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VOL. 45 | NO. 6 | Friday, February 5, 2021

Selling out or seeing the future?

Heirs, changing tax laws, evolving industry at heart of iconic music catalog sales

When much-honored songwriter, publisher, producer, Music Row Renaissance Man Craig Wiseman is asked about the ongoing flurry of big-name artists like Bob Dylan and Neil Young selling their song catalogs, there is wonder mixed with mirth in his voice.

RICHARD COURTNEY: REALTY CHECK

Forbearance bubble? Not in this hot housing market

Elliot Eisenberg is an internationally acclaimed economist who is able to mix his wit with his wisdom and communicates each day to 20,000 recipients of his 70-word blog, available to all at Econ70.com.

REAL ESTATE

Top Davidson County residential sales for fourth quarter 2020

Top residential real estate sales, fourth quarter 2020, for Davidson County, as compiled by Chandler Reports.

Local Weather
Currently
Nashville, TN
54.0°F
Overcast
Wind: Northwest at 6.9 mph
Humidity: 59%

EVENTS

Chamber Chat (Virtual). Zoom Meeting to hear from Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce staff about member benefits and involvement opportunities. Thursday, 1-2 p.m. Information

more events »

US long-term mortgage rates flat; 30-year stays at 2.73%

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. long-term mortgage rates were flat this week, staying near record lows as the economy remains burdened by the coronavirus pandemic.

JOE ROGERS: MY TAKE

Dolly knows new statue would be for the birds

Whatever adjectives might be attached to Dolly Parton – and many come to mind – “underappreciated” would not seem to apply.

NEWSMAKERS

Bass, Berry & Sims adds 10 in Nashville

Bass, Berry & Sims has hired 15 new attorneys, 10 of whom are located in Nashville. They are, grouped by specialty:

BRIEFS

Mule Day canceled due to COVID issues

The city of Columbia and the Maury County Bridle and Saddle Club – organizers for the annual Mule Day Parade and festivities – have announced the cancellation of Mule Day 2021, which had been planned for April 8-11. The decision was made after consideration of all potential options, and included input and recommendations from local health and public safety officials.

BEHIND THE WHEEL

Mustang Mach-E races to lead versus Tesla Model Y

The 2020 Tesla Model Y is an intriguing pick for an electric SUV. It has a relatively small footprint but provides cavernous passenger and cargo space. And with a current entry price of $43,190, including destination and handling fees, it’s also one the most affordable electric SUVs around.

PERSONAL FINANCE

How to prioritize debt payments during pandemic

A singular crisis has led to extraordinary relief options for borrowers. Interest and payments have been paused on federal student loans. Homeowners can request nearly a year of mortgage forbearance. Credit card issuers and other lenders dramatically expanded hardship programs.

CAREER CORNER

In February, focus on what you love about your work

February is one of my favorite months. It’s a time when we focus on love and happiness. People are more kind to one another. We think about what is going well in our personal lives and dream of new beginnings.

BUSINESS BOOK REVIEW

You’re not lazy, you’re taking care of yourself

Assume this position. Feet up, head back, fingers laced over your belly. Eyes shut. Teeth unclenched.

MILLENNIAL MONEY

Managing finances on top of COVID burnout

I’m writing this between my daughter’s diaper changes, bottle breaks and naps, as well as my own weepy fits of anxiety and despair. Our day care closed because of a COVID-19 case, so our baby gets to gurgle at my husband and me as we stare at our computers – tense shoulders at ears – and attempt to work.

MUSIC INDUSTRY

Jason Isbell to donate money from Morgan Wallen's sales

NASHVILLE (AP) — Grammy-winning singer songwriter Jason Isbell says he is going to donate money that he makes from Morgan Wallen's cover of his song "Cover Me Up" to the NAACP.

PREDATORS

Stamkos, Joseph lead Lightning past Preds 6-1 for 6th in row

NASHVILLE (AP) — Mathieu Joseph enjoyed a very happy birthday, even if he couldn't play in front of his favorite fans.

STATE GOVERNMENT

Tennessee: FBI raid no excuse for not filing campaign report

NASHVILLE (AP) — Campaign finance officials offered little sympathy Wednesday to a Tennessee Republican lawmaker who said he was unable to complete a recent election finance report due the FBI confiscating all his campaign files.

Gov. Lee: Transgender athletes will 'destroy women's sports'

NASHVILLE (AP) — Republican Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee said Wednesday that transgender girls should be banned from playing on middle and high school sports teams or they will "destroy women's sports."

MIDSTATE

Murfreesboro psychologist sentenced to 41 months for fraud

NASHVILLE (AP) — A Tennessee psychologist was sentenced to more than three years in prison for fraudulently billing excessive hours of services, sometimes totaling more than 24 hours a day, a federal prosecutor said.

TRANSPORTATION

United: Small electric aircraft will zip people to airports

CHICAGO (AP) — United Airlines said Wednesday it will buy up to 200 small electric aircraft to help customers in urban areas get to the airport.

AUTO INDUSTRY

Toyota to add electric, plug-in hybrid vehicles next year

DETROIT (AP) — Toyota says it will roll out two new battery-electric vehicles and one plug-in gas-electric hybrid in the U.S. this year as the parade of new EVs continues.

