Syrian regime forces took full control of a key northwestern town Wednesday, surrounding rebel-backing Turkish forces at a nearby observation post, a war monitor said. The advance on the town of Khan Sheikhun in Idlib province comes after months of air strikes on the area by the Syrian regime and its Russian ally. "Regime forces took full control of the town of Khan Sheikhun and are currently clearing it of mines," said Syrian Observatory for Human Rights chief Rami Abdel Rahman.
(Bloomberg) -- In a sign of rising tensions with the farm community, the Trump administration withdrew staff from a privately run tour of Midwestern corn and soybean fields after a government employee received a threat.While the threat was made by someone not involved in the Pro Farmer Midwest Crop Tour, the U.S. Department of Agriculture opted to pull all its staff as a precaution, Hubert Hamer, administrator of the USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service, said by email Wednesday. NASS crops chief Lance Honig was scheduled to address groups on the tour, which is comprised of farmers, reporters and agribusiness interests scouting crop progress.“Federal Protective Services were contacted and are investigating the incident,” Hamer said, without giving detail on the nature of the threat. “The safety of our employees is our top priority.”The USDA’s data arm has been the subject of ire in recent months after crop estimates that surprised traders and growers who had expected the agency to significantly reduce its outlook after rain delayed planting. Corn prices plunged last week on planting data that was higher than analyst expectations. The USDA had already been criticized for its June estimates and took the unusual step of re-surveying farmers to get a more accurate number. The USDA’s crop-tour withdrawal comes about two weeks after farmers leveled criticism at Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue at a fair in Minnesota over President Donald Trump’s yearlong trade war with China, which has eroded demand and pressured already low prices.In a statement Wednesday, Farm Journal, the parent company of Pro Farmer, said it took the threat seriously and has also taken precautions to ensure the safety of participants.“For 27 years the Pro Farmer Crop Tour has been a public service for the benefit of agriculture, in good times and bad,” it said. “And it’s clearly a stressful time right now.”At nightly crop-tour stops in Indiana, Illinois and Grand Island, Nebraska, farmers questioned officials from both the USDA and Pro Farmer about the government’s methodology in determining corn planted area and yields. Some farmers, stung by years of low prices, were frustrated by the rapid rise in prices in May and subsequent steep drop.USDA officials said yield estimates were based largely on input from farmers as well as satellite imagery. Planted acreage numbers published by the Farm Service Agency earlier this month referred to Aug. 1 data and that figure has already increased, Chris Hawthorn, a NASS statistician, told farmers on the tour.“We had a great time with the USDA guys yesterday,” said Jim Putnam, a Minnesota farmer, who traveled with two USDA staff on the tour Tuesday. “I’m sorry this happened. It makes us all look stupid.”Last month, the Trump administration announced another $16 billion in aid to farmers after a $12 billion tranche in 2018. Earlier this month, Trump hinted his administration may provide more money for farmers if the trade war were to persist.Trump’s overwhelming support in rural America was crucial to his narrow 2016 election victory and maintaining farmer’s backing is critical to his re-election. Just this week, the administration has taken criticism from agricultural interests for its handling of the Renewable Fuel Standard, the policy that mandates use of corn-based ethanol and soy-based biodiesel.On Tuesday, the Iowa Soybean Association sent a letter to Trump and Perdue, asking for a meeting to discuss the Environmental Protection Agency’s granting of small refinery exemptions, saying that the agency’s Aug. 9 announcement that it granted 31 waivers adds to the “economic pain Iowa’s farmers and biodiesel producers are experiencing.”Chicago corn for delivery in December rose 0.4% on Wednesday.(Adds corn prices. A previous version corrected spelling of Nebraska in eighth paragraph)\--With assistance from Dominic Carey and Millie Munshi.To contact the reporters on this story: Mario Parker in Chicago at firstname.lastname@example.org;Michael Hirtzer in Chicago at email@example.com;Isis Almeida in Chicago at firstname.lastname@example.orgTo contact the editors responsible for this story: James Attwood at email@example.com, Tina DavisFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
NEW YORK (AP) — The divide between retail winners and losers is widening.
That became even more evident Wednesday with the latest batch of earnings reports: Big-box stores and off-price retailers have been responding faster to shoppers' increasing shift online with expanded deliveries and better merchandise. But many mall-based clothing chains and department stores continue to suffer weak sales as they struggle to lure in shoppers.
"There is an increasing polarization in retail," said Neil Saunders, managing director at GlobalData Retail. "It's a vicious cycle, and it's difficult to pull out of the tail spin."
In fact, for the first two fiscal quarters of this year, earnings at off-mall retailers rose 3%, compared with a drop of 29% for mall-based retailers, according to Retail Metrics, a retail research firm, which analyzed results at 105 retailers.
