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In the search for life beyond Earth, astronomers should look for signs of pollution in the atmospheres of alien planets outside the Earth's solar system, a new study says. The next-generation James Webb Space Telescope, which is set to launch in 2018, could hunt for worlds harboring alien life by sniffing their atmospheres for chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs), greenhouse gases that destroy ozone in the Earth's atmosphere. Of course, to very advanced civilizations, Earth's own greenhouse gases might signal a primitive world, the scientists said. "We consider industrial pollution as a sign of intelligent life, but perhaps civilizations more advanced than us, with their own SETI programs, will consider pollution as a sign of unintelligent life since it's not smart to contaminate your own air," study leader Henry Lin, a student at Harvard University, said in a statement.
Women who are more educated than their husbands used to have a higher chance of divorce, but a new study found that this trend stopped in the 1990s. A team of researchers examined statistics on heterosexual marriages in the United States from 1950 through 2009, and found changes over the decades in the rates of divorce. "These trends are consistent with a shift away from a breadwinner-homemaker model of marriage toward a more egalitarian model of marriage in which women's status is less threatening to men's gender identity," the study's lead researcher Christine Schwartz, an associate professor of sociology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, said in a statement. Before the early 1980s, husbands commonly had more education than their wives, the researchers found.
By Richard Lough BUENOS AIRES (Reuters) - Argentina will send a negotiating team to New York on Monday for further talks with a U.S. court-appointed mediator in a debt dispute with 'holdout' investors, cabinet chief Jorge Capitanich said, with just three days to go to avert a default. If the deadlock persists, U.S. District Judge Thomas Griesa will prevent Argentina from making a July 30 deadline for a coupon payment on exchanged bonds, triggering a new default. Argentina wants a stay of Griesa's 2012 ruling ordering the Buenos Aires government to pay the holdouts. For this reason Argentina wants a stay," Capitanich told reporters.
NEW YORK (Reuters) - U.S. stocks were little changed on Monday as investors looked ahead to the latest economic data and corporate earnings to give direction to a market near record levels. The Dow Jones industrial average fell 18.43 points, or 0.11 percent, to 16,942.14, the S&P 500 lost 1.31 points, or 0.07 percent, to 1,977.03 and the Nasdaq Composite added 0.30 points, or 0.01 percent, to 4,449.86. (Reporting by Angela Moon; Editing by Bernadette Baum)
Britain's Lloyds Banking Group has agreed to pay fines totaling $370 million to U.S. and British authorities investigating its part in a global interest rate rigging scandal and manipulating fees for a government lending scheme. The settlement is the seventh joint penalty handed out by U.S. and British regulators in connection with the attempted manipulation of the London interbank offered rate, or Libor, and other similar benchmarks, which are used to price around $450 trillion of financial products worldwide. Lloyds' settlement follows British rivals Barclays and Royal Bank of Scotland , which agreed to pay fines of $453 million and $612 million respectively in 2012 and 2013. The FCA said the total UK fine of 105 million pounds include 70 million pounds for attempting to manipulate fees payable to the Bank of England for the firm's participation in the special liquidity scheme, a taxpayer backed government scheme to support British banks during the financial crisis.
(Reuters) - Discount store chain Dollar Tree Inc said it would buy rival Family Dollar Stores Inc for about $8.5 billion, creating North America's biggest discount retailer. Shares of Family Dollar, which has been under pressure from activist investor Carl Icahn to sell itself, rose almost 25 percent to $75.50 in premarket trading on Monday. Dollar Tree shares were up 8.8 percent at $59. Dollar Tree, whose products cost $1 or less, caters to the middle class.
Those children who have formed attachments to their pets may develop empathy toward other animals, too, which can result in greater avoidance of eating meat, the researchers suggested. "Once an individual feels empathy toward animals, it makes it harder to eat animals," study author Hank Rothgerber, a professor of psychology at Bellarmine University and a vegetarian for more than 12 years, told Live Science in an email. "For these individuals [who get attached to their pets as kids], the love they feel toward their childhood pet(s) was likely so strong that they have a hard time not seeing some aspect of their companion animal in the meat that they wish to avoid," Rothgerber added. In the study, Rothgerber and colleagues asked 273 people if they ate meat, and, if they did, how much meat they normally ate, as well as whether they owned a pet in childhood and how attached they were to their pets.
By Marc Jones LONDON (Reuters) - The euro was stuck near its lowest level since November and Russian markets tumbled for a third straight day on Monday as new European sanctions for Moscow chilled the already frosty relationship between the two. The 28-nation European Union reached an outline agreement on Friday on its first economic sanctions on Russia. Russia warned the moves would hamper cooperation between the two and undermine the fight against terrorism, although Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on Monday that Moscow would not impose tit-for-tat measures. Europe's main bourses were flat in subdued trade as strong earnings updates and relief over Russia's response, and that the EU measures had steered away from Russia's gas industry, balanced concerns about the impact of the sanctions.
One of the greatest pleasures for summer stargazers is viewing the splendor of the Milky Way. The Milky Way is still there, but you need to make a special effort to see it. At this time of year in the early evening, the core of the Milky Way galaxy looms just above the southern horizon. The height of the eastern arch of the Milky Way is marked by the three bright stars of the “Summer Triangle”: Vega, Deneb, and Altair.