GM 2020 profit drops, but it makes $6.43B despite pandemic

DETROIT (AP) — General Motors' profit fell 4.5% in 2020, but a strong second half more than offset the effects of pandemic-related factory closures and a costly air bag recall.

Toyota profits up amid solid recovery from pandemic fallout

TOKYO (AP) — Toyota reported a 50% jump in its October to December profit Wednesday, underlining a solid recovery at the Japanese automaker from the damage of the coronavirus pandemic.

VIRUS OUTBREAK

Government investigating massive counterfeit N95 mask scam

WASHINGTON (AP) — Federal authorities are investigating a massive counterfeit N95 mask operation in which fake 3M masks were sold in at least five states to hospitals, medical facilities and government agencies. The foreign-made knockoffs are becoming increasingly difficult to spot and could put health care workers at grave risk for the coronavirus.

WHO expert group recommends use of AstraZeneca vaccine

GENEVA (AP) — Independent experts advising the World Health Organization on Wednesday recommended the use of AstraZeneca's vaccine even in countries that turned up worrying coronavirus variants in their populations.

AP-NORC poll: A third of US adults skeptical of COVID shots

NEW YORK (AP) — About 1 in 3 Americans say they definitely or probably won't get the COVID-19 vaccine, according to a new poll that some experts say is discouraging news if the U.S. hopes to achieve herd immunity and vanquish the outbreak.

EXPLAINER: What the WHO coronavirus experts learned in Wuhan

WUHAN, China (AP) — A World Health Organization team is leaving China on Wednesday after gaining some new insights into the origins of the coronavirus pandemic that has now killed more than 2.3 million people worldwide — but with the major questions still unanswered.

EU top official regrets 'mistakes' over vaccine export gaffe

BRUSSELS (AP) — The European Union's top official expressed regret for creating a row with Britain last month when the bloc briefly considered applying an emergency restriction on exports of COVID-19 vaccines also to the U.K.'s Northern Ireland.

NATIONAL/INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS

US stock indexes edge higher, hover near all-time highs

The major U.S. stock indexes edged mostly higher in afternoon trading Wednesday, a day after the S&P 500 ended a six-day winning streak.

Budget deficit totals record $735.7 billion through January

WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. government's budget deficit hit $735.7 billion through the first four months of the budget year — an all-time high for the period — as a pandemic-induced recession cut into tax revenues while spending on COVID relief measures sent outlays soaring.

Powell stresses commitment to full employment, low rates

WASHINGTON (AP) — Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell on Wednesday underscored the Fed's commitment to reducing unemployment to multi-decade lows, where it stood before the pandemic, while signaling little concern about the risk of potentially high inflation or financial-market instability.

Report: TikTok sale pushed by Trump is shelved

The Biden administration has "indefinitely" shelved a proposed U.S. takeover of the popular video app TikTok, according to a Wall Street Journal report. Last year, the Trump administration brokered a deal that would have had U.S. corporations Oracle and Walmart take a large stake in the Chinese-owned app on national-security grounds.

US consumer prices up 0.3% in January, led by energy spike

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. consumer prices rose 0.3% in January, led by a surge in energy. But even though the gain was the biggest monthly increase since July, inflation gains over the past year have remained modest.

World's biggest shipper reports rebound in business

COPENHAGEN, Denmark (AP) — The world's biggest shipping company, Denmark's A.P. Moller-Maersk, on Wednesday reported a sharp rise in earnings for the fourth quarter, when global demand for goods rebounded from an earlier slump caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

Resurgent virus slows recovery at Coca-Cola

A resurgent coronavirus slowed Coca-Cola's recovery in the fourth quarter, and the company said the slump has continued into this year.

EU lawmakers OK $815 billion recovery program

BRUSSELS (AP) — European Union lawmakers on Wednesday approved a 672.5 billion euro ($815 billion) recovery package of loans and grants to help member nations recover more quickly from the coronavirus pandemic, but countries will not receive the money for several months.

Aunt Jemima brand gets a new name: Pearl Milling Company

Aunt Jemima is making her last batch of pancakes.

NATIONAL/INTERNATIONAL POLITICS

Trump accused as 'inciter in chief' of Capitol insurrection

WASHINGTON (AP) — Prosecutors in Donald Trump's impeachment trial said Wednesday they would prove that Trump was no "innocent bystander" but the "inciter in chief" of the deadly attack at the Capitol aimed at overturning his election loss to Joe Biden.

Many GOP senators indifferent to Democrats' case

WASHINGTON (AP) — At a break in Donald Trump's impeachment trial, many Republicans appeared indifferent to the Democratic prosecutors' case that the former president incited the violent attack on the Capitol Jan. 6 — and made clear they were unlikely to convict.

Biden orders sanctions against Myanmar after military coup

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden on Wednesday ordered new sanctions against the military regime in Myanmar, taking action after the military this month staged a coup in the Southeast Asian country and arrested de facto leader Aung San Suu Kyi and other senior politicians.

What to Watch: Democrats to argue Trump alone incited mob

WASHINGTON (AP) — House Democrats will begin two days of arguments in Donald Trump's second impeachment trial, trying to convince skeptical Republicans that the former president alone was responsible for inciting his mob of supporters who broke into the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6 and interrupted the presidential electoral count.