On Wednesday, Target raised its annual earnings guidance after reporting strong sales and traffic. It was helped by its same-day delivery services, as well as a strong lineup of homegrown brands. Lowe's, the nation's second largest home improvement retailer behind Home Depot, blew past Wall Street's second-quarter earnings expectations, buoyed by strong demand for spring goods and sales to contractors.
Both companies' stocks soared.
Earlier this week, Home Depot handily beat second-quarter profit expectations, while Walmart raised its outlook for the year last week and off price chains like T.J. Maxx are also faring well, resonating with shoppers who love to treasure hunt.
But clothing chains and department stores haven't differentiated their merchandise enough, and now discounters are further squeezing them by pushing into more affordable trendy fashions, retail industry analysts say.
Last week, Macy's lowered its...
The divide between retail winners and losers is widening. "There is an increasing polarization in retail," said Neil Saunders, managing director at GlobalData Retail. In fact, for the first two fiscal quarters of this year, earnings at off-mall retailers rose 3%, compared with a drop of 29% for mall-based retailers, according to Retail Metrics, a retail research firm, which analyzed results at 105 retailers.
New York officials who are pushing for additional cleanup of the Hudson River followed through Wednesday on their promise of a lawsuit against the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The federal lawsuit seeks to overturn the EPA's decision in April not to compel General Electric Co. to restart dredging for polychlorinated biphenyls from the upper river. Agency officials had said more time and testing are needed to fully assess the $1.7 billion Superfund cleanup.
FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) — Imagine lending money to someone and having to pay for the privilege of doing so. Or being asked to invest and informed of how much money you'll lose.
Sounds absurd, but increasingly that's the global bond market these days. A rising share of government and corporate bonds are trading at negative interest yields — a financial twilight zone that took hold after the financial crisis and has accelerated on fear that a fragile global economy will be further damaged by the U.S.-China trade war.
On Wednesday, for the first time ever, the German government sold 30-year bonds at a negative interest rate. The bonds pay no coupon interest at all. Yet bidders at the auction were willing to pay more than the face value they would receive back when the bonds mature.
The sale added to the mountain of negative-yielding bonds around the world that investors have gobbled up, suggesting that they expect global growth and inflation to remain subpar for years to come. After all, accepting a negative yield on a bond — agreeing, in effect, to lose money in exchange for parking money in a safe place — could reflect expectations that yields will sink even further into negative territory.
"You're essentially paying a warehouse fee by paying these negative rates," said Jim Bianco of Bianco Research in Chicago.
Worldwide debt with negative rates has surged to $16.4 trillion from $12.2 trillion in mid-July and $5.7 trillion in October, Bianco said.
"Until a few months ago, negative-yielding debt was an interesting curiosity," he said. "In the last three months, it's become a mainstay in the marketplace."
The negative-yield phenomenon — 87% of it in Europe and Japan combined — is above all sign of pessimism about the future.
"This is like a temperature gauge...
Imagine lending money to someone and having to pay for the privilege of doing so. A rising share of government and corporate bonds are trading at negative interest yields — a financial twilight zone that took hold after the financial crisis and has accelerated on fear that a fragile global economy will be further damaged by the U.S.-China trade war. On Wednesday, for the first time ever, the German government sold 30-year bonds at a negative interest rate.
The U.S. on Wednesday urged Cuba to drop criminal charges against journalist Roberto Quiñones, who is facing a year in jail."We condemn the injustices committed against Cuban journalist Roberto Quiñones, arrested for reporting on Cuba’s repression of religious freedom," Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Wednesday in a statement. "We will continue to use targeted sanctions to cut off resources from the Cuban regime which uses its income to repress its own people."Quiñones, a reporter for CubaNet, was detained in April while covering a trial in Guantanamo, according to the Committee to Protect Journalists. He was charged with resistance and disobedience, and after he refused to pay the fine authorities demanded of him he was sentenced to a year in prison. He has appealed his sentence.The Trump administration has cracked down on Cuba, targeting tourism and foreign investment in particular and reversing many of the results of President Obama's thaw in relations between the two nations. The administration intends to keep the economic pressure on Cuba as an incentive to reform the country's authoritarian government.
Strong earnings reports from several big retailers helped drive stocks broadly higher on Wall Street Wednesday, placing the market on track to recover most of its losses from the day before.
Target and Lowe's surged, leading a rally in retail stocks, as the market bounced back from its first loss in four days. Technology companies accounted for a big share of the market's gains. Microsoft gained 1% and Apple rose 1.1%.
Financial stocks rose as bond prices fell, pushing yields higher. Bank of America picked up 1%. Real estate and utilities lagged the rest of the market.
