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Eduardo Porter: Minimum wages are going up. Jobs may disappear.

Business / Business News /

The minimum wage is roaring back.

President Joe Biden may have failed to drive through Congress an increase in the federal wage floor, which remains stuck at $7.25. But last month, Connecticut, Nevada and Oregon raised their minimums alongside Washington D.C. and a handful of other cities. Twenty-one states raised their minimum wages at the ...Read more

Groupon to lay off 500 employees as struggling online marketplace seeks financial turnaround

Business / Business News /

Groupon is laying off 500 employees, or nearly 15% of its global workforce, as the struggling Chicago-based online marketplace seeks to cut costs amid falling revenues.

The total includes 293 positions associated with the headquarters at 600 W. Chicago Ave., although many employees are working remotely, Groupon spokesman Nick Halliwell said ...Read more

Southern California gas prices are falling fast. But how long can it last?

Business / Business News /

Southern California drivers are getting more relief at the gas pump, with the average cost of a gallon of regular gas in Los Angeles County slipping below $5.50.

Gas prices have fallen from recent record highs nationwide because oil prices and gasoline demand have declined and gasoline supplies have increased, analysts said. But oil and ...Read more

'It's not easy to go out and find a job': Baltimore-area businesses find ways to hire and help squeegee workers

Business / Business News /

When Revival Hotel in Baltimore's Mount Vernon neighborhood began to take on squeegee workers through a city employment program, the staff decided to invite the apprentices to play basketball on Sundays.

The games had started recently as “Over the Hill Hoops,” an excuse for members of the staff in their 40s and older to play at a court near...Read more

California child-care providers fight to 'retire with dignity'

Business / Business News /

Renee Kuykendall woke up at 4 a.m. to prepare for the arrival of her first client. She won't be done with her last client of the day until 11 p.m.

In her home in Antelope, just outside of Sacramento, she makes enough eggs, sausage, grits and toast for 13 people, to be served at 7 a.m. She checks on the frogs in the fish tank — a crowd ...Read more

Raquel Zaldívar/Chicago Tribune/TNS

Workers vote to unionize Chicago coffee chain Intelligentsia

Business / Business News /

Workers at Chicago-based specialty coffee company Intelligentsia Coffee voted to unionize Monday, the latest in a string of union votes at coffeehouses across the city in recent months.

The vote affects nearly 30 workers at Intelligentsia’s five Chicago cafes, including two in the Loop, and one each in Lakeview East, East Ukrainian Village ...Read more

GOP's Phillips to leave FTC, boosting Khan's advantage

Business / Business News /

Republican Federal Trade Commissioner Noah Phillips said he plans to step down this fall, which will hand an even bigger majority to progressive Chair Lina Khan to advance her agenda.

Phillips told the agency last week about his plan to leave, a move that may require him to recuse himself from some cases.

“This fall is the right time for me...Read more

FREDERIC J. BROWN/AFP/Getty Images North America/TNS

Whole Foods cofounder is building chain of cafes, wellness centers

Business / Business News /

Whole Foods Market co-founder John Mackey is planning a second act when he retires from the Amazon-owned grocer next month: building a chain of plant-based restaurants and wellness centers that offer fitness and spa services.

Corporate records list Mackey, 68, as a partner in Healthy America LLC, a startup that raised about $31 million from ...Read more

Martin Peers: Axios purchase comes with some sticker shock

Business / Business News /

The siren call of digital media startups is hard to resist, even in a market as rocky as this one.

That was illustrated sharply on Monday by the premium price that Cox Enterprises, owner of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, agreed to pay to buy the prominent startup Axios. The $525 million headline valuation that Cox is putting on the five-year...Read more

Illinois consumers sue health insurer Centene, saying they couldn't find in-network doctors

Business / Business News /

Consumers in Illinois and other states are suing health insurance giant Centene and its Chicago-based subsidiary Celtic Insurance Co., alleging the insurers defrauded them by overcharging them for plans that didn’t deliver the benefits they promised.