Trial highlights: history lessons, Trump tweets and more

WASHINGTON (AP) — Donald Trump will stand trial for impeachment after the Senate rejected arguments from the former president's lawyers that the chamber cannot move forward because he is no longer in office.

AP FACT CHECK: Trump's lawyers and the Constitution

WASHINGTON (AP) — Lawyers for Donald Trump stretched beyond the facts when they argued there's an open-and-shut case that the Constitution bars impeaching former presidents. That question is not settled, though the weight of legal views contradicts the Trump team's assertions.

Trump never conceded he lost but his impeachment lawyer did

WASHINGTON (AP) — One of the lawyers heading former President Donald Trump's defense at his second impeachment trial did what Trump himself has not: conceded Joe Biden won the presidential election. —

Dems attempt to push through school funding, wage increase

WASHINGTON (AP) — House Democrats muscled past Republicans on portions of President Joe Biden's pandemic plan, including a proposed $130 billion in additional relief to help the nation's schools reopen and a gradual increase of the federal minimum wage to $15 an hour.

Biden visits a Pentagon hoping to shift from Trump turmoil

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden visited the Pentagon on Wednesday for the first time as commander in chief, taking stock of the military as it pivots from the turmoil of the Trump years and focuses to an unusual degree on domestic and internal issues.

Senate schedules confirmation hearing for Merrick Garland

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Senate Judiciary Committee has set a confirmation hearing for Merrick Garland, President Joe Biden's nominee for attorney general.


TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 9
VANDERBILT SPORTS

Vanderbilt football coach Clark Lea adds 2 more assistants

NASHVILLE (AP) — Vanderbilt coach Clark Lea has hired North Dakota State's AJ Blazek as his new offensive line coach and John Egorugwu from the NFL's Buffalo Bills as his linebackers coach.

PREDATORS

Cirelli scores twice as Tampa Bay beats Predators 4-1

NASHVILLE (AP) — The Tampa Bay Lightning made sure Curtis McElhinney's first start in net since last March went as smoothly as possible.

STATE GOVERNMENT

Tennessee governor delivers 3rd State of the State speech

NASHVILLE (AP) — Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee offered a cautious message of hope Monday in a state drastically upended by the COVID-19 pandemic, unveiling his administration's top legislative priorities and spending plan for the upcoming year to lawmakers.

Full text of Gov. Bill Lee's State of the State address

NASHVILLE (AP) — Thank you very much. Lieutenant Governor McNally, Speaker Sexton, Speaker Pro Tem Haile, Speaker Pro Tem Marsh, Members of the 112th General Assembly, Justices, Constitutional Officers, fellow Tennesseans:

A look at Tennessee Gov. Lee's third budget proposal

NASHVILLE (AP) — Tennessee's Gov. Bill Lee on Monday unveiled his $41.8 billion budget proposal for the upcoming fiscal year. The spending plan includes increases for teacher pay and more funds for COVID-19 relief efforts, buoyed by better-than-expected revenues during the COVID-19 pandemic. The budget proposal needs ultimate approval from the Republican-dominant General Assembly. Here's a look at the highlights:

Tennessee commissioner to lead US corrections group

NASHVILLE (AP) — Tennessee Department of Correction Commissioner Tony Parker will serve as the president of the American Correctional Association.

REGION

New boost for minority businesses in underserved communities

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Small minority-owned businesses have often struggled to gain access to capital and other tools to grow, a challenge made more daunting by the economic upheaval of the coronavirus pandemic. But a new effort announced Tuesday aims to address those disparities in pockets of the nation long gripped by poverty.

COURTS

82 advocacy groups call on Biden to end federal executions

WASHINGTON (AP) — Dozens of civil rights and advocacy organizations are calling on the Biden administration to immediately halt federal executions after an unprecedented run of capital punishment under President Donald Trump and to commute the sentences of inmates on federal death row.

TRANSPORTATION

US officials: Pilot error caused Kobe Bryant chopper crash

LOS ANGELES (AP) — The pilot who crashed the helicopter carrying Kobe Bryant, killing all nine aboard, made a series of poor decisions that led him to fly blindly into a wall of clouds where he became so disoriented he thought he was climbing when the craft was plunging toward a Southern California hillside, federal safety officials said Tuesday.

MEDIA

Fox News leader signs new contract, no 'pivot' planned

NEW YORK (AP) — Fox News Media CEO Suzanne Scott signed a new contract Tuesday and the company said it will continue its "center right" programming mix despite a recent ratings slump and legal fight against its flagship Fox News Channel.

EDUCATION

Jill Biden pushes free access to community college, training

WASHINGTON (AP) — Jill Biden is pushing free access to community college and training programs, saying the schools will be an important part of Biden administration efforts to rebuild the economy.

AUTO INDUSTRY

Nissan stays in red ink amid pandemic, Japan criminal trial

TOKYO (AP) — Japanese automaker Nissan reported Tuesday losses for the fiscal third quarter, as its sales were hit by the coronavirus pandemic and its brand image continued to take a beating from the financial misconduct scandal centered on its former chairman, Carlos Ghosn.

Japan automaker Honda's profit rises despite pandemic damage

TOKYO (AP) — Honda reported Tuesday its fiscal third quarter profit more than doubled to 284 billion yen ($2.7 billion) despite the coronavirus pandemic as auto sales grew in Japan and the U.S.