Traders had a muted reaction to the afternoon release of notes from the Federal Reserve's policymaking meeting last month. The minutes showed officials were divided in their decision to cut interest rates for the first time in a decade, with some arguing for a bigger cut and others against cutting at all. The minutes did not indicate any consensus among Fed officials on whether future rate cuts would be needed.
Investors have been seeking insight into the Fed's willingness to make further interest rate cuts to help shore up the economy. Traders are now looking ahead to Friday, when Fed Chairman Jerome Powell is scheduled to speak at the central bank's annual conference.
The stock market has been volatile this month as investors try to parse conflicting signals on the U.S. economy and determine whether a recession is on the way. A key concern is that the U.S.-Chinese tariff war will weigh on global economic growth.
The Trump administration has imposed a 25% tariff on $250 billion in Chinese imports. A pending 10% tariff on another $300 billion in goods would hit everything from toys to clothing and shoes that China ships to the United States, however some 60% of the new tariffs wouldn't go into effect until mid-December, and others were taken off the...
Strong earnings reports from several big retailers helped drive stocks broadly higher on Wall Street Wednesday, placing the market on track to recover most of its losses from the day before. Target and Lowe's surged, leading a rally in retail stocks, as the market bounced back from its first loss in four days. Bank of America picked up 1%.
HELSINKI (AP) — Russian President Vladimir Putin insisted Wednesday that a recent deadly explosion at a military testing site in northwestern Russia hasn't posed any radiation threat, but he remained coy about the circumstances of the mysterious incident.
Speaking after talks in Helsinki with Finnish President Sauli Niinisto, Putin emphasized that neighboring nations haven't recorded any spike in radioactivity.
"These are the objective data," he said. "These things can be tracked."
The Aug. 8 incident at the Russian navy's range in Nyonoksa on the White Sea killed two servicemen and five nuclear engineers and injured six. It was followed by a brief rise in radiation levels in nearby Severodvinsk, but the authorities insisted the recorded levels didn't pose any danger to local residents.
Russian officials' changing and contradictory accounts of the incident drew comparisons to Soviet attempts to cover up the 1986 explosion and fire at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant in Ukraine, the world's worst nuclear disaster.
The Russian Defense Ministry at first denied any radiation leak in the incident even as the authorities in nearby Severodvinsk reported a brief rise in radiation levels and advised residents to stay indoors and close the windows. Frightened residents rushed to buy iodine, which can help reduce risks from exposure to radiation.
Russia's state weather and environmental monitoring agency said the peak radiation reading in Severodvinsk on Aug. 8 was 1.78 microsieverts per hour in just one neighborhood — about 16 times the average. Peak readings in other parts of Severodvinsk varied between 0.45 and 1.33 microsieverts.
The announced peak levels were indeed lower than the cosmic radiation that plane passengers are exposed to on longer flights or doses that...
Lowe's blew past second quarter profit expectations, buoyed by strong demand for spring goods and sales to contractors.
Even though the home improvement retailer wrestled with lower lumber prices and rough spring weather, CEO Marvin Ellison said Lowe's saw growth in same-store sales across the U.S.
"Our transformation is ongoing, and our future is bright. We are confident that we are on the right path to capitalize on solid demand in a healthy home improvement market and generate long-term profitable growth," he said.
Ellison, a one-time Home Depot executive who took the top job at Lowe's last year, is trying to reshape the culture at the home improvement retailers, which has been a distant second to Home Depot in the sector. Weaker-selling goods are also disappearing from stores.
Wall Street likes what he's doing.
Lowe's stock surged 10.5% or, $10.23 to $108.10 in Wednesday afternoon trading.
Ellison has thinned the executive ranks at the company and is outsourcing some duties once done by employees, such as maintenance. That has meant thousands of layoffs.
In an interview with The Associated Press on Wednesday, Ellison said Lowe's has been trying to strip away tedious tasks from sales associates like loading trucks and stocking shelves so they are more efficient and can spend more time with customers. He noted that this year, each store has added 120 hours that are all devoted to spending time with customers. That translates to three new full-time employees at each store.
For the three months ended Aug. 2, the Mooresville, North Carolina, company earned $1.68 billion, or $2.14 per share. A year earlier it earned $1.52 billion, or $1.86 per share.
Stripping out one-time costs, earnings were $2.15 per share. That handily topped the $2 per share that analysts surveyed...
WASHINGTON (AP) — Federal Reserve officials were widely divided at their meeting last month when they decided to cut rates for the first time in a decade, with some arguing for a bigger rate cut while others insisted the Fed should not cut rates at all.
The minutes of the July 30-31 discussions released Wednesday show two officials believed the Fed should cut its benchmark policy rate by a half-percentage point, double the quarter-point reduction the central bank eventually agreed upon. On the other end, some Fed officials argued for no rate cut at all, believing that the economy was beginning to improve after a soft patch in the spring.
