Financial News

Carol Lou James Tucker
May 15, 2023
May 15, 2023
Financial News


May 15, 2023


Repelled by high car prices, Americans are holding on to their vehicles longer than ever

ANN ARBOR, Mich. (AP) — Americans are keeping their cars longer than ever. The average age of a passenger vehicle on U.S. roads hit a record 12.5 years this year, according to data gathered by S&P Global Mobility. Sedans are even older, on average — 13.6 years. Blame it mainly on the pandemic, which triggered a shortage of automotive computer chips, the vital component that runs everything from radios to gas pedals to transmissions. The shortage drastically slowed assembly lines, making new vehicles scarce just when consumers were increasingly eager to buy. Prices surged to record highs. And though they’ve eased somewhat, the cost of a vehicle still feels punishingly expensive to many Americans, especially when coupled with now much-higher loan rates.

Linda Yaccarino may be “exactly what Twitter needs.” But is the new CEO being set up to fail?

Less than two months into his $44 billion purchase of Twitter, Elon Musk declared that whoever took over as the company’s CEO “must like pain a lot.” Then he promised he’d step down as soon as he found a replacement “foolish enough” to want the job. That person is Linda Yaccarino, a highly-regarded advertising executive with NBCUniversal. Musk has women in top positions at his other companies, including Gwynne Shotwell, the chief operating officer of SpaceX. But it is also true that women are often more likely to be hired for leadership jobs when there’s a crisis — the so-called “glass cliff.” Could Yaccarino be headed toward it?

Elon Musk must still have his tweets approved by Tesla lawyer, federal appeals court rules

NEW YORK (AP) — A federal appeals court says Elon Musk cannot back out of a settlement with securities regulators over 2018 tweets claiming he had the funding to take Tesla private. The 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Manhattan ruled Monday, just days after hearing arguments from lawyers in the case. Musk had challenged a lower court judge’s ruling last year requiring him to abide by the deal. The settlement with the Securities and Exchange Commission required that his tweets be first approved by a Tesla attorney. It also called for Musk and Tesla to pay civil fines over the tweets.

NYC skyscrapers turning to carbon capture to lessen climate change

NEW YORK (AP) — In a vertical city like New York, any serious effort to address climate change has to focus on the greenhouse gas emissions caused by buildings. In large part, that means emissions released from giant boilers that heat water for people’s showers, sinks and radiators. The boilers generally burn natural gas or heating oil, which generates lots of carbon dioxide along with other pollution. Now New York is forcing buildings to clean up, and several are experimenting with capturing the carbon dioxide, cooling it into a liquid and mixing it into concrete where it’s locked in pretty much forever.

EU backs Microsoft buying Call of Duty maker Activision Blizzard. But the $69B deal is still at risk

LONDON (AP) — The European Union has approved Microsoft’s $69 billion purchase of video game maker Activision Blizzard. The EU said Monday that it decided the deal won’t stifle competition for popular console titles like Call of Duty and accepted the U.S. tech company’s remedies to boost competition in cloud gaming. But the blockbuster deal is still in jeopardy because British regulators have rejected it and U.S. authorities are trying to thwart it. The all-cash deal announced more than a year ago has been scrutinized by regulators worldwide over fears that it would give Microsoft and its Xbox console control of Activision’s hit franchises like Call of Duty and World of Warcraft.

Stock market today: Wall Street is mixed ahead of updates on U.S. shoppers

NEW YORK (AP) — Wall Street is drifting ahead of reports that will show how much a slowing economy is hurting what’s prevented a recession so far: solid spending by U.S. households. The S&P 500 was flat Monday. The Dow was down modestly, while the Nasdaq inched higher. Some of the sharper moves came from companies announcing takeovers of rivals, but the larger market remained listless as several worries hang over Wall Street. That includes fears about a possible recession and a countdown to a possible default by the U.S. government. The latest discouraging report on manufacturing showed a plunge in New York state.

More dogs could show up in outdoor dining spaces. Not everyone is happy about it

Just in time for the summer dining season, the U.S. government has given its blessing to restaurants that want to allow pet dogs in their outdoor spaces. It better reflects reality; nearly half of states already allow canine dining outdoors. Restaurants have been required to allow service dogs for decades. But it wasn’t until the mid-2000’s that states began allowing dogs in outdoor dining spaces. Late last year, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration issued new guidance saying restaurants can welcome dogs as long as they get permission from a local authority. The FDA suggests they also require leashes and develop plans to handle dog waste.

Vice Media files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, the latest in a string of digital media setbacks

NEW YORK (AP) — Vice Media is filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, the latest digital media company to falter after a meteoric rise. Vice has agreed to sell its assets to a consortium of lenders in exchange for $225 million in credit. Other parties will also be able to submit bids. The bankruptcy filing arrives just weeks after the company announced it would cancel its flagship “Vice News Tonight” program amid a wave of layoffs. The company also said it would end its Vice World News brand, making Vice News its only brand worldwide.

Europe’s economic outlook brightens a little after avoiding recession. But inflation still squeezes

FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) — The European Union’s executive body raised its economic growth forecast, saying Europe had dodged a winter recession that was feared amid an energy crisis. But stubbornly high inflation is likely to keep hurting the economy by sapping people’s ability to spend. In a spring forecast Monday, the European Commission says it expects improved economic growth of 1.1% this year. That’s up from 0.9% in the commission’s previous predictions in February. But the European economy faces persistent challenges from inflation and rising interest rates that the European Central Bank is unleashing to try to tame spikes in consumer prices.

Are you who you say you are? TSA tests facial recognition technology to boost airport security

BALTIMORE (AP) — The agency tasked with securing America’s airports is testing the use of facial recognition technology at a number of airports across the country. The Transportation Safety Administration says the technology is an effort to more accurately identify the millions of passengers traveling through its airports every day and that passengers can opt out. The technology is both checking to make sure the person at the airport matches the ID presented and that the identification is in fact real. It’s currently at 16 airports. Critics have raised concerns about questions of bias in facial recognition technology and possible repercussions for passengers who want to opt out.