Friday, December 28, 2018

Business Highlights - ABC News

US stocks stage big rally, erase 600 point drop in Dow

Wall Street staged a swift, last-minute turnaround Thursday that rescued stocks from a steep dive and put the market on track to end a topsy-turvy, volatile week with a gain.

The comeback reversed a 611 point drop in the Dow Jones Industrial Average. The S&P 500 and Nasdaq eked out modest gains after having been down 2.8 and 3.3 percent, respectively.

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Lighter load: Laundry detergents shrink for Amazon

Amazon's rise is forcing laundry detergents to shrink.

Tide and Seventh Generation have introduced redesigned laundry detergents that are several pounds lighter by cutting down on plastic in their packaging and using less water in their formulas. They're making the changes to please Amazon and other online stores: Lighter packaging means retailers pay less to ship the detergent to shopper's doorsteps, making each sale more profitable.

For consumers, the new packaging has been designed to better survive shipping without leaking. The challenge, however, is getting online shoppers to buy detergent that looks nothing like the heavy bottles they are used to.

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Trade war, profits, marijuana: Markets saw it all in 2018

Wall Street started 2018 strong, buoyed by a growing economy and corporate profits.

The optimism eventually gave way to fears that the U.S.-China trade dispute and rising interest rate could hurt what investors care about most: profits.

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Quiz: Test your knowledge of this year's business news

2018 was a big year in business news. A trade war heated up between the U.S. and China, Facebook's stock took a face-plant, and two big tech companies reached $1 trillion in value, although that was before this fall's stock market rout. Test your knowledge of this year's notable events in business news with this end-of-year quiz.

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Legal marijuana industry toasts year of global gains

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — The last year was a 12-month champagne toast for the legal marijuana industry as the global market exploded and cannabis pushed its way further into the financial and cultural mainstream.

Liberal California became the largest legal U.S. marketplace, while conservative Utah and Oklahoma embraced medical marijuana. Canada ushered in broad legalization, and Mexico's Supreme Court set the stage for that country to follow.

U.S. drug regulators approved the first marijuana-based pharmaceutical to treat kids with a form of epilepsy, and billions of investment dollars poured into cannabis companies. Even main street brands like Coca-Cola said they are considering joining the party.

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US consumer confidence tumbles in December

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. consumer confidence tumbled this month as Americans began to worry that economic growth will moderate next year. But consumer spirits are still high by historic standards.

The Conference Board, a business research group, said Thursday that its consumer confidence index fell to 128.1 in December, down from 136.4 in November and lowest since July.

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How Fox's 25 seasons of covering the NFL changed the game

Terry Bradshaw thought his career as a football analyst was over in 1993 when CBS lost the NFL rights to Fox. But instead of going back to cattle ranching, he has had a front-row seat to the biggest sports broadcasting startup of the past quarter-century.

"It seems like an eternity. We all have occasionally talked about where we started. We've had all of these innovations that has transformed broadcasting on television," Bradshaw said.

It was Bradshaw who helped usher in Fox's coverage of the NFL in 1994 riding a horse around Los Angeles before arriving at the Fox set in Hollywood. That entrance helped set the tone that still drives the network's coverage and has included eight Super Bowls.

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3 ways a new credit card can boost your side job

These days, many of us wear different hats to earn income on the side. You might clock out of one job and into the next as a ride-hailing driver, Airbnb host, Etsy shop owner or pet sitter.

Such "gig economy" work can make for a stressful tax season that eats up your time (and billable hours) and costs you potential deductions. A separate credit card for business purposes can help simplify things and maximize your income.

Here's how a regular rewards credit card or a rewards-earning business credit card can offer value to your side hustle.

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US fossil fuel exports spur growth, climate worries

GEOJEDO, South Korea (AP) — In South Korea's largest shipyard, thousands of workers in yellow hard hats move ceaselessly between towering cranes lifting hulks of steel. They look like a hive of bees scurrying over a massive circuit board as they weld together the latest additions to the rapidly growing fleet of tankers carrying super-chilled liquefied natural gas across the world's oceans.

The boom in fossil-fuel production in the United States has been matched by a rush on the other side of the Pacific to build the infrastructure needed to respond to the seemingly unquenchable thirst for energy among Asia's top economies. When Congress lifted restrictions on shipping crude oil overseas in 2015, soon after the Obama administration opened the doors for international sales of natural gas, even the most boosterish of Texas oil men wouldn't have predicted the U.S. could become one of the world's biggest fossil-fuel exporters so quickly.

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Male Disney Cruise worker claims harassment by female boss

ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — A middle-aged male former labor analyst at Disney Cruise Line claims his younger female manager created a hostile work environment by bullying him about his age, bragging about sleeping with married men in the office and passing him over for promotions, according to a federal lawsuit.

Anthony McHugh claims in the lawsuit filed last month that his former female manager discriminated against him because of his sex and age, a scenario that legal experts say is rare given the genders of the employee and supervisor.

The unidentified female supervisor called McHugh a "stuffy old fart" in front of staff, moved his office to a windowless space, wouldn't provide him with an iPhone or tablet like she did for staff younger than 40 and passed him over for promotions even though he says he was more senior and qualified, the lawsuit said.

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The S&P 500 index rose 21.13 points, or 0.9 percent, to 2,488.83. The Dow gained 260.37 points, or 1.1 percent, to 23,138.82. The Nasdaq added 25.14 points, or 0.4 percent, to 6,579.49.

Benchmark U.S. crude dropped 3.5 percent to settle at $44.61 a barrel in New York. Brent crude, used to price international oils, lost 4.2 percent to $52.16 a barrel in London.



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