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Your Office Coach: Hugger or not, keep yours hands to yourself at work

Business / Business News /

Q: I'm the type of person who likes to physically express my appreciation. If a co-worker helps me out or offers a compliment, I often say thanks by squeezing their hand or giving them a shoulder rub. Unfortunately, these friendly gestures of gratitude are now grounds for getting reprimanded by human resources.

When I met with our HR manager, ...Read more

Pharma firm CEO insists $89,000 drug is affordable, but what's the true cost?

Business / Business News /

CHICAGO -- When Marathon Pharmaceuticals' $89,000 price tag for a year's supply of its newly approved muscular dystrophy drug sparked outrage earlier this month, the company's CEO responded with another figure: $20.

That's how much he expected Duchenne muscular dystrophy patients would pay per prescription of the drug, he wrote in a letter ...Read more

Diane Stafford: Facebook, LinkedIn and job hunting protocol

Business / Business News /

Q: Should I "friend" my boss on Facebook?

A: It depends whether your boss is a real friend, or maybe a relative. If your ties predate your employment, it's likely your boss already knows quite a bit about your life. But if your relationship exists solely because of business, it might be prudent to keep at arm's length on social media.

...Read more

Neal St. Anthony: When it comes to immigration, business owners ahead of the politicians

Business / Business News /

Luis Fitch, an immigrant artist and businessman, is co-founder of Uno Branding, a Minneapolis marketing agency with an office in Mexico City.

Uno is working on Mexico-based Manzanita, an apple-based soda that's a rage in Mexico and starting to sweep the U.S. It's owned by Uno client, PepsiCo. He also works for a Canadian company that owns an ...Read more

Liz Reyer: Listening is the critical first step in bringing work groups together

Business / Business News /

Q: As part of my job, I am working to help unify a number of different work groups around some consistent processes. They all have different workplace cultures and have developed their own unique ways to get their work done. How do I help bring them together without forcing the change down their throats?

-- Lynette, 48, vice president, ...Read more

Rex Huppke: Bathroom bills won't keep transgender equality from the workplace

Business / Business News /

What will you do when transgender equality comes to your workplace?

To understand why I ask that, consider some recent news.

The National Football League released a statement that stirred up some dust in Texas.

It read, in part: "The NFL embraces inclusiveness."

That may not sound dust-stirring on its own, but the statement was directed at ...Read more

Tough 'Lego Batman' kicks through 'Wall' at box office

Business / Business News /

LOS ANGELES -- A talking building-block toy proved tougher than Matt Damon's "The Great Wall" at the box office over the four-day Presidents Day weekend, as "The Lego Batman Movie" from Warner Bros. finished first, raking in an estimated $42.5 million in the U.S. and Canada.

The animated "Batman" parody, now in its second week, saw its total ...Read more

Snapchat Spectacles now sold online

Business / Business News /

LOS ANGELES -- If you didn't race out to Los Angeles to get them, or stand in an endless line in Santa Monica, Calif., or catch a helicopter ride to the middle of the Grand Canyon, or brave the Manhattan cold, or pay a premium on eBay, well, you finally can just go online to buy Spectacles.

The $130 high-tech sunglasses from the company behind ...Read more

Warm weather is melting winter economy in Minn., Wis. towns

Business / Business News /

MINNEAPOLIS -- For every Minnesotan who welcomed the past weekend's warm weather, there was another putting away skis, skates or a snowmobile and wondering whatever happened to the cold. Springlike temps are in the Twin Cities' forecast for much of the rest of February, meaning winter's fans might be the only ones getting frosted.

"It's going ...Read more

Russia overtakes Saudi Arabia as world's top crude oil producer

Business / Business News /

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates -- Russia overtook Saudi Arabia as the world's largest crude producer in December, when both countries started restricting supplies ahead of agreed cuts with other global producers to curb the worst glut in decades.

