Erin Hooley / Chicago Tribune/Chicago Tribune/TNS

Swiss billionaire Wyss is said to drop out of Tribune bid

Business / Business News /

Swiss billionaire Hansjoerg Wyss will drop out of a group that was bidding for Tribune Publishing Co., according to people familiar with the situation, dealing a setback to a $681 million takeover attempt.

Wyss had teamed up with Choice Hotels International Inc. Chairman Stewart Bainum Jr. on the $18.50-a-share offer, which topped a rival bid ...Read more


NASA chooses SpaceX Starship for lunar landing partner

Business / Business News /

NASA announced Friday it would partner with SpaceX as its sole contractor for a human landing system for its Artemis missions to return humans to the moon.

The Starship lander was one of three teams vying for the contract that aims to put the first woman as part of a two-person team on the Artemis III mission later this decade. The NASA ...Read more

Brian Cassella/TNS

Rivian plant gearing up for June launch

Business / Business News /

Nestled among the cornfields of Normal, Illinois, a long-fallow stretch of land is preparing for a bumper crop this summer.

Rivian, the startup electric vehicle maker whose inaugural truck, SUV and Amazon delivery van have captured the auto world’s attention — and billions of dollars in investor seed money — is launching production in ...Read more


Amazon and Microsoft team up to defend against facial recognition lawsuits

Business / Business News /

Cloud-computing and crosstown rivals Amazon and Microsoft have teamed up to defend themselves against twin lawsuits challenging how the companies built their facial recognition software.

Illinois residents Steven Vance and Tim Janecyk uploaded images of themselves to the photo-sharing website Flickr in the mid-2000s. Without their knowledge, ...Read more


Amazon must address racial and gender pay inequities in its workforce, Harvard Business School petition says

Business / Business News /

Hundreds of alumni and faculty of Harvard Business School — the alma mater of many of Amazon's top executives — have signed a petition calling on the company to address pay inequities faced by female employees and employees of color.

Amazon's commitment Wednesday to increase the representation and retention of women and employees of color ...Read more

GM, LG to build Tennessee battery plant

Business / Business News /

DETROIT — General Motors Co. and its partner LG Energy Solution are building another battery cell manufacturing plant in the United States, the companies said Friday at an event in Tennessee, where the second plant will be located.

Ultium Cells LLC, the joint venture between the two, will invest more than $2.3 billion to build the second ...Read more

Jay L. Clendenin/Los Angeles Times/TNS

Consumer Confidential: An 800% markup for blood work? It's time to standardize medical test prices

Business / Business News /

Universal, affordable coverage through a "Medicare for all" program remains a distant prospect for the U.S. healthcare system. But that doesn't mean we can't address some of the crazier aspects of medical pricing.

One place to start: diagnostic tests.

Cheryl Becker Leff, 59, related her experience involving breast cancer and recent tests ...Read more

Dania Maxwell/Los Angeles Times/TNS

California's unemployment rate dipped -- but many workers have quit the job hunt

Business / Business News /

California's economy is slowly picking up as businesses reopen and new unemployment claims fall, but stubborn joblessness persists as many simply stop looking for work.

In March, employers added 119,600 positions, state officials reported Friday. The Golden State has yet to recover 56% of the 2.7 million jobs lost due to the COVID-19 pandemic. ...Read more

Antonio Perez/Chicago Tribune/TNS

Motormouth: How will we charge all those electric cars?

Business / Business News /

Q: With all the manufacturers talking about going to electric vehicles, I wonder how my neighbors who have four SUVs in their driveway and garage full of stuff and the people in the city who park on the street nightly will charge their vehicles?

F.M., Darien, Illinois

A: Charging in one’s driveway should not be a problem if the cable is long...Read more

Nathan Hunsinger/Dallas Morning News/TNS

The Week Ahead: Climate risk and the role of investors

Business / Business News /

Earth Day will bring together leaders of more than three dozen countries to talk climate. And while the state of the environment will be the focus of the discussions, it’s the economy that will drive decisions.

Long-term investors should be paying attention. After all, companies are under increasing pressure to acknowledge and disclose the ...Read more

Delores Johnson/Virginian-Pilot/TNS

Larry Printz: Watt's new? A forthcoming flood of electric vehicles

Business / Business News /

Watt’s new?

