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The latest news from Business Insider

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    China economy

    • China's economy grew at its slowest pace in a decade in the third quarter. 
    • But even after the US and China placed hundreds of billions of dollars' worth of tariffs on each other, exports have held up better than expected.
    • Economists say the slowdown is partly due to a deleveraging campaign started last year.

    As the Chinese economy slows, economists say trade tensions are only part of the equation.

    Gross domestic product in China expanded at its weakest pace in nearly a decade in July through September, with growth in the manufacturing sector slowing to a near standstill. Meanwhile, the Shanghai Composite is down about 25% this year.

    But even in the face of hundreds of billions of dollars worth of tariffs between Washington and Beijing, exports have continued to hold up better than expected. In October, China shipped 11% more products out of the country than a year earlier, according to a Reuters poll, slower than the previous month’s 14.5% export growth, but faster than August’s 9.8% rise. 

    The US was the destination for about 18% of Chinese shipments in 2017. That's a large enough portion of exports that they can't be easily made up, according to Brad Setser, a senior fellow on the Council of Foreign Relations and former economist at the Department of Treasury, but it's possible. 

    "You would sort of expect that supply chains would reorganize," Setser said. "But that's going to take some time."

    To be sure, exports may have received a boost from a weaker yuan and companies rushing orders ahead of expected price increases. But economists say it also shows the slowdown this year is in largely thanks to a state-led deleveraging campaign that was started last year in attempt to deal with excess debt. Most notably, authorities had attempted to crack down on risky lending as part of the program.

    Stephen Roach, a senior fellow at Yale University’s Jackson Institute of Global Affairs and the former chairman of Morgan Stanley in Asia, said tariffs will exacerbate the policy-engineered slowdown that’s already in place. But that doesn’t necessarily mean there is enough pressure to force meaningful concessions anytime soon.

    "It's a tough combination," Roach said.

    "Does that mean that they’re about to capitulate and cut a deal as the Art-of-the-Deal president seems to be hinting at? I think that’s dubious at this point, especially if the US is looking for a deal on these core strategic issues that have driven a wedge between us."

    In addition to reducing the trade deficit, the White House has also called on Beijing to address intellectual-property-theft rules and its Made in China 2025 program. With analysts skeptical that Chinese leader Xi Jinping will easily budge on those economic reforms, a deal with President Donald Trump at an expected meeting this month appears unlikely.

    The US has placed import taxes on roughly half of China's exports to the US, and Trump has threatened to increase tariff rates and extend those to all shipments from China. Beijing has retaliated, but doesn’t import enough from the US to match duties dollar-for-dollar. China sold about $506 billion in goods and services to the US in 2017, while the US sold roughly $130 billion worth to the Chinese.

    "China can outlast the U.S. in an extended trade war, but only if voters here react negatively to it," said Gregory Wawro, a political science professor at Columbia University.

    "That seems to be what Beijing has banked on, but so far the reaction seems to be muted even among those who are experiencing some pain due to the tariffs."

    SEE ALSO: The market’s Red October nailed the coffin on one of the most trusted trading strategies of the bull market — and Morgan Stanley warns it could send stocks tumbling

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: 7 places you can't find on Google Maps

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    idris elba luther

    • Actor Idris Elba was named People's Sexiest Man Alive for 2018. 
    • The award has been given every year since 1985, but Elba is only the third man of color to win it.

    Idris Elba is only the third man of color to be People's Sexiest Man Alive since the annual title started 33 years ago. 

    On Tuesday, the publication named the British actor as 2018's Sexiest Man Alive. 

    Elba, 46, rose to fame for his role as Baltimore drug kingpin Stringer Bell on HBO's "The Wire" in the early 2000s. He also appeared in multiple Marvel Cinematic Universe films as the keeper of the Asgardian bridge, Heimdall. 

    In addition to being the third man of color to get the honor, he's the second black man. The first man of color honored was Denzel Washington back in 1996.

    Twenty years later, Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson won the title for 2016's Sexiest Man Alive issue. Coincidentally, Elba and Johnson will appear together along with Jason Statham in "Hobbs and Shaw," a spin-off of the "Fast and Furious " franchise, coming in 2019. Elba is playing the villain. 

    Read more: People magazine names Idris Elba 2018's 'Sexiest Man Alive'

    Since 1985 when People first started bestowing the title, four white men have gotten the award twice: George Clooney, Johnny Depp, Brad Pitt, and Richard Gere. Over the years, other men who've won the title include Adam Levine, Bradley Cooper, Ryan Reynolds, Chris Hemsworth, and Mel Gibson, who was the first man chosen for the now iconic title.

    Last year's winner, Blake Shelton, recieved backlash from many people who did not agree with the decision. Shelton himself said, "Y'all must be running out of people. Like, wow, we're down to somebody who is somewhat symmetrical.

    Unlike last year, people overwhelmingly agree that Elba the perfect choice for 2018's Sexiest Man Alive.

    Visit INSIDER's homepage for more.

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: This mind-melting thought experiment of Einstein's reveals how to manipulate time

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    India Submarine Arihant

    India said on Monday its first domestically built nuclear-powered submarine had recently completed a "deterrence patrol," giving it the capability to fire nuclear weapons from land, air, and sea in the event of any "misadventure" by enemies.

    With nuclear-armed China to its north and nuclear-armed Pakistan to its west — both of which India has fought wars with— India's nationalist prime minister, Narendra Modi, said the INS Arihant was a "fitting response to those who indulge in nuclear blackmail."

    He did not elaborate.

    "Amid an increase in the number of nuclear weapons in our surroundings, a credible nuclear deterrence is extremely important for our country's security," he told the crew of the submarine in a speech televised nationwide.

    "Arihant is an open warning for the country's enemies, for the foes of peace: Don't try any misadventure against India."

    Indian Navy's INS Arihant submarine is pictured at the naval warehouse in the southern Indian city of Visakhapatnam November 18, 2014. REUTERS/R Narendra

    Modi said on Twitter that the "success of the INS Arihant enhances India's security needs." Calling it "a major achievement," Modi added that the sub would protect Indians from "external threats and contribute to the atmosphere of peace in the region."

    "India's nuclear triad will be an important pillar of global peace and stability," the prime minister said.

    Though India's relations with China are warming, particularly in the area of trade, ties with Pakistan have nosedived under Modi, who has adopted a more assertive strategy towards the arch rival.

    Modi said a successful month-long patrol by Arihant, which was commissioned in 2016, had completed India's goal of having the capacity to deliver nuclear warheads with aircraft, missiles and submarines, 20 years after conducting its first nuclear tests.

    India has said little about the operational details of the Arihant's first deterrent patrol, other than that it lasted a little more than a month. New Delhi also hasn't said what kind of submarine-launched ballistic missiles the sub carried or if they were mated with nuclear warheads, according to The Diplomat.

