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WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Barack Obama signed an annual defense policy bill on Friday that authorizes U.S. training for Iraqi and Syrian forces fighting Islamic State rebels and sets overall defense spending at nearly $578 billion, including about $64 billion for wars abroad.

MIAMI (Reuters) - A south Florida mayor was sentenced to 22 months in prison on Friday after being found guilty of corruption tied to his lobbying work for a secret consulting job while in office.

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Former New York City Councilman Larry Seabrook lost a bid for a new trial on Friday after a federal judge rejected his claim that his brother and aide were excluded from watching jury selection.

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - If U.S. President Barack Obama is feeling the pain from a rough year at the office, he did a great job of covering it up on Friday.

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Barack Obama called it his "who's been naughty, and who's been nice" list: a checklist of reporters to call on during his traditional year-end news conference on Friday.

HAVANA (Reuters) - Cuba will defend its socialist principles and will not return to capitalism just because it has agreed a detente with the United States, the daughter of President Raul Castro said, dispelling any notion that U.S. companies would be free to roll into Cuba.

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. President Barack Obama said on Friday that construction of the Keystone XL pipeline to transport crude oil from Canada to the U.S. Gulf Coast would only nominally benefit American consumers and workers in perhaps his strongest comments on the Canada-to-U.S. pipeline to date.

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. (Reuters) - Voting maps, drawn by North Carolina's Republican-led legislature and denounced by critics as an effort to diminish the influence of black voters, are constitutional, the state Supreme Court ruled on Friday.

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Normalized relations with Cuba will give the United States its best chance to influence the communist-ruled island, President Barack Obama said on Friday, and he urged Congress to ease the U.S. economic embargo against Havana.

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. President Barack Obama on Friday threatened to veto any efforts by a Republican-controlled Congress to weaken measures aimed at protecting consumers from abuses in the financial system.

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Fri, 19 Dec 2014 23:56:52 GMT
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FINANCE NEWS
(Reuters) - A former securities arbitration official's wrongful termination suit against the Financi...
(Reuters) - The biggest investor in Meredith Whitney's hedge fund has demanded his money back and tw...
BOSTON (Reuters) - Baltimore asset manager Legg Mason Inc's board has approved additional future sha...
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