THE RE­CAP

From news ser­vices and staff re­ports

The Washington Post Sunday - - TAKING STOCK -

Busi­ness

Pres­i­dent Trump met with Brian Krzanich, the chief ex­ec­u­tive of U.S.-based tech­nol­ogy com­pany In­tel, to an­nounce a $7 bil­lion in­vest­ment in an ad­vanced com­puter chip fac­tory in Chan­dler, Ariz. Krzanich said the fa­cil­ity, called Fab 42, would em­ploy 3,000 peo­ple at its peak and in­di­rectly cre­ate 10,000 jobs in the area in sup­port of the fac­tory. Trump lashed out on Twit­ter at depart­ment store Nord­strom over its de­ci­sion to stop car­ry­ing Ivanka Trump prod­ucts, say­ing his daugh­ter “has been treated so un­fairly” by the re­tail­ing giant. The so­cial me­dia mis­sive adds to a cloud of con­fu­sion swirling around the Trump ad­min­is­tra­tion about how the fam­ily’s busi­ness in­ter­ests are col­lid­ing with Trump’s job at the White House. Nord­strom said the move was based on sales results, not pol­i­tics. Its share price climbed on the news. Volk­swa­gen formed a sub­sidiary to man­age the $2 bil­lion it is re­quired by the En­vi­ron­men­tal Pro­tec­tion Agency to spend over the next decade in sup­port of zero-emis­sion ve­hi­cles in the United States. The com­pany, Elec­trify Amer­ica, will in­vest in con­struc­tion and main­te­nance of charg­ing sta­tions for elec­tric ve­hi­cles. Vizio used 11 mil­lion tele­vi­sions to spy on its cus­tomers, and the com­pany agreed to pay $2.2 mil­lion to set­tle a case with the FTC and the New Jersey at­tor­ney gen­eral’s of­fice af­ter the agen­cies ac­cused it of se­cretly col­lect­ing — and sell­ing — data about its cus­tomers’ lo­ca­tions, de­mo­graph­ics and view­ing habits.

Cap­i­tal Busi­ness

Car­lyle Group posted sharply lower-than-ex­pected fourth-quar­ter earn­ings. The Wash­ing­ton-based firm said it took a charge of $175 mil­lion in its for­mer hedge fund Ver­mil­lion As­set Man­age­ment and in­curred about $25 mil­lion in charges af­ter sell­ing its own­er­ship stake in for­mer hedge fund Claren Road As­set Man­age­ment. For the fourth quar­ter, Car­lyle said it earned eco­nomic net in­come of $6.4 mil­lion af­ter taxes, or 2 cents per share, down from 24 cents a year ago.

Deals

The $54 bil­lion merger of health in­sur­ance gi­ants An­them and

Cigna was blocked by a fed­eral judge, who said the deal would in­crease prices and de­crease com­pe­ti­tion. The 12-page rul­ing by U.S. Dis­trict Judge Amy Berman Jack­son in Wash­ing­ton fol­lows a sim­i­lar de­ci­sion by a dif­fer­ent judge to block the pro­posed merger of Aetna and Hu­mana last month.

Snap has a deal to pay Ama­zon.com at least $1 bil­lion for In­ter­net ser­vices over the next five years, adding to a $2 bil­lion agree­ment it al­ready has with Al­pha­bet’s Google. De­tails of the deal were re­leased in an up­date to Snap’s ini­tial pub­lic of­fer­ing doc­u­ments. Snap will pay Ama­zon $50 mil­lion in 2017 and then spend pro­gres­sively more on the ecom­merce giant’s cloud and in­fra­struc­ture ser­vices through 2021. Snap, whose prod­ucts in­clude Snapchat, is seek­ing a val­u­a­tion of as much as $25 bil­lion.

Earn­ings

Gen­eral Mo­tors posted record annual profit of $9.43 bil­lion in 2016. GM ex­pects to match or ex­ceed last year’s results in large part be­cause lu­cra­tive sport-util­ity ve­hi­cles keep sell­ing strongly in North Amer­ica.

Econ­omy

The 30-year fixed-rate av­er­age

mort­gage slipped to 4.17 per­cent with an av­er­age 0.4 point. (Points are fees paid to a lender equal to 1 per­cent of the loan amount.) It was 4.19 per­cent a week ago and 3.65 per­cent a year ago. The 15year fixed-rate av­er­age dropped to 3.39 per­cent with an av­er­age 0.4 point.

Wash­ing­ton

A fed­eral ap­peals panel main­tained the freeze on Trump’s im­mi­gra­tion or­der, mean­ing pre­vi­ously barred refugees and cit­i­zens from seven ma­jor­i­tyMus­lim coun­tries can con­tinue en­ter­ing the coun­try. In a unan­i­mous opin­ion, three judges from the U.S. Court of Ap­peals for the 9th Cir­cuit re­jected the gov­ern­ment’s ar­gu­ment that sus­pen­sion of the or­der should be lifted im­me­di­ately for na­tional se­cu­rity rea­sons and force­fully as­serted their abil­ity to serve as a check on the pres­i­dent’s power. Trump re­acted an­grily on Twit­ter, post­ing min­utes af­ter the rul­ing, “SEE YOU IN COURT, THE SE­CU­RITY OF OUR NA­TION IS AT STAKE!”

An­drew Puzder, the fast-food chief ex­ec­u­tive nom­i­nated by Trump as la­bor sec­re­tary, said that if con­firmed he would off­load a vast port­fo­lio in­clud­ing more than 200 stock hold­ings and a dozen real es­tate part­ner­ships and pri­vate eq­uity funds, ac­cord­ing to fi­nan­cial dis­clo­sures ob­tained by The Wash­ing­ton Post. He would also have to sell his stake in CKE Restau­rants, which in­cludes burger chains Hardee’s and Carl’s Jr. His hold­ings in the fast-food chain are worth be­tween $10 mil­lion and $50 mil­lion, the doc­u­ments show.

Tran­si­tions

De­mand for Amer­i­can whiskeys is grow­ing. The Dis­tilled Spir­its Coun­cil said that com­bined U.S. rev­enue for bour­bon, Ten­nessee whiskey and rye whiskey shot up 7.7 per­cent to $3.1 bil­lion in 2016. Ex­port vol­umes re­port­edly rose 10 per­cent, but rev­enue fell short of $1 bil­lion for the first time in re­cent years as the strong dol­lar led more con­sumers to choose les­s­ex­pen­sive whiskeys. The U.S. Postal Ser­vice said it lost $200 mil­lion dur­ing the year-end hol­i­day sea­son, de­spite a strong quar­ter of pack­age ship­ping and ex­panded use of vote-by-mail in the Novem­ber pres­i­den­tial elec­tion.

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