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  • AP PHOTOS: The most charitable stars Thursday, 18 Oct 2012 | 10:22 AM ET

    LOS ANGELES-- Celebrity charity work has been around as long as celebrity itself. "Beethoven was doing charity concerts," says Myrlia Purcell, founder of LooktotheStars.org, a website that tracks celebrity charity events around the world. Good thing Annie Lennox is around.

  • Benefits can flow both ways at celeb charity galas Thursday, 18 Oct 2012 | 10:19 AM ET

    LOS ANGELES-- The Beverly Hilton's International Ballroom will soon be filled with flowers, chiffon, fine china and crystal stemware for a starry black-tie ball costing couples as much as $20,000 to attend.

  • Cancer groups to improve disclosures on pink wares Thursday, 18 Oct 2012 | 10:12 AM ET

    ALBANY, N.Y.-- The nation's two largest breast cancer charities have adopted guidelines for fuller disclosure by those selling pink products and services in their names, New York's attorney general said Thursday.

  • Markets falter in run-up to EU summit Thursday, 18 Oct 2012 | 10:11 AM ET

    Though expectations have diminished in recent days that the 27- nation EU will agree on the terms of a banking union, investors are keen to hear updates on the economic fate of Spain, as well as Greece, which appears to be near to securing its next batch of bailout cash.

  • Official proposes bullet tax to curb Chicago crime Thursday, 18 Oct 2012 | 10:11 AM ET

    CHICAGO-- As Chicago struggles to quell gang violence that has contributed to a jump in homicides, a top elected official wants to tax the sale of every bullet and firearm _ an effort even she acknowledges could spark a legal challenge.

  • Audit looks at Alaska film tax-credit program Thursday, 18 Oct 2012 | 10:09 AM ET

    It cited a consultant's findings, indicating that between July 2008 and February 2012, the program generated an estimated $2 in economic activity in Alaska for every $1 in tax credits issued. Eighty-four percent of direct wages for qualified productions went to non- Alaska residents.

  • North Dakota race comes down to ticket-splitters Thursday, 18 Oct 2012 | 10:09 AM ET

    BISMARCK, N.D.-- Dwight Thompson is a solid conservative businessman who will be voting for a Republican for president and a Democrat for Senate.

  • Pa. university faculty take 1st step toward strike Thursday, 18 Oct 2012 | 10:08 AM ET

    HARRISBURG, Pa.-- The union representing faculty at Pennsylvania's 14 state-owned universities is taking the first step toward a possible strike. Union officials say delegates from each campus will meet Saturday in State College for a strike authorization vote.

  • Federal approval sought for Montana coal railroad Thursday, 18 Oct 2012 | 10:07 AM ET

    BILLINGS, Mont.-- Owners of a proposed railroad serving southeastern Montana's coal fields have applied to the federal government to build an 83- mile line carrying up to 20 million tons of fuel annually.

  • Humane Society hatches bid to unseat Iowa lawmaker Thursday, 18 Oct 2012 | 10:07 AM ET

    Steve King of Iowa has little use for the Humane Society, particularly when it comes to laws designed to give calves, pregnant sows and hens a little more freedom on the farm.

  • Pa. Supreme Court hears drilling, zoning debate Thursday, 18 Oct 2012 | 10:06 AM ET

    PITTSBURGH-- The Pennsylvania Supreme Court had an unusual standing-room-only crowd Wednesday, as lawyers debated a new law that regulates the state's booming natural gas industry. The Supreme Court currently has three Republicans and three Democrats, and cannot overturn a lower court decision on a 3-3 tie vote.

  • Measure of future economic activity up 0.6 percent Thursday, 18 Oct 2012 | 10:05 AM ET

    WASHINGTON-- A measure of U.S. economic activity designed to give signals about the future posted a solid gain in September, rebounding after a dip in August. The index is still signaling weak growth, however. The major areas of weakness came from a decline in the Institute for Supply Management's new orders index and in consumer confidence.

  • Experts seek to reduce Miss. infant mortality rate Thursday, 18 Oct 2012 | 10:05 AM ET

    JACKSON, Miss.-- Mississippi has the nation's highest infant mortality rate, and experts are trying to change that by teaching people about healthy pregnancies and proper sleep conditions for babies. Yvonne Maddox, deputy director of the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development at the National Institutes of Health.

  • Pa. health-insurance exchange plan stalls Thursday, 18 Oct 2012 | 10:04 AM ET

    HARRISBURG, Pa.-- A state-run health insurance exchange is unlikely to be ready for a scheduled January 2014 rollout, Pennsylvania's top insurance regulator said Wednesday.

  • Winds leave thousands without power in Colorado Thursday, 18 Oct 2012 | 10:04 AM ET

    Xcel Energy Inc. says the blackouts affected about 50,000 customers in Denver, Fort Collins and Greeley starting at 10 p.m. Tuesday. The National Weather Service said gusts of up to 60 mph were reported in the Denver area and the northeast Colorado plains Tuesday night. Fort Morgan, Akron and Holyoke in northeastern Colorado reported 40 mph gusts.

  • Ormet's deferred Ohio electric payments approved Thursday, 18 Oct 2012 | 10:03 AM ET

    COLUMBUS, Ohio-- State regulators in Ohio are allowing aluminum manufacturer Ormet Corp. to defer electric bill payments for the remainder of the year. Ormet, located near Hannibal in eastern Ohio, has benefited from a unique electric-rate subsidy with American Electric Power Co. that has reduced its costs by more than $150 million since 2009..

  • England's Cole fined $145,000 for Twitter post Thursday, 18 Oct 2012 | 10:03 AM ET

    LONDON-- England's Football Association has fined Chelsea's Ashley Cole $145,000 for insulting the governing body in an offensive Twitter post. The England defender had reacted angrily to an FA commission questioning the evidence he gave in defending teammate John Terry against a charge of racially abusing an opponent.

  • Survey: English ticket prices increase further Thursday, 18 Oct 2012 | 10:02 AM ET

    A BBC survey released Thursday showed the average price of the cheapest match ticket in the Premier League has increased from 24.87 pounds last year to 28.30 pounds this year, an increase of nearly 14 percent. Newcastle United offered the best overall value in the Premier League for a day out, charging 23 pounds for a ticket, a program, a pie and a cup of tea.

  • Oil, gas production up in Utah Thursday, 18 Oct 2012 | 10:01 AM ET

    Utah and industry officials say oil and gas production was up across the region and country last year because of drilling on state and private lands, not federal lands.

  • Two days after NHL offer, union set to have a say Thursday, 18 Oct 2012 | 10:01 AM ET

    On Tuesday, the NHL made its strongest, and most public, pitch yet to save a full season. "I hope we can get going ASAP," Red Wings defenseman Niklas Kronwall told The Associated Press on Wednesday. " Fehr met with the union to formulate a response, and in a letter to players and agents said the management plan would cost his members more than $1.6 billion over six years.