The minutes did not indicate any consensus on the pace of future cuts.
Financial markets have been turbulent since the July 31 rate cut, diving 800 points one day last week on the Dow Jones Industrial Average, as bad news has piled up in terms of the slowing global economy and the latest developments in President Donald Trump's trade war with China.
Because of these developments, investors have become convinced the central bank will follow up the July rate cut with further cuts at coming meetings. But private economists are not so sure, believing the Fed may want to save some of its rate cut ammunition should the economy take a serious turn for the worse with the possibility of a recession.
The minutes provided little clarity on what the future course for rates will be, but markets are hoping that Fed Chairman Jerome Powell may send a stronger signal about future rate hikes when he delivers the keynote address at the Fed's annual policy conference at Jackson Hole, Wyoming, on Friday.
The two Fed officials who argued for a bigger rate cut "favored a stronger action to better address the stubbornly low inflation rates of the past...
WASHINGTON (AP) — Fed minutes: Panel widely divided on interest rates at July meeting, with two officials pushing for bigger cut.
WASHINGTON (AP) — Federal safety officials are warning people who work on airplanes to avoid damaging the kind of sensors that misfired before crashes involving two Boeing 737 Max jets.
A Federal Aviation Administration bulletin stresses the need to avoid damaging "angle of attack" or AOA sensors, which measure a plane's position relative to oncoming air.
The FAA said in the Aug. 14 bulletin that it's imperative that airlines and other plane operators know how critical the sensors are and the potential for damaging them during normal operations and maintenance.
Faulty information from the sensors led an automated anti-stall system to repeatedly push down the noses of Max jets that crashed in Indonesia and Ethiopia, killing a total of 346 people.
The bulletin doesn't mention the Boeing Max by name.
WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. job market isn't quite as strong as originally believed — with revised figures showing that the economy had 501,000 fewer total jobs this March than initially reported.
The Labor Department said Wednesday that nearly two-thirds of the downward revision came from the retail and leisure and hospitality sectors, the industries most associated with consumer spending.
These preliminary revisions complicate the Trump administration's message of a strong economy, as they suggest that job growth was slowing as the expansion approached its tenth anniversary. Some of this slowdown would be natural given the length of the expansion.
Retailers had 146,400 fewer jobs, while leisure and hospitality — which includes hotels and restaurants — had 175,000 fewer workers.
Business services, health care, construction and manufacturing were also lower than first reported. But other sectors had their job totals upwardly revised. Employers in government, financial services, information and transportation and warehousing hired more workers than originally reported.
This was the sharpest downward revision in jobs totals since 2009, when the economy was just starting to emerge from the Great Recession.
The Labor Department will update these revisions in February 2020.
NEW YORK (AP) — The latest on developments in financial markets (all times local):
Stocks are rising broadly on Wall Street as investors applauded encouraging quarterly results from major retailers.
Target soared 20% Wednesday after releasing earnings that blew past analysts' expectations and raising its full-year forecast.
Lowe's also jumped 10% after its results also beat forecasts. That came a day after rival Home Depot reported strong results of its own.
Traders will be looking out for minutes released later in the day from the Federal Reserve's latest policy meeting.
The S&P 500 rose 25 points, or 0.9%, to 2,926.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average added 286, or 1.1%, to 26,248. The Nasdaq climbed 79, or 1%, to 8,028.
Bond prices fell. The yield on the 10-year Treasury rose to 1.57% from 1.56%.
Stocks are rising broadly in early trading on Wall Street as investors applauded encouraging quarterly results from major retailers.
Target soared 17% in early trading Wednesday after releasing earnings that blew past analysts' expectations and raising its full-year forecast.
Lowe's also jumped 11.5% after its results also beat forecasts. That came a day after rival Home Depot reported strong results of its own.
Traders will be looking out for minutes released later in the day from the Federal Reserve's latest policy meeting.
The S&P 500 rose 23 points, or 0.8%, to 2,923.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average added 220, or 0.9%, to 26,181. The Nasdaq climbed 63, or 0.8%, to 8,011.
Bond prices fell. The yield on the 10-year Treasury rose to 1.59% from 1.56%.
Breaking into the restaurant industry is notoriously difficult. The dire statistic everybody knows is that one of every two new restaurants close after only being open for a year or two. Of those that survive past this point, their financial situation is often still precarious.
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The post Need Tech to Boost Your Restaurant? Use Employee Scheduling Software appeared first on SMALL BUSINESS CEO.
NEW YORK (AP) — At a four-hour meeting last month, Michelle Abdow's staffers got to experience some of the sights, sounds and even smells they could encounter if someone invaded their office and began shooting.
