Your daily look at late-breaking news, upcoming events and the stories that will be talked about Friday:
1. AP REVEALS MISSING AMERICAN'S BACKSTORY
Robert Levinson, who vanished seven years ago in Iran, was working for the CIA on an unapproved spy mission, an AP investigation finds. It's a secret the U.S. has long sought to keep.
2. KIM JONG UN'S UNCLE PUT TO DEATH
North Korea's stunning announcement comes just days after Jang Song Thaek — long considered the country's No. 2 power — was charged with corruption and removed from all his posts.
3. EVEN MOST GOP LAWMAKERS BACK BUDGET DEAL IN HOUSE
Lopsided majorities of Republicans and Democrats alike vote in favor of the legislation, which now goes to the Senate.
4. INQUIRY LAUNCHED INTO FAKE SIGN LANGUAGE INTERPRETER
South African officials are scrambling to determine how the man was hired for Mandela's memorial.
5. MEXICO VOTES TO OPEN OIL INDUSTRY
Opponents say they fear the dramatic move will allow multinationals, especially from the U.S., to once again dominate the country's oil.
6. WHO'S STILL ON THE LOOSE — DESPITE WORLDWIDE ALERT
Briton Samantha Lewthwaite, a suspected terrorist known as the "white widow," somehow eludes authorities, even as she has traveled through Africa with four small children.
7. LUKEWARM REPORT FOR ARCTIC CLIMATE
While temperatures weren't as warm as last year, long-term problems like shrinking snow, ice and reindeer populations persist, NOAA says.
8. WHY MEGA MILLIONS JACKPOTS ARE SWELLING
Officials have significantly lowered the odds of winning the multi-state lottery — thereby increasing the chances of each jackpot rolling over.
9. 'KING OF SANDS,' UNFLATTERING LOOK AT SAUDI FOUNDER, OPENS IN SYRIA
The movie is seen as a jab at the kingdom for its support of rebels seeking to topple Assad.
10. WHICH FILMS ARE FRONTRUNNERS FOR OSCARS
Golden Globes voters install "American Hustle" and "12 Years a Slave" as the early favorites.