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Shep Smith, Photo by Steven Ferdman/Getty Images

Longtime Fox News anchor Shep Smith announced on Friday that he is stepping down from his position as Fox News' chief news anchor, managing editor of the network’s breaking news unit and anchor of his weekday news show, Shepard Smith Reporting. Smith has been with the network for 23 years.

Why it matters: His departure comes as a rift grows wider between daytime news anchors and primetime opinion hosts at Fox.

Details: Smith's last broadcast was Friday. The network sent a press release ahead of his final remarks about his departure on his show.

  • “Recently I asked the company to allow me to leave Fox News and begin a new chapter. After requesting that I stay, they graciously obliged," he said in a statement.
  • In his final broadcast remarks, Smith thanked the network, and said he appreciated the opportunities that afforded him to "travel the country and the world gathering the facts for you."

Fox News personalities seemed shocked by the decision. Neil Cavuto was speechless after Smith's final remarks. "I don't know what to say ... A better newsman you cannot find." John Roberts said he felt like he got hit by a subway train.

Be smart: The news comes just days after Attorney General William Barr met privately with Fox Corporation Chairman Rupert Murdoch, per The New York Times. Details about the context of the meeting were not reported.

Yes, but: CNN reports that Smith asked Fox leadership to get out of his contract in September, thus disproving any assertion that the meeting between Barr and Murdoch had anything to do with his departure.

The big picture: The President has become frustrated with Fox News' coverage in recent months, and has many times tweeted critically about Shep Smith and other Fox News personalities.

Go deeper:

Go deeper

China's economic growth slows

A worker assembles heavy truck engines in Hangzhou in eastern China's Zhejiang Province, on Monday. Photo: Long We/Costfoto/Barcroft Media via Getty Images

China's economy grew 4.9% in the third quarter of 2021 compared with a year earlier, the country's National Bureau of Statistics announced Monday.

Why it matters: The gross domestic product growth in the July-September quarter in the world’s second-largest economy marked the "weakest pace since the third quarter of 2020 and slowing from 7.9% in the second quarter," Reuters notes.

2 hours ago - World

Former spy Steele defends controversial Trump Russia dossier

Former U.K. intelligence officer Christopher Steele arrives at the High Court in London in July 2020. Photo: Tolga Akmen/AFP via Getty Images

The author of the "Steele Dossier," containing unverified claims about former President Trump told ABC News he stands by his controversial report, according to excerpts from an upcoming documentary published Sunday.

Why it matters: Former U.K. intelligence officer Christopher Steele's dossier was used as part of former special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into the Trump campaign's alleged links to Russia's government.

Ina Fried, author of Login
5 hours ago - Technology

Intel CEO sees making own chips as a matter of national security

Pat Gelsinger. Photo: Axios on HBO

Intel CEO Pat Gelsinger is putting the pressure on the U.S. government to help subsidize chip manufacturing, insisting the current reliance on plants in Taiwan and Korea as "geopolitically unstable."

Why it matters: There is bipartisan support for funding the domestic semiconductor industry, but Congress has yet to sign the check. The Senate has passed the CHIPS Act that includes $52 billion in semiconductor investment, but it has yet to pass the House.