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Reports of phishing scams doubled in 2023, BBB says

Business / Business News /

Reports of online scams doubled in 2023 as artificial intelligence and text-based scams gain popularity among hackers, a new report from the Better Business Bureau says.

More than 9,000 people nationally reported phishing scams — online targeted attempts to steal a person's money or identification by asking for personal information — and ...Read more

Michael M. Santiago/Getty Images North America/TNS

S&P 500 hits 30th record of 2024 as megacaps rally: Markets wrap

Business / Business News /

A rally in several large technology companies drove stocks to all-time highs, with some prominent Wall Street strategists rushing to boost their targets even as many hedge funds grow increasingly cautious.

The S&P 500 hit its 30th record this year, defying concerns about narrow breadth that could make the market more vulnerable to surprises. As...Read more

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Is it safe to give out my card details over the phone?

Business / Business News /

By 2027, worldwide e-commerce sales are expected to reach $7.96 billion — an increase of about 61% over e-commerce sales since 2021, according to a 2024 report from eMarketer. As this trend of internet and phone shopping keeps growing, so-called “card-not-present” (CNP) shopping activity (which are transactions where you don’t physically...Read more

Shae Hammond/Bay Area News Group/TNS

Not (officially) in my backyard: Illegal California ADUs outpacing permitted ones

Business / Business News /

When it comes to building more of the housing that California needs, the legislative reforms making it easier to build accessory dwelling units have been a major success story: In 2023, one in every five new homes built in the state was an ADU, resulting in 22,802 new homes.

But there is much wider interest in ADUs than that number suggests; it...Read more

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Music publishers urge states to investigate Spotify

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A trade group representing songwriters and music publishers filed a complaint against Spotify with the Federal Trade Commission last week, alleging the music streaming platform’s decision to bundle subscriptions is deceiving consumers.

The National Music Publishers Association sent its complaint to 10 states, encouraging attorneys general to ...Read more

GM-LG battery plant workers ratify initial deal, UAW local says

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United Auto Workers-represented employees at General Motors Co.'s first operating joint-venture battery plant in northeast Ohio have ratified an inaugural local contract with the company.

Workers at the Warren, Ohio, Ultium Cells LLC plant, owned by GM and battery supplier LG Energy Solution, approved the new four-year deal with 98% voting yes ...Read more

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UnitedHealth Group's lawsuit against former executives over alleged trade secrets theft dismissed

Business / Business News /

A federal lawsuit filed by UnitedHealth Group against two of its former executives alleging they stole confidential company information to create new companies has been dismissed.

Minnetonka-based UHG alleged Ken Ehlert and Mark Pollman used trade secrets to start up several competing companies, including Sequelae Inc. and Lore Health.

Lore ...Read more

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When will America get its $25,000 electric car?

Business / Business News /

Electric-vehicle prices are falling fast in the U.S., but the cheapest models remain far more costly than what other countries have on offer. The BYD Seagull sells for about $10,000 in China, the Dacia Spring starts at $20,000 in Europe, the Renault Kwid e-Tech costs $19,000 in Brazil, and the Kia Ray goes for $22,000 in South Korea.

So where ...Read more

Christina House/Los Angeles Times/TNS

Food 4 Less workers in California vote to authorize strike

Business / Business News /

Nearly 6,000 workers at Food 4 Less locations across California this week voted to authorize a strike if Kroger, the grocery chain's owner, continues with what they say are labor violations during ongoing contract talks.

The vote comes after the union, United Food and Commercial Workers, filed multiple claims of unfair labor practices with the ...Read more

Christina House/Los Angeles Times/TNS

Food 4 Less workers in California vote to authorize strike

Business / Business News /

LOS ANGELES — Nearly 6,000 workers at Food 4 Less locations across California this week voted to authorize a strike if Kroger, the grocery chain's owner, continues with what they say are labor violations during ongoing contract talks.

The vote comes after the union, United Food and Commercial Workers, filed multiple claims of unfair labor ...Read more

Dreamstime/Dreamstime/TNS

Truist investigates data breach, notifies employees and some customers

Business / Business News /

Truist Financial Corp. said it is responding to a cybersecurity incident, notifying employees and some of its customers.

