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WASHINGTON (AP) -- Growth at U.S. service companies slowed slightly in January behind weaker new orders and business activity. But hiring improved, a bright sign for the economy. The Institute for Supply Management said Tuesday that its index of non-manufacturing activity dipped to 55.2 in January. That's down from 55.7 in December, which was the highest level in nearly a year. Any reading above 50 indicates expansion.
WASHINGTON (AP) -- An unclassified Justice Department memo reveals that the Obama administration's justification for drone strikes that kill al-Qaida linked U.S. citizens abroad is based on a much broader definition of whether they pose an imminent threat than was previously known. The government does not need information that a specific attack is imminent, the document says, only that the targeted suspect is involved in ongoing plotting against the United States.
SCHLADMING, Austria (AP) -- Lindsey Vonn crashed during the super-G Tuesday and was taken to a hospital by helicopter after apparently hurting her right knee at the world championships. The four-time overall World Cup champion lost balance on her right leg while landing after a jump. Her ski came off immediately, and Vonn slid off course and hit a gate before coming to a halt. She received treatment on the slope for 12 minutes before going to the hospital. Her U.S. team had no immediate information on her condition.
NEW YORK (AP) — With a partial power outage, an overly excited quarterback and a game that suddenly turned from snoozer to sizzler, CBS had its hands full at the Super Bowl. The game fell short of setting a viewership record, but it stands as the third most-watched program in U.S. television history.
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Xcel Energy plans to capitalize on what could be a buyer's market for wind energy this year. The Minneapolis-based utility has told regulators in Minnesota, Wisconsin and the Dakotas that it will look for up to 200 megawatts of wind power by April 1. The federal tax credit for wind production has been extended to next January.
WASHINGTON (AP) -- U.S. home prices jumped by the most in 6 1/2 years in December, spurred by a low supply of available homes and rising demand. Home prices rose 8.3 percent in December compared with a year earlier, according to data Tuesday from CoreLogic, a real estate data provider. That is the biggest annual gain since May 2006. Prices rose last year in 46 of 50 states.
NEW ORLEANS (AP) -- While authorities investigate the causes of the 34-minute Super Bowl blackout, documents show that Superdome officials were worried last fall about losing power at the big game. Tests on the dome's electrical feeders showed decay and "a chance of failure," state officials warned in a memo dated Oct. 15. Also, the utility that supplied the stadium with power expressed concern about the reliability of the service before the NFL championship.
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — The farmer-owned CHS cooperative says it will pay $600 million to its owners, including $116 million to Minnesota members. The nation's largest farmer-owned cooperative earned a record $1.2 billion in the last fiscal year, up 31 percent over 2011. The majority of CHS profits last year came from its energy business. The Star Tribune ( http://bit.ly/UUsGst ) says oil refineries in Montana and Kansas earned high margins because of favorable midcontinent crude oil prices.
WASHINGTON (AP) -- The U.S. government is accusing the debt rating agency Standard & Poor's of fraud for giving high ratings to risky mortgage bonds that helped bring about the financial crisis. The government said in a civil complaint filed late Monday that S&P misled investors by stating that its ratings were objective and "uninfluenced by any conflicts of interest." It said S&P's desire to make money and gain market share caused S&P to ignore the risks posed by the investments between September 2004 and October 2007.
NEW YORK (AP) -- Shares of Dell climbed in premarket trading Tuesday on reports the personal computer maker is nearing a deal to go private worth between $23 billion and $24 billion. The transaction is said to involve a group including Microsoft Corp., private equity firm Silver Lake and CEO and company founder Michael Dell.