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Ellen M. Banner/Seattle Times/TNS

Starbucks says it will cover abortion travel and gender-affirming care

Business / Business News /

Starbucks said Friday it will reimburse abortion travel expenses for partners enrolled in its health care plan if a legal provider isn't in the partner's state of residence or within 100 miles of their home.

Responding to the U.S. Supreme Court decision ending constitutional protections for abortion, the company also said it will begin ...Read more

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Major WA employers commit to maintaining abortion access for employees

Business / Business News /

Many major Washington employers responded to Friday's U.S. Supreme Court decision throwing out constitutional protections for abortion with renewed pledges to pay the way for employees who must travel to access reproductive health care.

Microsoft, Starbucks, Alaska Airlines and others committed Friday to covering the travel costs of employees ...Read more

Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images North America/TNS

Major WA employers commit to maintaining abortion access for employees

Business / Business News /

Many major Washington employers responded to Friday's U.S. Supreme Court decision throwing out constitutional protections for abortion with renewed pledges to pay the way for employees who must travel to access reproductive health care.

Microsoft, Starbucks, Alaska Airlines and others committed Friday to covering the travel costs of employees ...Read more

Workers walk out of unionized Seattle Starbucks to protest treatment of employees at other stores

Business / Business News /

Workers at a Capitol Hill Starbucks walked out Friday to protest the treatment of their colleagues at several other Starbucks locations in Seattle.

The strike followed Starbucks' move this week to rebrand some stores as "Heritage Markets." Among them: the store at First Avenue and Pike Street where workers were attempting to unionize. Employees...Read more

Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images North America/TNS

Big Tech companies will cover travel expenses for employees' medical procedures, including abortion

Business / Business News /

Tech companies including Microsoft, Amazon, Meta, Apple and Google will cover or reimburse employees for travel expenses related to medical procedures, including abortions.

Amazon announced in May it would cover up to $4,000 in travel expenses related to medical procedures including abortion services. That policy is retroactive to Jan. 1 for ...Read more

Dreamstime/Dreamstime/TNS

Michigan regulators approve Consumers Energy plan to end coal use by 2025

Business / Business News /

Michigan regulators on Thursday approved Consumers Energy’s plan to be one of the first utilities in the country no longer to burn coal by 2025, a move the energy company says still will offer reliability and save customers money.

The Michigan Public Service Commission approved the CMS Corp. subsidiary’s integrated resource plan, a 20-year ...Read more

David Carson/St. Louis Post-Dispatch/TNS

Ameren aims to build natural gas power plant by 2031 amid push away from coal

Business / Business News /

ST. LOUIS — Ameren announced plans Thursday to build a large power plant within the next decade that runs on natural gas — even as the utility aims to accelerate its shift toward carbon neutrality.

The announcement sparked criticism from environmental groups, as well as some skepticism that the plant would come to fruition, mainly due to ...Read more

Stellantis/Stellantis/TNS

Stellantis investment makes it 2nd largest shareholder in lithium supplier

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Jeep maker Stellantis NV is investing nearly $53 million (50 million euro) into its European lithium partner in an effort to create a reliable supply chain of the critical mineral for electric-vehicle batteries.

The equity investment in Vulcan Energy Resources Ltd. makes the automaker Vulcan's second largest shareholder with 8% ownership. The ...Read more

Allie Goulding/Tampa Bay Times/TNS

Disney offers 'travel benefit' for employees seeking an abortion

Business / Business News /

The Walt Disney Co., which employs some 80,000 people at its theme parks and other operations in Florida, said it will offer employees a “travel benefit” to cover costs related to seeking an abortion.

After the Supreme Court announced its ruling to overturn Roe v. Wade, ending constitutional protections for abortion, a company spokesperson ...Read more

Jay L. Clendenin/Los Angeles Times/TNS

Hollywood companies vow to pay travel costs for abortions after Roe v. Wade decision

Business / Business News /

Walt Disney Co., Netflix, Sony Pictures and Paramount Pictures are among the Hollywood companies that are stepping in to help employees who will need to travel for abortion care in the wake of the Supreme Court overturning the landmark 1973 Roe vs. Wade decision Friday.

