Comcast's failed Time Warner acquisition is a victory for Al Franken

Business / Business News /

WASHINGTON -- Members of Congress use hearings and letters to wield influence over corporate mergers -- and that wascertainly the case with Sen. Al Franken, D-Minn., and the failed Comcast-Time Warner Cable deal.

In attacking the proposal, no lawmaker was a bigger player than Franken, who sent three letters to regulators and caught a Comcast ...Read more

Comcast officially drops TWC bid; Charter seen as likely suitor

Business / Business News /

WASHINGTON--Pay-television leader Comcast Corp. withdrew its $45-billion bid for Time Warner Cable Inc. in the face of a long fight with federal regulators, sending the smaller cable firm on its own in a churning marketplace without the heft it had sought in a merger.

The decision, announced Friday, came after federal regulators earlier this ...Read more

Computer glitch leads to free coffee at Starbucks

Business / Business News /

SEATTLE -- Starbucks' latest offering appears to be free coffee -- the result of a systemwide glitch Friday in its computer system.

At a Seattle coffee shop, a barista declined to charge for an 8-ounce cup of drip coffee, saying it's "on the house" due to a problem that began around 4:10 p.m. Pacific Time.

In Redmond, Wash., coffee, espresso ...Read more

With the Comcast-Time Warner deal dead, LA fans have little hope of seeing Dodgers on TV

Business / Business News /

LOS ANGELES -- For Los Angeles Dodgers fans, the long wait to see games televised again may be headed into extra innings.

An estimated 70 percent of Los Angeles-area households don't get the SportsNet LA channel that carries Dodgers games. That situation was expected to be corrected if Comcast Corp.'s planned $45 billion acquisition of Time ...Read more

Family in GET-THIN investigation fights for $109 million in seized funds

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Federal agents have seized $109 million in cash and securities during an ongoing investigation of the businesses and individuals behind the 1-800-GET-THIN ad campaign for weight-loss surgery -- and lawyers are fighting to get it back.

An attorney representing three people behind the defunct Lap-Band surgery enterprise said the seizure was ...Read more

L.A. prosecutors to use Nextdoor app to strengthen ties with residents

Business / Business News /

Los Angeles city prosecutors will use a highly valued social media app to post about their efforts to combat polluters, school violence and illegal medical dispensaries and to field grievances.

But they won't use Snapchat or Facebook. Instead, City Attorney Mike Feuer announced Friday that his crew of 22 neighborhood prosecutors would become ...Read more

Sondors E-Bike, a big crowdfunded project, tangled in legal dispute

Business / Business News /

A company that raised millions of dollars in an Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign is headed to court.

Entrepreneur Storm Sondors and his Sondors E-Bike have been sued by Agency 2.0, the public relations firm that mounted the crowdfunding campaign.

The effort began with the aim of gaining investment in an affordable electric bicycle and raising $...Read more

Harley-Davidson recalls big motorcycles

Business / Business News /

Harley-Davidson has recalled about 46,000 of its big-bore road motorcycles.

The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration reported Friday that Harley had recalled some 2014 and 2015 models of its Electra Glide, Street Glide, Ultra Limited, Road Glide and Road King motorcycles.

The affected motorcycles have potentially defective ...Read more

Chevy plans limited run of high-velocity Z06 Corvette

Business / Business News /

Chevrolet is making good on its promise to produce a faster Z06 supercar. The company will introduce a 650-horsepower Corvette later this year.

The 500-unit limited run of the "road-going, track-capable" Z06 C7.R will be powered by a supercharged LT4 engine, and be fitted with Brembo carbon ceramic brakes and Michelin PS Cup 2 tires.

Clad in ...Read more

EU considers option of national GMO bans

Business / Business News /

BRUSSELS -- European Union regulators have proposed giving individual EU countries the authority to ban imports of genetically modified food and animal feed, risking a renewed trans-Atlantic trade dispute.

