Existing Home Sales Rise 1.3%
Existing home sales rose in April for the first time in 2014, an encouraging sign amid growing worries about the housing recovery's sagging momentum in recent months. Sales crept up 1.3% from March to a seasonally adjusted rate of 4.65 million, the National Association of Realtors said Thursday. The pace is still almost 7% below April 2013.
Senate Agrees On $11B Highway Funding Measure
The Senate is moving toward passage of an $11 billion measure to temporarily fix a multibillion-dollar shortfall in federal highway and transit programs. The chamber reached agreement Wednesday that sets up a vote next week on several alternatives. But senators will likely end up simply adopting a measure that passed the GOP-controlled House by a sweeping bipartisan vote last week, which would send it directly to President Barack Obama. The House bill would provide $10.8 billion to keep the federal Highway Trust Fund solvent through May 2015.
The Ardent Fans Of Turkey's Erdogan
Turkey's populist prime minister is running for president and legions of young female supporters are rallying behind him. Friday evening, Turkey's prime minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan broke his Ramadan fast with hundreds of supporters at one of his first campaign events in Istanbul since announcing his bid to run for president. Bus-loads of fans jammed into a seaside park to catch a glimpse of their beloved leader, while his closest allies, including glammed-up celebrities, and politicians from his Justice and Development Party dined in a walled-off section, snapping selfies.
Hilary Duff Announces New Single "Chasing The Sun" And Sets An Album Release Date For Fall 2014
Those who worried Hilary Duff's music career was "So Yesterday" needn't worry any longer! The pop star announced her musical comeback Wednesday after signing a contract with RCA Records. Her new single, "Chasing the Sun," was written by Colbie Caillat, Jason Reeves and Toby Gad. It will be available for digital download on July 29, the same day the music video is scheduled to debut on VEVO.
Senate Bill Targets Companies That Move Overseas
The Senate voted Wednesday to advance an election-year bill limiting tax breaks for U.S. companies that move operations overseas. Senate Democratic leaders say the bill would end senseless tax breaks for companies that ship jobs abroad. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev said, "It would end the absurd practice of American taxpayers bankrolling the outsourcing of their very own jobs." According to the Joint Committee on Taxation, which analyzes tax bills for Congress, the bill would cost U.S. companies that move overseas $143 million in additional taxes over the next decade.
Exclusive: Ukraine Rebel Commander Acknowledges Fighters Had BUK Missile
A powerful Ukrainian rebel leader has confirmed that pro-Russian separatists had anti-aircraft missiles of the type Washington says were used to shoot down Malaysia Airlines flight MH17. In an interview with Reuters, Alexander Khodakovsky, commander of the Vostok Battalion, acknowledged for the first time since the airliner was brought down in eastern Ukraine on Thursday that the rebels did possess the BUK missile system. He also indicated that the BUK may have originated in Russia and could have been sent back to remove proof of its presence. Before the Malaysian plane was shot down, rebels had boasted of obtaining the BUK missiles, which can shoot down airliners at cruising height. But since the disaster the separatists' main group, the self-proclaimed People’s Republic of Donetsk, has repeatedly denied ever having possessed such weapons. Since the airliner crashed with the loss of all 298 on board, the most contentious issue has been who fired the missile that brought the jet down in an area where government forces are fighting pro-Russian rebels.
Lana Del Rey Has "Slept With A Lot Of Guys In The Industry," Prefers "Physical Love"
Lana Del Rey isn't afraid of owning her sexuality. In her new song "F--king My Way Up to the Top," the 28-year-old acknowledges the rumored reason for much of her success. But as she tells Complex's 2014 August-September issue, the provocative lyrics are just "commentary, like, 'I know what you think of me,' and I'm alluding to that." "You know, I have slept with a lot of guys in the industry," she adds, "but none of them helped me get my record deals. Which is annoying." That said, Lana is the first to admit she likes "a physical love," saying, "I like a hands-on love. How can I say this without getting into too much trouble? I like a tangible, passionate love."
Ariana Grande's Grandfather Passes Away, Grieving Singer Says "It's The Hardest Thing Imaginable"
Ariana Grande revealed to her fans that her grandfather lost his battle with cancer last night. The pop star took to Twitter to share the tragic news, and expressed her gratitude for those who have supported her through this difficult time. "I lost you to the summer wind," she wrote late Tuesday evening. "Thaaaanks to my best friends who stayed up with me all night talking and helped me pull myself together temporarily this am. Flyin back home." Despite his passing, the 21-year-old singer still made it to her scheduled appearance on Good Morning America Wednesday. The "Problem" songstress recently traveled to her native Florida around Independence Day to be with her grandparents. She shared several photos of family members at her grandfather's bedside and thanked fans for their unwavering support.
LeBron James -- Dropped $2k On Cupcake Apology ... Proceeds To Benefit Charity
LeBron James' cupcake apology keeps getting better -- because now we've learned the NBA star dropped nearly $2k on the treats for his Akron neighbors and HALF of the bill is going to charity. LeBron's people initially called the Baker Boulevard Decadent Cupcakes store a few days ago and ordered 840 cupcakes to send to neighbors to apologize for the media madness that consumed the neighborhood during his big NBA decision.
Matt Leinart -- FIRES BACK AT DEAN CAIN ... 'Stick To Being D List'
Matt Leinart isn't taking too kindly to being dissed by Dean Cain -- and now the former NFL quarterback is firing back at the Superman actor ... telling the guy to "stick to being D list." Leinart is clearly pissed about the comments Cain made to TMZ Sports ... in which he said Johnny Manziel should be careful about running with the Hollywood crowd because he wouldn't want to end up like Matt Leinart. Then came the personal shots at Dean -- a former football player who was cut by the Buffalo Bills in training camp after suffering a knee injury.