VIRUS OUTBREAK

Lying on arrival could mean 10 years in prison in England

LONDON (AP) — Anyone arriving in England and found to have lied about a recent visit to a country on the British government's travel ban list faces up to 10 years in prison under new tough coronavirus border policies announced Tuesday.

WHO team: Coronavirus unlikely to have leaked from China lab

WUHAN, China (AP) — The coronavirus most likely first appeared in humans after jumping from an animal, a team of international and Chinese scientists looking for the origins of COVID-19 said Tuesday, dismissing as unlikely an alternate theory that the virus leaked from a Chinese lab.

Vatican seeks elder care rethink after COVID-19 'massacre'

ROME (AP) — The Vatican is calling for a new paradigm of care for older people after what it calls the "massacre" wrought by the coronavirus pandemic, which has disproportionately killed people living in nursing homes.

NATIONAL/INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS

Stocks end mixed, ending a 6-day winning streak for S&P 500

Stocks ended a wobbly day with mixed results, ending a six-day winning streak for the S&P 500 even as the Nasdaq eked out another record high.

Dem Sen. Manchin asks Biden to reverse Keystone XL rejection

WASHINGTON (AP) — In one of his first acts as new chairman of the Senate Energy Committee, Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin on Tuesday urged President Joe Biden to reconsider his executive order revoking a presidential permit for the long-delayed Keystone XL oil pipeline, siding with Republican critics who say Biden's action will cost thousands of high-paying jobs.

Election of Democratic chair portends change at post office

WASHINGTON (AP) — A former labor leader and Obama administration official was elected Tuesday to serve as chair of the U.S. Postal Service Board of Governors, marking the first step in a potential shakeup under President Joe Biden.

US hiring plunged in December even as job openings ticked up

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. employers cut back sharply on hiring in December, particularly industries slammed by the pandemic such as restaurants and hotels, as virus infections soared and governments responded with tighter restrictions.

Bezos, Bloomberg among top 50 US charity donors for 2020

As the world grappled with COVID-19, a recession and a racial reckoning, the ultrawealthy gave to a broader set of causes than ever before — bestowing multimillion-dollar gifts on food pantries, historically Black colleges and universities and organizations that serve the poor and the homeless, according to the Chronicle of Philanthropy's annual rankings of the 50 Americans who gave the most to charity last year.

Democrats propose $1,400 payments as part of Biden virus relief

WASHINGTON (AP) — House Democrats proposed an additional $1,400 in direct payments to individuals as Congress began piecing together a $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief package that tracks President Joe Biden's plan for battling the pandemic and reviving a still staggering economy.

Family of novice investor who killed himself sue Robinhood

LOS ANGELES (AP) — The family of a novice stock trader who killed himself after mistakenly believing he lost more than $700,000 are suing Robinhood Financial, claiming the popular stock-trading platform's business practices "directly" led to their son's death.

NATIONAL/INTERNATIONAL POLITICS

Trump's historic 2nd trial opens with jarring video of siege

WASHINGTON (AP) — Democrats opened Donald Trump's historic second impeachment trial Tuesday by showing the former president whipping up a rally crowd to march to the Capitol and "fight like hell" against his reelection defeat, followed by graphic video of the deadly attack on Congress  that came soon after.

EXPLAINER: What's ahead as Trump impeachment trial begins

WASHINGTON (AP) — Former President Donald Trump's historic second impeachment trial will force the Senate to decide whether to convict him of incitement of insurrection after a violent mob of his supporters laid siege to the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6.

What to watch as Trump's 2nd impeachment trial kicks off

WASHINGTON (AP) — Former President Donald Trump's second impeachment trial begins on Tuesday, a solemn proceeding that will force lawmakers to relive the violent events of Jan. 6 as House Democrats prosecute their case for "incitement of insurrection."

White House budget chief nominee apologizes for past tweets

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden's choice to the lead the Office of Management and Budget apologized Tuesday for spending years attacking top Republicans on social media as she tried to convince senators she'll leave partisan politics behind if confirmed.

Justice Dept. seeks resignations of Trump-era US attorneys

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Justice Department will ask U.S. attorneys who were appointed by former President Donald Trump to resign from their posts, as the Biden administration moves to transition to its own nominees, a senior Justice Department official said Monday.

Top EU diplomat to propose new sanctions against Russia

BRUSSELS (AP) — European Union foreign policy chief Josep Borrell said Tuesday that the 27-nation bloc must take a firm stance in its future relations with Russia including through the use of new sanctions, in the wake of the jailing of opposition leader Alexei Navalny.

China blocks Clubhouse, app used for political discussion

BEIJING (AP) — Zeng Jiajun, a former tech worker, fell in love with social media app Clubhouse, a window through the ruling Communist Party's pervasive censorship, after listening to a freewheeling discussion between members of China's Uighur minority and Han majority that wound up lasting 12 hours.


MONDAY, FEBRUARY 8
NASHVILLE AREA

Nashville’s vaccinations now include schools, those 70 and older

Dr. Alex Jahangir, Nashville’s COVID-19 Taskforce Chair, announced today plans for Davidson County to enter Phase 1B of the State’s COVID vaccine plan that includes schools, and will also begin scheduling vaccine appointments for those 70 years and older.