    The Arihant is the first of its class of ballistic-missile subs, with three or four more expected. It can carry up to 12 K-15 short-range ballistic missiles, which have an estimated range of about 460 miles, or four K-4 intermediate-range ballistic missiles, which have an estimated range of 2,200 miles. Both missiles are nuclear-capable.

    India Narendra Modi Arihant navy submarine

    The Arihant was not designed for regular patrols and has largely been used for training. The sub also severly damaged in early 2017, when an external hatch was left unsecured while the boat submerged, allowing water to flood the sub.

    The next sub in the class, to be named the Arighant, was launched in November 2017 and is expected to be commissioned in 2020 or 2021. It will have double the missile tubes of the Arihant and is expected to be quieter. 

    India is also working on acquiring nonnuclear subs to bolster its undersea forces. Delhi has grown increasingly concerned about Chinese submarines operating in the Indian Ocean. India is also developing its presence in the area and considering buying moreP-8I maritime patrol aircraft. 

    (Reporting for Reuters by Krishna N. Das)

    SEE ALSO: Germany's military is about to get a big spending boost

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: Watch how the US would shoot down an incoming ICBM in its tracks

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    cookie dough

    • We asked chefs from around the country to tell us about their favorite store-bought cookie doughs, and they definitely didn't disappoint.
    • The hands-down winner? Nestlé Toll House Cookie Dough, which is also the most easily-accessible dough on this list.
    • Other top contenders include Trader Joe's Chunky Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough, Whole Foods 365 Sugar Cookie Dough, and Sweet Loren's Cookie Dough.

    There's nothing better than a fresh batch of cookies pulled straight out of the oven ... but making cookie dough from scratch can feel like a massive struggle for those of us who lack keen pastry skills. And honestly, even the folks with these elusive talents sometimes want a quick and easy solution to their sudden cookie cravings. That's where store-bought cookie dough comes in.

    Of course, taking a shortcut doesn't mean that you should skimp on quality. To set you on a righteous path toward delicious cookies, we asked a group of chefs to name the best pre-made cookie doughs out there. To our surprise, one brand stood out as the overwhelming favorite ... and it's probably the easiest dough to find at any grocery store you visit. First, check out the runners-up:

    Trader Joe's Chunky Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough delivers close-to-homemade flavors without any artificial preservatives.

    Trader Joe's Chunky Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough

    An NYC-based chef, food stylist, and culinary producer of "Scraps" on A&E, Clare Langan knows a thing or two about prepping delicious and attractive dishes under a tight time crunch. When she needs to whip up a batch of cookies in a hurry, Langan grabs a package of Trader Joe's Chunky Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough.

    "I've used [this dough] on photo shoots I've styled in a pinch — [the cookies] come out looking homemade and taste pretty close, too! I also appreciate that there are no artificial preservatives, and of course, you can't beat the price. To jazz up store-bought dough, try adding a handful or two of unexpected mix-ins: chopped chocolate-covered espresso beans, toasted hazelnuts or even crushed potato chips for a sweet and salty vibe," Langan told INSIDER.

    Whole Foods 365 Sugar Cookie Dough makes a great canvas for fun cookie experimentation

    Whole Foods 365 Sugar Cookie Dough

    As the pastry chef for the acclaimed Gotham Bar & Grill in NYC, Ron Paprocki vastly prefers to make his own doughs from scratch. But if he's relaxing at home and wants something quick and easy to customize, Whole Foods 365 Sugar Cookie Dough is his go-to. These classic sugar cookies are ideal for Paprocki's creative embellishments:

    "What I really like to do is make a simple cream cheese frosting, spread it on a cooled baked cookie, and decorate it with rainbow sprinkles, an almost exact replica of the Schmackary's famous Funfetti sugar cookie. Cookies should be fun."

    For an all-natural, health-conscious spin on pre-made cookie dough, try Sweet Loren's

    sweet lorens

    Chef and nutritionist Julie Harrington recommends a relatively-virtuous store-bought cookie dough: Sweet Loren's, whose doughs are vegan, gluten-free, and made with whole grains:

    "From both a chef and RD standpoint, I would recommend Sweet Loren's store-bought cookie dough. With a simple ingredient list, these cookies are delicious right out of the oven. Sweet Loren's cookies are gluten-free, vegan, non-GMO, plant-based, dairy free, nut free, 100% whole grain, and kosher pareve making them enjoyable for everyone. Plus, now they even have an edible cookie dough. I mean, who doesn't love cookie dough?"

    And now, the all-around favorite store-bought cookie dough: Nestlé Toll House

    nestle cookies

    The vast majority of chefs we consulted opted for a childhood classic, a cookie dough so ubiquitous that you'd be hard-pressed to name a grocery store that doesn't carry it. Yes, according to chefs we asked, Nestlé Toll House cookie dough is, in fact, the best of the bunch.

    Chef Matt Ward of NICO in Charleston, Sout Carolina said he loves the simplicity of the pre-cut Nestlé cookie doughs, which he can jazz up to his heart's content: "I have a soft spot for all of Nestlé's Pre-Cut cookie doughs. The classic chocolate chip dough is a great base, and sometimes I like to press Reese's Pieces or M&Ms into them before baking.  

    "The pre-cut ones literally take no time at all and can curb any sweet tooth [craving] in about 15 minutes, start to finish. Not to mention, when baked, they're pretty solid cookies.  The best thing to pair these cookies with is a cold glass of whole milk."

    Nestle Cookie Dough

    As a culinary student, Alex Levin, the culinary director of pastry for Alta Strada in Washington, DC, conducted an experiment to find the finest store-bought cookie dough, and Nestlé emerged triumphant:

    "In culinary school, I did a project evaluating a number of different store-bought cookie doughs. I looked at Trader Joe's, Nestlé, Pillsbury, and Betty Crocker. Before any baking at all, the one that tasted the best raw was the Nestlé dough. The Nestlé chocolate chip was the most flavorful, and the dough had a very buttery [taste]. The color of the Nestlé dough is also a bit darker - either from molasses in the recipe or from the dark brown sugar. The dark brown sugar, butter, and good chocolate chips are the three key things [needed] for a great cookie ... and [thanks to] the millions of dollars of research used to perfect the Nestlé recipe, they nailed it on all fronts."

    Culinary director Amanda Rockman of New Waterloo Restaurants in Austin, Texas thinks that Nestlé dough achieves the Platonic ideal of cookiedom, especially with some special touches added in:

    "[Cookies made from Nestlé dough]have the perfect crunchy outside and gooey soft inside texture that you want from a cookie. [For the best baking experience,] let the dough rest in the fridge for one to two hours before scooping and baking. The easiest way to upgrade your cookie is to sprinkle Maldon sea salt right before you bake them.

