Business

Editor of Los Angeles Times Steps Down
Business

Editor of Los Angeles Times Steps Down

The top editor of The Los Angeles Times, Kevin Merida, told staff members on Tuesday that he was stepping down “after considerable soul-searching about my career.”He said his last day would be on Friday.Mr. Merida was named the top editor of The Los Angeles Times in 2021. He had previously worked as a top editor at The Washington Post and at ESPN.This is a developing story. Check back for updates. More information
U.S. Steel Acquisition Proposal Tests Biden’s Industrial Policy
Business

U.S. Steel Acquisition Proposal Tests Biden’s Industrial Policy

U.S. Steel is an iconic example of the lost manufacturing muscle that President Biden says his economic policies will bring back to the United States.But last month, the storied-but-diminished company announced plans to be acquired by a Japanese competitor. That development has put Mr. Biden in an awkward bind as he tries to balance attempts to revitalize the nation’s industrial sector with his efforts to rebuild international alliances.Mr. Biden’s administration has expressed some discomfort with the deal and is reviewing the proposed $14.1 billion takeover bid by Japan’s Nippon Steel. The company is offering a hefty premium for U.S. Steel, which has struggled to compete against a flood of cheap foreign metal and has been weighing takeover offers for several months.The proposal has quickl...
Alaska Airlines Plane Makes Emergency Airline After Losing Window
Business

Alaska Airlines Plane Makes Emergency Airline After Losing Window

A Boeing 737 Max 9 operated by Alaska Airlines made an emergency landing at Portland International Airport in Oregon on Friday evening after experiencing a midair pressure problem that passengers said blew out a chunk of the fuselage.The airline said that Alaska Airlines Flight 1282 had made a safe emergency landing carrying 171 passengers and six crew members at the Portland airport shortly after takeoff for Ontario, Calif. Within hours, the company said that it was grounding its fleet of 65 Boeing 737 Max 9 aircraft until it could inspect each plane. It said in a statement that it expected to complete the inspections within a few days.Passengers described an unnerving experience during the 15 or so minutes in which the plane was returning to the airport. As yellow oxygen masks dangled ab...
U.S. Awards Chip Supplier $162 Million to Bolster Critical Industries
Business

U.S. Awards Chip Supplier $162 Million to Bolster Critical Industries

The Biden administration on Thursday announced plans to provide $162 million in federal grants to Microchip Technology, an Arizona-based semiconductor company that supplies the automotive, defense and other industries.The agreement is the second award announced under a new program intended to help ensure that American companies that rely on semiconductors have a stable supply. Last month, the Biden administration announced a $35 million grant for BAE Systems, a defense contractor.The investment will enable Microchip to increase its production of semiconductors that are used in cars, airplanes, appliances, medical devices and military products. The administration said it expected the award to create more than 700 jobs in construction and manufacturing.“Today’s announcement with Microchip is...
More Women Who Are Not Pregnant Are Ordering Abortion Pills Just in Case
Business

More Women Who Are Not Pregnant Are Ordering Abortion Pills Just in Case

Behind the NumbersData from September 2021 through April 2023 showed 48,404 advance provision requests and 147,112 requests from women seeking to terminate existing pregnancies. (Women in both categories completed telehealth consultations and Aid Access evaluated their medical information before prescribing pills.)Advance provision requesters were more likely than those already pregnant to be 30 or older, white and childless, and to live in urban neighborhoods with lower poverty rates than the national average. That might be partly because Aid Access offers free or reduced-price services to pregnant patients who need financial assistance, while advance provision requesters were expected to pay the full $110 cost, Dr. Aiken said.And because few organizations offer advance provision, women f...
Under Argentina’s New President, Fuel Is Up 60%, and Diaper Prices Have Doubled
Business