VANDERBILT SPORTS

Vanderbilt coach Clark Lea adds Earl Bennett to his staff

NASHVILLE (AP) — Vanderbilt coach Clark Lea has hired two more staff members, with former NFL wide receiver Earl Bennett as director of player development at his alma mater and Kaelene Curry director of mental performance.

STATE GOVERNMENT

Tennessee governor to deliver 3rd State of the State speech

NASHVILLE (AP) — Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee will deliver his third annual State of the State address to lawmakers on Monday.

STATEWIDE

Tennessee State Guard head turns over command after 4 years

NASHVILLE (AP) — The head of the Tennessee State Guard is turning over command and retiring from the state Military Department.

ENVIRONMENT

UN chief: Polluters must join 'net zero' club for climate

BERLIN (AP) — Polluters must step up their commitments to cutting greenhouse gas emissions before a crucial climate summit in November, U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said Monday.

COURTS

Florida man sentenced in Giuliani-related fraud case

NEW YORK (AP) — A Florida businessman whose fraud-busting business was exposed as a fraud itself was sentenced Monday to a year and a day in prison in a case in which prosecutors said Rudy Giuliani was hired as a consultant to attract investors.

VIRUS OUTBREAK

UN: 'Concerning news' vaccines may not work against variants

GENEVA (AP) — The head of the World Health Organization said Monday the emergence of new COVID-19 variants has raised questions about whether or not existing vaccines will work, calling it "concerning news" that the vaccines developed so far may be less effective against the variant first detected in South Africa.

Schools plan for potential of remote learning into the fall

Parents of schoolchildren learning from home shouldn't necessarily count on reclaiming the dining room table any time soon.

Russian statistics soar for virus-linked deaths in 2020

MOSCOW (AP) — Russia issued updated statistics Monday on coronavirus-linked deaths which showed that 162,429 people with COVID-19 died last year, a number far higher than previously reported by government officials.

Tampa mayor frustrated by maskless fans after Super Bowl

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) — So much for the mayor's order requiring masks at Super Bowl parties. Throngs of mostly maskless fans took to the streets and packed sports bars as the clock inside Raymond James Stadium ticked down on a hometown Super Bowl win for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Around the globe, virus cancels spring travel for millions

FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) — They are the annual journeys of late winter and early spring: Factory workers in China heading home for the Lunar New Year; American college students going on road trips and hitting the beach over spring break; Germans and Britons fleeing drab skies for some Mediterranean sun over Easter.

S Africa seeks new vaccine plan after halting AstraZeneca

JOHANNESBURG (AP) — South Africa is considering giving a COVID-19 vaccine that is still in the testing phase to health workers, after suspending the rollout of another shot that preliminary data indicated is not effective at preventing mild to moderate illness from the variant dominant in the country.

NATIONAL/INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS

Stocks push to more gains, record highs on Wall Street

U.S. stocks notched more gains and pushed to new highs Monday, extending a winning streak that just gave the market its best weekly gain since November.

Amazon, Cadillac score with Super Bowl ads

NEW YORK (AP) — During this year's Super Bowl, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers reigned supreme on the field. During advertising's biggest night, there were hits and misses as well. Overall, this year's crop of Super Bowl ads focused on light humor that strove to entertain and connect.

Yellen: Biden's plan could restore full employment by 2022

WASHINGTON (AP) — Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said Sunday the country was still in a "deep hole" with millions of lost jobs but that President Joe Biden's $1.9 trillion relief plan could generate enough growth to restore full employment by next year.

NATIONAL/INTERNATIONAL POLITICS

Budget office: $15 wage would reduce poverty, increase debt

WASHINGTON (AP) — Increasing the minimum wage to $15 an hour would reduce the number of Americans living in poverty and boost wages for millions of Americans while adding to the federal debt and joblessness, a new report from the Congressional Budget Office projects.

AP-NORC poll: Few in US say democracy is working very well

WASHINGTON (AP) — Only a fragment of Americans believe democracy is thriving in the U.S., even as broad majorities agree that representative government is one of the country's bedrock principles, according to a new poll from The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research.

Trump lawyers blast impeachment trial as 'political theater'

WASHINGTON (AP) — Lawyers for Donald Trump on Monday blasted the impeachment case against him as an act of "political theater" and accused House Democrats on the eve of the former president's trial of exploiting the chaos and trauma of last month's Capitol riot for their party's gain.

US plans to reengage with UN rights council, reversing Trump

WASHINGTON (AP) — The United States announced plans Monday to reengage with the much-maligned U.N. Human Rights Council that former President Donald Trump withdrew from almost three years ago, as the Biden administration reverses another Trump-era move away from multilateral organizations and agreements.

Longtime Reagan Secretary of State George Shultz dies at 100

WASHINGTON (AP) — Former Secretary of State George P. Shultz, a titan of American academia, business and diplomacy who spent most of the 1980s trying to improve Cold War relations with the Soviet Union and forging a course for peace in the Middle East, has died. He was 100.


FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 5
TENNESSEE TITANS

Josh Evans, Titans tackle in 2000 Super Bowl, dies at 48

ATLANTA (AP) — Josh Evans, a defensive tackle who started for the Tennessee Titans in the 2000 Super Bowl, has died. Evans was 48.

PREDATORS

Forsberg shines as Predators beat Panthers 6-5 in overtime

SUNRISE, Fla. (AP) — Filip Forsberg scored in regulation and overtime, and the Nashville Predators beat the Florida Panthers 6-5 on Thursday night.

