Business

CNN’s New Morning Strategy: More News, Less Banter
Business

CNN’s New Morning Strategy: More News, Less Banter

CNN spent years trying to compete in the cutthroat realm of chatty morning TV, cycling through formats in the hopes of catching up to breakfast-time staples like “Morning Joe” and “Good Morning America.”That experiment never quite caught on with viewers — and now it is coming to an end.In his first significant programming move since joining the network in the fall, Mark Thompson, CNN’s chairman, announced on Monday that the channel would exit the morning chat-show format by the end of the month. Instead, its morning lineup will focus on straight news coverage, the kind of bread-and-butter reporting that Mr. Thompson, a former head of The BBC and The New York Times, has championed.The co-anchors of “CNN This Morning,” Poppy Harlow and Phil Mattingly, are in discussions about new roles at th...
A City Built on Steel Tries to Reverse Its Decline
Business

A City Built on Steel Tries to Reverse Its Decline

Gary, Ind., was once a symbol of American innovation. The home of U.S. Steel’s largest mill, Gary churned out the product that built America’s bridges, tunnels and skyscrapers. The city reaped the rewards, with a prosperous downtown and vibrant neighborhoods.Gary’s smokestacks are still prominent along Lake Michigan’s sandy shore, starkly juxtaposed between the eroding dunes and Chicago’s towering silhouette to the northwest. But now they represent a city looking for a fresh start.More than 10,000 buildings sit abandoned, and the population of 180,000 in the 1960s has dropped by more than half. Poverty, crime and an ignoble moniker — “Scary Gary” — deter private investors and prospective homeowners.As U.S. Steel stands at a crossroads — a planned acquisition would put it under foreign cont...
India’s Quiet Push to Steal More of China’s iPhone Business
Business

India’s Quiet Push to Steal More of China’s iPhone Business

India is quietly grabbing from China more manufacturing of Apple’s iPhones and other electronics gear.It is happening in South Indian industrial areas on muddy plots that were once farmland.In Sriperumbudur, people call Apple “the customer,” not daring to say the name of a company that prizes its secrets.But some things are too big to hide. Two gigantic dormitory complexes are springing up from the earth. Once finished, each will be a tight block of 13 buildings with 24 rooms per floor around an L-shaped hallway. Every one of those pink-painted rooms will have beds for six workers, all women. The two blocks will house 18,720 workers apiece.It’s a ready-made scene from Shenzhen or Zhengzhou, the Chinese cities famous for their iPhone production prowess. And it’s no wonder.Sriperumbudur, in ...
Walmart to Add 150 U.S. Stores in Five-Year Expansion Drive
Business

Walmart to Add 150 U.S. Stores in Five-Year Expansion Drive

Walmart will add 150 stores in the United States over the next five years, a major expansion drive for the retail giant.The company, which announced the move in a statement on Wednesday, said would involve millions of dollars in investment. Walmart employs roughly 1.6 million people in the United States, and said it hires hundreds of people each time it opens a new store.Walmart had just over 4,600 stores nationwide at the end of October 2023, down from more than 4,700 a year earlier. The company has not opened a new U.S. store since late 2021.Most of the stores Walmart plans to open will be newly built, while others will be conversions of existing locations to new formats. The first two new stores will open in the spring, in Florida and Georgia, and the company is finalizing construction ...
Pandora Now Only Sources Recycled Metals for Its Jewelry
Business

Pandora Now Only Sources Recycled Metals for Its Jewelry

Pandora, known for its affordable sterling-silver charm bracelets, is the world’s largest jewelry company by volume: The Danish chain sells more than 100 million pieces annually. This week, it announced that it is now sourcing only 100-percent-recycled silver and gold for its collections.The move was touted as an important step by a massive company to reduce its environmental footprint. “We wanted to lead by example,” Pandora’s chief executive, Alexander Lacik, said in an interview. “If we can make positive contributions to society through our use of recycled gold and silver, it means anyone can do it.”By working with metals that have already been mined, Pandora won’t be digging deeper in search of new materials, allowing the company to substantially reduce its greenhouse gas emissions. Mi...
Economists Predicted a Recession. Instead, the Economy Grew.
Business

Economists Predicted a Recession. Instead, the Economy Grew.

