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  • BERLIN, Oct 28- With the U.S. presidential election too close to call, hundreds of thousands of Americans living in Europe have been posting their absentee ballots with a sense that they could truly make a difference on Nov. 6.

  • WASHINGTON-- You'd think health insurance CEOs would be chilling the bubbly with Republican Mitt Romney's improved election prospects, but instead they're in a quandary.

  • CHARLOTTE, N.C.-- Here was Chas Kaufmann's life before the Great Recession: $28,000 in restaurant tabs in a year, cruises, house parties with fireworks. Now: "We mainly shop at Sam's Club and portion out our meals. We spend $4 to $5 a night on eating. "

  • BEIJING-- A Hong Kong newspaper says Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao's family has denied a report that it has amassed assets worth $2.7 billion. The New York Times reported Friday that most of the wealth was accumulated after Wen rose to high office in 2002.. The New York Times has said it stands by its story.

  • BERLIN-- Germany's finance minister has dismissed suggestions that governments and other public creditors could agree to a so-called haircut on their Greek debt holdings.

  • *New York and New Jersey area could be hit first. *Sandy may halt, flood New York City subway system. HATTERAS ISLAND, N.C., Oct 27- Hurricane Sandy closed in on the United States on Saturday as coastal communities along the East Coast scrambled to prepare for torrential rains, high winds, major flooding and power outages a week before the presidential election.

  • Ukraine's relations with the West have soured over the jailing of Tymoshenko, which prompted the European Union to shelve a long-awaited partnership deal with Kiev. If the West turns a cold shoulder to Ukraine, Moscow is likely to court Kiev to create a greater economic and political alliance.

  • Washington; Writing by David Adams and Tom Brown; Editing by Will Dunham).

  • *New York and New Jersey area could be hit first. HATTERAS ISLAND, N.C., Oct 27- Hurricane Sandy closed in on the United States on Saturday as coastal communities along the East Coast scrambled to prepare for torrential rains, high winds, major flooding and power outages a week before the presidential election.

  • *New York and New Jersey area could be hit first. HATTERAS ISLAND, N.C., Oct 27- Hurricane Sandy closed in on the United States on Saturday as coastal communities along the East Coast scrambled to prepare for torrential rains, high winds, major flooding and power outages a week before the presidential election.

  • *New York and New Jersey area could be hit first. HATTERAS ISLAND, N.C., Oct 27- Hurricane Sandy closed in on the United States on Saturday as coastal communities along the East Coast scrambled to prepare for torrential rains, high winds, major flooding and power outages a week before the presidential election.

  • MADRID-- Spanish shepherds led a flock of more than 2,000 sheep through central Madrid on Sunday in defense of ancient grazing, migration and droving rights threatened by urban sprawl and modern agricultural practices.

  • NEW YORK-- New York City announced the closings of its mass transit and school systems, both the nation's largest, and ordered residents to leave some low-lying areas Sunday ahead of the massive storm approaching the eastern third of the U.S.

  • HATTERAS ISLAND, N.C., Oct 27- Hurricane Sandy closed in on the United States on Saturday as it threatened to smack the eastern third of the country with torrential rains, high winds, major flooding and power outages a week before the U.S. presidential election.

  • HATTERAS ISLAND, N.C., Oct 27- Hurricane Sandy closed in on the United States on Saturday as it threatened to hit the eastern third of the country with torrential rains, high winds, major flooding and power outages a week before U.S. presidential and congressional elections.

  • ABOARD AIR FORCE ONE, Oct 27- President Barack Obama will continue to push for middle-class tax cuts as part of his economic agenda, but the White House is not considering a specific new tax cut plan at this time, a spokesman for Obama said on Saturday. It is something he'll continue to push for,'' White House spokesman Josh Earnest told reporters.

  • WASHINGTON-- The storm that is threatening 60 million Americans in the eastern third of the nation in just a couple of days with high winds, drenching rains, extreme tides, flooding and probably snow is much more than just an ordinary weather system. Start with Sandy, an ordinary late summer hurricane from the tropics, moving north up the East Coast.

  • *Hitachi made best offer, looks set to win- source. TOKYO/ DUESSELDORF, Germany, Oct 27- Hitachi Ltd, Japan's largest industrial electronics maker, is close to buying British nuclear new-build project Horizon, two people familiar with the matter told Reuters.

  • HATTERAS ISLAND, N.C., Oct 27- Hurricane Sandy closed in on the United States on Saturday, where it threatens to hit the eastern third of the country with torrential rains, high winds, major flooding and power outages a week before U.S. presidential and congressional elections.

  • WASHINGTON-- The storm that is threatening 60 million Americans in the eastern third of the nation with persistent high winds, drenching rains, extreme tides and heavy flooding is not one simple weather system. The hurricane is being steered by a giant ridge of air centered over Greenland, blocking its normal path north.