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A winter storm blamed for at least five deaths in the Midwest pummeled the mid-Atlantic region over the weekend, bringing with an icy mix that knocked out power, cancelled flights, and caused car accidents. (AP)

Due to the storm, all federal offices are closed today, not just the ones impacted by the partial government shutdown, which entered its 24th day. A rash of analyst notes are warning that the longest shutdown in U.S. history will soon start to affect businesses. (CNBC)

* Thousands of federal workers file for unemployment (CNBC)

The White House requested options for a military strike against Iran last September, according to the Wall Street Journal revealed, citing U.S. officials. The request alarmed Pentagon and State Department officials, the Journal wrote.

President Donald Trump has gone to extraordinary lengths to conceal details of his conversations with Russian President Vladi­mir Putin, current and former U.S. officials said. (Washington Post)

CNBC has learned that several Democratic politicians – known collectively as "the governors" among elite donors – have been in contact with Wall Street's top political financiers as they each consider running for president in 2020.

British lawmakers are set to vote on Prime Minister Theresa May's much-maligned Brexit deal tomorrow, with less than three months to go before the U.K. is set to leave the European Union. (CNBC)

At the Detroit Auto Show, Ford Motor (F) CEO Jim Hackett told CNBC the company is gearing up to launch new electric cars as soon as next year. Ford previously announced its plans to invest $11 billion in electric vehicles by 2022.

Chinese telecom giant Huawei, the world's second largest maker of smartphones, fired a sales director arrested in Poland on charges of conducting espionage on behalf of China, according to the Wall Street Journal.

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