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Good evening. Here’s the latest.
1. The Federal Reserve downgraded its outlook for the U.S. economy, and forecasting data it released suggested little appetite for raising interest rates — at all — in 2019.
Wall Street couldn’t be happier over the new patience.
Jerome Powell, the Fed chairman, discussed expectations of growth “at a solid pace” for the coming year, but slower than last year’s. The central bank is tracking slowdowns in household spending and business fixed investment.
The expectation gap between the Fed (2.1 percent growth for the year) and the White House (3.2 percent) has never been greater.
2. Commuting by airboat, two-hour detours, houses on islands.
The Nebraska floods wiped out infrastructure, making a devastating week that much harder for farmers and commuters. The damage promises to be an expensive and long-term challenge.
“It’s like a dream and you’re going to wake up and it’s going to be all O.K. But it’s not,” one man said. Above, road damage from severe flooding in North Bend, Neb.
And our South African bureau chief has been reporting from the worst-hit area of Cyclone Idai in Mozambique. We’ll update the briefing online with his story when we publish. Meanwhile, we’ve mapped the cyclone’s path of destruction through southern Africa and collected images to help you grasp the scale of the disaster.
3. “I didn’t get a thank you.”
President Trump has renewed his attacks on Senator John McCain, who died last year of brain cancer. At a rally in Ohio, above, Mr. Trump complained that Mr. McCain had not invited him to the funeral and that the McCain family had not expressed gratitude to him for giving the senator “the funeral he wanted.”
Mr. Trump blamed Mr. McCain for the Iraq war, and added a note of personal distaste: “I have to be honest, I’ve never liked him much. Hasn’t been for me. I really probably never will.”
Earlier in the day, President Trump said the last ISIS territory in Syria would be “gone by tonight,” despite reports of continued fighting.
4. Newly reviewed audio from the cockpit recorder on the Lion Air flight in October paints a chilling scene, one that is under renewed scrutiny with the crash of a second nearly brand-new 737 Max 8 flight this month. It has also raised questions about pilot training. Above, a simulator in Indonesia.
As the nose of the doomed flight repeatedly bucked downward, one of the pilots flipped through the pages of a technical manual to try to figure out what was happening. Then his co-pilot began to pray.
“I think he knew it was unrecoverable,” said an Indonesian transportation official who heard and described the audio.
5. Hundreds of mourners from around the world arrived in Christchurch, New Zealand, in time for the first funerals since Friday’s mass shootings at two mosques.
They massed on a hilltop of dirt cut open with row after row of graves. For relatives of the dead, the prolonged waiting period for coroners to identify and return victims’ bodies frustrated traditional Islamic rituals, which prioritize immediate burials and a joyful departure.
Coroners have been working overtime to identify and return the bodies of the 50 dead. As of Tuesday, 21 had been identified.
6. In news from Europe:
E.U. officials agreed to a short extension for Brexit — but only if British lawmakers approved Prime Minister Theresa May’s withdrawal plan, which Parliament has soundly rejected twice. Above, Mrs. May in Parliament today.
The E.U.’s move, which comes little more than a week before the March 29 deadline for Britain to leave the bloc, appears calculated to pressure lawmakers into supporting Mrs. May’s painstakingly negotiated plan. In the unlikely event that lawmakers do endorse it, they would still need the extension to pass supporting legislation.
Separately, European authorities fined Google $1.7 billion for violating antitrust rules in the online advertising market. The punitive action is the region’s third against the tech company since 2017.
7. One in seven American women experience depression during or after pregnancy. The first drug approved for postpartum depression offers hope.
It’s a quick-acting medication given by infusion that can begin to lift the darkness within 48 hours. But it’s expensive — averaging $34,000 per patient — and requires a 60-hour stay in a medical center. A pill made with a similar molecule is showing promise in clinical trials. Stephanie Hathaway, above, volunteered for the clinical trial.
We have a guide to what to look for and how to get help for maternal depression.
8. Who should own photos of slaves? A woman is suing Harvard for images of people from the 1850s who she says were her ancestors.
The images of Renty and Delia were taken as part of a Harvard-commissioned study that argued that black people were an inferior race. The daguerreotypes are stored in a museum on campus, but Tamara Lanier, 54, says the images are part of her personal family history, not collectible artifacts or for use as promotional material, above.
Separately, the American Museum of Natural History in New York City placed a correction to a diorama in full view of visitors, inviting them to “reconsider this scene” of an imagined 17th-century meeting between Dutch settlers and the Lenape Indians.
9. There’s one N.C.A.A. team that just can’t win: the referees.
As the college men’s basketball tournament begins, referees will most likely be accused of incompetence, and others will be blamed for game outcomes or blown calls. Above, Illinois Coach Brad Underwood during a loss to Penn State this season.
We took a look at how officiating the game has changed over the years, and why referees are “under the highest amount of scrutiny” ever, as one longtime official put it.
From the basketball court to the baseball field: Our columnist looks at the $430 million deal Mike Trout signed with the Los Angeles Angels for 12 seasons. He writes that the center fielder waited for the other guys to get their megadeals and then quietly outdid them all, just as he does on the field.
10. Finally, a look back at Rosie the Riveter’s English cousins.
During World War II, the Women’s Timber Corps, known as “lumberjills,” were responsible for harvesting timber for telegraph poles, rails for D-Day splashdowns and the pit props that bulwarked vital British coal mines. We went back into the archives to highlight this little-known yet vital unit.
A Times account in 1944 assured readers: “It has been found more often than not that the girl whose previous knowledge of tree life was often limited to the telegraph post can swing an axe just as efficiently as a farmer’s daughter.”
Have a hardy night.
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