Wednesday, May 29, 2024

AP morning business news brief – Feb. 10, 2023

by BIZ Magazine

Super Bowl ads keep it light by using nostalgia and stars

NEW YORK (AP) — Super Bowl ads are more than just breaks between gameplay during the biggest sporting event of the year: they offer a glimpse of the country’s zeitgeist, along with how major industries are faring. Advertisers spend millions for a chance to capture the attention of more than 100 million viewers expected to tune in for the big game. This year, crypto ads and automakers are advertising less since those industries are facing problems. Major food brands like M&Ms, tech companies like Google, streaming services including Peacock and more alcohol brands have jumped in to take their place.

Year after ‘Crypto Bowl,’ crypto ads vanish from big game

NEW YORK (AP) — Cryptocurrency companies grabbed the spotlight during the 2022 Super Bowl, with commercials from a handful of newcomers to advertising’s biggest stage: FTX, Coinbase, Crypto.com and eToro. Some marketing experts dubbed it the “Crypto Bowl.” A year later, the industry has been humbled by a massive downturn in crypto prices, as well as the bankruptcy of several well-known companies. The dramatic turnaround harkens back to 2000, when dot-com companies such as Pets.com ran Super Bowl ads, only to go out of business within a year or two. This year, crypto ads are nowhere to be found.

UK economy avoids decline but cost of living pains many

LONDON (AP) — The British economy has stagnated in the final three months of last year amid cost-of-living crisis that’s squeezing household budgets, crimping business investment and fueling labor unrest. The Office for National Statistics said Friday that gross domestic product, the broadest measure of economic activity, failed to grow during the fourth quarter of 2022. Britain faces a prolonged economic slowdown triggered by soaring food and energy prices. Carlton Peters, who cooks for the Margins Project charity’s free lunch program, sees it in his own life. He now buys all of his food in the reduced-price section of the supermarket and has cut out butter altogether because it is too expensive.

Russia announces cut to oil output over Western price caps

MOSCOW (AP) — Russia has announced it will cut oil production by 500,000 barrels per day next month after Western countries capped the price of its crude over its action in Ukraine. Deputy Prime Minister Alexander Novak said Friday that “we will not sell oil to those who directly or indirectly adhere to the ‘price ceiling.'” The Group of Seven major democracies have imposed a $60-per-barrel price cap on Russian oil shipped to non-Western countries. The goal is to keep oil flowing to global markets to prevent price spikes, while limiting Russia’s financial gains that can be used to pay for its campaign in Ukraine.

Wall Street drifts, heading for worst week since December

NEW YORK (AP) — Stocks are drifting as Wall Street nears the end of its worst week since December. The S&P 500 was just barely higher in Friday morning trading and on pace for a 1.2% loss for the week. The Dow Jones Industrial Average was up slightly, while weakness for tech stocks pulled the Nasdaq lower. Stocks have been struggling since rallying at the start of the year on hopes that the economy could avoid a severe recession, and that cooling inflation could get the Federal Reserve to take it easier on interest rates. Lyft lost more than a third of its value following a weaker-than-expected forecast.

Dutch-owned grid operator mulls sale to German government

BERLIN (AP) — A state-owned Dutch company that is Germany’s biggest electricity grid operator says it plans to hold talks on selling its entire German business to the government in Berlin. Germany welcomed the announcement Friday. TenneT, which is one of four transmission network operators in Germany, pointed to the need to find a “structural solution” to funding needs for its German business as the grid is bolstered to handle the transition to renewable energy. It put that cost at about 15 billion euros, or $16.1 billion. TenneT operates electricity grids across a large swath of Germany. Those transmission lines are crucial for Germany’s plans to completely shift its power production from fossil fuels to renewable energy by 2045.

Peltz, citing changes at Disney, ends push for seat on board

Activist investor Nelson Peltz is calling off a proxy fight with Disney one day after newly returned CEO Bob Iger announced a major restructuring of the company that includes thousands of job cuts. Peltz phoned into CNBC Thursday to say that his firm, Trian Fund Management, got everything it wanted with the changes imposed by Iger. Peltz last month announced that he would seek a seat on the board of the entertainment company, citing a failed succession after Iger departed about two years ago and named Bob Chapek as his replacement. Chapek floundered as the chief executive and was ousted on Iger’s return.

HarperCollins and striking union reach tentative agreement

New YORK (AP) — HarperCollins Publishers and the union representing around 250 striking employees reached a tentative agreement providing increases to entry level salaries. If union members ratify the contract, it will run through the end of 2025 and end a walkout that began nearly three months ago. HarperCollins and Local 2110 of the United Auto Workers released separate, identical statements Thursday night announcing increases to minimum salaries across levels throughout the agreement term and a one-time bonus of $1,500 to be paid to bargaining unit employees. No other details of the agreement were immediately available. HarperCollins employees have worked without a contract since last spring and went on strike Nov. 10.

FTX founder keeps talking, ignoring typical legal strategy

NEW YORK (AP) — Sam Bankman-Fried, the founder and former CEO of FTX, has been unusually talkative following the November collapse of the cryptocurrency exchange and his subsequent indictment on fraud and other charges. He’s given a series of interviews intended to present his version of events and used social media to criticize the new management of FTX. The atypical chattiness for a criminal defendant is likely causing Bankman-Fried’s attorneys to scratch their heads, or worse. Prosecutors can use any statements, tweets or other communications against him at his trial, which is scheduled for October. Bankman-Fried returned to Manhattan federal court Thursday for a heaing related to his bail package.

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