It’s a phrase that applies to the auto industry, which is undergoing a fundamental shift in powertrain technology to battery electric vehicles from those powered by internal combustion engines. While there are a number of gas-electric hybrids, a host of pure electric vehicles, or EVs, are about to hit the market.

Currently, ...Read more


Ford's hands-free BlueCruise chases Tesla Autopilot and GM Super Cruise

Business / Business News /

Following the lead of Tesla Inc.'s Autopilot and General Motors Co.'s Super Cruise, Ford Motor Co. has telegraphed a semi-autonomous, active-drive-assist feature available with its 2021 Ford F-150 pickup and electric Mustang Mach-E.

Now that system has a name: BlueCruise.

Blue as in the colorful highlights in the instrument panel that indicate...Read more

Mel Melcon/Los Angeles Times/TNS

Fewer than 1 in 4 workers has gone back to the office as businesses plot a wider reopening

Business / Business News /

People had started showing up to the office again in greater numbers, but fled for home as the recent coronavirus surge shook the region, fresh data show.

Still, employers and landlords are betting that workers will want to return as vaccinations increase and virus fears recede, even though demand to rent space in office buildings continues to ...Read more


Auto review: Mazda MX-30 boasts full-EV and Wankel plug-in models

Business / Business News /

Performance brand Mazda wants to put its own unique stamp on the electric vehicle market.

The zippy automaker introduced the 2022 MX-30 SUV Wednesday, its first battery-powered offering. Following other Asian automakers' electrification strategies, the ute is part of a portfolio of electrified vehicles that will include a hybrid and plug-in ...Read more

Morgan Segal/TNS

Auto review: Hyundai Veloster N offers N-pressive bang for the buck

Business / Business News /

The brash $35,000 Hyundai Veloster N hot hatch thinks it's a premium performance car. Slip inside and it hands you your seat belt like a Mercedes S560 Coupe. The seats are bolstered for hard cornering, yet easy on the backside like an Audi RS. The steering wheel bristles with twin drive-mode buttons like a BMW M.

But my favorite luxe imitation ...Read more

Mark Phelan/Detroit Free Press/Detroit Free Press/TNS

Auto review: 2021 Porsche 911 turbo delivers legendary performance, latest tech

Business / Business News /

The ability to walk and chew gum will go a long way toward determining which automakers survive this decade. Engineering talent and investment capital are being pulled in two different directions like never before.

On one hand, automakers are scrambling to develop electric and self-driving vehicles — fabulously challenging and expensive ...Read more


Auto review: Maxi-van? 2022 Kia Carnival has loads of space, SUV looks -- and one oddball feature

Business / Business News /

Reasons to buy: SUV-type looks; room, safety and driver assistance features

Shortcomings: Access to third row with optional VIP middle-row seats; no hybrid model; controls

Are minivan owners happy?

That may sound like a question for their therapists, but automakers ask it all the time.

Kia is the latest to answer it, with a resounding “...Read more


Why stricter fuel-economy standards could have unintended consequences

Business / Business News /

Federal regulators directed by President Joe Biden to re-evaluate national fuel economy rules and encourage the transition to electric vehicles are expected to raise the standards — though it's unclear just how high.

Gas- and diesel-powered vehicles, however, still earn automakers their profits. Many companies say they don't intend to invest ...Read more

Jane Tyska/TRAX ID/TNS

Could downtown Oakland become the next Bay Area 'tech capital?'

Business / Business News /

A new report on Oakland’s post-COVID economy is bullish on the city’s downtown, which analysts and at least one developer are betting will come back in a big way in 2021 and beyond.

Speaking at an economic summit hosted by the Oakland Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce Thursday, Beacon Economics founder Christopher Thornberg presented the key...Read more

Mary Evans/Mary Evans via ZUMA Press/TNS

Michael Hiltzik: Is Biden the next FDR? That depends on what you think about the New Deal

Business / Business News /

President Biden's chief of staff, Ron Klain, left nothing to the imagination on Feb. 9 when he tweeted a line from Franklin D. Roosevelt's first inaugural address: "Action, and action now."

Klain repeated the allusion in another tweet a week later, and even more recently posted side-by-side photos of the Biden and Roosevelt cabinets. All this ...Read more