    Also, I don't follow the baking times on the instructions; I bake till they are barely set in the middle and then let them carry-over bake to perfection."

    Executive chef Steven Lona of Waterbar in San Diego, California likes to add some spice to his Nestlé dough:

    "[Nestlé Toll House Chocolate Chip Dough is] consistent and yields the perfect cookie every time. I do have ways that I typically jazz up my pre-made dough. I usually like to add some salt and spice to the cookies.

    Cinnamon sticks

    "I portion out the cookie dough, sprinkle them with some almonds and dust them with sea salt, plus a mixture of cinnamon, clove and cayenne pepper, to give them a more complexity."

    Pastry chef Alisha Ivey of Il Solito in Portland, Oregon said she especially likes the Nestlé sugar cookie dough, which she uses to make pretty epic "dessert pizzas":

    "The sugar cookie dough is so versatile if you are in a time crunch. I think one of my favorite uses, though, would be to make it into a 'dessert pizza.' My mom used to make these for birthdays [when I was] growing up," Ivey said. "It's a sugar cookie base rolled out into the shape of a pizza, baked, then topped with a layer of cream cheese icing and a layer of homemade strawberry jam."

    Visit INSIDER's homepage for more.

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: Valedictorians rarely become rich and famous — here's why the average millionaire's college GPA is 2.9

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    Long Island City

    • Amazon will reportedly split its second headquarters project, known as HQ2, among two cities, both the Wall Street Journal and The New York Times reported on Monday.
    • The two locations that Amazon is reportedly nearing a deal with are New York City's Long Island City and Northern Virginia's Crystal City, according to The New York Times. 
    • Splitting the headquarters into two cities breaks the whole idea of what HQ2 was intended for in the first place, which was to eventually create a second headquarters that equaled the company's operations in Seattle.

    Amazon has finally found its HQ2 — and its HQ3.

    The company will split its second headquarters project among two cities, both the Wall Street Journal and the New York Times reported on Monday.

    Those lucky cities will apparently be New York and Arlington, Virginia, according to The Times. The report centers on Long Island City in Queens and Crystal City in Arlington, specifically. 

    This is a bit of curveball. On the website it created when it first announced the project, Amazon stated that the purpose of HQ2 was to create "a full equal to our current campus in Seattle."

    Read more:Amazon is reportedly splitting HQ2 into 2 cities, which would prove the whole contest was a massive sham

    With two locations now reportedly splitting the promised $5 billion investment and 50,000 jobs, Amazon's initial promise rings hollow. Neither location will be anywhere close to equal to Seattle, where Amazon says it now has more than 40,000 employees and has made $3.7 billion in capital investment.

    Effectively, it means Amazon won't really have a true second headquarters, which is what some critics have been claiming all along.

    This may have something to do with Amazon being sensitive to criticisms that no one municipality could absorb the large impact of Amazon's HQ2 as it had been proposed. Splitting it into two could remove some objections from local leaders, but it also takes some of the luster away from the project.

    Less potential downside in this case also means less potential upside. New York and Arlington will reportedly get Amazon, but they won't get HQ2. Nobody will.

    Read more about Amazon's HQ2 project:

    SEE ALSO: People are furious about Amazon's reported decision to split its HQ2 between New York City and Virginia after months of deliberation

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: Why this Bovet watch costs over $450,000

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    dog election day sticker

    • People are bringing their dogs to polling places while voting in the 2018 midterm elections.
    • The dogs are living their best lives.
    • Here are photos of dogs getting excited about democracy.

    Voting is a right reserved for humans, but dogs can still get in on the fun.

    As polls opened for the 2018 midterm elections, people began bringing their dogs along with them to vote.

    Read more: The polls are open in dozens of states for the midterm elections — see what time they close

    The patriotic pups are getting excited about democracy.

    I vote u vote we vote let's all vote #govote

    A post shared by Benny (@bennythefoodhog) on Nov 6, 2018 at 4:36am PST on

    They look especially cute sporting "I voted" stickers.

    Some dogs are even getting in on the "Me voting in 2016 vs. me voting in 2018" meme.

    Dogs make great companions while waiting in line to vote.

    Service dogs are also welcome at the polls.

    Former President George H. W. Bush was accompanied by his service dog Sully to cast his vote.

    As if fulfilling your civic duty on Election Day wasn't exciting enough.

    Visit INSIDER's homepage for more.

    Read more of Business Insider's 2018 Midterm Election coverage:

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: Dogs everywhere are doing the snoot challenge — and it's taking over Instagram

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    Xbox vs Playstation

    Five years ago, in 2013, Sony's PlayStation 4 and Microsoft's Xbox One were on the verge of launch.

    Now, in 2018, the two consoles have come into their own — and they're more distinct from each other than ever before.

    They're also more affordable than ever before. But which to buy?

    The answer isn't so clear.

    SEE ALSO: Here are the 16 biggest video games launching this holiday, from an all-new ‘Fallout’ to the hotly-anticipated ‘Red Dead Redemption 2'

    1. Price.

    The Xbox One and the PlayStation 4 cost approximately the same amount of money: The base level for each is $250 to $300 in North America.

    The ranges in price come from bundle offerings, in which the consoles come with various games or extra controllers or services at a discount that still raise the overall cost. You're also likely to find sales that put the prices below $250.

    That's all before we start talking about the more powerful, more expensive versions of the consoles: the $400 PlayStation 4 Pro and the $500 Xbox One X.

    If you're looking for the best-looking games running on the most powerful console hardware, then you're looking at buying one of these step-up versions of the PS4 and the Xbox One. Both do everything the normal PS4 and Xbox One consoles do but have the added benefit of making games look ever better than usual.

    In the case of the Xbox One X, games are able to natively run with 4K/HDR visuals; the PlayStation 4 Pro offers a similar visual boost, though a slightly less impressive one. If you just bought a super-high-end 4K/HDR television and want to see what it can do, the Xbox One X is your best option when it comes to gaming.

    In general, though, for the average buyer, the Xbox One and the PlayStation 4 are evenly matched when it comes to price.

    2. Games.

    This is where things start to divide pretty sharply: Sony's PlayStation 4 simply has more games you can only play on the PlayStation 4.

    From the "Uncharted" series to "The Last of Us,""Bloodborne,""Spider-Man" and "God of War," Sony has a far richer lineup of exclusive games on the PlayStation 4. Coming heavies like "Death Stranding" loom large on the horizon. And major third-party games like "Call of Duty,""Assassin's Creed,""Madden," and "FIFA" all show up on the PlayStation 4 as well as the Xbox One.

    It has been Microsoft's biggest problem with the Xbox One in recent years: Not enough great games that can be played on only the Xbox One. There's "Halo" and "Forza," and the occasional new exclusive like "Sea of Thieves" and "State of Decay 2," but nothing of the scale that Sony's PS4 has.

