- The Cuban Communist Party congress has approved an economic reform that will allow individuals to buy and sell their homes for the first time since 1959. Details have not yet been announced, and President Raul Castro has also warned that the concentration of property will not be allowed.
- Workers at the Fukushima reactor have begun to remove 25,000 tons of radioactive water from the basement of a reactor building, which should give workers access to carry out repairs to coolant systems. TEPCO is optimistic that the crisis should be under control by the end of the year.
- The UN reports that the Libyan government has promised humanitarian aid workers access to areas under its control.
- Some 16,000 people have fled their homes in northern Nigeria after riots prompted by the reelection of President Goodluk Jonathan. President Jonathan was declared victor with 57% of the vote, and international observers have said that the vote was reasonably free and fair.
- The US State Department, in the wake of a recent WikiLeaks revelation that the US has secretly funded Syrian opposition groups, has taken steps to assure the Syrian government that they are not working to undermine them. "Trying to promote a transformation to a more democratic process in this society is not undermining necessarily the existing government," said a State Department spokesman.
- Syrian securty forces used automatic weapons to "disperse" an anti-government protest in Homs.
- Efforts to raise 740 million euros to build a new containment shield around the Chernobyl nuclear poweer plant have fallen short, with only 550 million euros raised.
- That horrible plummeting sound from yesterday was the reaction of the US equity markets to Standard & Poor's issuing a negative outlook on the US credit rating. They haven't actually cut the rating yet, but they did say that there is at least a one-in-three chance that they will unless the US finds a way to substantially cut its budget deficit within two years.
- Both sides in the ongoing Washington budget battle are now using the Standard & Poor's US credit outlook as ammunition. The Republicans are calling for deep spending cuts and making permanent the Bush tax cuts, while the Democrats are calling for somewhat less severe spending cuts and increased taxes on "the rich".
- An anonymous source is reporting that the US Treasury is looking at selling a "big chunk" of its 33% stake in GM in either summer or fall of this year. The Treasury, which lost money on the IPO late last year, would need to sell it's remaining 500 million shares at $53 per share in order to break even 9according to the Wall Street Journal). In related news, as of yesterday the one-year high for GM was $39.48.
- Arizona Governor Jan Brewer has vetoed a bill that would require presidential candidates to prove US citizenship before getting on the state's ballot. "I do not support designating one person as the gatekeeper to the ballot for a candidate, which could lead to arbitrary or politically motivated decisions," said the governor in a statement. The Republican backers of the bill insist that the bill is not aimed at President Obama.
 Remember them? Leaked US diplomatic cables. Huge debates over national security vs. free speech?
 The definition of "the rich" is rather nebulous right now, with President Obama describing the targets of the tax hikes as "folks like myself who can afford to pay a little bit more." There also appears to be no specific definition of what "a little bit more" means.