Biggest jump in Midwest farmland prices in 34 years

CHICAGO (Reuters) – Prices for farmland in the heart of the U.S. grain belt were up 17 percent in the second quarter compared to a year ago, the biggest jump since 1977, the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago said on Wednesday.

Judge orders new hearing on Loughner subpoenas

PHOENIX (Reuters) – A U.S. federal judge on Wednesday ordered a hearing in the case of accused Tucson shooter Jared Loughner to hear arguments about subpoenas issued by his lawyers that may seek to shape an insanity defense.

Cousins plead not guilty to suffocating Phoenix girl

PHOENIX (Reuters) – Two cousins of an Arizona girl who suffocated after being locked in a box in what investigators said was punishment for taking a Popsicle pleaded not guilty on Wednesday to murdering her, court officials said.

Eight sent to hospital after SeaWorld lightning strike released

ORLANDO, Fla (Reuters) – Eight people who experienced a lightning strike on Tuesday at SeaWorld Orlando were examined and released from medical facilities by midnight, the theme park reported on Wednesday.

Life after Wall Street: Ex-bankers answer the call

NEW YORK (Reuters) – In his 23 years as a banker, Adam Greene trotted the globe, closing billions of dollars’ worth of deals for some of the world’s biggest banks, and starting his own advisory firm. Then, in 2006, he traded in his BlackBerry and fancy suits for a Bible and clerical collar.

Voters go to polls in Wisconsin’s two final recalls

EAGLE RIVER, Wis (Reuters) – Voters in two Wisconsin State Senate districts headed to the polls on Tuesday in the last of nine recall elections triggered by the fight earlier this year over Republican-backed curbs on union rights of public workers.

Obama says "lone wolf terrorist" biggest U.S. threat

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A decade after the 9/11 attacks, a “lone wolf terrorist” like the shooter in Norway now presents a bigger risk to the United States than a large-scale operation, President Barack Obama said on Tuesday.

Packages at Alaska Congressional offices harmless

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (Reuters) – Suspicious packages that turned out to be harmless prompted scares and temporary closures on Monday at the Alaska offices of all three of the state’s members of Congress, officials said.