Russia pumped 10.49 million barrels a day in December, down 29,000 barrels a day from November, while ...Read more

Nordstrom's big, beautiful stores are losing ground

Business / Business News /

SEATTLE -- For many years, Nordstrom has been regarded as a poster child for how traditional retailers should respond to the rise of e-commerce.

But, as the past year has shown, even Nordstrom isn't immune from the larger forces rocking brick-and-mortar retailers these days, with department stores hit particularly hard.

While Nordstrom's total...Read more

Nearly a year after layoffs, former Oreo plant workers struggle to find their way

Business / Business News /

CHICAGO -- Susana Palomo couldn't sleep for a week, torn between a dream and reality.

One of the hundreds of workers laid off last year from a Nabisco plant on Chicago's Southwest Side, where Oreos were made for more than six decades, Palomo had embarked on a bold plan to attend college and perhaps open her own small bakery someday. But ...Read more

Spooked by spike in cyber extortion, businesses are stockpiling bitcoin for payoffs

Business / Business News /

SAN FRANCISCO -- U.S. corporations that have long resisted bending to the demands of computer hackers who take their networks hostage are increasingly stockpiling bitcoin, the digital currency, so that they can quickly meet ransom demands rather than lose valuable corporate data.

The companies are responding to cybersecurity experts who ...Read more

On Philanthropy: Tax form 990: A treasure trove of information for strategic philanthropy

Business / Business News /

To achieve their goals, philanthropic families and businesses seek to partner with nonprofits that can demonstrate operational sustainability and effectiveness over the long term. For those making this decision, IRS tax form 990 contains a treasure trove of available information. Many otherwise-savvy donors fail to take advantage of this useful ...Read more

Susan Tompor: There are lots of options for quick-cash fixes

Business / Business News /

When big names in the financial services industry -- including Detroit-based mortgage lender Quicken Loans and New York-based investment bank Goldman Sachs -- enter a niche market for online personal loans, it's fair to say that consumers can bank on more buzz for simple, quick-cash fixes.

Marcus by Goldman Sachs had a limited rollout in ...Read more

Q&A: Why 'border adjustment' is the talk of Washington

Business / Business News /

President Donald Trump and the Republican-controlled Congress want to undertake the biggest overhaul of the U.S. tax code in three decades, with steep rate cuts across the board for businesses and individuals. But some House Republicans want something else as well: a radical shift in the way U.S. corporations are taxed. They'd scrap the 35 ...Read more

Trump said he would isolate his family businesses, but they have already seeped into the White House

Business / Business News /

WASHINGTON -- Twenty-four hours before taking the oath of office, President Donald Trump strutted into the presidential ballroom of the Trump International Hotel to toast congressional leaders, top donors and the people he had picked to fill out his Cabinet.

Trump joked that "a total genius must have built this place," underscoring the message:...Read more

Gail MarksJarvis: Why you don't need Warren Buffett to get your finances in order

Business / Business News /

You don't have to be Warren Buffett to be richer.

Nor do you need to have him hold your hand to get there.

Yet, a recent study shows most Americans are deeply uncertain about handling their money, and they'd like Warren Buffett to help them figure it out.

If you are among them, take a deep breath and reassure yourself. Remember, you don't ...Read more

Kushner's use of US-backed apartment loans poses conflict risk

Business / Business News /

WASHINGTON -- Jared Kushner relinquished control of his family's multibillion-dollar real-estate business in January to eliminate conflicts of interest when he became a top White House adviser to his father-in-law, President Donald Trump.

Yet Kushner Cos. has apartment buildings with more than $500 million in government-backed mortgages ...Read more

Studio chief Grey to step down

Business / Business News /

LOS ANGELES--Paramount Pictures Chairman Brad Grey is preparing to leave his job, ending months of speculation about his future as Viacom Chief Executive Bob Bakish moves aggressively to revive the long struggling studio.

Grey, who has led the storied movie company for 12 years, is in negotiations with Paramount Pictures parent Viacom Inc. to ...Read more