The European Commission proposed that EU governments gain a right to opt out of rules making the 28-nation bloc a single market for gene-...Read more

Freed from government oversight, GM triples CEO's pay

Business / Business News /

DETROIT -- General Motors paid chief Mary Barra $16.2 million in total compensation for 2014 in the first year the company's executive pay was free from government oversight, according to a government filing released today.

Her pay was more than triple the $5.2 million she made in 2013 because on Jan. 15, 2014, she was promoted from executive ...Read more

Ellen Pao may be on the hook for $1 million for company's legal expenses

Business / Business News /

MENLO PARK, Calif.--Venture capital firm Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers paid nearly $1 million in court costs and expert witness fees during the sex-discrimination trial brought by former employee Ellen Pao. Now Pao, after losing the case, might have to pay those expenses.

Kleiner Perkins this week filed court documents detailing the venture ...Read more

Analysis: Defense chief's Stanford speech translates to more money for Silicon Valley

Business / Business News /

When Defense Secretary Ashton Carter asked Silicon Valley for help in a speech at Stanford University on Thursday, he didn't say what he'd offer in return.

He didn't have to.

Allusions to patriotism were made, and Carter nodded to everyone's desire to make the world a better place. Left undiscussed were the billions of dollars the Defense ...Read more

The current trend: Kia Soul goes electric for 2015

Business / Business News /

Like a desperate team in the final seconds, time was running out one afternoon in my 2015 Kia Soul EV.

Heading home from a racetrack in South Florida, the remaining charge on the plug-in electric Soul was shrinking by the minute. Five percent, it said. I looked down a minute later: I flatlined the son-of-a-gun.

But the Soul kept creeping along...Read more

The 2016 Fiat 500X? 'Game-changer'

Business / Business News /

It's been four years since Fiat re-entered the U.S. market. Yet despite new showrooms and provocative advertising campaigns, Fiat's brand awareness seems as small as the diminutive 500 it sells, which is nicknamed "Topolino," or little mouse, in Italy.

Despite the slightly larger 500L crossover, Fiat's 2014 sales in the United States totaled ...Read more

Harley-Davidson motorcycles steal scenes in 'Avengers: Age of Ultron'

Business / Business News /

When Scarlett Johanssen, as Black Widow, drops out of the bottom of a jet fighter, astride a motorcycle, in the new "Avengers: Age of Ultron," the weirdest thing about the scene is the bike she's riding.

It's a Harley-Davidson LiveWire, one of the few real vehicles used in the filming of the CGI-driven sequel.

It's also a motorcycle that doesn...Read more

The Week Ahead: News, or no news, of higher interest rates

Business / Business News /

Another Federal Reserve decision on interest rates comes in the week ahead without mystery but a growing predicament.

For two years the Central Bank has been talking about reducing its effort to goose the economy. First, it was talk about cutting back on its bond-buying program (what was called quantitative easing). The mere mention of a less ...Read more

New auto trend picks up speed: Small but mighty engines

Business / Business News /

DETROIT -- A high-end luxury sedan without a V8 engine; a Jeep Wrangler made of aluminum clambering over boulders; a Corvette that gets 30 m.p.g.

The unthinkable is becoming reality with the transition to smaller engines, better transmissions, electronic wizardry and lightweight materials. Based on a slew of new models presented at auto shows ...Read more

Tesla getting into the energy-storage business

Business / Business News /

Tesla Motors is expected to announce next week that it will expand into a new business offering battery-based energy storage for residential and commercial customers.

Documents filed with the California Public Utilities Commission show that Tesla already has begun pilot projects that leverage technology it has developed for electric car ...Read more

Trucking industry faces shortage of drivers

Business / Business News /

DAYTON, Ohio -- An aging workforce, tougher regulations and waning interest among younger workers are causing a nationwide shortage of truck drivers.

Despite a need for hundreds of thousands of drivers over the next decade, trucking companies say they are having a tough time attracting applicants.

The need for more drivers is expected to ...Read more