Under Argentina’s New President, Fuel Is Up 60%, and Diaper Prices Have Doubled

Over the past two weeks, the owner of a hip wine bar in Buenos Aires saw the price of beef soar 73 percent, while the zucchini he puts in salads rose 140 percent. An Uber driver paid 60 percent more to fill her tank. And a father said he spent twice as much on diapers for his toddler than he did last month.In Argentina, a country synonymous with galloping inflation, people are used to paying more for just about everything. But under the country’s new president, life is quickly becoming even more painful.When Javier Milei was elected president on Nov. 19, the country was already suffering under the world’s third-highest rate of inflation, with prices up 160 percent from a year before.But since Mr. Milei took office on Dec. 10 and quickly devalued the Argentine currency, prices have soared a...
Boom in A.I. Prompts a Test of Copyright Law
Business

Boom in A.I. Prompts a Test of Copyright Law

The boom in artificial intelligence tools that draw on troves of content from across the internet has begun to test the bounds of copyright law.Authors and a leading photo agency have brought suit over the past year, contending that their intellectual property was illegally used to train A.I. systems, which can produce humanlike prose and power applications like chatbots.Now they have been joined in the spotlight by the news industry. The New York Times filed a lawsuit on Wednesday accusing OpenAI and Microsoft of copyright infringement, the first such challenge by a major American news organization over the use of artificial intelligence.The lawsuit contends that OpenAI’s ChatGPT and Microsoft’s Bing Chat can produce content nearly identical to Times articles, allowing the companies to “f...
Holiday Spending Increased, Defying Fears of a Decline
Business

Holiday Spending Increased, Defying Fears of a Decline

Despite lingering inflation, Americans increased their spending this holiday season, early data shows. That comes as a big relief for retailers that had spent much of the year fearing the economy would soon weaken and consumer spending would fall.Retail sales from Nov. 1 to Dec. 24 increased 3.1 percent from a year earlier, according to data from Mastercard SpendingPulse, which measures in-store and online retail sales across all forms of payment. The numbers, released Tuesday, are not adjusted for inflation.Spending increased across many categories, with restaurants experiencing one of the largest jumps, 7.8 percent. Apparel increased 2.4 percent, and groceries also had gains.The holiday sales figures, driven by a healthy labor market and wage gains, suggest that the economy remains stron...
Downturn or Not? At Year’s End, Wall St. Is Split on What’s Ahead.
Business

Downturn or Not? At Year’s End, Wall St. Is Split on What’s Ahead.

Twelve months ago, Tom Lee bet that 2023 was going to turn out just fine.While many of his peers on Wall Street were sounding the alarm over an impending economic downturn, Mr. Lee, a stock market strategist who spent more than a decade running J.P. Morgan’s equity research before setting up his own firm, forecast in December 2022 that falling inflation and economic resilience would buck the broadly bearish mood.Mr. Lee was right. Despite political brinkmanship over the nation’s debt ceiling, a banking crisis in March, fears over the cost of funding the government’s fiscal deficit, a continuing war in Ukraine and fresh conflict in Israel, the core of Mr. Lee’s prediction came to fruition in 2023. Inflation has fallen, unemployment remains low, and the S&P 500 has risen 25 percent.Most ...
Red Sea Shipping Halt Is Latest Risk to Global Economy
Business

Red Sea Shipping Halt Is Latest Risk to Global Economy

The attacks on crucial shipping traffic in the Red Sea straits by a determined band of militants in Yemen — a spillover from the Israeli-Hamas war in Gaza — are injecting a new dose of instability into a world economy already struggling with mounting geopolitical tensions.The risk of escalating conflict in the Middle East is the latest in a string of unpredictable crises, including the Covid-19 pandemic and the war in Ukraine, that have landed like swipes of a bear claw on the global economy, smacking it off course and leaving scars.As if that weren’t enough, more volatility lies ahead in the form of a wave of national elections whose repercussions could be deep and long. More than two billion people in roughly 50 countries, including India, Indonesia, Mexico, South Africa, the United Stat...