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Top News & Analysis Chicago

  • NEW YORK-- ABC News said it wanted to step beyond reporting on the gang violence in Chicago to explore ways of reducing it. There have been more than 400 murders in Chicago this year, with the murder rate four times what it is in New York, ABC said.

  • CHICAGO-- In a modest milestone for President Barack Obama's high-speed rail vision, test runs will start zooming along a small section of the Amtrak line between Chicago and St. Louis at 110 mph Friday. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood and Illinois Gov.

  • CHICAGO-- Shares of USG Corp. rose Thursday after the building products maker said its third-quarter loss shrank. In the three months ended Sept. 30, the Chicago company reported a loss of $29 million, or 28 cents per share.

  • TRENTON, N.J.-- Shares of RR Donnelley fell and then partially recovered Thursday amid news the printer and communications consultant had mistakenly filed a draft version of client Google Inc.' s third-quarter financial results to the Securities and Exchange Commission hours before the final version was to be submitted.

  • CHICAGO-- Railcar leasing company GATX Corp. said Thursday that its third-quarter earnings rose on a surge in orders for tank cars to haul oil, gas and chemicals. The company earned $53.8 million, or $1.13 per share, compared with $32.9 million, or 70 cents per share, a year ago. But stripping out those one-time items, GATX still topped Wall Street expectations.

  • ALBANY, N.Y.-- The digital divide is wider than ever between diners who talk, tweet and snap pictures mid-meal and those who wish they'd just shut up, shut down and be present. "There's no place to get away from the chatter," said Julie Liberty of Miami, who started the Facebook page "Ban Cell Phones From Restaurants" earlier this year. "

  • CHICAGO-- Illinois' unemployment rate dipped to 8.8 percent in September. And the Illinois Department of Employment Security says the seasonally adjusted figures reported Thursday show Illinois' unemployment rate has fallen 10 times in the past 13 months.

  • Michele Bachmann's tendency to cause a ruckus on Capitol Hill made her a tea party sensation. Allen West of Florida, Steve King of Iowa and Joe Walsh of Illinois are all embroiled in tough and expensive races that are drawing plenty of spending by friends and foes from around the country.

  • CHICAGO-- A leading venture capital firm is opening an office in Chicago, giving a boost to Mayor Rahm Emanuel's efforts to attract high-tech businesses and entrepreneurs to the city.

  • NEW YORK-- The Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright of " Clybourne Park" says he recently withdrew permission for a Berlin theater company to produce the play after learning that one of the actors would perform the roles in blackface.

  • 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.

  • 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.

  • PARIS-- The burglars dashed out the back door with seven masterworks, then sped on screeching tires into the night. If the thieves who robbed Rotterdam's Kunsthal exhibition this week don't have a plan, the stolen art could quickly become a burden.

  • CHICAGO-- Grains futures rose Wednesday on the Chicago Board of Trade. Wheat for December delivery gained 8.5 cents to $8.5625 per bushel; December corn rose 7.25 cents to $7.455 per bushel; December oats increased 3.25 cents to $3.9575 per bushel and November soybeans gained 15.5 cents to $15.0925 per bushel.

  • CHICAGO-- Grain prices rose Wednesday in early trading on the Chicago Board of Trade. Wheat for December delivery rose 3.25 cents to $8.51 per bushel; December corn gained 0.75 cent to $7.39 per bushel; December oats were unchanged at $3.9225 per bushel and November soybeans increased 4.25 cents to $14.98 per bushel.

  • CHICAGO-- A for-profit nursing home company owned by a politically connected Chicago businessman is a partner in a project Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn announced Tuesday that aims to control health spending for high-cost Medicaid recipients.

  • CHICAGO-- Northern Trust Corp. said Wednesday that its third-quarter net income rose 5 percent due to higher fees from clients for managing their money. The wealth management firm, which is based in Chicago, earned $178.8 million, or 73 cents per share, in the three months through Sept. 30, up from $170.4 million, or 70 cents per share, in the same quarter last year.

  • CHICAGO-- Houston, San Francisco and South Florida are bidding for the 2016 and 2017 Super Bowls. NFL owners will vote next May between San Francisco _ the 49 ers are building a new stadium in Santa Clara, Calif., _ and South Florida for the 50th Super Bowl in 2016. The loser of that race will then compete with Houston for hosting the 2017 game.

  • CHICAGO-- The NFL is doubling down on London. The league announced Tuesday that the Minnesota Vikings will host the Pittsburgh Steelers at London's Wembley Stadium on Sept. 29, 2013. This is the first time the NFL will play two regular-season games in London in the same season.

  • ABC, NBC and the CW all debuted new dramas last Wednesday to varied receptions. It finished a strong second behind CBS' long-running "CSI: Crime Scene Investigation" at the 10 p.m. ET slot. Despite that showing, long-slumping NBC can boast about its best showing for an early TV season in a decade.