MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – Here’s a look at the four stories you should be aware of for Wednesday, March 18, 2015.

Israeli Elections

Isreali Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s Likud party scored a big victory at the polls.

With nearly all the votes counted, Likud appears to have earned 30 out of parliament’s 120 seats. Exit polls had shown a tight race with the opposition Zionist Union Party, but they wound up with just 24 seats.

Netanyahu will now have a relatively easy time putting together a coalition government which could take weeks of negotiation.

Investors Watch Federal Reserve Closely

The Central Bank wrapped up a two-day meeting on interest rates.

Many will watch to see if the Fed clears a path for an increase in interest rates.

Experts predict rates will go up as early as June. Rates have been near zero since the 2008 financial crisis.

Many credit it for fueling the six-year bull market.

Companies Come Together For Cross Brand Loyalty Program

If those plastic key chains drive you crazy, you may be able to ditch them and still get a discount at your favorite stores.

Macy’s, Rite Aid, AT&T, ExxonMobil, Nationwide, Hulu and Direct Energy will start offering a first ever cross brand loyalty program.

It’s called the Plenti program.

The idea is you can buy a handbag at Macy’s and use points from the purchase to pay your AT&T bill.

Goodbye Internet Explorer

Microsoft said it’s going to stop making Internet Explorer.

The company announced with Windows 10, it will virtually retire the old brand.

They’re working on a new browser, which they say will work better across all Windows devices.

It’s code-named Project Spartan, for now.

Internet Explorer will still exist, but only for compatibility with existing corporate software.

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