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  • *Only 2 points behind in Reuters/ Ipsos poll. PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla., Oct 7- Mitt Romney appeared on Sunday to have halted his perilous slide in the polls and is back to running a close race with President Barack Obama as he prepares a new assault on the Democrat over foreign policy.

  • *Most news cases in Michigan. The widening outbreak has alarmed U.S. health officials and focused attention on regulations of pharmaceutical compounding companies like the one that produced the drugs, the New England Compounding Center Inc in Framingham, Massachusetts.

  • Most of the new cases were reported in Michigan, where the total increased to 20 from five. The widening outbreak has alarmed health officials across the United States and focused attention on regulations of pharmaceutical compounding companies like the one that produced the drugs, the New England Compounding Center Inc in Framingham, Massachusetts.

  • The cases have been traced to three lots of the steroid prepared by a pharmaceutical compounding plant in Massachusetts, New England Compounding Center Inc.. So far, cases of people becoming ill after receiving the steroid injections have been reported in Florida, Indiana, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, North Carolina, Ohio, Tennessee and Virginia.

  • *Ohio and Minnesota latest to report cases. The latest two deaths were reported on Saturday in Michigan, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Other states with reported cases of people who fell ill after receiving the injections- primarily for back pain- are Michigan, Tennessee, Virginia, Florida, Maryland, North Carolina and Indiana.

  • NASHVILLE, Tenn., Oct 6- A widening outbreak of fungal meningitis has spread to Minnesota, which reported two cases to become the eighth U.S. state affected, officials said on Saturday.

  • Crisis highlights running dispute over US fish law Saturday, 6 Oct 2012 | 11:53 AM ET

    BOSTON-- The law that governs the nation's fisheries was passed 36 years ago to oust foreign boats working in U.S. waters. The law has become "an impediment to keeping the fishing industry alive," said Scituate fisherman Frank Mirachi.

  • 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.