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US mortgage rates hit all-time low

Mortgage rates dropped again, with the 15-year fixed-rate loan hitting a record low. The most popular mortgage, the 30-year fixed rate, came in at 3.35%, a drop of 0.05 percentage point and only 0.04 percentage point above its record low.

Nelson Mandela steps down as President of South Africa

President Nelson Mandela confirmed the rumours that he would not stand for re-election in 1999. In this in accordance to what he had initially said when he was sworn in as the country's first democratic president in 1994.

Reagan nominates Sandra Day

Reagan announced he would nominate Sandra Day O'Connor as an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court to replace the retiring Potter Stewart. O'Connor received notification from President Reagan of her nomination on the day prior to the announcement and did not know that she was a finalist for the position.

Iran adopts sharia law

Sharia law is the religious law forming part of the Islamic tradition. It is derived from the religious precepts of Islam, particularly the Quran and the Hadith. It has been described as "one of the major intellectual achievements of Islam" and its importance in Islam has been compared to that of theology in Christianity.

Alaska is confirmed as a state

From 1867 to 1884 Alaska was considered to be a military district of the United States of America under the control of the federal government. Alaskans had sought statehood since as early as the 1920s through this vision was not realized until the decade after World War II.

Hoover Dam construction begins

Hoover Dam is a concrete arch-gravity dam in the Black Canyon of the Colorado River, on the border between the U.S. states of Nevada and Arizona. It was constructed during the Great Depression and its construction was the result of a massive effort involving thousands of workers and cost over one hundred lives.

Sliced bread is sold for the first time

Sliced bread is a loaf of bread that has been sliced with a machine and packaged for convenience. It was first sold in 1928, advertised as "the greatest forward step in the baking industry since bread was wrapped". This led to the popular phrase "greatest thing since sliced bread".

Anniversaries of the (in)famous