Massachusetts judge allows Sumner Redstone case to go on

Business / Business News /

LOS ANGELES -- A Massachusetts judge will allow Viacom Chief Executive Philippe Dauman's case against Sumner Redstone to proceed but will not order an immediate mental examination of the ailing media mogul.

The Thursday decision by Probate Judge George F. Phelan to take the case represents a partial victory for the Viacom chief, whom Redstone ...Read more

Alphabet revenue surges

Business / Business News /

MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif. -- Google parent company Alphabet on Thursday beat Wall Street expectations on several fronts, chalking up $21.5 billion in second-quarter revenue, a 21 percent increase over the same period last year.

Analysts had predicted revenue of $20.8 billion for the quarter.

Alphabet's quarterly report also revealed the firm has ...Read more

Proposed rules would limit harassment by debt collectors

Business / Business News /

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is taking its first step toward reining in debt collectors, releasing an early outline of rules aimed at preventing them from harassing consumers and trying to collect debts that don't exist.

The proposal, discussed Thursday at a CFPB hearing in Sacramento, Calif., would require collection companies to ...Read more

Oracle is buying cloud company NetSuite for $9.3 billion

Business / Business News /

Oracle Corp. is buying cloud company NetSuite Inc. in a deal valued at $9.3 billion, combining two Silicon Valley firms that both count Larry Ellison as a founder and top shareholder.

Oracle Chief Executive Mark Hurd said the companies' cloud applications complement each other. "We intend to invest heavily in both products -- engineering and ...Read more

PG&E profits tumble, but customers face higher gas bills Aug. 1

Business / Business News /

SAN FRANCISCO -- Pacific Gas & Electric's second-quarter profits tumbled, the utility reported Thursday -- but its bottom line could soon be bolstered when a big increase in monthly gas bills arrive for residential customers starting in early August.

The embattled utility told analysts on a conference call Thursday that customers will soon see ...Read more

Ford's second-quarter earnings down 9 percent to $2 billion

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DETROIT -- Ford earned $2 billion in the second quarter, down 9 percent from the same period a year ago, as the long-running boom in U.S. vehicle sales showed signs of cooling.

Ford earned 52 cents per share, short of Wall Street expectations, which averaged 60 cents a share among 14 analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters.

Total revenue rose 6 ...Read more

GNC replaces chief executive

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PITTSBURGH -- Two years after GNC Holdings hired top retail industry executive Michael Archbold to reverse a downturn, he has been replaced by GNC board member Robert Moran, a former chairman and chief executive of PetSmart Inc.

In a surprise announcement Thursday morning, the Pittsburgh-based vitamin and wellness products maker said Moran, 65,...Read more

Clinton tests a demand-side line: Wage growth creates GDP growth

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WASHINGTON -- Just last month, Hillary Clinton began including an idea in her speeches that suggests a shift in thinking for the Democratic Party: Wage growth may not just be good for the people who get a raise. It may be good for economic growth.

"It's really simple," she said at a rally in June in Ohio. "Higher wages leads to more demand, ...Read more

In a boost for Uber, China legalizes ride-sharing services

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BEIJING -- Lifting a cloud of regulatory uncertainty hanging over the future of Uber and its competitors in China, the government on Thursday legalized ride-sharing services but announced new licensing requirements and other rules.

The new regulations, to take effect Nov. 1, require drivers to have at least three years of driving experience and...Read more

Consumer Confidential: As the VCR finally dies, a lament for once-great technologies

Business / Business News /

It's a little silly to lament the demise of a technology that has been well-demised for years.

But last week's announcement that production will cease within days at the last Japanese factory manufacturing VCRs is a cause for reflection -- both about where we've been technologically and where we're going.

"It's one of those moments," Langdon ...Read more

Ann Marie van den Hurk: How Pokemon Go could be very good for your small business

Business / Business News /

In case you haven't heard, Pokemon Go has taken the United States by storm.

Released earlier this month, it became the top free downloaded app in Apple's app store and Google's Play store. There have been more than 15 million installs on Apple and Android devices so far this month, according to App intelligence provider Sensor Tower.

Pokemon ...Read more

Real estate Q&A: Condos can opt out of costly fire sprinklers

Business / Business News /

Q: I understand that there is a state law in Florida, where I live, requiring condominium associations to retrofit buildings with fire sprinklers. This sounds expensive. Can you tell me what is going on here?

-- Theodore

A: In 2003, the Florida Legislature required condominium buildings to be retrofitted with fire sprinkler systems, and the ...Read more

Facebook's second-quarter earnings beat Wall Street's expectations

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MENLO PARK, Calif. -- Facebook's growth picked up more momentum on Wednesday with the tech firm reporting second-quarter sales and earnings that beat Wall Street's expectations.

Driven by mobile ad sales, Facebook raked in $6.4 billion in the second quarter, up 59 percent from the same period last year. That's better than the $6 billion in ...Read more

Whole Foods' earnings report misses analyst forecast; shares fall

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AUSTIN, Texas -- Austin-based Whole Foods Market issued a mixed third-quarter earnings report on Wednesday, missing on some Wall Street forecasts and triggering a drop in the retailer's stock in after-hours trading.

Whole Foods said it had record revenue for the quarter of more than $3.7 billion with earnings per share of 37 cents. Thomson ...Read more

SpaceX will spend $300 million on Red Dragon Mars mission, NASA says

Business / Business News /

LOS ANGELES -- SpaceX is likely spending about $300 million on its unmanned Red Dragon Mars mission, according to NASA estimates.

The topic came up at a NASA Advisory Council committee meeting Tuesday, when agency official Jim Reuter said SpaceX's spending on the mission was about 10 times that of NASA's, according to Space News.

NASA said it ...Read more

Amazon opening third Chicago-area warehouse

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CHICAGO -- E-commerce giant Amazon is opening a third Chicago-area fulfillment center in the suburb of Romeoville. The company didn't receive any local or state tax breaks.

Employees at the more than 750,000-square-foot warehouse will pick, pack and ship large items, such as big-screen TVs, sports equipment and kayaks, Amazon said in a news ...Read more

Goodyear reports increase in net income; tire unit volumes up

Business / Business News /

AKON, Ohio -- Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. said Wednesday that second-quarter net income was $202 million, or 75 cents per share, up from $192 million, or 70 cents per share, in the year-ago quarter.

The Akron-headquartered tire-maker said the improvement was primarily due to a decrease in income tax expense.

Adjusted net income was $314 million...Read more

Fed holds key interest rate steady but signals a hike could come this fall

Business / Business News /

WASHINGTON -- Federal Reserve policymakers said Wednesday they were holding a key interest rate steady but signaled a hike could come this fall as their concerns have eased about a slowing job market and the fallout from Britain's vote to leave the European Union.

Following a two-day meeting, central bank officials voted to keep the federal ...Read more

Lower Universal film revenue drags on Comcast earnings

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LOS ANGELES -- A sharp decline in box office revenue from Universal Pictures weighed on second quarterly earnings for parent company Comcast Corp.

Revenue from Universal movies totaled $1.35 billion in the three months that ended June 30, down 40 percent from the same period last year when the Los Angeles studio released the massive hits "...Read more

Mondelez hopes for sweet success as it launches chocolate in China

Business / Business News /

CHICAGO -- Mondelez, the maker of iconic brands including Cadbury and Nabisco, will start selling its Milka brand chocolate in China in September, hoping to capture a slice of a still-small market the company believes is ripe for opportunity.

The company, headquartered in suburban Chicago, already sells items from its biscuit and gum categories...Read more