Suspicious packages sent to Robert De Niro Joe Biden AP

A New York police bomb squad says it removed a package of concern Thursday morning from a building in Manhattan associated with actor Robert De Niro.The device was taken from 345 Greenwich St. in the Tribeca neighbourhood around 6:30 a.m.Update: The package has been removed from the location. Expect a heavy police presence and residual traffic in the area as we continue our investigation with our law enforcement partners. #Tribeca— NYPD NEWS (@NYPDnews) October 25, 2018According to The Associate Press, a law enforcement source says the device found Thursday appears to be linked to the others sent to Democratic figures and CNN’s New York City hub. The package looked similar to the others and had a similar device inside.The source said the package looked similar to the others and had a similar device inside.The United States Secret Service intercepted suspicious devices sent to former President Barack Obama in Washington and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in Chappaqua, N.Y. on Wednesday. The Secret Service said the packages were found during a routine mail screening.A police bomb squad was sent to CNN’s offices in New York City Wednesday morning and the newsroom was evacuated because of a suspicious package.A similar package was also sent to billionaire Democratic philanthropist George Soros on Monday. A law enforcement official told the Associated Press that the package discovered at Soros’ home appeared to be a pipe bomb and was in a package placed in a mailbox outside the gates of the compound. A Soros employee opened it just inside the gates, not near Soros’ quarters.None of the bombs detonated, and nobody was hurt. read more

Fed survey US economy expanding moderately in early part of year led

WASHINGTON – Strong auto sales, hiring gains and a continued housing recovery helped the U.S. economy grow throughout the country in January and February, according to a survey released Wednesday by the Federal Reserve.The Fed says 10 of its 12 banking districts reported moderate or modest growth, while Boston and Chicago districts reported slow growth.Consumer spending increased in most regions, although growth slowed in many districts and much of the increases were driven by auto sales. Many districts said that consumers pulled back slightly on spending outside of autos after seeing taxes rise and gas prices increase. Some also expressed concerns about federal spending cuts that started on March 1.Housing markets showed more strength in nearly all parts of the country, while manufacturing showed modest improvements in most regions. And most districts reported some improvement in individual jobs markets.The report, called the Beige Book, provides anecdotal information on economic conditions through February 22. The information will be used as the basis for the Fed’s policy discussion at the March 19-20 meeting. Many economists believe Fed officials will take no new steps when they meet.In January, the Fed stood behind aggressive steps it launched in December to try to reduce unemployment. It repeated that it would keep its key short-term interest rate at a record low at least until unemployment falls below 6.5 per cent. And the Fed said it would keep buying Treasurys and mortgage bonds to help lower borrowing costs and encourage spending.The unemployment rate was 7.9 per cent in January when the Fed last met.The economy has shown improvement since then, even as Americans paid higher taxes and automatic government spending cuts loomed. On Jan. 1, nearly all Americans who draw a paycheque began paying higher Social Security taxes and income taxes rose for the highest earning workers.The tax increases and broader budget debate in Washington haven’t slowed financial markets.The Dow Jones industrial average closed Tuesday at a record high and kept rising Wednesday. The index of 30 big corporations has more than doubled since hitting a low during the financial crisis in March 2009.Consumer confidence rose in February from January, according to surveys by both the Conference Board and the University of Michigan. Factories and service companies both grew at the fastest pace in at least a year, according to surveys issued Friday and Tuesday by the Institute for Supply Management.And payroll processor ADP said Wednesday that U.S. businesses added 198,000 jobs in February. The private survey also revised January’s hiring figures to show companies added 215,000 jobs that month, 23,000 more than what had initially been reported.The figure suggests that the government’s February jobs report, to be issued Friday, may come in above economists’ forecasts. Analysts expect it will show the economy added 152,000 jobs and the unemployment rate dipped to 7.8 per cent from 7.9 per cent in January. by Martin Crutsinger, The Associated Press Posted Mar 6, 2013 2:20 pm MDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email Fed survey: US economy expanding moderately in early part of year, led by consumer spending read more