216,000 JOBS ADDED IN NOVEMBER
U.S. companies added a solid 216,000 jobs in November, the most since June. Payroll provider ADP said Wednesday that nearly all the gains occurred in service sectors such as retail, hotels and restaurants, as well as higher-paying professional services. Construction firms added 2,000 jobs, while manufacturing shed 10,000. The figures add to other recent signs that the economy is expanding at a decent pace.
Nivalis shares plunge. Shares of Nivalis Therapeutics have lost almost two-thirds of their value after the Boulder pharmaceutical company reported Monday that its drug cavosonstat failed “to demonstrate benefit” in a recent trial. Shares plunged 54 percent Monday from a $6.25 open, falling further Tuesday and again Wednesday to close at $2.17.
“Disappointingly, there was no improvement in lung function provided by cavosonstat,” CEO Jon Congleton said Monday afternoon.
The 12-week trial that began in May was to assess cavosonstat’s ability to change forced exhale volume (FEV) in adult patients with cystic fibrosis and a double mutation of a specific gene. FEV is a measure of how much air a person can exhale during a forced breath.
“The absence of any clinical effect indicates that cavosonstat isn’t a relevant drug for cystic fibrosis,” RW Baird analyst Brian Skorney told Marketwatch, while Stifel’s Thomas Shrader said the results suggest “the therapeutic premise may be dead.” Consumer spending, incomes up. U.S. consumers boosted their spending again in October, while their incomes increased at the fastest clip in six months. A key gauge of inflation watched by the Federal Reserve posted the fastest 12-month gain in two years.
Consumer spending increased 0.3 percent in October after a revised 0.7 percent jump in September, the Commerce Department said Wednesday. Incomes increased 0.6 percent, the best showing since April.
An inflation gauge closely followed by the Federal Reserve increased 1.4 percent compared to a year ago. That was the fastest 12-month advance since 2014.
You don’t need internet access to binge on Netflix. Netflix subscribers
can now binge on many of their favorite shows and movies even when they don’t have an internet connection. The long-awaited offline option announced Wednesday gives Netflix’s 87 million subscribers offline access to videos for the first time in the streaming service’s decade-long history.
Netflix is matching a downloading feature that one of its biggest rivals, Amazon.com, has been offering to its video subscribers for the past year.
EPA to keep strict mileage standards. The Obama administration
has decided not to change requirements that force automakers to increase the efficiency of new cars and trucks. The decision follows a mandatory review of the standards established in 2012, when gas averaged $3.60 a gallon and small cars and hybrids were gaining favor.
The standards had required new cars to average 54.5 miles per gallon by 2025. But there was a built-in reduction if buying habits changed — and they have. Now, as gas is averaging close to $2 a gallon, three of every five new vehicles sold in the U.S. are trucks and SUVs. As a result, the 2025 fuel-economy number drops to 50.8 mph. Denver Post wire reports