    For many, understandably, the game-library comparison is enough to tip the scale in favor of Sony's PlayStation 4. But look deeper and you'll find the competition is more complicated.

    3. Services.

    Sony and Microsoft offer nearly identical services, which serve as a means of accessing online multiplayer gaming as well as offering "free" games (as long as you remain a paying subscriber).

    In Sony's case, the service is PlayStation Network; in Microsoft's case, it's Xbox Live. They cost about the same amount of money ($60 a year) and offer access to online gaming on their respective platforms. Both dole out a handful of free games to paying subscribers every month, yours to play as long as you continue to subscribe.

    PlayStation Network and Xbox Live are industry-standard services at this point. What makes each console stand out in the services department is its Netflix-like gaming services: PlayStation Now and Xbox Game Pass.

    With PlayStation Now, users can play more than 650 playable PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3, and PlayStation 4 games on a PlayStation 4 or a PC. The games are running elsewhere — you just start playing — though some are able to be downloaded to the PS4 for local play. It costs $20 a month, or $100 a year.

    With Game Pass, users can download and play more than 100 original Xbox, Xbox 360, and Xbox One games on the Xbox One. It costs $10 a month. Better yet: Any games Microsoft publishes show up on Game Pass at launch, including the next major "Halo" and "Forza" games. It's one of the best deals available in gaming for this alone.

    Xbox Game Pass is a strong argument for owning an Xbox One and offers a glimpse into the future of video game consoles. Instead of dropping $60 a game, for $10 a month you have access to a massive library that includes new, major games. That's huge.

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    marijuana cannabis

    • Americans went to the polls Tuesday, with two states voting on legalizing recreational marijuana and another two more deciding the fate of medical marijuana.
    • Weed stocks are gaining around on Tuesday.
    • So far in the US, 10 states allow recreational marijuana and 32 states allow medical marijuana, but marijuana is not allowed at a federal level.
    • In October, Canada became the second country after Uruguay to legalize the recreational use of marijuana.

    Weed stocks were surging Tuesday as Americans in four states will determine the fate of marijuana use at a state level.

    Voters in Michigan and North Dakota are considering the full recreational use of marijuana for individuals over the age of 21. Meanwhile, citizens in Missouri and Utah are voting for medical use of marijuana.

    As a result, weed stocks were rising across the board. Here's the scoreboard at 10:09 a.m. ET:

    • Cronos Group (CRON): +4.79%
    • Canopy Growth (CGC): 3.62%
    • Tilray (TLRY): +1.94%
    • Aphria (APHA): +1.84%
    • Aurora Cannabis (ACB): +0.95%

    High-flying cannabis stocks have caught the attention of both Main Street and Wall Street this year. In October, Canada became the second country after Uruguay to legalize the recreational use of marijuana.

    At the time, Jon Trauben, managing partner at the cannabis-focused Altitude Investment Management, said"We believe that the legalization in Canada offers a road map to invest in the companies that will form the basis of the legal cannabis industry in the coming years." 

    In the two months before Canada's recreational legalization, the biggest cannabis stocks all more than doubled in value. But after the legalization, they've been hard hit.

    While marijuana is not allowed at the federal level in the US, some states have already opened the door for the market. This year, Vermont became the 10th state to allow the sale and full use of marijuana. Medical marijuana is allowed in 32 states so far. 

    Read more stories on weed stocks:


    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: A sleep expert explains what happens to your body and brain if you don't get enough sleep

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    donald trump

    • Democrats have gone from being optimistic to confident that they will take back the House of Representatives following the midterm elections.
    • They plan to launch an investigative blitz against the White House and Russian interests if they regain control of the House.
    • They also plan to focus significant resources on examining the administration's healthcare and economic agenda.

    As Democrats gear up to potentially regain control of the House of Representatives, it has stirred speculation about whether the party will move to impeach President Donald Trump.

    But few Democrats want to actively talk about impeaching Trump, whether it's on Capitol Hill or on the campaign trail. For many, the issue is a nuisance and a distraction from more serious matters. Senior leadership has also repeatedly cautioned against impeachment, warning that it would only deepen partisan squabbling in Congress.

    Instead of impeachment, Democrats plan to tighten the screws by mounting an investigative blitz against the White House and Russian interests.

    "I am not looking for headlines," Democratic Rep. Elijah Cummings of Maryland, the top Democrat on the powerful House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, told The New York Times. "I am going to be defending the truth. We want to look at what is happening under this administration because all of us can agree this is not normal."

    adam schiff

    According to two sources close to the House Intelligence Committee, who requested anonymity to speak freely about post-election plans, Democrats plan to focus a significant amount of energy on reopening the panel's now-shuttered investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election, and whether members of the Trump campaign colluded with Moscow to tilt the race in his favor.

    "On a whole host of investigative threads, our work is fundamentally incomplete, some issues partially investigated, others, like that involving credible allegations of Russian money laundering, remain barely touched," Rep. Adam Schiff, the panel's ranking member, said after chairman Devin Nunes, a Republican, shut down the investigation earlier this year.

    "If the Russians do have leverage over the president of the United States, the majority has simply decided it would rather not know," Schiff said.

    Democrats also plan to reintroduce legislation safeguarding the integrity of the FBI's ongoing Russia investigation by protecting key figures like special counsel Robert Mueller and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein. Moreover, they want to bring legislation protecting future elections from foreign influence by countering nation-state sponsored cyberattacks and disinformation campaigns.

    Read more:A string of recent revelations paints a stark picture of Russia's ongoing campaign to meddle in the 2018 midterms

    Where the White House is concerned, one source close to the House Oversight Committee said Democrats want to pressure the president to beef up surveillance bodies that are tasked with overseeing the intelligence community, like the Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board.

    The source said Democrats also plan to scrutinize the White House's process of granting security clearances. The issue took center stage this year after the White House raised red flags by granting high level clearances to White House staffers like former staff secretary Rob Porter. In February, the White House downgraded the clearances of more than 30 aides, revoking their top-secret level access.

    The president also attracted sharp criticism when he revoked former CIA Director John Brennan's security clearance in August and announced he would be revoking the clearance of several other current and former law enforcement and intelligence officials. All the names on the list were people who have been critical of the president in the past and were involved in the Russia investigation.

    Reviewing Trump's process in granting and revoking clearances will be a "top priority" for Democrats, the source close to the House Oversight Committee said, adding that lawmakers would also subpoena documents related to the revocation of Brennan's clearance.

    Trump could face dozens of nightmare scenarios

    Steny Hoyer

    House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer outlined several other areas Democrats will prioritize if they take back the House, most of which involved the administration's economic and health care agendas.