Security experts and local law enforcement officers gave Abdow's 23 staffers active shooter training — explaining what could happen and what they could do to remain safe during a shooting at their company, public relations firm Market Mentors. The visitors acted out scenarios that helped staffers understand what a real shooting might be like.
"It was very intense, much more than most other training where people watch videos," says Abdow, whose company is based in Springfield, Massachusetts. "But I surveyed everyone after, and there was not one negative comment. Everyone was grateful."
The shootings in public places in recent years have made many small business owners and managers aware that they and their staffers need to be educated about workplace violence. They need to know not only how to improve their chances of survival but also how to recognize any warning signs, a possibility if the assailant is a current or former employee or is involved in a domestic dispute with an employee. Security consultants and human resources providers say they're getting more inquiries and requests for training sessions following this month's shooting that killed 22 people and wounded dozens of others in an El Paso, Texas, Walmart — than they did after previous mass shootings.
Engage PEO, a human resources provider, began getting more calls from small businesses after the February 2018 shooting at the Marjory Stoneman Douglas School in Parkland, Florida, that killed 17 students and staffers and wounded 17 others.
"It went from almost nothing to a regular occurrence," says Julie Cirillo, vice president of risk...
LISBON, Portugal (AP) — Portuguese tanker truck drivers have announced a new walkout, just days after returning to work and resuming talks with employers in a pay dispute.
The Hazardous Materials Drivers Union said Wednesday its about 750 members — from a total of some 900 in Portugal — will refuse to work overtime or on weekends and public holidays from Sept. 7-22.
The union says truckers work many hours of overtime to keep the country's 3,000 gas stations stocked.
Truckers ended a seven-day walkout on Sunday, after the Portuguese government instituted emergency measures to keep gas pumps from running dry. Talks with employers broke down late Tuesday.
A spate of strikes has tested the country's Socialist government, traditionally sympathetic to trade unions. But with a general election less than two months away, the center-left government is wary of taking sides.
WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. home sales increased 2.5% in July, a sign that lower mortgage rates have produced a spurt of home-buying.
The National Association of Realtors said Wednesday homes sold last month at a seasonally adjusted annualized rate of 5.42 million units, up from 5.29 million in June.
Average interest rates on 30-year mortgages have fallen to 3.60%, the lowest in nearly three years. Cheaper borrowing costs have enabled sales to rise 0.6% from a year ago, ending 16 consecutive months of annual sales declines.
Jennifer Lee, a senior economist at BMO Capital Markets, said the sales growth should ease concerns about a weakening economy.
"This may not be the most exciting of economic reports, but at least it helped ease recession fears," she said.
The low rates are providing a boost to a housing sector where affordability remains an obstacle for many would-be buyers. Home prices have risen fastest for the bottom half of the market since 2012, making it harder to save for a down payment or manage monthly payments at a higher mortgage rate.
In the Atlanta, Denver, Miami and Tampa metro areas, prices have more than doubled for homes priced below the local median, according to an analysis of property records by Black Knight, Inc. The gains were generally much more modest for homes on the upper end.
In July, sales jumped a strong 8.3% in the West. The South and Midwest also posted higher sales. Purchases slumped in the Northeast.
Still, sales could be limited by a shortage of listings and home prices that are rising faster than incomes. The number of properties on the market has fallen 1.6% during the past 12 months to 1.89 million units, giving buyers fewer options.
The median sales price climbed 4.3% from a year ago to $280,800.
WASHINGTON (AP) — US home sales rose 2.5% in July as falling mortgage rates help affordability.
NEW YORK (AP) — Target topped expectations in just about any way measureable during the second quarter as it pushed faster delivery for customers and invested heavily in new private label brands.
Comparable store sales, which include online sales, rose 3.4 % as customer traffic jumped 2.4%. The measure includes sales at stores open at least a year and online sales. Sales at established stores rose 1.5 %. Online sales soared 34%.
The Minneapolis company raised profit expectations for the year, sending shares up nearly 12% before the opening bell Wednesday.
Target is underscoring the successes of big box giants in checking the advance of Amazon.com. Walmart raised its outlook for the year last week after a very strong quarter.
Both have expanded their online presence, populated shelves with new merchandise, and modernized stores.
Being squeezed between big box stores and Amazon are mall-based clothing chains and department stores. J.C. Penney's, Macy's and Kohl's and other retailers are all getting hammered.
Still, it is a precarious time for even surging retailers like Target.
The Trump administration imposed a 25% tariff on $250 billion in Chinese imports. A pending 10% tariff on another $300 billion in goods would hit everything from toys to clothing and shoes that China ships to the United States.
The prospect of raising prices, or absorbing higher costs, would be perilous for U.S. companies if the economy dips into recession, as some recent indicators have suggested it may.
