Banks
9:31 am
Wed January 30, 2013

Regions Bank Ends Payday Loans In NC

Regions Bank, based in Birmingham, Alabama has been using a federal banking law to provide payday lending services, even though these types of loans are illegal in North Carolina.

But the bank recently announced that it will no longer offer its payday lending service to North Carolina residents because of the small number of eligible customers for the product in the state.

Since 2001, payday lending shops have been illegal in North Carolina. But that law doesn't apply to banks that are based outside the state.

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Gaston County
9:29 am
Wed January 30, 2013

Bessemer City Will Form Its Own Police Force

The Gaston County Police Department has provided services to Bessemer since 1998. On Monday night, Mayor Becky Smith broke a tie that created a new police force as a cost-saving measure.
Credit Courtesy of Gaston County Police

Bessemer City council members were divided Monday night in Gaston County over whether to form its own police department, separate from the county. Mayor Becky Smith broke the tie on Monday night by voting in favor of a local police department.  

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The Two-Way
9:08 am
Wed January 30, 2013

192,000 Jobs Added To Payrolls This Month, Report Signals

Looking for work: In Birmingham, Ala., last summer, Jessica McQueen (left) and Ashley Abramson were among those filling out applications at a jobs fair.
Joe Songer Birmingham News /Landov

After bad news about late 2012 — that the U.S. economy shrank a bit in the fourth quarter — there's modestly good news about early 2013:

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The Two-Way
8:48 am
Wed January 30, 2013

Economy Shrank At 0.1 Percent Annual Rate In Fourth Quarter

Originally published on Wed January 30, 2013 9:11 am

The U.S. economy shrank at a 0.1 percent annual rate in the fourth quarter, the Bureau of Economic Analysis reports, its first quarterly contraction since the second quarter of 2009.

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The Two-Way
8:15 am
Wed January 30, 2013

Report: Your Salary Data May Be For Sale

Fill out an application for a loan, and your wage history may go places you didn't expect.
Joe Raedle Getty Images

Originally published on Wed January 30, 2013 6:42 pm

If you've earned a paycheck in recent years, you'll probably want want to know about this:

The Equifax credit reporting agency, NBC News reports, has collected 190 million employment and salary records on about one-third of U.S. adults and has sold some of the information "to debt collectors, financial service companies and other entities."

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Around the Nation
8:00 am
Wed January 30, 2013

Gnomes Allowed To Stay On Utility Poles

Originally published on Wed January 30, 2013 10:44 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne with gnomes in the news. This time, about 2,300 tiny paintings of gnomes have appeared on utility poles all over Oakland, California. Since the little guys showed up last year, full-sized residents got into the spirit - blogging and tweeting new sightings. Pacific Gas and Electric was going to evict the bearded figures, but when the anonymous artist appealed, PG&E backed off. Yesterday it declared the poles gnome-man's-land. It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

Around the Nation
7:50 am
Wed January 30, 2013

Seagull Attacks A Vatican's Dove Of Peace

Originally published on Wed January 30, 2013 10:44 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Good morning, I'm Steve Inskeep.

The Caravan of Peace is an annual march at the Vatican. As Pope Benedict looked on, two doves, symbolizing peace, were released into St. Peter's Square. It was beautiful until a seagull assaulted one of the doves. Time magazine got one of the finest headlines ever seen outside The Onion: Pope's Dove of Peace Attacked by Seagull of Irony. But the symbolism grew deeper when the surprisingly tough Dove of Peace fought off the much larger seagull.

The Two-Way
7:30 am
Wed January 30, 2013

Giffords: 'We Must Do Something!' About Gun Violence

Former Rep. Gabby Giffords, D-Ariz., and her husband Mark Kelly at Wednesday's Senate hearing about gun violence.
Chip Somodevilla Getty Images

Originally published on Wed January 30, 2013 1:57 pm

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Book Reviews
7:03 am
Wed January 30, 2013

Under Ogawa's Macabre, Metafictional Spell

iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Mon February 25, 2013 7:23 pm

It used to be a truism among critics of British poetry that Keats and most of his fellow Romantic poets worked in the shadow of John Milton. I'm not making a perfect analogy when I suggest that most contemporary Japanese writers seem to be working under the shadow of Haruki Murakami, but I hope it highlights the spirit of the situation.

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