    The committees on the budget, ways and means, and financial services would probe Trump's handling of the US economy and budgetary process, while others would look into botched natural disaster responses.

    Among the highest priorities for Democrats would be the Trump administration's dismantling of former President Barack Obama's signature policy, the Affordable Care Act.

    "In terms of oversight, we'll be looking at what they're doing administratively to undermine the operations of the Affordable Care Act and what consequences they may have caused to literally millions of people," Hoyer said in a meeting with reporters in September.

    An area that could be particularly stressful for Trump is the probing of his personal finances and benefits his properties and companies may or may not be receiving during his presidency.

    "I think we'll try to focus on issues which undermine the American people," Hoyer added. "Also I think we want to focus on the integrity of the interests of the president in terms of what interests he has and is he pursuing policies that are in the public's interest or in the Trump investment interest."

    The pledge by Democrats to pursue countless investigations into the Trump administration could put a serious hindrance on Republicans' agenda — and create dozens of nightmare scenarios for the president.

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: Megyn Kelly in 2017: 'I regret a lot' of the controversial stuff I've said on live television

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    Whole Foods

    • Amazon Prime Now will deliver Whole Foods groceries in as little as one hour on Thanksgiving Day, the company said Tuesday. 
    • Shoppers will also have the option to pick up their orders from participating Whole Foods stores. 
    • Prime Now delivery is available at Whole Foods stores in 63 cities, and pickup is available in 14 cities. 

    Amazon is giving Prime members a chance to avoid the chaos of last-minute trips to the grocery store this Thanksgiving.

    The company is offering same-day delivery of groceries from Whole Foods stores until 2 p.m. on Thanksgiving Day, Amazon said Tuesday. 

    The service, offered through Amazon Prime Now, will provide delivery in as little as one hour from the time of the order.

    Shoppers will also have the option to pick up their orders from participating Whole Foods stores. 

    Amazon started rolling out delivery of Whole Foods groceries earlier this year, after acquiring the grocery chain for $13.7 billion in 2017. 

    Prime Now delivery is available at Whole Foods stores in 63 cities, and pickup is available in 14 cities. 

    The company plans to eventually roll out delivery and pickup to all Whole Foods stores.

    SEE ALSO: I finally tried Amazon's free, two-hour Whole Foods delivery, and I was shocked to discover it isn't free

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: Target has a few sneaky ways it gets customers to spend more money

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    sagaponack new york

    • The tiny village of Sagaponack is the most expensive zip code in the Hamptons.
    • A study by GoBankingRates found that you'd need to make at least $853,738 to live there comfortably.
    • The median price of a home in Sagaponack is $7.1 million.
    • Celebrities and businesspeople, including talk show host Jimmy Fallon and billionaire investor  Ira Rennert, own homes in the secluded village.


    The Hamptons, a series of beach towns dotting eastern Long Island, is well-known as a summer retreat for the wealthy and famous of New York.

    Within these affluent communities, a tiny village of 491 people stands out as the priciest zip code — and by some calculations, the most expensive in the entire country.

    Sagaponack, a village in the town of Southampton in the 11962, has been called home by CEOs, musicians, famous authors, and celebrities. 

    In Sagaponack, a typical home is listed for $7.1 million, according to a study by GoBankingRates. In order to live comfortably in the Hamptons village, you'll need to make at least  $853,738 a year, according to the analysis.

    Here's a look inside the exclusive Hamptons community.

    SEE ALSO: How much you need to earn to live in the most expensive zip code in every state

    DON'T MISS: 10 cities where you can make 6 figures and still feel broke

    Sagaponack sits in The Hamptons, a stretch of affluent seaside communities on New York's Long Island.

    Source: Google Maps

    It's about a 2.5 hour drive from New York City.

    Source: Google Maps

    The median listing price for a home in Sagaponack is $7.1 million.

    Source: GoBankingRates

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    Royole's FlexPai foldable smartphone

    • Startup display maker Royole on Monday showed off its new foldable flexible screen gadget, getting out ahead of Samsung.
    • When folded in half, the device can function as two different smartphones.
    • When unfolded, it can act like a tablet.
    • Its flexible screen is cool, but feels more like a gimmick than a useful feature.

    I just got to put my hands on what's supposed to be the future of smartphones.

    My first impression: The future still needs some work.

    The ostensible gadget of tomorrow is a foldable phone with a flexible screen. Samsung is widely expected to unveil its idea for just such a device at a conference on Wednesday. But it was beaten to the punch Monday night by Royole, a startup display and device maker.

    Royole CEO Bill Liu with some devices that use the company's flexible OLED displays, as seen in San Francisco on August, 22, 2018.At a small press event, company CEO Bill Liu showed off the FlexPai, which he dubbed the world's first commercially available flexible screen foldable phone. The device, when folded, looks something like a small notebook with a wraparound screen. When opened, it looks like a small tablet.

    "We've been working on this a long time," Liu told Business Insider.

    Royole designed the FlexPai to address two significant shortcomings of traditional smartphones — their screens are fragile, and they're not really big enough for many tasks, such as watching movies or editing documents.

    Unlike nearly all smartphones, the FlexPai screen isn't encased in glass. Its display is an OLED screen that's printed on a thin plastic material. The screen is scratch resistant and, because it doesn't use any glass, it's shatter-proof. It can be bent 200,000 times without breaking, Liu said.

    "It's a significant breakthrough," he said. He continued: "Say goodbye to broken screens."

    The FlexPai can act as a phone or a tablet

    The FlexPai has a hinge in its middle that allows you to fold it to the point where its two ends touch or unfold it to a 180-degree angle. The hinge is stiff enough that it will maintain any angle in between those two points. So, one thing you can do with it is to fold it part-way to form an "A" shape and have it stand up on its two ends.

    The device runs a custom version of Android that Royole calls Water OS that it designed specifically for the FlexPai's flexible screen. One thing it allows you to do is to show a different video on each side of the device's screen when its folded, so you and a friend could potentially watch two different things at the same time.

    Read this:This Stanford grad's startup can make screens that are thinner than a sheet of copy paper — and he's gearing up to take on Samsung and LG in the display market

    The FlexPai supports dual SIM cards. When it's folded in half, you can use the screens on the front and back as, essentially, two different phones, each associated with a different SIM.

    Royole's FlexPai foldable smartphone, folded in halfBut the flexible screen is perhaps most useful when you actually unfold it and you can see the full 7.8" display in its entirety. In that configuration, it's almost the exact size as the iPad mini. It's only slightly heavier and thicker.

    So, basically, the FlexPai is a miniature tablet that actually fits in your pocket. It will allow users to save money and weight, because they won't need as many devices, Liu said.

    You'll need "less and less devices to get the same user experience," he said.

    Royole is already mass producing the device and taking preorders for it. It plans to start shipping it at the end of December.