Home Depot on Tuesday cut its sales expectations for the year in part because of the potential impact of tariffs on customers.
Macy's said last week that its shoppers don't have an appetite for higher prices in a ballooning U.S. trade war with China. The department store was forced to raise...
Did you know freelancers contributed around $1.4 trillion to the US economy in 2017? And this number continues to grow each year. With the increase in popularity of remote work, freelancing is becoming a popular part-time or full-time career option for many people.
The thing is, with an increase in demand and supply comes an increase in cut-throat competition for independent workers. In order to stand out in the world of freelancing, it is important to put your best foot forward.
Here are 6 effective marketing tips for freelancers to help them kickstart a successful remote work career.
Before any career move it is important to have a clear understanding of your expertise and desired focus areas.…
BANGKOK (AP) — Thailand's government on Wednesday announced a plan to set up a center to combat unverified news on social media platforms, rejecting concerns that it might be used to suppress free speech.
The planned center's goal would be to fight all kinds of fake news, with a focus on misinformation about disasters and financial matters, Minister of Digital Economy and Society Buddhipongse Punnakanta said.
"Fake news is embedded within every aspect of our society, so it's very hard to specifically pinpoint anything right now besides the obvious problems, disasters and financial news, but as we progress — slowly but effectively — we'll try to cover every aspect possible," Buddhipongse said at a news conference.
He said the center would also teach media literacy and launch a website that would act as a digital verifier of news that people suspected of being fake.
"People can submit any news they're suspicious of being unauthenticated, or that could incite fear and confusion to the public, to the website and our officials would verify its authenticity within two hours," he said.
The center and the website are expected to be launched by October.
The plan has already drawn criticism. A spokeswoman for the opposition Future Forward Party said last month that it shared concerns about fake news, which it said has been used to attack the government's opponents, but was skeptical about setting up such a center.
"If the anti-fake news center is officially founded, we are afraid that it won't truly combat fake news or stop distorting information, but rather aid the destruction of the government's opponents. Because this is a global issue that every country is facing, we think that the most effective method would be encouraging people to have more media literacy, not...
BEIJING (AP) — Asia stock markets followed Wall Street lower Wednesday as investors looked ahead to a speech by the Federal Reserve chairman for signs of possible plans for more U.S. interest rate cuts.
Benchmarks in Tokyo, Shanghai and Australia declined while South Korea advanced.
U.S. stocks fell Tuesday after another slide in bond yields and a mixed batch of corporate earnings. Financial sector stocks led the declines.
Investors looked ahead to the Fed's release Wednesday of notes from its policymaking meeting last month and a speech Friday by chairman Jerome Powell.
Markets have "entered a holding pattern" ahead of Powell's speech at an annual gathering in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, said Jeffrey Halley of Oanda in a report.
Investors expect Powell to signal the Fed "is about to embark on a reinvigorated wave of easing," said Halley. However, he said U.S. data "simply does not support the need for an aggressive easing cycle."
The Shanghai Composite Index lost 0.1% to 2,875.63 and Tokyo's Nikkei 225 shed 0.4% to 20,597.21. Hong Kong's Hang Seng declined 0.3% to 26,161.92.
Seoul's Kospi gained 0.2% to 1,965.02 while Sydney's S&P-ASX 200 fell 1% to 6,477.60. Taiwan and Indonesian markets advanced while New Zealand and Singapore retreated.
On Wall Street, the benchmark Standard & Poor's 500 index snapped a three-day winning streak and fell 0.8% to 2,900.51. The Dow Jones Industrial Average slid 0.7% to 25,962.44. The Nasdaq composite dropped 0.7% to 7,948.56.
The U.S. market has been volatile this month as investors try to parse conflicting signals on the U.S. economy and determine whether a recession is on the horizon. A key concern is that the U.S.-Chinese tariff war will weigh on global economic growth.
Some chipmakers rose on Monday that the Trump...
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Soon, you could get fewer familiar ads following you around the internet — or at least on Facebook.
Facebook is launching a long-promised tool that lets you limit what the social network can gather about you on outside websites and apps.
The company said Tuesday that it is adding a section where you can see the activity that Facebook tracks outside its service via its "like" buttons and other means. You can choose to turn off the tracking; otherwise, tracking will continue the same way it has been.
Formerly known as "clear history," the tool will now go by the slightly clunkier moniker "off-Facebook activity." The feature launches in South Korea, Ireland and Spain on Tuesday, consistent with Facebook's tendency to launch features in smaller markets first. The company did not give a timeline for when it might expand it to the U.S. and other countries, only that it will be in "coming months."
