Business News at a Glance
Posted December 6, 2018 9:44 p.m. EST
On First Day of OPEC Meetings, No Deal to Cut Global Oil Output
OPEC ended a meeting Thursday without striking a deal to reduce oil output and without any clear sign one would be reached when officials from the organization, Russia and other oil producers reconvene Friday. Saudi Arabia’s energy minister, Khalid al-Falih, told reporters he was “not confident” an agreement that would keep supply and demand in balance was within reach. Al-Falih had said in the morning that “all options” were on the table but that a reduction of 1 million barrels a day would be “adequate” to balance the markets. One million barrels a day would likely be considered a modest cut by traders.
U.S. Oil Exports Are Rising. So Is the Trade Deficit.
The United States exported more oil and fuel than it imported last week for the first time in 75 years, a significant milestone in the resurgence of domestic energy production that comes as the Trump administration pushes to increase energy exports even further. To President Donald Trump, increased sales of oil and gas are a way to close the gap between what the United States buys from foreign countries and what it sells. Instead, as Americans buy less foreign oil, they are buying more of other foreign goods and services. In October, the monthly deficit hit $55.5 billion, the highest monthly level in 10 years.
With the Economy Uncertain, Tech ‘Unicorns’ Rush Toward IPOs
For years, Uber and Lyft put off going public. Now, they are speeding up. Faced with a volatile stock market and the prospect of an economic downturn next year, the ride-hailing services have moved more urgently toward an IPO, said four people with knowledge of the companies’ plans. Lyft originally aimed to list its shares toward the middle of 2019, but it began moving more quickly after the recent stock market sell-off and because of a desire to go public before Uber, said two of the people. Uber has pushed its timing up because of concerns that a recession might be coming, said two people familiar with the plans.
Whiplash on Wall Street as Tension About Global Economy Mounts
A steep slide followed by a strong recovery whipsawed investors Thursday, as concerns about the global economy, trade tensions and interest rates kept markets on edge. Stocks fell around the world after the arrest of a top Chinese technology executive intensified concerns that China and the United States could be entering a risky new chapter in their trade dispute. But Wall Street recovered most of those losses in an afternoon rally predicated on the prospect that the Federal Reserve may slow interest rate increases next year. At one point in the day, the S&P 500 was down as much as 2.9 percent, mirroring steep declines in Asia and Europe.
Students Shut Out as For-Profit College Chain Closes
The for-profit college chain Education Corporation of America said this week that it would shut down nearly all its schools, leaving almost 20,000 students with partially completed degrees and credits that many other schools will not accept. The company, based in Birmingham, Alabama, operated more than 70 vocationally focused campuses nationwide before losing its accreditation Tuesday. The shutdown was the largest failure of a for-profit chain since 2016, when ITT Technical Institutes went bankrupt, and came after the college’s accreditor — itself a troubled organization that the U.S. Education Department had accused of oversight failures — said it would no longer endorse the company’s programs.
At ’60 Minutes,’ Independence Led to Trouble, Investigators Say
For decades, “60 Minutes” has reigned at the top of television news. The success has allowed “60 Minutes” to operate independently from the larger network news division to which it belongs. But that independence came at a cost: The show proved unable to prevent inappropriate conduct by some of its top executives, according to lawyers hired by the CBS Corp. board of directors to investigate the workplace culture of the program. In a draft of a report for the board, investigators wrote that “the physical, administrative and cultural separation between ’60 Minutes’ and the rest of CBS News permitted misconduct by some ’60 Minutes’ employees.”
Knicks Owner James Dolan Fined for Violating FTC Rules
James L. Dolan, the owner of the New York Knicks and chief executive of the Madison Square Garden Co., violated federal law when he failed to tell government agencies of his acquisition of additional voting securities in the company, the Federal Trade Commission said Thursday. Dolan, who also serves as executive chairman of MSG Networks, has agreed to pay $609,810 in civil penalties to settle the charges, the FTC said. Companies and individuals must inform the FTC and the Justice Department if a major financial move, such as a merger or acquisition, will cause the value of their voting securities in a company to surpass a certain amount.