The entertainment companies — and the SAG-AFTRA union, which represents ...Read more

Auto review: The fearless, peerless Ford Bronco Raptor is an off-road beast

Business / Business News /

JOHNSON VALLEY, California — Sixty miles north of Palm Springs, Johnson Valley is synonymous with Ultra4 racing — America's most demanding off-road competition. Every February, 75,000 people descend on this 96,000-acre desert pasture to watch insane, all-wheel-drive 1,000-horsepower dune buggies on 'roids vie for the King of the Hammers ...Read more

Jim West/Zuma Press/TNS

UAW, more than 60 workers at non-union automakers eye organizing push

Business / Business News /

Amid a nationwide surge in worker momentum and public support for unions, the United Auto Workers is making a renewed push to build on-the-ground interest in organizing non-unionized auto plants.

More than 60 workers at 10 automakers that don't have contracts with the UAW met late last month in Birmingham, Alabama, to discuss how to organize ...Read more

Toyota/Toyota/TNS

Auto review: Tougher Tundra has bolder look, better ride

Business / Business News /

There's a new, tougher full-size pickup in town. It's built in San Antonio, Texas, and it's gunning for the class-leading American trucks. It's name is Toyota Tundra.

The third-generation TRD Off Road Tundra is armed with more power and an available hybrid, better road skills and smarter technology inside and off-road.

No one is saying the ...Read more

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Almost $4 billion in bitcoin miner loans are coming under stress

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The prolonged slump in Bitcoin is making it more difficult for some miners to repay the up to $4 billion in loans they have backed by their equipment, posing a potential risk to major crypto lenders.

A growing number of loans are now underwater, according to analysts, as many of the mining rigs lenders accepted as collateral have now halved in ...Read more

Brian Contreras/Los Angeles Times/TNS

The crypto-themed restaurant that no longer accepts crypto

Business / Business News /

When Bored & Hungry first opened in Long Beach in April, the burger joint didn't just embrace the aesthetics of crypto culture. It was all-in on the digital money part too.

Sure, meme-y references to rockets and bulls dotted the walls, and Bored Apes — those cartoon monkeys that celebrities such as Paris Hilton and Post Malone have touted as ...Read more

Ken Lambert/The Seattle Times/TNS

At Microsoft, a back-to-office 'normal' may not happen this year

Business / Business News /

For employers banking on a surge of workers returning to the office this summer, Microsoft would like a word.

The Redmond, Washington, tech giant, which has probably gamed out the back-to-office challenge as carefully as any organization, says the stream of workers coming back to its own offices has grown steadily since April 4, when the ...Read more

Dreamstime/Dreamstime/TNS

Remote work could save firms $206 billion and ease pressure on the Fed

Business / Business News /

The rise of remote work could make the Federal Reserve’s task of taming inflation a bit easier, while saving employers more than $200 billion, according to new research.

That’s because workers are willing to accept smaller pay increases for the convenience of working from home. In turn, that helps moderate business costs and slow what ...Read more

Honda/Honda/TNS

Auto review: The 2023 Honda HR-V grows in social stature and size

Business / Business News /

Would you guess that Honda offers the highest number of American-made cars offered in the U.S.? Probably not. But more than that, their models are designed specifically for the American market. Just consider today’s subject, the all-new, redesigned 2023 Honda HR-V.

Offered in base LX, mid-level Sport and top-of-the-line EX-L trim levels, the ...Read more

Robert Gauthier/Los Angeles Times/TNS

The Week Ahead: Core inflation may have peaked, but still well-above Fed's target

Business / Business News /

The high price of gasoline doesn’t really matter to the Federal Reserve’s fight against inflation.

That’s the stark reality as American drivers face $5 gallon gasoline and investors become convinced an economic recession is close, if not already here.

The central bank is essentially helpless in the effort to bring down energy prices. ...Read more

Spencer Platt/Getty Images North America/TNS

World's dirtiest oil and gas fields are in Russia, Turkmenistan and Texas

Business / Business News /

Oil and natural gas fields in Russia, Turkmenistan and Texas are the most climate-damaging on Earth, according to a first-of-its kind analysis that looks at greenhouse-gas emissions across entire supply chains and finds they vary widely. The dirtiest fields emit more than 10 times as much carbon dioxide equivalent as the least emissions-...Read more