    The gadget is pricey and clunky

    But you may want to wait before you buy one.

    For one thing, the device is expensive. It starts at $1,318 for a version with 128 gigabytes of storage. If you want the 256-gigabyte version, it will set you back $1,469. That's more than the priciest iPhone XS Max — and that model comes with 512 gigabytes of storage.

    For another, Royole doesn't yet have any U.S. carrier partners and isn't really selling the FlexPai to consumers here. Right now, it's targeting consumers in China instead.

    Royole's FlexPai smartphone, unfoldedBut the gadget has more fundamental problems. It feels like a first-generation device. Although it's small and thin for a tablet, it feels big and clunky when folded in half. That's because it doesn't fold down flat. Instead it has a relatively thick bulge at its hinge. That could be annoying if you're trying to carry it around in your pocket.

    Right before Apple introduced that iPad, I met with a small Silicon Valley company that showed off one of the first modern touchscreen tablets. I had been skeptical about tablets before then, but after seeing device — even in its rough shape — it was immediately clear why someone would want a gadget like it.

    I was hoping to have the same experience with the FlexPai. I've been excited about the coming era of flexible screen devices since the first time I saw a demo of such a display around a decade or so ago. The idea of having a large screen device that you can fit in your pocket or roll up into a pen-like tube is really appealing in theory.

    It feels like a gimmick

    But right now, this flexible screen device feels more like a gimmick than a vision of the future.

    I didn't really get to test the device, so I can't say how it performs or what it's like to use on a daily basis. But I'm dubious that in practice its flexible screen feature is really that compelling. Other companies have tried dual-screen phones, and they've never really caught on with consumers. I'm skeptical that people are going to like the trade off of having a thicker gadget in their pocket.

    Sure, its larger screen can offer a better movie-watching experience. But the display still isn't big enough for the device to replace a laptop or a full-sized tablet. You're not going to want to edit documents or do other work on that sized screen.

    Solving the problem of fragile screens is an important advance. But not at a $1,300 price point.

    It was cool to see the FlexPai in person. I'm just hoping that future foldable devices do a better job of living up to the hype.

    Now read:

    SEE ALSO: Apple has killed off the most premium version of the Apple Watch, which originally cost $10,000 and came in an 18-karat gold case

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: Watch Apple's October 2018 event in 8 minutes

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    2018 11 06T172202Z_1232340123_RC152274A180_RTRMADP_3_USA ELECTION GEORGIA.JPG

    Millions of Americans across the country took to the polls Tuesday to make their voices heard in the 2018 midterm elections.

    Engagement this year seems to be higher than usual for midterm elections, which are generally less popular than presidential election years. Even before polls opened on Tuesday, more than 35 million Americans had already voted.

    From Georgia to California on Tuesday, lines stretched out the door and around the block as Americans carried out their civic duty.

    Here's what Election Day 2018 looks like in America.

    SEE ALSO: Thunderstorms, heavy wind, and rain threaten to deter voters from going to the polls on Election Day

    DON'T MISS: The 2018 midterms will have a big impact on healthcare, from Medicaid to nurses to abortion — here are the key issues

    Many committed voters got up in the pre-dawn hours to cast their votes before work, like at this polling station at a recreation center in Columbus, Ohio.

    The line at the Columbus, Ohio rec center appeared to continue even once voters got inside the gym.

    Voters in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida also had to stand outside, though the weather was more favorable.

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    • This April, a San Francisco-based startup called Goodly launched as a part of Y Combinator's summer batch.
    • Goodly aims to help companies help their employees pay off their student loans, by making regular matching contributions — kind of like a 401(k).
    • Greg Poulin, co-founder and CEO, was motivated to start Goodly because of his own experiences in paying off $80,000 in student debt.
    • Poulin believes that the budget for common company perks such as gym memberships and massage chairs can be better used for helping employees pay off student loans.

    While Greg Poulin, co-founder and CEO of Goodly, was attending Dartmouth, his father passed away unexpectedly. On top of the emotional toll, he also ended up having to borrow $80,000 in student loans to pay his tuition.

    Poulin has since moved to San Francisco, the thriving-but-pricey hub of the startup world, and he’s still chipping away at his loans with a monthly payment of about $900 a month. Frustrated by his experiences, he founded Goodly, a platform for companies to offer employees assistance with their student loans as a benefit.

    Goodly allows companies to make a monthly contribution to their employees’ student loans, similar to how companies often match 401(k) contributions. Based in San Francisco, Goodly was founded just this April, launched with a $120,000 seed investment as a part of the summer batch from famed startup program Y Combinator.

    “Most employers don’t know that student loan benefits exist. It’s both a challenge and an opportunity for us,” Poulin told Business Insider. “It’s helped us completely define a new category of benefits.”

    Companies often offer perks like gym memberships, massage chairs and snacks, but the money can be better allocated to helping employees pay student loans, Poulin says. That way, student loan repayment won’t be a large expense for companies. This benefit, he says, could help with both recruiting and retention.

    “The problem is those employees are saddled with crippling student loan debt,” Poulin said. “Gym memberships aren’t going to cut it when it comes to recruiting employees.”

    Hemant Verma, co-founder and CTO of Goodly, also had to pay off debts from his own education in India.

    “This is a massive problem for people,” Verma told Business Insider. “It’s the biggest problem our generation is facing...This was a mission we were energized with.”

    The scale of the problem

    Today, 70% of college students graduate with debt, and over 44 million Americans collectively owe $1.5 trillion in student debt. An American Student Assistance survey reported that 76% of respondents said student loan repayment benefit would be a deciding or contributing factor to accepting a job offer.

    The average college graduate has $37,172 in student loans, by some estimates, up $20,000 from 13 years ago. It makes sense that the demand for student loan benefits is rising.

    “For millennials, they bear the grunt of student loans,” Poulin said. “It’s an issue where we see people of all backgrounds.”

    This could potentially impact diversity and inclusion at companies as well, as student loans disproportionately affect women and people of color. For example, research shows that women carry two-thirds of the nation’s student debt load, and that African American students are four times more likely to default on their student loans than their white peers.

    Poulin has seen Goodly’s customers make contributions of $25 to $300 a month to repaying their employees’ student loans. On average, employers contribute $100 a month.

    “We’ve had companies of all sizes reach out to us,” Poulin said. “We’ve been really blown away by the interest of companies we’ve seen. It’s not surprising when so many are leaving the company in debt. This is a problem they’ve struggled with. It’s exciting to see companies that are working to proactively help their employees solve this challenge.”

    Get started early

    For Poulin, one thing that has helped him was making bi-weekly payments instead of monthly payments.

    “Over the course of the year, you’ll make an additional payment,” Poulin said. “It could shave off two years over the repayment period.”