What you do off Facebook is among the many pieces of information that Facebook uses to target ads to people. Blocking the tracking could mean fewer ads that seem familiar — for example, for a pair of shoes you decided not to buy, or a nonprofit you donated money to. But it won't change the actual number of ads you'll see on Facebook. Nor will it change how your actions on Facebook are used to show you ads.
Even if you turn off tracking, Facebook will still gather data on your off-Facebook activities. It will simply disconnect those activities from your Facebook profile. Facebook says businesses won't know you clicked on their ad — but they'll know that someone did. So Facebook can still tell advertisers how well their ads are performing.
Jasmine Enberg, social media analyst at research firm eMarketer, said the tool is part of Facebook's efforts to be clearer to users on how it tracks them and likely...
NEW YORK (AP) — Walmart sued Tesla for "gross negligence" on Tuesday, saying that the electric car company's energy division installed solar panels that went up in flames on its store rooftops.
The retailer said fires broke out at seven store rooftops between 2012 and 2018, causing millions of dollars in damage. One location in Ohio had to be closed for eight days, Walmart said in the complaint.
Inspections found that several of Tesla's solar panels were broken and that wires were hanging out, causing a fire hazard. In its lawsuit, Walmart said Tesla engaged in "widespread, systemic negligence" and "failed to abide by prudent industry practices in installing, operating, and maintaining its solar systems."
Tesla Inc., which is based in Palo Alto, California, did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Tuesday.
Walmart said it had deals with Tesla Energy, formerly known as SolarCity, to install and maintain solar panels on 244 Walmart stores.
In May of last year, Walmart said it demanded that Tesla disconnect all the solar panel systems it had installed. But Walmart said another fire still occurred at a California store, even though the panels had been disconnected for several months. The company said that the wires on the store's rooftop were still sparking when it discovered the fire.
Walmart said it later found out that Tesla ignored an alert from that store's solar panels, which Walmart said was the likely cause of the fire. In the court documents, Walmart said ignoring the alert reveals "Tesla's utter incompetence or callousness, or both."
Bentonville, Arkansas-based Walmart Inc. did not specify how much money it is seeking from Tesla in the lawsuit filed in New York State Supreme Court, saying that the amount would be determined at trial.
WASHINGTON (AP) — American Airlines will pay $22.1 million to settle allegations it falsified times when it handed off mail, including items sent to U.S. soldiers stationed abroad.
The Justice Department said Tuesday that American picked up mail for the U.S. Postal Service at six locations in the U.S., and Defense Department and State Department locations overseas.
American transferred the mail to foreign postal agencies or other recipients, then submitted electronic scans of bins to show deliveries were made correctly and on time.
American says the allegations are several years old and it has invested in new equipment and procedures to handle the mail.
In 2016, American disclosed it was under investigation regarding international-mail contracts from 2009 and 2011.
Last year, British Airways and Spain's Iberia paid $5.8 million to settle similar allegations.
A key factor steering the economic growth of any country is a knowledge-driven workforce and the significance of the teaching profession towards the same cannot be underrated. Teachers play a vital role in building a strong human capital base and shaping the future of a country. However, while there is the need to recruit and retain quality teachers, there is a growing concern across the globe with regard to the attrition rate.
Research put forth by the U.S. Department of Education suggests that 17 per cent of new teachers leave the classroom within 5 years. This has led to a decline in instruction quality, making it necessary to adopt strategies that improve teacher recruitment and retention.…
This issue is one of those debates that nearly feels talked to death. The amount of spilled digital ink on the subject could fill out about a hundred blogs, and there would still be some opinions left over.
For some, the rift between cold calling and social selling proponents is generational in nature, with cold calling representing the old, intrusive and no-longer effective form of selling, while social selling is the new and improved way of connecting with prospects. To others, social selling is just an ineffective “preaching to the choir” that connects you with people but doesn’t actually make a sale.…
If you own a small business, then you know how important communication is – yet how overwhelming it can seem at times. That said, you need tools that can help you in streamlining your business communication.
Without further adieu, in this article, we’ll outline ten communication tools that can help you in handling inquiries from customers and even how your team works together.
Through social media pages on platforms such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, and Twitter, you can effectively connect your business with prospects and existing customers. Thanks to built-in messaging, people can easily message you anytime, and it’s essential to be sure that you are replying quickly.…
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First impressions last longest. This saying also applies in business and that is why there is always a lot of stress attached to business launches. Corporate events are usually the most tedious as you cannot just play simple fun events. Do not fret yet. We would walk you through seven tips for organizing the perfect business launch.
The first step is to get a pen on paper or if you prefer, type on your computer. It is time to start planning. You should know how many people you want at your event, the place you want to use, the goals you want to achieve, and how you want your event to look.…
As you already know, life can bring many unexpected events. You never know when something odd or unbelievable is going to happen. Using your smartphone to capture evidence can help but this can be tough when you’re driving an automobile. Instead, you should think about buying a dash cam.
photo credit: Wikimedia Commons
The dash cam benefits are immense, especially for your business fleet. With a good dash cam, you can guarantee that you’ll be able to record footage of unexpected incidents.
