The following is a rundown of the day’s news drawn from other media sources with topics curated just for Money and Markets readers: personal security and freedom, dangerously cold weather, and business and technology.
Jill Abramson: ‘Most Secretive White House I Have Ever Dealt With’
Former NSA contractor Edward Snowden helped The New York Times “keep the public informed on what I consider to be very important matters,” says Jill Abramson, the woman who has the final say on what constitutes “all the news that’s fit to print.”
Conservative Activist O’Keefe Claims Cuomo Targeting His Group
“His goal, of course, is to harass us and limit our effectiveness by tying us up in court. Just like President Obama used the IRS to target and suppress conservatives, Governor Cuomo is using his Department of Labor to do the same exact thing.”
Noonan: No One’s Listening to Obama Now
Obama gave a speech on the National Security Agency, that bitterly contested issue, the other day. Pew Research found half of those polled didn’t notice. National Journal wrote that Americans greeted the speech with “collective indifference and broad skepticism.”
Snowden: ‘No Chance’ for Fair Trial in U.S.
“The law under which I’ve been charged was never intended to be used against people working in the public interest, and forbids a public interest defense. This is especially frustrating, because it means there’s no chance to have a fair trial, and no way I can come home and make my case to a jury.”
Clemency for Snowden ‘Too Far,’ but Open to Resolution
“If any individual who objects to government policy can take it into their own hands to publicly disclose classified information, then we will not be able to keep our people safe, or conduct foreign policy,” Obama said.
It’s Colder Than Alaska!
The average temperature for the lower 48 states midmorning Wednesday was a chilly 22 degrees. The average temperature for the entire state of Alaska at the same time was 24 degrees, according to calculations by Weather Bell Analytics.
Cold, Colder, Coldest
Bitterly cold air has again settled southward from the Arctic into a large part of the Eastern states. Unlike the outbreak from early January, this time the cold will have more staying power.
Frigid Temperatures Heat Up Home Utility Bills
Bitter cold is likely to linger over the Northeast and Midwest, and unseasonably low temperatures are forecast for the Southeast, so millions of consumers who’ve seen skyrocketing utility bills are likely to see another spike in January and February.
Apple’s Iconic Glass Cube Store Shatters in the New York Cold
One of the huge 32-foot glass panels that make up the entrance to the iPhone giant’s flagship store was reportedly accidently smashed by a city snowblower that threw up a stone. The estimated cost to the Californian firm to restore the cube is estimated to be around $450,000.
Super Bowl Snowstorm
CBS 2 meteorologist Lonnie Quinn says one model suggests a system similar to this week’s snowstorm could hit the Tri-State area “within 48 hours” of Super Bowl XLVIII. The NFL could move the big game to Saturday or even Monday or Tuesday if a major storm slams the area.
Smith & Wesson to End Most California Sales Due to Microstamping Regulation
The law requires each firearm be fitted with a special firing pin that leaves a fingerprint on a bullet casing which differs from the fingerprint of every other firearm. The cost of doing this would be incredibly high to manufacturers, and would be a cost they would have to pass on to consumers in higher prices.
Moody’s Slashes Outlook on Insurers, Cites Obamacare ‘Uncertainty’
Moody’s Investors Service on Thursday lowered its outlook for health insurers to “negative” from “stable.” In a new report, the agency said that the outlook for insurance companies is no longer clear because the law’s insurance exchanges haven’t been attracting enough younger individuals.
Google Chief Warns of IT Threat
“The race is between computers and people and the people need to win,” he said. “I am clearly on that side. In this fight, it is very important that we find the things that humans are really good at.”
Volvo’s Self-Parking Cars
Henry Foy, motor industry correspondent for the Financial Times, reports from Volvo’s automation research center in Gothenburg on the car manufacturer’s latest advances in self-driving vehicles.
Implantable Battery Transforms Movement of Organs Into Energy
A team of U.S. and Chinese researchers has revealed a tiny implantable battery they have used to power a pacemaker. It converts the constant movement of organs such as the heart, lungs and diaphragm into energy.
The Money and Markets Team