK, Calif. (AP) — Fire crews strengthened old containment lines on Wednesday, as they tried to keep a blaze in Yosemite National Park away from a grove of treasured giant sequoia trees.
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