For instance, you can record car accidents, meteors, and strange weather events. This footage could prove to be very beneficial to you in the future.…
It’s very possible that your business is the center of your life. You have put your heart and soul into it, and you have put lots of money, time, and energy into it as well. Through an unfortunate set of circumstances, though, your business has been accused of criminal activity. You know that this activity never happened, but you still have to deal with the accusations in a court of law. You may be wondering if your business can recover after this type of situation.
You have to do everything possible to clear your name and the name of your brand.…
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There is little doubt that a website is essential to the success of any business. Fortunately, it is relatively easy to create one.
But, creating a website is not enough, you need the right features on your page and enough advertising to encourage people to visit. Of course, having great content will help to keep them on your page and get them purchasing your products/services.
Before you consider what elements need to be included on every website, you should consider getting expert help from a firm like this Web Design Bondi. You’ll quickly realize it’s worth every cent.
The average visitor to a website will only stay on a page for approximately 15-30 seconds.…
Bad credit can be a serious problem for your future. When you’re looking to take out a loan or begin your own company, having the right score can make all the difference. Those who have low scores are often viewed as a risk by lenders and are denied the chance at finding fair financing options. While you might not be able to change your score in an immediate way, there are several steps you can take to make a positive impact on your score.
Give yourself a moment to take a look at some of these ideas on how you can improve your score.…
Signs of new construction on the south side of Badger Mountain—including a new service station and convenience store that will include a fast-food chicken restaurant—signal more growth coming to the planned development that’s been years in the making. Badger Mountain South’s owner and developer Nor Am Investments has an end-goal of building 5,000 household units,…
The post Construction on south side of mountain points to more growth appeared first on Tri-Cities Area Journal of Business.
By Andrew Kirk Several Tri-City employers and nonprofit leaders criticized the state’s proposal to overhaul its worker overtime exemption rule at a recent public hearing, citing concerns about their bottom lines and ability to serve customers and clients. More than 50 people attended an Aug. 6 hearing in Kennewick—one of seven meetings held across the state—to…
The post Tri-City employers balk at state’s overtime proposal appeared first on Tri-Cities Area Journal of Business.
3 departments merged near Tri-Cities, expanded services coming to Prosser The process of jumping through the required hoops to start new construction projects is set to run more efficiently in Benton County once a new “one-stop shop” opens in the Tri-Cities, replicating some services currently only available in Prosser. The move will merge the county’s…
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Following a successful effort to land a daily, nonstop flight to Los Angeles, the Tri-Cities Airport is setting a course for adding capacity to existing routes. “I think that’s more realistic than trying to get some new market when you don’t have any grant dollars,” said Buck Taft, director of the airport. “Add capacity to…
A Benton County Superior Court judge has issued a decision against a Kennewick company in one of its three pending lawsuits. And the state Department of Labor and Industries has found i-3 Global owes more than $18,000 in unpaid wages to eight former employees. The business and its president, Kristopher Lapp, came under fire this…
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By Andy Perdue One of Washington’s top winemakers has consolidated his operations in the Tri-City area. Victor Palencia, owner of Palencia Winery and Vino La Monarcha, recently closed his Walla Walla operation to focus on a tasting room and winemaking facility in downtown Kennewick and a new tasting room in West Richland. Palencia, who was…
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The past year has been a wild ride for the Boys and Girls Clubs of Benton and Franklin Counties. The nonprofit took over the Richland School District’s before- and after-school child care program in June 2018. This meant more sites, children, staff and a bigger budget to manage. It also occurred while the nonprofit was…
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By Andrew Kirk Despite recent ownership challenges, the Tri-Cities Cancer Center is not going anywhere and there will be no noticeable difference in its operations or the care it provides to cancer patients. That’s the message Chief Executive Officer Chuck DeGooyer is working hard to share. It’s an important message because a lot recently has…
Athalia Clower has always wanted to help people. And she has done so for more than 25 years. “I have been a certified physician assistant (PA-C) since 1993,” said Clower in an email interview. “I started working for Kadlec during March of 2010.” For Clower, this has been a high calling. But so has her…
The post Focus on children leads Kadlec provider to Guatemala appeared first on Tri-Cities Area Journal of Business.
United Way of Benton and Franklin Counties is kickstarting its annual fundraising campaign in September. And it is armed with hard data showing where the two counties it serves are falling behind. Last year, United Way recruited a group of volunteer analysts to identify key data points in hopes of measuring the overall health and…
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