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IRS Facing Tough Questions At Hearing Today/AP NewsMinute

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WASHINGTON (AP) — The Internal Revenue Service is planning a robust defense at a House committee hearing today on lavish spending at employee conferences. The agency has already imposed strict regulations for future conferences. And the new acting head of the agency has placed two officials on administrative leave for accepting free food at a party in a private suite in 2010. The officials could lose their jobs.

WASHINGTON (AP) — A British newspaper is reporting a massive, indiscriminate collection of U.S. telephone records by the National Security Agency, using a top-secret court order. The Guardian newspaper reports millions of U.S. customers of Verizon have had their records scrutinized. The newspaper says it has a copy of the order.

WASHINGTON (AP) — Investors have been wondering whether the recent stock surge is a bubble inflated by the Federal Reserve’s low interest policies. Three-quarters of economists surveyed by The Associated press say no, stocks are not overvalued. They also say economic growth should pick up after the quarter that ends this month.

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — A number of people working near a Philadelphia building that collapsed during demolition say they were afraid that would happen. Six people died and 14 were injured when the unstable shell of the building collapsed into a massive heap, taking part of a Salvation Army thrift store with it. Crews continue digging through the rubble.

DRESDEN, Germany (AP) — The scramble continues in Germany to bolster riverbanks and build sandbag barriers as floodwaters that have already claimed 16 lives in Europe roared farther north. Residents and emergency crews worked through the night in Dresden and other cities. The Elbe (EL’-beh) river is expected to crest today in Dresden, the capital of Saxony state.

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