Six consumers, including two in Illinois, are seeking class-action status for the lawsuit, ...Read more

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The nation's top consumer watchdog wants to protect your personal data and digital wallet

Business / Business News /

Rohit Chopra heads the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), the federal agency tasked with protecting consumers and their money. The CFPB in recent years has sued student loan servicers, investigated redlining — or discriminatory lending — in mortgages and other loans, and is now focusing on "buy-now-pay-later" firms, payment apps, ...Read more

UPS to acquire health care logistics firm Bomi Group

Business / Business News /

UPS announced plans to acquire Italian-based health care logistics firm Bomi Group to expand the reach of its health unit globally.

Through the acquisition, UPS said it will gain temperature-controlled facilities in 14 countries, 350 temperature-controlled vehicles and nearly 3,000 employees in Europe and Latin America.

Kate Gutmann, president...Read more

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To retain nurses and other staffers, hospitals are opening child care centers

Business / Business News /

When Jennifer Lucier and her husband found out they were expecting a baby in 2016, they immediately made three phone calls.

The first was to her mother. The second was to her husband’s family. And the third was to the Roper St. Francis Healthcare Learning Center.

That last call, she felt, was particularly urgent. Lucier wanted to secure a ...Read more

HEATHER AINSWORTH FOR KHN/KHN/TNS

Nursing homes are suing the friends and family of residents to collect debts

Business / Business News /

ROCHESTER, N.Y. — Lucille Brooks was stunned when she picked up the phone before Christmas two years ago and learned a nursing home was suing her.

“I thought this was crazy,” recalled Brooks, 74, a retiree who lives with her husband in a modest home in the Rochester suburbs. Brooks’ brother had been a resident of the nursing home. But ...Read more

Sterling Bay/Hartshorne Plunkard/Sterling Bay/Hartshorne Plunkard/TNS

The Great Fire slowed interest in wood buildings, but Chicago's first mass timber tower could soon take shape

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CHICAGO — Developer Sterling Bay is set to begin construction of Chicago’s first mass timber building, a nine-story, apartment tower in the Lincoln Park neighborhood. If approved by City Council, the $50 million development may kick off widespread use of the modern technique, already popular in other cities, which boosters claim is more ...Read more

Dreamstime/Dreamstime/TNS

Socially responsible investing 2022: How to get started in 6 steps

Business / Business News /

If you want to put your dollars into causes you care about, one of the easiest ways to get started is through socially responsible investing. The strategy prioritizes financial return with the caveat that the money is invested to fuel positive change in three key areas: environmental, social and corporate governance (ESG). Perhaps you’re ...Read more

Dreamstime/TNS/TNS

Commentary: The fatal flaw in your retirement plan's target date funds

Business / Business News /

There was a major development in 2006 that transformed how Americans invest for retirement. It solved one problem, but created another that will be causing extra pain to people who retire in this economy.

The mid-2000s was the start of the nudge revolution, where policy makers thought they could coax people into more desirable behavior. The ...Read more

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Musk questions why SEC not investigating Twitter spam data

Business / Business News /

The world’s richest person Elon Musk has taken his concern about Twitter Inc. to the social media site again.

Responding to a thread initiated by another user, Musk said the deal to buy the company “should proceed on original terms” if Twitter would provide their method for sampling accounts and confirm them to be genuine. “However, if ...Read more

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Feds should issue no-interest student loans to address debt crisis, report says

Business / Business News /

BOSTON — A new report from a Boston-based research center found that nearly a quarter of all student loan payments made in 2019 went to interest, and is calling for a no-interest loan structure to be implemented to address the college debt crisis.

The Hildreth Institute report said that if the federal government was to implement this program ...Read more

Warner Bros. Discovery stock drops after disappointing forecast

Business / Business News /

Shares of Warner Bros. Discovery sank Friday after the media and entertainment giant reported disappointing earnings and lowered profit projections for the recently combined company.

The New York-based company’s stock fell $2.73, or 16%, to $14.74 a share as Wall Street gave a cool response to the company’s second-quarter results, in the ...Read more