(Reuters) - Tyson Foods Inc , the biggest U.S. meat processor, said it would sell its Mexican and Brazilian poultry businesses to JBS SA , the world's No. 1 meat producer, for $575 million. Tyson also reported a 4.4 percent increase in third-quarter profit and forecast sales for fiscal year ending September 2015 above the average analyst estimate. The company said it would use proceeds from the sale to pay down debt associated with its $7.7 billion acquisition of Hillshire Brands Co , which is expected to close in the current quarter. "Although these are good businesses with great team members, we haven't had the necessary scale to gain leading share positions in these markets," Chief Executive Donnie Smith said in a statement.
By Megan Davies, Jack Stubbs and Thomas Escritt MOSCOW/LONDON/AMSTERDAM (Reuters) - The Hague's arbitration court ruled on Monday that Russia must pay a group of shareholders in oil giant Yukos $51.6 billion for expropriating its assets, a big hit for a country teetering on the brink of recession. The arbitration panel in the Netherlands said it had awarded shareholders in the GML group just under half of their $114 billion claim, going some way to covering the money they lost when the Kremlin seized Yukos, once controlled by Mikhail Khodorkovsky. "It's now a question of enforcing it." But Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Moscow would most likely appeal the decision, so shareholders, who have battled through the courts for a decade, might have longer to wait. "The Russian side, those agencies which represent Russia in this process, will no doubt use all available legal possibilities to defend its position," he said when news of the award leaked ahead of the official announcement.
Chinese government officials have made sudden visits to Microsoft Corp offices in China, a spokeswoman for the company said on Monday, but declined to give any reason for the inspections. China's State Administration for Industry & Commerce, which Chinese media reported had made the visits to Microsoft offices in Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Chengdu, declined to give comment outside of working hours. Microsoft has been a focus of anti-U.S. technology sentiment in China since U.S. National Security Agency (NSA) contractor Edward Snowden revealed widespread spying programs, including PRISM, which used U.S. company's technology for cyber espionage. In an e-mailed statement, the Microsoft spokeswoman said: "We aim to build products that deliver the features, security and reliability customers expect and we're happy to answer the government's questions," but declined to give any further information.
By Yoko Kubota YOKOHAMA Japan (Reuters) - Nissan Motor Co Ltd aims to boost sales and profitability in the United States, its biggest market, an executive said, after Japan's No.2 automaker posted a 14 percent rise in quarterly U.S. sales, closing in on rival Honda Motor Co . For the April-June quarter, Nissan posted a 4.3 percent quarterly operating profit margin for North America, up from the 3.8 percent it booked the same period a year ago. In the first six months of the year, Nissan's U.S. sales grew 12.8 percent, making it the sixth-best selling carmaker in the country. It surpassed Hyundai Motor Co and is closing in on Honda, whose sales fell 0.8 percent during the same period.
By Ransdell Pierson NEW YORK (Reuters) - Pfizer Inc's vulnerability to cheaper generics and its weak roster of experimental medicines will be on display Tuesday when the company reports quarterly earnings, reviving interest in its pursuit of AstraZeneca Plc or other deals to fortify its pipeline. While many industry watchers expect Pfizer to re-engage with Britain's AstraZeneca in coming months, some say the U.S. drugmaker should consider targets more focused on biotechnology, a strategy that has paid off for Merck & Co and Bristol-Myers Squibb Co. Although Pfizer is conducting trials of promising products - including breast cancer drug palbociclib and vaccines against meningitis and staph aureus - it needs far more drugs to generate meaningful sales growth, said Ori Hershkovitz, analyst with the Tel Aviv-based Sphera Fund, which holds Pfizer shares. "Pfizer is in a very desperate spot, having seen most of its pipeline disappoint and facing multiple patent expirations," he said.
Twitter is an essential platform for businesses marketing to other businesses and it's morphing quickly to a direct response "buy it now" platform functionality like Pinterest and Facebook. I anticipate "social selling" will accelerate moving forward, as social platforms embrace mobile enabled direct commerce and marketers pour more money into...
Each summer, amateur astronomers from all over the world look forward to observing the famous Perseid meteor shower, but often overlook six lesser celestial fireworks displays that reach their peak between July 28 and Aug. 20. This year, a bright nearly-full moon will seriously interfere with Perseid meteor observing, so why not take this opportunity to try and view the other six, all but one of which will enjoy dark skies. The online Slooh community observatory will stream live views of the Delta Aquarids in a webcast Monday night (July 28) at 10 p.m. EDT (7 p.m. PDT/0200 GMT) featuring views from observatories in Arizona and the Canary Islands. NASA, meanwhile, will provide a follow-up webcast on Tuesday night via all-sky cameras at the agency's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama.
As a business owner, mom of two, wife, speaker, and consultant, managing each day effectively can be a challenge. I am sure I don't have to tell you. You know. My mind, like yours, is often filled with to-do lists, schedules, and responsibilities. It's easy to feel overwhelmed sometimes, but my secret to mental serenity in the face of a harried...
For the past few years, we have argued that the economy needs to continue the process of deleveraging as consumer and government debt levels remain far too high from an historical perspective. While we agreed with the Fed's initial aggressive action to save us from financial catastrophe during the throes of the financial crisis, we also said...