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Suburban companies battle tech giants for talent. Downtown office spaces are their secret weapon.

Business / Business News /

CHICAGO -- In the quest for digital talent, Chicago-area companies battle the technology giants.

To lure data scientists and other tech workers, companies in industries from fast food to insurance have opened outposts in the heart of the city, where tech employees want to work. Having hip, downtown spaces has proved worth the extra cost to ...Read more

PG&E will take $2.5 billion charge to cover wildfire liabilities

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PG&E will be forced to endure a $2.5 billion charge to cover its potential liability in several -- but not all -- of a series of lethal infernos that scorched the North Bay Wine Country and nearby regions, the embattled utility disclosed Thursday.

The mammoth scope of the charge suggests financial pressures have begun to mount on PG&E...Read more

Bay Area's stark gaps between haves and have-nots

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Even as Bay Area tech professionals take home the highest disposable incomes in the country, local service workers have sunk to the bottom with little or no cash left over after living expenses, a new report found.

The region is the worst in the nation for service employees and security workers, according to a new analysis by real estate ...Read more

Odd Bedfellows Call on FCC to Reject Sinclair's Deal for Tribune

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WASHINGTON -- Sinclair Broadcast Group Inc.'s proposed purchase of Tribune Media Co. drew opposition from strange political bedfellows, as the American Civil Liberties Union and the conservative Parents Television Council separately asked regulators to reject the deal.

Each group told the Federal Communications Commission that Sinclair would be...Read more

Supermarket giants play role in mistreatment of global food workers, report says

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The global anti-poverty organization Oxfam issued a report Thursday saying that supermarket giants such as Whole Foods, Costco, Walmart and the owner of Landover, Md.-based Giant Food share responsibility for widespread suffering of farmers and other food producers around the world.

Oxfam said it hopes the new research will shed light on ...Read more

As smaller marijuana businesses get squeezed, state revenue takes a hit

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SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- Tyler Kearns, owner of the cannabis cultivation company Seven Leaves, stood in one of his half-dozen temperature-controlled grow rooms on a recent day, surveying a crop derived from the same mother plant.

"We have really tried to educate the general public through talks, tours, communication and presentations," Kearns said...Read more

Intel CEO Brian Krzanich resigns after relationship with employee

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Brian Krzanich abruptly resigned as chief executive of Intel Corp. on Thursday after the giant chip maker found that he had a past consensual relationship with an Intel employee that violated the company's policies.

Robert Swan, Intel's chief financial officer, was named interim CEO while the company searches for a permanent chief executive.

...Read more

Vandalized homes, spying, a knife and restraining orders: Inside a billionaire couple's nightmarish divorce

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LOS ANGELES -- The usual question asked when an ordinary couple's marriage comes apart is: "Can there be life after divorce?"

That's not the case with the billionaire couple Bill and Sue Gross, who were divorced in 2017 after 32 years of marriage. With them, the question is: "When will the nightmare end?"

The pair's divorce was enormously ...Read more

States stand to pocket billions as Supreme Court rules internet businesses must collect sales taxes

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WASHINGTON -- The Supreme Court on Thursday standardized taxing rules for traditional retailers and online transactions, ruling that states and localities may collect sales taxes on all purchases over the internet.

By a 5-4 vote, the justices that ruled that online sellers can be required to collect state and local taxes from customers even if ...Read more

Real estate Q&A: My new house has a sinkhole. Is the seller liable?

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Q: We bought a house with a major problem, a covered-over sinkhole, that was not disclosed to us. No one wants to help us with it -- our agent, the seller, everyone has turned his or her back. The house is so torn up to fix the problem that we have been staying in a hotel. Is there anything we can do? -- Edythe

A: Most people have heard the ...Read more

The Mortgage Professor: Refinancing in a time of rising rates and property values, part 3

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While rising interest rates have sharply reduced the number of mortgage borrowers who can refinance into a lower rate, rising home prices create opportunities for some borrowers to refinance into mortgages that are less costly in other respects. Previous articles looked at refinancing a mortgage that is burdened by mortgage insurance, or by a ...Read more

Ann Marie van den Hurk: Summer reading suggestions for the entrepreneur in all of us

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It is finally summer and time for some vacation away from the office. It feels good, doesn't it?

For many of us, this time includes a goal to disconnect from our digital devices. It's a big goal in our highly digitalized lives where we have all forms of entertainment at our fingertips.

And it's not easy. In fact, Pew Research Center observed ...Read more

Consumer Confidential: Trump's pick for consumer agency chief has never stood up for consumers

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President Trump has picked a nominee for director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and, true to form, he's made a bad choice.

Trump this week will nominate Kathy Kraninger, a little-known White House budget official, to serve as the nation's top consumer watchdog.

She has no experience in consumer advocacy, no experience as a ...Read more

Where are the worst places to live in the U.S.? Three of them are in Miami-Dade.

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MIAMI -- South Florida has been saddled with the "Paradise Lost" label since that unflattering Time magazine cover in 1981. Now, another quality- of-life list asserts that things are still bad down here at the bottom of the Sunshine State. Three Miami-Dade County cities -- Miami, Miami Beach and Homestead -- rank among the 50 Worst Places to ...Read more

Are tiny homes the new American Dream? County fair offers a glimpse

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It's 2018 and the American Dream looks slightly different. The big house has been replaced with a ... tiny house. The white picket fence is now four wheels. The 2.5 kids are missing and the dog ... OK, the dog is still there and he's probably living a better life than you.

A vision of this new ever-dynamic dream was on display at the Santa ...Read more

Airbnb-style rentals are a growing cash cow for developers and owners

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South Florida real estate agent Sara Dorfman hit the jackpot this month when she arranged the sale of a multi-unit complex in Fort Lauderdale's Victoria Park for $1.65 million. The chief selling point: The property was set up for vacation home rentals. And the buyer is eager to continue that business.

"We see more investors who are looking to ...Read more

Ford hails Detroit a new 'city of possibility'; residents hopeful, skeptical

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DETROIT -- As Ford Motor Co. celebrated its return to Detroit with dignitaries and grand plans for the new economy and the future of transportation at Michigan Central Station in Corktown, Alondra Alvarez worried.

She slipped into the train station during a media huddle Tuesday and approached Bill Ford, the great-grandson of Henry Ford, ...Read more

Purdue Pharma axes remaining sales force

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Purdue Pharma, the Stamford, Conn., drug maker that designed OxyContin to provide pain relief to millions, said Tuesday it has eliminated its remaining sales force as it shifts to cancer and central nervous disorder medications.

It announced in February it reduced its sales force by half and would no longer promote the painkiller to doctors.

"...Read more

Workers at Trump golf course and Terranea resort file lawsuit over 'panic button' ballot measure

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A petition drive to force the exclusive Terranea Resort and nearby Trump National Golf Club to provide employees with panic buttons and wage increases is now the subject of a lawsuit alleging that the city of Rancho Palos Verdes, Calif., is refusing to put the measure on the ballot.

The Los Angeles County Registrar of Voters certified last week...Read more

Disney agrees to pay $71.3 billion for a swath of Fox, topping Comcast's bid

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NEW YORK -- Walt Disney Co. and 21st Century Fox struck a new deal Wednesday: Disney agreed to pay $71.3 billion for Fox entertainment assets, surpassing the $65-billion offer from Comcast Corp.

Disney said it amended its original Dec. 21 agreement with Fox in which Disney offered $52.8 billion.

Fox said the amended deal is "superior" to the ...Read more