AT&T under pressure to sell DirecTV amid heavy subscriber losses

Business / Business News /

LOS ANGELES -- Telecommunications giant AT&T is facing mounting pressure from an activist shareholder to pare down its operations by unloading the El Segundo-based satellite television giant DirecTV, which has been reeling from the loss of millions of subscribers.

Elliott Management Corp. of New York, which owns a $3.2 billion stake in AT&T, ...Read more

Court reinstates lawsuit against Catholic hospital for refusing transgender patient's surgery

Business / Business News /

LOS ANGELES -- Stating that California's interest in fighting discrimination against LGBTQ residents outweighs the right to impose religious standards on health care, an appeals court has reinstated a lawsuit against the Catholic Dignity Health hospital chain for barring a hysterectomy for a transgender patient.

The lawsuit was brought by Evan ...Read more

Fed cuts interest rates again by a quarter point, but future drops this year are in doubt

Business / Business News /

WASHINGTON -- The Federal Reserve on Wednesday cut interest rates for a second straight time, but policymakers were divided about the future path of rates.

At their meeting this week, a majority of Fed officials projected no more rate reductions in the foreseeable future, in what is almost certain to be a disappointment to financial markets and...Read more

Newsom signs bill rewriting California employment law, limiting use of independent contractors

Business / Business News /

SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- California businesses will be limited in their use of independent contracts under a closely watched proposal signed into law by Gov. Gavin Newsom on Wednesday, a decision that is unlikely to quell a growing debate over the rules and nature of work in the 21st century economy.

Newsom signed Assembly Bill 5 in a private ...Read more

New California law will redefine who is an employee. What does it mean for workers and businesses?

Business / Business News /

SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- California Gov. Gavin Newsom signed a bill Wednesday that could reframe the state's economy by compelling industries to give employment benefits to more workers.

Assembly Bill 5 was shaped by concerns that gig economy giants like Uber and Lyft have exploited workers, but it would affect many other industries as well.

Here...Read more

GM-UAW contract negotiations: Where things stand on day 3 of strike

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DETROIT -- General Motors and the UAW returned to bargaining early Wednesday with negotiators buckling down at "all levels."

The parties have been meeting steadily at GM's headquarters in Detroit in an effort to reach a four-year contract agreement as 46,000 union workers enter the third day of a nationwide strike.

Sources close to the talks ...Read more

Thousands line up for jobs at Amazon, which has thousands on offer

Business / Business News /

SEATTLE -- Everyone from recent college grads to late-career job switchers lined up in South Lake Union to learn about openings at Amazon, which held job fairs in Seattle and five other U.S. cities Tuesday as part of a push to fill some 30,000 positions nationwide, including more than 10,000 locally.

While the national unemployment rate is at a...Read more

California governor, attorney general lash out at Trump plan on state's emissions standards

Business / Business News /

SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- Gov. Gavin Newsom on Wednesday criticized the Trump administration's plan to rescind California's nearly half-century-old authority to impose tough car emissions standards, vowing to take legal action to block the move.

"California will prevail because we're leaders in this space," Newsom said.

Newsom's comments came ...Read more

Holy guacamole! Specially treated avocados last twice as long. And that's only the start for the plant-based coating.

Business / Business News /

Many an avocado lover has waited for the right moment to cut into the creamy fruit only to discover the fleeting window of perfect ripeness has passed.

A new technology that extends the life of avocados and other produce promises to save millions of avocados from an untimely end in the trash, and it's coming soon to grocery stores nationwide.

...Read more

GM dumped health care for striking workers. That poured gas on fire, expert says

Business / Business News /

DETROIT -- Within 36 hours of the UAW strike against General Motors, the Detroit automaker announced a decision to shift worker health care payments to the union immediately -- a strategy that risks dragging out the strike, labor negotiators say.

"They're pouring gasoline on the fire," said Harry Katz, the Jack Sheinkman Professor of Collective...Read more

Kaiser CEO on strike: 'We will always make sure we're taking care of our members'

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Just before more than 80,000 workers announced Monday they planned an October strike against Kaiser Permanente, Kaiser CEO Bernard Tyson talked with The Bee about the union's concerns about pay inequity, labor strategy and concerns voiced by workers.

Leaders of the Coalition of Kaiser Permanente Unions said their strike will begin Oct. 14 and ...Read more

Facebook launches Portal TV in new streaming television push

Business / Business News /

Facebook on Wednesday took another step in its efforts to gain a piece of the home video-communications market by taking the wraps off of Portal TV, a new set-top box for streaming TV programs and video chats.

In a company blog post, Facebook said that Portal TV will cost $149; they'll be shipped Nov. 5. The device will include streaming TV ...Read more

Facebook reveals how its content-dispute final-appeals board will work

Business / Business News /

Facebook on Tuesday revealed how it plans to handle disputes over its content decisions, detailing how its purportedly independent "Oversight Board" will operate.

Facebook users who object to a content decision by the company or the algorithms it uses to approve or remove content, and who have exhausted appeals, will be able to request a review...Read more

Tech Q&A: Is that e-warning a scam? Here are clues

Business / Business News /

Q: I received what appears to be a scam e-mail from Computer Help Security & Services. It urged me to renew my membership or call their telephone number to cancel (and thus avoid an impending $300 renewal charge to my account). I've never done business with this company, but is it possible they have my credit card number? Should I just delete ...Read more

Fed is expected to cut interest rates again by quarter point

Business / Business News /

WASHINGTON -- The Federal Reserve on Wednesday is poised to cut interest rates for a second straight time, but the big question is: How many more rate reductions is the central bank prepared to make in coming months?

The Fed shaved a quarter point from its key interest rate on July 31, and it has been signaling a similar move would be coming at...Read more

If you are looking to buy a new car, this trade deal could mean higher prices

Business / Business News /

WASHINGTON -- The price of a small car could increase $322 to $627 if the United States agrees to a new free trade deal with Mexico and Canada.

Mid-size car prices could rise $105 to $231, while pickup trucks could cost an additional $151.

Those figures, derived from separate estimates by the government's International Trade Commission and ...Read more

Minority contractors claiming to be 'Native American' to undergo nationwide review

Business / Business News /

Federal, state and local authorities are intensifying scrutiny of minority contracting programs across the country in the wake of a Los Angeles Times investigation that found that companies received more than $300 million in government contracts based on unsubstantiated claims by the firms' owners to be Native American.

As two House committees ...Read more

Amazon's Alexa Answers raises questions about information quality and transparency issues

Business / Business News /

SEATTLE -- Amazon's new Alexa Answers program, which encourages unpaid volunteers to fill in gaps in its databases to better respond to user queries, raises a host of questions about information quality and transparency in the fast-evolving voice computing era.

Many people make purchases, control home automation systems, play music and ask ...Read more

Minnesota Supreme Court rejects appeal regarding Enbridge's new $2.9 billion pipeline

Business / Business News /

MINNEAPOLIS -- The Minnesota Supreme Court has rejected an appeal by opponents regarding the environmental impact statement for Enbridge's proposed $2.9 billion pipeline -- setting the stage for state utility regulators to fix the flawed document.

While the high court's decision restarts an oft-stalled process, it could still take several ...Read more

The man who put MoviePass in spotlight just made a bid to take it private — and revive it

Business / Business News /

Ted Farnsworth is a survivor.

The sometime South Florida resident -- and, until Tuesday, head of MoviePass' parent company -- has stared down lawsuits, busted businesses, tech industry scrutiny, and Hollywood skepticism.

Farnsworth remains standing -- and is now ready for his next act.

On Tuesday, Farnsworth announced he would be stepping ...Read more