    Still, student loan repayments can impede employees from making future investments such as graduate school, buying a house, marriage and retirement. Poulin sees investing in retirement as his biggest challenge, especially when he first started working after graduation.

    “I was contributing very little, if at all,” Poulin said. “Student loan debt is a major barrier. When you delay contributing to the 401(k), there’s a large compounding effect.”

    Having faced the issue of paying off student debt themselves, Poulin and Verma hope Goodly can help people slash the amount of time it takes to pay off loans.

    “We want to make student loans obsolete,” Verma said. “Student loans get a bad rep for most people. In terms of investments, it’s still a good thing basically. You’re able to upgrade your life. Our goal is not to get rid of it completely, but make sure you can pay it off as fast as possible.”

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: This company spent 10 years developing a product that allows humans to scale walls like a gecko

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    Growth Regtech Firms

    This is a preview of a research report from Business Insider Intelligence, Business Insider's premium research service. To learn more about Business Insider Intelligence, click here.

    Regtech solutions seemed to offer the solution to financial institutions' (FIs) compliance woes when they first came to prominence around 24 months ago, gaining support from regulators and investors alike. 

    However, many of the companies offering these solutions haven't scaled as might have been expected from the initial hype, and have failed to follow the trajectory of firms in other segments of fintech.

    This unexpected inertia in the regtech industry is likely to resolve over the next 12-18 months as other factors come into play that shift FIs' approach to regtech solutions, and as the companies offering them evolve. External factors driving this change include regulatory support of regtech solutions, and consultancies offering more help to FIs wanting to sift through solutions. Startups offering regtech solutions will also play a part by partnering with each other, forming industry organizations, and taking advantage of new opportunities.

    This report from Business Insider Intelligence, Business Insider's premium research service, provides a brief overview of the current global financial regulatory compliance landscape, and the regtech industry's position within it. It then details the major drivers that will shift the dial on FIs' adoption of regtech over the next 12-18 months, as well as those that will propel startups offering regtech solutions to new heights. Finally, it outlines what impact these drivers will have, and gives insight into what the global regtech industry will look like by 2020.

    Here are some of the key takeaways:

    • Regulatory compliance is still a significant issue faced by global FIs. In 2018 alone, EU regulations MiFID II and PSD2 have come into effect, bringing with them huge handbooks and gigantic reporting requirements. 
    • Regtech startups boast solutions that can ease FIs' compliance burden — but they are struggling to scale. 
    • Some changes expected to drive greater adoption of these solutions in the next 12 to 18 months are: the ongoing evolution of startups' business models, increasing numbers of partnerships, regulators' promotion of regtech, changing attitudes to the segment among FIs, and consultancies helping to facilitate adoption.
    • FIs will actively be using solutions from regtech startups by 2020, and startups will be collaborating in an organized fashion with each other and with FIs. Global regulators will have adopted regtech themselves, while continuing to act as advocates for the industry.

    In full, the report:

    • Reviews the major changes expected to hit the regtech segment in the next 12 to 18 months.
    • Examines the drivers behind these changes, and how the proliferation of regtech will improve compliance for FIs.
    • Provides our view on what the future of the regtech industry looks like through 2020.


    Join the conversation about this story »

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    Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer

    • Early exit polls show that a plurality of voters identified healthcare as the most important issue in the 2018 midterm elections.
    • The polls could be a good sign for Democrats, who made healthcare their top issue during the campaign.
    • Preelection polls also showed voters trusted Democrats over Republicans on healthcare.
    • But exit polls can be unreliable and it's unclear how the focus influenced individual races.

    Healthcare was the driving issue for many Americans in Tuesday's midterm elections, according to early exit polls, and the focus could be a good sign for Democrats.

    According to early exit polls, healthcare was the most important issue for a plurality of voters in the midterms. An exit poll conducted by CNN, NBC, and other major outlets found 40% of Americans picking healthcare as their most important issue. Immigration came in second with roughly 20% of people selecting it as the top issue.

    An exit poll conducted by the Associated Press' Votecast system also found that healthcare was the most important issue, but by a slimmer margin. 26% of Americans selected healthcare as the top issue with immigration nabbing a 23% share and 19% of people picking the economy.

    Read more: Midterms 2018 LIVE: Follow along for live results and coverage of a wild election night

    Healthcare was a dominant theme for Democrats throughout the election season with both House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer imploring candidates to focus on the issue during the waning days of the campaign.

    "I write to acknowledge the vital role Congressional Democrats played in protecting the Affordable Care Act and exposing the GOP’s monstrous health care agenda – and I urge all of us to continue to push this message in the next 24 hours," Pelosi said in a letter to colleagues on Monday.

    Read more: The 2018 midterms will have a big impact on healthcare, from Medicaid to nurses to abortion — here are the key issues

    The focus on healthcare may also be a good, though incredibly early, sign for Democrats' hopes of retaking the House of Representatives. According to polling done before the election, Americans generally trusted the party more on healthcare and Democrats poured money into advertising on the issue.

    Additionally, support for Obamacare and the law's preexisting conditions protections are at relative high points — both are issues that the Democrats harped on in the lead up to Election Day.

    On the flip side, Trump and the GOP largely played defense on healthcare and attempted to turn the focus onto the strong economy or immigration issues like the migrant caravan. But that fight seems to have been blunted.

    The results do come with a few caveats. Exit polls are prone to unreliability and just because voters were focused on healthcare doesn't mean that they voted for Democrats.

    But Democrats largely wanted the midterm elections to be a referendum on the GOP's handling of healthcare and it appears the party got its wish.

    SEE ALSO: A fight over the most popular piece of Obamacare could define the 2018 midterm elections

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: Trump once won a lawsuit against the NFL — but the result was an embarrassment

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    playerunknown's battlegrounds

    • It looks like "PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds," the game whose success paved the way for "Fortnite: Battle Royale," is coming to the PlayStation 4.
    • The game hasn't officially been announced, but files for the game are present in the PlayStation 4 game database, and the online PSN store.
    • "PUBG" is one of the most popular action games on PC, but it's been console exclusive to the Xbox One for the past year.

    It looks like "PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds," the game that is largely credited with sparking the popularity of battle royale shooting games like "Fortnite: Battle Royale," is set for release on PlayStation 4.

    While Bluehole, the game's developer, has yet to confirm a PS4 release date, fans have discovered files on PlayStation 4 consoles and in Sony's online PlayStation Network store. Last month the South Korean Game Rating and Administration Committee leaked ratings for a PlayStation 4 version of the game as well. A representative for the game declined to comment. 

    "PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds," or "PUBG," was officially released on PC in May 2017 and has been console exclusive to the Xbox One since December 2017. The game was in Microsoft's Xbox Game Preview program until September 4th, when version 1.0 was officially released. The mobile version of the game is also one of the most popular video games in China.

