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  • Other states with cases are Tennessee, Virginia, Florida, Maryland, North Carolina and Indiana. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control reported 47 cases of meningitis on Friday, while Michigan reported an additional two cases and North Carolina one not included in the CDC count.

  • *White House slams Welch tweet as "ludicrous". BOSTON/ WASHINGTON, Oct 5- BOSTON/ WASHINGTON, Oct 5- Jack Welch, the former chairman of General Electric Co, provoked cries of outrage in Washington on Friday when he suggested that the White House manipulated September job figures for political gains.

  • Other states with cases are Tennessee, Virginia, Florida, Maryland, North Carolina and Indiana. Tennessee accounts for most of those, and state officials said on Friday the number there had risen to 29 cases, up four from Thursday. Three of the deaths so far have been in Tennessee, where the outbreak began, and one each in Virginia and Maryland.

  • Jobs report boosts Obama; Romney not impressed Friday, 5 Oct 2012 | 5:57 PM ET

    FAIRFAX, Va.-- Mitt Romney was still celebrating his widely praised debate performance when the campaign lurched in a different direction. Incumbent and challenger alike campaigned in battleground states during the day, each man starting out in Virginia before the president headed for Ohio and Romney flew to Florida.

  • FAIRFAX, Va., Oct 5- President Barack Obama on Friday hailed a drop in the U.S. jobless rate to the lowest level since he took office, saying the country had "come too far to turn back now," as he sought to recover from a lackluster debate performance against Republican challenger Mitt Romney.

  • Jobs report brings down debate high in Romney camp Friday, 5 Oct 2012 | 5:46 PM ET

    ABINGDON, Va.-- The cheering stopped on Mitt Romney's campaign plane Friday morning. The day before, aides had whistled and clapped when the Denver control tower commended the Republican presidential nominee's debate performance.

  • Problems found at peanut butter plant in 2010 Friday, 5 Oct 2012 | 5:37 PM ET

    The FDA said Friday that a recent inspection found salmonella in the plant which produced Trader Joe's Valencia Creamy Peanut Butter and many other nut butters and nut products for several large national grocery chains. FDA has found problems at Sunland before.

  • US unemployment below 8 pct, first time since 2009 Friday, 5 Oct 2012 | 5:17 PM ET

    WASHINGTON-- The U.S. unemployment rate dropped below 8 percent for the first time since the month President Barack Obama took office, a surprising lift for both the economy and his re-election hopes in the final weeks of the campaign. It fell because a government survey of households found that 873,000 more people had jobs, the biggest jump since January 2003.

  • *White House slams Welch tweet as "ludicrous". BOSTON/ WASHINGTON, Oct 5- Jack Welch, the lionized former chairman of General Electric Co, provoked cries of outrage in Washington on Friday when he appeared to accuse the White House of manipulating September job figures for political gains.

  • Oct 5- The decision by Standard& Poor's to change the calculation of a key credit metric has left some investors accusing the agency of watering down standards, as it seeks to rebuild its once-dominant market share in the rating of commercial mortgage-backed securities.

  • NASHVILLE, Tenn., Oct 5- Tennessee confirmed on Friday four more cases of rare fungal meningitis, as health officials in 23 states scrambled to notify thousands of patients who received steroid injections linked to an outbreak that has killed five people. Three of the dead were in Tennessee, where the outbreak began, and one each in Virginia and Maryland.

  • Fleetmatics surges in debut on NYSE Friday, 5 Oct 2012 | 10:56 AM ET

    NEW YORK-- Shares of Fleetmatics jumped in their first day of trading on the New York Stock Exchange. The IPO priced at the high end of the $15 to $17 range Fleetmatics previously projected.

  • Romney shifts to center as his confidence grows Friday, 5 Oct 2012 | 10:23 AM ET

    WASHINGTON-- Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney is shifting sharply to the political center as he begins to deliver a closing argument aimed at a slice of moderate, undecided voters a month before Election Day.

  • Romney blasts Obama despite drop in unemployment Friday, 5 Oct 2012 | 9:43 AM ET

    WASHINGTON-- Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney says a drop in the nation's unemployment rate to 7.8 percent "is not what a real recovery looks like." The former Massachusetts governor responded to the September jobs report out Friday by arguing that Obama has a failed record on the economy.

  • Some answers about meningitis outbreak Friday, 5 Oct 2012 | 9:17 AM ET

    Federal and state health officials are investigating an outbreak of a rare and deadly form of meningitis. Most of the cases are in Tennessee, the rest in Florida, Indiana, Maryland, North Carolina and Virginia. A: A specialty pharmacy, New England Compounding Center in Framingham, Mass., custom-made the steroid.

  • Clinics rush to warn patients of tainted steroid Friday, 5 Oct 2012 | 9:15 AM ET

    The Food and Drug Administration urged physicians not to use any products at all from the Massachusetts pharmacy that supplied the preservative-free methylprednisolone acetate.

  • NEW YORK, Oct 5- The U.S. unemployment rate dropped to a near four-year low of 7.8 percent in September, a potential boost to President Barack Obama's re-election bid. RUSSELL PRICE, SENIOR ECONOMIST, AMERIPRISE FINANCIAL, DETROIT. ECONOMIST, RBC CAPITAL MARKETS, NEW YORK.

  • NEW YORK, Oct 5- The U.S. unemployment rate dropped to a near four-year low of 7.8 percent in September, a potential boost to President Barack Obama's re-election bid. STORY: TABLE GRAPHIC: COMMENTS: JOHN KILDUFF, PARTNER, AGAIN CAPITAL LLC, NEW YORK. RON FLORANCE, MANAGING DIRECTOR OF INVESTMENT STRATEGY FOR WELLS FARGO PRIVATE BANK BASED IN SCOTTSDALE, ARIZONA.

  • NEW YORK, Oct 5- The U.S. unemployment rate dropped to a near four-year low of 7.8 percent in September, a potential boost to President Barack Obama's re-election bid. RON FLORANCE, MANAGING DIRECTOR OF INVESTMENT STRATEGY FOR WELLS FARGO PRIVATE BANK BASED IN SCOTTSDALE, ARIZONA. "It's a little confusing, to be honest with you.

  • NEW YORK, Oct 5- The U.S. unemployment rate dropped to a near four-year low of 7.8 percent in September, a potential boost to President Barack Obama's re-election bid. OMER ESINER, CHIEF MARKET ANALYST, COMMONWEALTH FOREIGN EXCHANGE. "The headline of the day is clearly the drop in the unemployment rate, which was a big surprise.

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