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Kim Jong-un, Federal Reserve, Raccoon: Your Wednesday Evening Briefing

Kim Jong-un, Federal Reserve, Raccoon: Your Wednesday Evening Briefing

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Good evening. Here’s the latest.

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CreditDoug Mills/The New York Times

1. “There is no longer a Nuclear Threat from North Korea.”

That was President Trump upon his return from Singapore. In Pyongyang, the state-controlled media also celebrated the meeting’s outcome, declaring that Kim Jong-un had won major concessions. But the contours of the agreement the two leaders reached remain vague, and open to divergent interpretations.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, in Seoul to meet with South Korean officials, said that the Trump administration hoped to complete “major disarmament” of North Korea within the next 2½ years.

On the latest episode of our podcast “The Daily,” we discuss North Korea with our Op-Ed columnist Nicholas Kristof.

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CreditKevin C. Cox/Getty Images

2. The U.S., Mexico and Canada will host the 2026 World Cup, North America’s first since 1994. Their successful joint proposal promised record crowds and revenues, and $ 11 billion in profits for FIFA, soccer’s governing body. Above, officials from the three countries.

And this year’s World Cup starts Thursday in Russia. For updates and analysis delivered to your inbox twice a week, sign up for our Offsides newsletter. And to receive direct messages from Times journalists on the ground in Russia, sign up for World Cup Messenger.

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CreditAl Drago for The New York Times

3. Paul Ryan, the House speaker, told a closed-door meeting of House Republicans that his plan to bring two immigration bills up for a vote next week had the approval of President Trump.

Lawmakers will consider a hard-line measure that emphasizes border security and a somewhat more moderate compromise measure, yet to be finalized. But whether either bill can pass is very much in doubt.

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CreditNajeeb Almahboobi/EPA, via Shutterstock

4. The world’s worst humanitarian crisis may get even more grim.

A coalition led by Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates invaded Yemen’s main Red Sea port, disrupting a major pipeline for food and goods in the war-torn country. The attack seems aimed at tipping the balance in the long-running fight against Iranian-backed Houthi rebels, but could put millions at risk of starvation.

The U.S. has backed the Saudi-led coalition, but an increasing number of Republican and Democratic lawmakers in Congress are criticizing America’s role in the conflict.

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CreditRichard Drew/Associated Press

5. Comcast announced an offer worth $ 65 billion for the bulk of 21st Century Fox’s businesses, setting up a showdown with the Walt Disney Company for Rupert Murdoch’s media empire.

The all-cash bid by Comcast, the largest cable company in the U.S., came a day after a federal judge approved a merger between AT&T and Time Warner. Comcast executives had awaited the decision in that case before mounting their bid.

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CreditAndrew Caballero-Reynolds/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

6. In other financial news, the Federal Reserve raised interest rates by a quarter of a percentage point, and signaled it would raise rates two more times this year.

Jerome Powell, the Fed chairman, above, said the economy had strengthened significantly since the financial crisis and was approaching a “normal” level where monetary policy may no longer be needed to either encourage or discourage economic activity.

The markets had been widely expecting the move, and reaction among investors was muted.

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CreditAndrew Mangum for The New York Times

7. “It’s weird to be moving into this building. I used to work here.”

That was Karleen Smith, who was referring to the Macy’s at the Landmark Mall in Alexandria, Va. Like so many mall stores across the country, the Macy’s shut down a while back.

And now the vacant space is being used as a temporary homeless shelter, with 60 beds for families and single people without a place to live, in a city with a scarcity of affordable housing.

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CreditTy Wright/Associated Press

8. In much of the country, the stereotype that boys do better than girls at math isn’t true — on average, they perform about the same, at least through the eighth grade. (Above, a classroom in Stockport, Ohio.)

But there’s a notable exception: school districts that are mostly rich, white and suburban. That’s according to a new study from Stanford researchers, one of the most comprehensive looks at the gender gap in test scores at the school district level.

There’s no easy explanation; a variety of factors most likely account for the disparity. And girls continue to outperform boys in reading in school districts across the U.S., regardless of income.

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CreditCBS

9. The late-night hosts had their hands full trying to make sense of the budding camaraderie between President Trump and Kim Jong-un.

“The two leaders did seem to hit it off,” James Corden quipped. “In fact, Trump liked Kim so much, he’s said he’s going to let him decide the next presidential election. Makes a nice change.”

And we’re looking forward to Wednesday’s episode of “The Late Show.” Michael Avenatti, the lawyer for Stormy Daniels, and Anthony Scaramucci, the president’s short-lived communications director, will sit down with Stephen Colbert. They’ll surely be asked about reports that an agent has been pitching a talk show starring them to cable networks.

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CreditEvan Frost/Minnesota Public Radio, via Associated Press

10. Finally, a raccoon on the loose captivated the nation.

It all started when maintenance workers at an office tower in downtown St. Paul, Minn., found the raccoon curled up on a ledge on Tuesday afternoon. After it was roused, the creature took off — and scaled the side of the building. An audience gathered on the street below — and on Twitter — to watch the hourslong attempt to stop it. While some cheered for the animal, others warned that they were vicious.

“Do not be fooled by their attempts to be cute,” one user wrote. “This building climbing scheme was just part of their nefarious plot to take over the world. Stay vigilant!”

Officials managed to bait and trap the raccoon, and they released it into the wild.

Have a great night.

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Your Evening Briefing is posted at 6 p.m. Eastern.

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