The recession America was expecting never showed up.Many economists spent early 2023 predicting a painful downturn, a view so widely held that some commentators started to treat it as a given. Inflation had spiked to the highest level in decades, and a range of forecasters thought that it would take a drop in demand and a prolonged jump in unemployment to wrestle it down.Instead, the economy grew 3.1 percent last year, up from less than 1 percent in 2022 and faster than the average for the five years leading up to the pandemic. Inflation has retreated substantially. Unemployment remains at historic lows, and consumers continue to spend even with Federal Reserve interest rates at a 22-year high.The divide between doomsday predictions and the heyday reality is forcing a reckoning on Wall Str...
A Key Inflation Measure Cooled in December
Business

A Key Inflation Measure Cooled in December

A measure of inflation closely watched by the Federal Reserve continued to cool in December, the latest sign that price increases are coming back under control even as growth remains solid and the labor market healthy. In particularly positive news, a key gauge of price increases dipped below 3 percent for the first time since early 2021.The Personal Consumption Expenditures price index picked up 2.6 percent last month compared to a year earlier. That was in line with what economists had forecast and matched the November reading.But after stripping out food and fuel costs, which can move around from month to month, a “core” price index climbed by 2.9 percent from December 2022. That followed a 3.2 percent November reading, and was the coolest since March 2021.Fed officials aim for 2 percen...
Climate Change Takes Center Stage in Economics
Business

Climate Change Takes Center Stage in Economics

In early January in San Antonio, dozens of Ph.D. economists packed into a small windowless room in the recesses of a Grand Hyatt to hear brand-new research on the hottest topic of their annual conference: how climate change is affecting everything.The papers in this session focused on the impact of natural disasters on mortgage risk, railway safety and even payday loans. Some attendees had to stand in the back, as the seats had already been filled. It wasn’t an anomaly.Nearly every block of time at the Allied Social Science Associations conference — a gathering of dozens of economics-adjacent academic organizations recognized by the American Economic Association — had multiple climate-related presentations to choose from, and most appeared similarly popular.For those who have long focused ...
China’s Travel Economy Is Slowly Coming Back. Here’s Where It Stands.
Business

China’s Travel Economy Is Slowly Coming Back. Here’s Where It Stands.

Since China reopened its borders in 2023 after three years of Covid isolation, domestic travel has thrived and high-speed rail has grown increasingly popular. But international trips in and out of the country are lagging, and flight capacity is still just a third of prepandemic levels.The economic stakes are high. Before the pandemic, Chinese travelers were the world’s biggest spenders, accounting for 20 percent of global tourism spending, according to the United Nations World Tourism Organization.In the past year, the Chinese authorities have tried to spur more inbound travel. Among the changes: China has waived travel visas or agreed to extend the length of visa-free travel for visitors from eight countries, including Germany and France.The main factor holding back international travel b...
War Has Already Hurt the Economies of Israel’s Nearest Neighbors
Business

War Has Already Hurt the Economies of Israel’s Nearest Neighbors

In the Red Sea, attacks by Iranian-backed Houthi militants on commercial ships continue to disrupt a crucial trade route and raise shipping costs. The threat of escalation there and around flash points in Lebanon, Iraq, Syria, Yemen and now Iran and Pakistan ratchets up every day.Despite the staggering death toll and wrenching misery of the violence in the Middle East, the broader economic impact so far has been mostly contained. Oil production and prices, a critical driver of worldwide economic activity and inflation, have returned to pre-crisis levels. International tourists are still flying into other countries in the Middle East like Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Qatar.Yet for Israel’s next-door neighbors — Egypt, Lebanon and Jordan — the economic damage is already severe....