MUSIC INDUSTRY

"Midnight Train to Georgia' songwriter Jim Weatherly dies

NASHVILLE (AP) — Hall of Fame songwriter Jim Weatherly, who wrote "Midnight Train to Georgia" and other hits for Gladys Knight, Glen Campbell and Ray Price, has died. He was 77.

NASHVILLE AREA

Nashville holds off lowering age to receive COVID vaccine

NASHVILLE (AP) — As Tennessee slowly begins to loosen restrictions on who may receive the COVID-19 vaccine, Nashville on Friday had the strictest eligibility to receive the dose in the entire state.

New Museum of African American Music covers many genres

NASHVILLE (AP) — A new museum two decades in the making is telling the interconnected story of Black musical genres through the lens of American history.

STATEWIDE

FTC took more than 35K fraud reports in Tennessee in 2020

MEMPHIS (AP) — The Federal Trade Commission received more than 35,000 reports of fraud in Tennessee in 2020, resulting in more than $40.6 million in losses, the agency said.

COURTS

High court to review school voucher lawsuit

NASHVILLE (AP) — Tennessee's highest court on Thursday agreed to take up an appeal of a lawsuit challenging the legality of a school voucher program allowing parents to use public tax dollars for private school tuition.

AUTO INDUSTRY

Part maker to build new Chattanooga plant, add 240 jobs

NASHVILLE(AP) — Tennessee officials say a Spanish car part maker will invest $42 million to open a new plant in Chattanooga expected to create 240 more jobs.

Ford to cut back F-150 production due to chip shortage

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — Ford Motor Co. said Thursday that it will cut shifts at two of its U.S. manufacturing plants next week, due to the worldwide chip shortage that has also impacted other automakers.

ENVIRONMENT

UN chief reappoints billionaire Bloomberg as climate envoy

BERLIN (AP) — The United Nations says American billionaire Michael Bloomberg has been reappointed as a special envoy to engage governments and businesses in tackling the threat of global warming.

VIRUS OUTBREAK

Coronavirus cases drop at US homes for elderly and infirm

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) — Coronavirus cases have dropped at U.S. nursing homes and other long-term care facilities over the past few weeks, offering a glimmer of hope that health officials attribute to the start of vaccinations, an easing of the post-holiday surge and better prevention, among other reasons.

Trudeau tries to reassure Canadians vaccines are coming

TORONTO (AP) — Prime Minister Justin Trudeau tried Friday to reassure Canadians his plan to vaccinate them is working despite mounting criticism his government is not getting vaccines soon enough.

Pentagon deploys troops to fuel COVID-19 vaccine drive

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Pentagon will deploy more than 1,100 troops to five vaccination centers in what will be the first wave of increased military support for the White House campaign to get more Americans inoculated against COVID-19.

Canada blocks cruise ships for a year, ending Alaska trips

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — The Canadian government has extended a ban on cruise ships through February 2022, which is expected to block trips from visiting Alaska this year.

US rushes to catch up in the race to detect mutant viruses

NEW YORK (AP) — Despite its world-class medical system and its vaunted Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the U.S. fell behind in the race to detect dangerous coronavirus mutations. And it's only now beginning to catch up.

US leaders urge military to get vaccine shots

WASHINGTON (AP) — With more than half of America reluctant or flatly opposed to getting a COVID-19 vaccine, a VIP-filled video call on Thursday targeted the nation's military families with an urgent plea: Get the shot.

US virus deaths surpass 450K; daily toll is stubbornly high

Coronavirus deaths in the United States surpassed 450,000 on Thursday, and daily deaths remain stubbornly high at more than 3,000 a day, despite falling infections and the arrival of multiple vaccines.

J&J asks US regulators to OK its one-shot COVID-19 vaccine

Johnson & Johnson asked U.S. regulators Thursday to clear the world's first single-dose COVID-19 vaccine, an easier-to-use option that could boost scarce supplies.

NATIONAL/INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS

S&P 500 climbs again, closing out best week since November

Wall Street closed out a winning week Friday as the S&P 500 notched its fifth gain in a row and its biggest weekly increase since November.

US consumer credit rose a solid $9.7 billion in December

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. consumers increased their borrowing in December by $9.7 billion, as Americans took out loans to buy autos or finance their educations.

Biden seeks to go big, fast and alone on COVID relief

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden laid out his case Friday for moving fast and without Republicans, if necessary, to pass $1.9 trillion in coronavirus relief, armed with new signs of economic strain brought on by the continuing pandemic.

A meager gain in US jobs last month highlights virus' damage

WASHINGTON (AP) — America's employers barely added jobs last month, underscoring the viral pandemic's ongoing grip on the economy and likely adding momentum to the Biden administration's push for a bold rescue aid package.

EXPLAINER: 5 key takeaways from the January jobs report

WASHINGTON (AP) — The struggles that have afflicted the American job market since the viral pandemic tore through the economy nearly a year ago are keeping a tight lid on hiring.

U.S. trade deficit rises to $679B in 2020, a 12-year high

WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. trade deficit rose 17.7% last year to $679 billion, highest since 2008, as the coronavirus disrupted global commerce and confounded then-President Donald Trump's attempts to rebalance America's trade with the rest of the world.