The Charlotte-based bank, formed in 2019 in a merger of BB&T and Atlanta-based SunTrust, employs thousands of Georgians and is the largest bank in Georgia.

The data breach dates back to October 2023, with Truist saying that ...Read more

Are tiny homes a cost-effective solution for homelessness? This Bay Area nonprofit thinks so

Business / Business News /

DignityMoves CEO Elizabeth Funk thinks that for the most part, the public agencies and nonprofits tasked with solving homelessness are going about it all wrong.

From the federal government on down, the focus — and the funding — has long centered on moving homeless people directly into permanent housing. The problem with that strategy, as ...Read more

Jason Armond/Los Angeles Times/TNS

Econometer: Should restaurant surcharges be legal?

Business / Business News /

A California state bill designed to eradicate junk or hidden fees, and signed into law in October, is set to take effect on July 1.

The new law, as interpreted by the Attorney General’s Office, means a restaurant cannot charge an additional surcharge on top of the price listed. And it seemingly brings to an end the practice of restaurants ...Read more

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Apple's new AI technology is a step forward, Emory professor says

Business / Business News /

Rajiv Garg is an optimist.

An associate professor at Emory University’s Goizueta Business School, Garg has studied artificial intelligence for over 25 years. As the field becomes increasingly sophisticated, he believes AI will soon have the power to make every person more creative, innovative and knowledgeable.

But that outcome is dependent ...Read more

Google ad tech antitrust suit will go to trial, judge rules

Business / Business News /

Alphabet Inc. will have to defend itself at trial against all of the US Justice Department’s claims of a Google monopoly in online advertising technology after a federal judge rejected the tech giant’s request to decide the case ahead of time.

“We’re going to let this go to trial” as scheduled in September, US District Judge Leonie M....Read more

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Musk answers Tesla faithful with trillion-dollar robot prophesy

Business / Business News /

Elon Musk responded in kind to Tesla Inc. investors reapproving his massive compensation plan, offering outlandish predictions that he can enrich shareholders all over again.

After Tesla’s general counsel confirmed Thursday that investors supported awarding stock options to Musk worth as much as $55.8 billion, the chief executive officer said...Read more

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Auto review: The 2025 Genesis GV80: Making a good thing even better

Business / Business News /

Maybe it’s taken you some time to notice Genesis, the luxury vehicle brand manufactured by Hyundai Motor Group. But that’s OK. It’s a luxury brand that’s still finding new customers, with many trading in their Lexus RXs, Acura RDXs, BMW X5s and Mercedes-Benz MLs.

In 2023, the Korean luxury brand outsold longtime luxury stalwart Cadillac...Read more

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Stellantis goes on developer hiring spree as it hopes to make software big part of business

Business / Business News /

CHELSEA, Michigan — Stellantis NV is working to make software a major slice of its business.

The transatlantic automaker is putting a ChatGPT-powered voice assistant inside more vehicles beginning in Europe, adding in-vehicle navigation and route planning features, growing a business fleet software business, and releasing other products it ...Read more

Henry Payne, The Detroit News/The Detroit News/TNS

Auto review: e-Xploring Virginia farms in the Jeep Grand Cherokee 4xe

Business / Business News /

URBANNA, Virginia — If you’re traveling to Virginia’s remote, historic Northern Neck, you may want to bring a Jeep.

“You’re free to check out the beach, woods and farmland. Be mindful the trail is grass, dirt, and may be muddy in places,” said a staffer at Rosegill historic farm in Urbanna.

“We have a Jeep,” I replied.

“Oh. ...Read more

Myung J. Chun/Los Angeles Times/TNS

City National, 'Bank to the Stars,' aided a Ponzi scheme, lawsuit says

Business / Business News /

When Blake Whitmore pays his mortgage every month on his Marin County home, he winces.

The elevator mechanic and father of two young children can barely afford the $3,400 he must pay his lender. His wife has gone back to work, and he flipped a house with a buddy to help pay the bills.

The hefty mortgage payment is a painful reminder of a $200,...Read more