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8:24am

Thu October 6, 2011
The Two-Way

Average Rate On 30-Year Mortgages Falls Below 4 Percent For First Time

Mortgage rates are in uncharted territory.

"The average rate on the 30-year fixed mortgage fell to 3.94 percent this week, the lowest rate ever," The Associated Press reports. "Freddie Mac says the average rate ... dropped from 4.01 percent last week, the previous low."

And, "the average rate on a 15-year fixed loan dipped to 3.26 percent, also a record."

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7:55am

Thu October 6, 2011
The Two-Way

Wozniak Thankful For 'An Unbelievably Fortunate Partnership' With Jobs

Originally published on Thu October 6, 2011 7:56 am

April 24, 1984, from left to right: Steve Jobs, John Sculley and Steve Wozniak unveil the new Apple IIc computer in San Francisco.

Sal Veder AP

"My role was [to be] the key technologist, the scientist, the engineer that was building all these devices. ... Steve was spotting them and seeing ways to sell them and talking about where they could go. And talking about enhancements and improvements that would take it to the next level. He was always trying to move to the next level."

It was "an unbelievably fortunate partnership."

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7:24am

Thu October 6, 2011
The Salt

Potato Lobby Turns Up The Heat In School Lunch Battle

When the potato lobby speaks, it always puts its best spuds forward. Yesterday at a National Press Club lunchtime briefing to promote the nutritional value of the vegetable, that meant a full bar of baked potatoes, french fries (baked, not fried), sour cream, cheddar cheese, chopped tomatoes, spinach and broccoli. Yes, according to sources close to the food, it was scrumptious.

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7:00am

Thu October 6, 2011
Around the Nation

Under A Barrel: What Happened To Rising Gas Prices?

Originally published on Thu October 6, 2011 9:40 am

The price of gasoline stood at $3.17 earlier this week in Wakefield, Mass. That's more than 20 cents less than the national average for regular gas.

Charles Krupa AP

When Dave Barnes drove 600 miles from Maryland to Indiana last week for his 50th high school reunion, he was surprised by the price of gas — in a good way.

Barnes, 68, says he filled up his Dodge Challenger in Indianapolis for as little as $3.15 a gallon. It was a far cry from the cross-country motorcycle trip he took this summer.

"When I took the trip in June, I was seeing $3.60 a gallon in most places and as high as $4 a gallon in California," he says.

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6:52am

Thu October 6, 2011
Monkey See

Steve Jobs: How Apple's CEO Helped Transform Popular Culture

Steve Jobs, seen here in June 2010, passed away Wednesday at 56 after battling cancer for years.

Justin Sullivan Getty Images

When the death of Apple co-founder Steve Jobs was announced last night, if you were following Twitter, what you saw was a spasm of grief. Writers, actors, musicians, your friends, comedians ... the genuine sadness was palpable, not only because he was 56 years old, but because so many saw the news while holding one of his products in their hands. This is very much what popular culture is: this hive mind, this hum of collective response.

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