US regulators launch review of stock market turbulence

WASHINGTON (AP) — The nation's top financial markets regulators say they will look into whether recent stock market turbulence is an indication that current trading practices are not doing enough to protect investors.

Surprise tax forms reveal extent of unemployment fraud in US

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — Unemployment agencies across the country were bombarded with so many claims during the pandemic that many struggled to distinguish the correct from the criminal.

South Korea's trade minister drops bid to become WTO chief

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — South Korea's top trade official is dropping her bid to become the next director-general of the World Trade Organization, making it likely the job will go to former Nigerian finance minister Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala. She would become the first woman to lead the organization.

Indonesia, Malaysia vow to counter anti-palm oil campaign

JAKARTA, Indonesia (AP) — Malaysia and Indonesia on Friday agreed to coordinate and strengthen their campaign against they say is international discrimination against palm oil, the countries' main commodity.

NATIONAL/INTERNATIONAL POLITICS

Biden heading to Delaware as CDC recommends avoiding travel

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden is heading back to his home in Delaware on Friday to spend the weekend with his wife and family, even as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that Americans forgo travel because of the coronavirus pandemic.

AP-NORC poll: Most Republicans doubt Biden's legitimacy

WASHINGTON (AP) — About two-thirds of Republicans say Joe Biden was not legitimately elected president, according to a new poll conducted barely two weeks after he was inaugurated.

Rep. Greene says 'morons' voted to boot her from committees

WASHINGTON (AP) — Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene lashed out Friday at "morons" in both parties who voted to kick her off her committees, a day after the House meted out the unprecedented punishment that Democrats said she'd earned by spreading hateful and violent conspiracy theories.

AP-NORC poll: Americans are split on Trump's impeachment

WASHINGTON (AP) — A majority of Americans say former President Donald Trump bears at least some blame for the Capitol insurrection, and about half say the Senate should vote to convict him at the end of his impeachment trial.

Fiercely divided House kicks Greene off both her committees

WASHINGTON (AP) — A fiercely divided House has tossed Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene off both her committees, an unprecedented punishment that Democrats said she'd earned by spreading hateful and violent conspiracy theories.

A glance at Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene's incendiary words

WASHINGTON (AP) — Freshman Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, a Georgia Republican, has been stripped of her committee assignments by the House Democratic majority over racist remarks, her embrace of conspiracy theories and her past endorsement of violence against leading Democratic officials.


THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 4
MIDSTATE

US Rep. Jim Cooper's wife dies after battle with Alzheimer's

NASHVILLE (AP) — Tennessee U.S. Rep. Jim Cooper's wife died Thursday "after years of struggling with Alzheimer's," the Democrat's office announced.

NASHVILLE AREA

Iroquois Steeplechase pushed back to June 26

The Iroquois Steeplechase has been rescheduled to run on Saturday, June 26, at Percy Warner Park.

COURTS

Voting company sues Fox, Giuliani over election fraud claims

MIAMI (AP) — A voting technology company is suing Fox News, three of its hosts and two former lawyers for former President Donald Trump — Rudy Giuliani and Sidney Powell — for $2.7 billion, charging that the defendants conspired to spread false claims that the company helped "steal" the U.S. presidential election.

Tennessee AG sues Food City supermarkets over opioids

NASHVILLE (AP) — Tennessee's attorney general on Thursday sued Food City over claims that the supermarket chain's pharmacies intentionally profited from the opioid epidemic by unlawfully selling tens of millions of prescription opioids in the state.

McKinsey agrees to pay nearly $600M over opioid crisis

The business consultant McKinsey & Company agreed to pay nearly $600 million for its role in consulting businesses on how to sell more prescription opioid painkillers amid a nationwide overdose crisis.

ENVIRONMENT

Sanders, Ocasio-Cortez seek climate emergency declaration

WASHINGTON (AP) — With Democrats in charge of Congress and the White House, progressive lawmakers including Sen. Bernie Sanders and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez are pushing the Biden administration to act ever more aggressively on climate change.

Biden EPA nominee vows 'sense of urgency' on climate change

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden's nominee to run the Environmental Protection Agency pledged Wednesday to "move with a sense of urgency on climate change" and other priorities, while working with lawmakers from both parties to protect the environment.

Judge orders US officials to weigh coal mines' climate costs

BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) — A judge says U.S officials downplayed climate change impacts and other environmental costs from the expansion of a massive coal mine near the Montana-Wyoming border, in a case that could show how far the Biden administration is willing to go to unwind his predecessors' decisions.

MEDIA

Fake accounts gain traction as they praise China, mock US

A pro-China network of fake and imposter accounts found a global audience on YouTube, Facebook and Twitter to mock the U.S. response to the COVID-19 pandemic as well as the deadly riot in Washington that left five dead, new research published Thursday found.

UK strips Chinese state-owned TV channel of broadcast permit

LONDON (AP) — U.K. regulators stripped China's state TV channel of its national broadcasting license on Thursday, after an investigation cited lack of editorial control and links to China's ruling Communist Party.

Australian leader has 'constructive' talk with Google boss

CANBERRA, Australia (AP) — The Australian prime minister said he had a "constructive" meeting on Thursday with the head of Google after the tech giant threatened to remove its search engine from Australia over plans to make digital platforms pay for news.

