COAL PROJECTS ADVANCE IN WYO., MONT.
casper » U. S. officials on Wednesday cleared the way for a reviewof two mining projects that would dig up 644 million tons of coal from public lands, despite a recent government moratorium halting federal coal sales.
Wyoming, Montana and U. S. Bureau of Land Management officials approved moving forward with a multiyear evaluation of the projects next to mines in the Powder River Basin, the nation’s largest coalproducing region.
The Jan. 15 moratorium from the Obama administration allows coal sale applications to be reviewed but blocks their final approval pending a sweeping review of the federal coal program, expected to take three years.
Shell shareholders back deal to buy rival BG
B london » Royal Dutch Shell shareholders overwhelmingly backed the $ 49 billion bid to buy BG Group despite a slide in oil prices that has had some critics wondering about the wisdom of the megadeal. More than 80 percent of shareholders approved the moveWednesday. The deal will boost Shell’s oil and gas reserves by 25 percent and increase its presence in the fast- growing liquefied natural gas market.
Another death reported involving Takata air bag
B detroit » Another death has been reported in a crash that involved an exploding Takata air bag inflator, but it’s unclear whether the inflator killed the person. The driver of a 2007 Honda Civic died last year in India, according to Takata documents posted Wednesday by the U. S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
Anthem Q4 profit falls.
Anthem’s fourth- quarter earnings tumbled 64 percent as the health insurer absorbed some sizable expenses and booked fewer customers than it expected through the Affordable Care Act’s public insurance exchanges.
The Blue Cross Blue Shield insurer continued to expand its business from government programs such asMedicaid and reaffirmed its forecast for the new year. Overall, fourthquarter earnings totaled $ 180.9 million, down from $ 506.7 million in the previous year’s quarter.
Facebook delivers record revenue. Facebook delivered
another quarter of record revenue that topped estimates as it sells more ads via videos, mobile devices and Instagram, sending its shares up more than 8 percent. Fourth- quarter sales rose to $ 5.84 billion, compared with the $ 5.37 billion average analyst projection, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.
Blood- testing startup Theranoswarned.
Federal regulators issued awarning to blood- testing startup Theranos, saying some of the Silicon Valley company’s testing procedures do not meet standards to protect patients.
Inspectors for the Centers forMedicare andMedicaid Services sent a letter to Theranos, citing five deficiencies at a laboratory run by the privately held company. In the Jan. 25 letter, inspectors say that some of the problems “pose immediate jeopardy to patient health and safety.”
Founded by CEO Elizabeth Holmes, Theranos has raised millions by pitching its technology as a cheaper, faster way to run dozens of blood tests.