    Read more:The company behind 'PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds' has reportedly dropped its lawsuit against the wildly popular 'Fortnite'

    Like "Fortnite: Battle Royale" and other games that it inspired, "PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds" throws 100 players onto a single map with scattered resources. Players need to find weapons and items to defend themselves as the safe areas of the map begin to shrink. The last player or team surviving at the end of the round is the winner.

    Though "PUBG" helped pioneer the battle royale genre, the game has seen its star wane, even as rivals like "Fortnite" have skyrocketed to success and challengers like "Call of Duty's" Blackout and "Battlefield V's" Firestorm continue to crop up. and. "PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds" has a smaller development team than those games and has struggled to keep up with the demands of a massive community.

    In November of 2017, "PUBG" was averaging 1.3 million players each day, according to SteamCharts, which tracks players on Steam, the most popular platform for PC games. The average number of daily "PUBG" players has since dwindled to about 450,000 over the last 30 days.

    Still, "PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds" remains one of the three most popular games on Steam by a wide margin, alongside "Dota 2" and "CounterStrike: Global Offensive." 

    With "PUBG" available on multiple platforms, players are wondering if Bluehole will be able to implement cross-platform play. Earlier this year "Fortnite" became the first game to offer cross-platform play between the Xbox One, PlayStation 4, Nintendo Switch, PC, and mobile devices. Bluehole has expressed interest in allowing cross-platform play in the past, but nothing has been confirmed.

    "PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds" is currently available on PC and Xbox One for $29.99. This hypothetical PS4 version will likely carry a similar price.


    SEE ALSO: The new 'Call of Duty' has a surprisingly fantastic Battle Royale mode aimed directly at 'Fortnite'

    SEE ALSO: The company behind 'PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds' has reportedly dropped its lawsuit against the wildly popular 'Fortnite'

    Join the conversation about this story »

    NOW WATCH: After using Samsung Galaxy phones for 5 years, I made the switch to the iPhone XS

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    country music stars

    Country music seems to continue to grow in popularity and country music stars seem to continue to get more and more successful. You likely know quite a few country stars but there are some that are raking in the money that you may not have ever heard of.

    If you've ever wondered which stars might be considered the most successful of all time, read on to find out who makes the list.

    Toby Keith has an estimated net worth of $500 million.

    Toby Keith is known for hits like "Should've Been A Cowboy" and "As Good As I Once Was," but beyond being a singer and songwriter, he also has his own chain of restaurants and other ventures, as Taste of Country noted.

    An outspoken conservative, Keith also performed at President Trump's inauguration concert and flew to Saudi Arabia to play a show, The Atlantic reported. Keith is worth an estimated $500 million, according to Forbes.

    Dolly Parton is a singer, TV star, and has her own amusement park.

    At 72 years old, Dolly Parton is well-known both within and outside the world of country music. Beyond being a singer and songwriter, Parton also has her own theme park, Dollywood, acts in movies and on TV, and more, according to Taste of Country. Dolly Parton is also worth an estimated $500 million, according to Celebrity Net Worth. 

    Shania Twain is making a comeback.

    Shania Twain is well-known for hits like "Man, I Feel Like A Woman" and "Any Man Of Mine." According to Taste of Country, Twain's Las Vegas residency was a comeback of sorts for the artist after a sustained break. Shania Twain is worth a reported $400 million, according to Celebrity Net Worth.

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    A Star is Born  2018It's no secret that being an actor often requires picking up a few extra skills along the way— and sometimes these skills include playing musical instruments. 

    It's not always easy to learn how to play an instrument, but these actors went the extra mile and learned a new musical skill. 

    Here are 10 actors who learned how to play an instrument for a movie role.

    Ryan Gosling was excited to learn jazz piano for "La La Land."

    Gosling, who played Sebastian in "La La Land," had no formal training on piano before filming this musical blockbuster.

    Thankfully, his piano teacher said Gosling was highly receptive of the chance to learn.

    "Piano is something I always wished I had the time to learn. So I had this great opportunity to sit in front of a piano for three months and just play — and I took advantage of it," Gosling told Woman and Home Magazine. "I practiced some of those pieces four hours a day for three months."

    Bradley Cooper learned two instruments to play Jackson Maine in "A Star is Born."

    Portraying a musician alongside Lady Gaga is no simple feat. In addition to directing and writing original music for the film, Cooper learned two instruments for his role in the film. 

    Cooper said that he spent about six months learning how to play piano and guitar.

    "We mapped out my entire schedule, day by day," Cooper told W magazine. "I'd wake up and work out, followed by two hours of guitar practice and two hours of piano lessons."

    Read More: 15 surprising things you probably didn't know about 'A Star Is Born'

    A grueling practice schedule won Adrien Brody a record-breaking Oscar.

    In order to accurately portray Polish virtuoso Wladyslaw Szpilman in "The Pianist," director Roman Polanski insisted Adrien Brody practice the instrument for four hours a day.

    As if that weren't enough, Brody also sold his car, lost a lot of weight, and moved to Europe in order to create a more authentic portrayal of the Holocaust-era artist.

    Brody won an Oscar for this role in 2003. 

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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    Weight Loss

    Weight loss is a common goal of many, but one that can be quite difficult to achieve. This is partially due to the fact that there are many trends and misconceptions related to weight loss, that ultimately lead to dead ends en route to weight loss goals.

    We've debunked some of the most common weight loss myths that you have to stop believing.

    MYTH: Carbs are bad for you.

    Carbohydrates are not inherently bad for you. Cutting carbs completely from your diet can lead to nutritional deficiencies, increased risk of health problems, and low energy levels.

    The biggest takeaway from this myth is to recognize that not all carbs are created equally. Sure, sugars aren't a necessity, but carbohydrates like sweet potatoes, multi-grain bread, fruits, and vegetables, can be difficult to make up for if totally removed from one's diet.

    MYTH: Eating less will make you lose weight.

    Calories are energy. When you don't eat enough, your body actually panics and goes into starvation mode. This metabolic adjustment essentially makes the body hold onto more fat, since it's worried it's not going to get enough food. This results in weight gain, rather than weight loss, so it's important to not starve yourself.

    Ben Greenfield Fitness explained that "Depriving our bodies of calories, it turns out, only tends to slow down our metabolism. Over time, it causes us to gain more unwanted weight."

    Instead of eating substantially less than what you need or are accustomed to eating, find a healthy balance of calorie deficit that works for you.

    MYTH: "Fat-free" foods are a must.

    Fat-free and low-fat food options often contain just as many calories as their full-fat counterparts, and generally, contain a slew of additives and sugars. explained that we're more likely to overeat products labeled as low-fat or fat-free due to their association as healthy, yet we're often times better off to eat a smaller portion or one serving of the full-fat version of the food or food product.

    See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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