Category: Business

Sears, once a stalwart, has “substantial doubt” about future

BY ANNE D’INNOCENZIO AND HANNAH WEIKEL NEW YORK (AP) — Sears, a back-to-school shopping destination for generations of kids and the place newlyweds went to choose appliances, has said that after years of losing money that there is “substantial doubt” it will be able to keep its doors open. It’s a dramatic acknowledgment from the chain that owns Sears and Kmart stores, which has long held fast to its stance that a turnaround is possible, even as many of its shoppers have moved on to Wal-Mart, Target or Amazon. Sears has survived of late mainly with millions in loans...

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Big week for markets: Brexit, Fed and elections to collide

BY PAN PYLAS LONDON (AP) — Investors around the world are bracing for a series of events this week that could potentially cause waves in markets. And, for once, they’re not directly about U.S. President Donald Trump. From the expected launch of Britain’s exit from the European Union to the Federal Reserve’s discussion of another interest rate hike, there’s a lot that could cause volatility and even put a brake on the so-called Trump Bump, the months-long rally in stocks. “This week is most unusual from a macro point of view as there is a heavy concentration of ‘event...

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IRS strikes back as agents make big dent in identity theft

BY STEPHEN OHLEMACHER WASHINGTON (AP) — The IRS strikes back: The tax agency reports that the number of identity theft victims plummeted last year after agents struggled for years to combat what has become a multibillion-dollar industry. The number of victims dropped by 46 percent, to 376,000, the IRS said. These taxpayers had their identities stolen by criminals who used their Social Security numbers and birthdates to obtain fraudulent tax refunds. The IRS stopped nearly 1 million fraudulent refunds from being issued last year. They totaled almost $6.6 billion, the agency said. "It’s a much more challenging time for...

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GM sells European brands to France’s Peugeot

BY ANGELA CHARLTON AND TOM KRISHER – ASSOCIATED PRESS PARIS (AP) — General Motors is selling its unprofitable European car business to the French maker of Peugeot, marking the American company’s retreat from a major market and raising concerns of job cuts in the region. With the 2.2 billion euro ($2.33 billion) deal announced Monday, GM is giving up brands – Opel in Germany and Vauxhall in Britain – that have given it a foothold in the world’s third-largest auto market since the 1920s. They have not, however, made a combined profit in the past 18 years despite multiple...

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High school makes $24 million from Snap IPO

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — A California high school has made millions of dollars from the initial public offering of shares in Snap Inc., the company behind the Snapchat photo messaging application. The board of the Saint Francis high school in Mountain View agreed to invest $15,000 in seed money in Snap in 2012, when the company was just getting started. They had been invited to do so by one of the student’s parents, a venture capital investor, the high school president says in a letter issued to the school community Thursday. The school held onto the investment until this...

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Welcome to your new office: A stranger’s living room

BY DANICA KIRKA – ASSOCIATED PRESS LONDON (AP) — Claire Brynteson had a house, a job and a dining table that was empty once she got her three children out the door every morning. When she received a flyer telling her she could make money by renting seats at the table to people looking for short-term office space, she jumped at the chance to list its virtues on the Spacehop website – where Airbnb meets the laptop entrepreneur. “I wondered why perhaps it had taken so long since Airbnb has been running for so long,” Brynteson said at her...

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Snapchat parent passes big test: IPO above expectation

BY BARBARA ORTUTAY AND MICHAEL LIEDTKE – AP TECHNOLOGY WRITERS NEW YORK (AP) — Snapchat parent Snap Inc. started its official bid to go public last Halloween. Now investors get to learn whether they’re in for a trick or a treat. Snap passed its first major test on Wall Street on Wednesday, when the company priced its initial public offering of 200 million non-voting shares at $17 each. That’s above the expected range of $14 to $16. Snap is expected to start trading on the New York Stock Exchange on Thursday under the symbol "SNAP." Snap’s IPO is one...

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US, Mexico square off on immigration as top officials meet

BY JOSH LEDERMAN – ASSOCIATED PRESS MEXICO CITY (AP) — Mexico’s mounting unease and resentment over President Donald Trump’s immigration crackdown are looming over a gathering of U.S. and Mexican leaders Thursday that the U.S. had hoped would project a strong future for relations between neighbors. U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly were meeting with their Mexican counterparts in Mexico City before they were supposed to sit down with Mexican President Pena Nieto. But a top Mexican official suggested the meeting with Pena Nieto, announced days in advance by the U.S., might not...

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US musician makes mics in Russia using Kalashnikov machinery

NATALIA SUVOROVA – ASSOCIATED PRESS TULA, Russia (AP) — Claims of hacking by the Russian state may be feeding international tensions, but they’ve given Californian musician David Brown a great icebreaker when selling his line of Russian-made microphones. “We give free hacking lessons with these microphones,” he tells potential buyers in Los Angeles. “Watch what you say because they never turn off.” Brown, who’s often toured Russia with his band Brazzaville, teamed up with fan Pavel Bazdyrev in 2013 to start making top-end musical equipment in Bazdyrev’s home city of Tula, which is dominated by the Russian defense industry....

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Americans buy existing homes at fastest pace in a decade

BY CHRISTOPHER S. RUGABER – AP ECONOMICS WRITER WASHINGTON (AP) — Americans shrugged off rising mortgage rates and bought existing homes in January at the fastest pace since 2007. Home sales rose 3.3 percent in January from December to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.69 million, the National Association of Realtors said Wednesday. Steady job gains, modest pay raises and rising consumer confidence are spurring healthy home buying even as borrowing costs have risen since last fall. Some potential buyers may be accelerating their home purchases to get ahead of any further increases in mortgage rates. Buyers are...

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Edinburg EDC announces that $10 million TownePlace Suites by Marriott offers latest proof that Edinburg is becoming the “Destination City

Featured: TownePlace Suites by Marriott in Edinburg, whose owners, the Qube Hotel Group of Carrollton, Texas, hosted a grand opening on Friday, February 10, 2017, is the first of its type for the famous Marriott International brand, considered one of the top hospitality companies in the world, according to Ron Stewart of Dallas, Area Vice President, Lodging Development for Marriott International, Inc. “We have been watching Edinburg for a while. I have heard a lot of interesting things about what is happening with the growth, and among the most impressive things now, there have been some really big changes,...

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US stocks start week at new highs on deals and earnings

NEW YORK (AP) — Stocks are breaking records again Tuesday. Energy companies are rising more than the rest of the market. Consumer goods giant Kraft Heinz is falling after it withdrew a $143 billion offer for competition Unilever, but several other food and household goods makers are rising as investors bet Kraft will make an offer for one of those companies instead. KEEPING SCORE: The Dow Jones industrial average climbed 93 points, or 0.5 percent, to 20,717 as of 10 a.m. Eastern time. The Standard & Poor’s 500 index rose 10 points, or 0.4 percent, to 2,361. The Nasdaq...

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