AUTO INDUSTRY

Ford loses $1.28B in 2020, raises electric vehicle spending

DETROIT (AP) — Ford Motor Co. lost $1.28 billion last year as it dealt with the coronavirus pandemic that forced it to shut down U.S. factories for about two months.

NATIONAL/INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS

Sitting on billions, Catholic dioceses amassed taxpayer aid

When the coronavirus forced churches to close their doors and give up Sunday collections, the Roman Catholic Diocese of Charlotte turned to the federal government's signature small business relief program for more than $8 million.

Stuck in DC, Biden team pitches rest of US on big virus aid

WASHINGTON (AP) — Even as President Joe Biden meets with senators and works the phones with Capitol Hill to push for a $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief package, his team is increasingly focused on selling the plan directly to voters.

Solid company earnings and hopes for aid send stocks higher

A broad rally on Wall Street Thursday added to the market's solid gains this week and pushed the S&P 500 and Nasdaq composite to all-time highs.

More GameStops possible as small investors flex muscles

LOS ANGELES (AP) — GameStop and a handful of other stocks whose meteoric rise last month shocked Wall Street began falling back to Earth this week.

Zuckerberg part of $100M 'California Black Freedom Fund'

More than two dozen philanthropic organizations and corporations on Thursday launched the California Black Freedom Fund, a $100 million, five-year initiative that they say will provide resources to Black-led organizations in the state that are seeking to eradicate systemic racism.

US productivity in Q4 falls by largest amount in 39 years

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. productivity in the October-December quarter fell by the largest amount in 39 years as the coronavirus pandemic roiled the labor market.

US unemployment claims fall to 779,000 but job cuts grind on

WASHINGTON (AP) — The number of Americans seeking unemployment benefits declined to 779,000 last week, a still-historically high total that shows that a sizable number of people keep losing jobs to the viral pandemic.

Yellen warns of 'tough months' ahead, urges congress to act

WASHINGTON (AP) — Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen warned of "tough months ahead" with COVID-19 continuing to flare, making it critical that Congress pass President Joe Biden's $1.9 trillion relief package.

Boeing to outsource IT work to Dell, eliminate 600 jobs

SEATTLE (AP) — Boeing Co. has said it will outsource a significant amount of information technology work to Dell starting in April, including support of cloud services, databases and information technology. The move is expected to eliminate 600 jobs.

Businesses face hard decisions on whether, when to hire

NEW YORK (AP) — As the U.S. economy undergoes an uneven recovery from the virus pandemic, many small business owners face a tough decision on whether and when to take on employees.

5 challenges awaiting Amazon's new CEO

NEW YORK (AP) — In 1995, few could imagine that the modest online bookstore built by Jeff Bezos would turn into a $1.7 trillion behemoth that sells everything from diapers to sofas, produces movies, owns a grocery chain and provides cloud computing services to businesses all over the globe.

Bank of England holds off more stimulus as vaccines roll out

LONDON (AP) — The Bank of England kept its key interest rate on hold Thursday amid rising optimism over the British economy's prospects later this year in the wake of the rapid rollout of coronavirus vaccines.

German government prepares more economic help in pandemic

BERLIN (AP) — Germany's governing parties have agreed on more help for families with children and people on benefits, as well as tax help for companies, as they try to keep Europe's biggest economy on course to grow out of the pandemic.

NATIONAL/INTERNATIONAL POLITICS

Trump rejects Dems' request to testify at impeachment trial

WASHINGTON (AP) — House Democrats on Thursday asked Donald Trump to testify under oath for his Senate impeachment trial, challenging him to respond to their charge that he incited a violent mob to storm the Capitol. A Trump adviser said the former president won't testify.

Greene regrets 'words of the past' without explicit apology

WASHINGTON (AP) — Embattled Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, facing a House vote to strip her of committee assignments, said Thursday that she regrets some "words of the past," but she did not explicitly apologize for her racist and violent rhetoric.

AP FACT CHECK: House GOP chief unfamiliar with QAnon?

WASHINGTON (AP) — House Republican leader Kevin McCarthy is claiming he's unfamiliar with an extremist conspiracy theory whose adherents joined the violent assault on Congress and hunted for his members as well as Democrats. He says he's not even learned how to pronounce it.

Biden strikes tough tone on Russia in diplomatic push

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden on Thursday said the days of the U.S. "rolling over" to Russian President Vladimir Putin are gone as he called for the immediate release of Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny.

Biden, at prayer breakfast, calls out 'political extremism'

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden on Thursday called for a confrontation of the "political extremism" that inspired the U.S. Capitol riot and appealed for collective strength during such turbulent times in remarks at the National Prayer Breakfast, a Washington tradition that asks political combatants to set aside their differences for one morning.

AP-NORC Poll: Americans open to Biden's approach to crises

WASHINGTON (AP) — Two weeks into a new administration, a majority of Americans say they have at least some confidence in President Joe Biden and his ability to manage the myriad crises facing the nation, including the raging coronavirus pandemic.

Biden to visit State Dept. as US reengages with its allies

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden is sending a message to his messengers.

Defend or rebuke? House GOP faces difficult vote over Greene

WASHINGTON (AP) — House Republicans will be forced to go on the record, defending or rebuking Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, who has drawn bipartisan condemnation over her embrace of far-right conspiracy theories, racist comments, as well as her past endorsement of violence against Democrats.

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