Business

Fed Chair Powell Says Officials Need More ‘Good’ Data Before Cutting Rates
Business

Fed Chair Powell Says Officials Need More ‘Good’ Data Before Cutting Rates

Jerome H. Powell, the chair of the Federal Reserve, made clear during a “60 Minutes” interview aired on Sunday night that the central bank is moving toward cutting interest rates as inflation recedes, but that policymakers need to see continued progress toward cooler price increases to make the first move.Mr. Powell was interviewed on Thursday, after the Fed’s meeting last week but before Friday’s blockbuster jobs report. He reiterated his message that lower borrowing costs are coming. But he also said that the Fed’s next meeting in March is probably too early for policymakers to feel sure enough that inflation is coming under control to reduce rates.“We think we can be careful in approaching this decision just because of the strength that we’re seeing in the economy,” Mr. Powell said duri...
Joe Madison, Radio Host and Civil Rights Activist, Dies at 74
Business

Joe Madison, Radio Host and Civil Rights Activist, Dies at 74

Joe Madison, an influential talk radio host with a rumbling musical baritone, who interviewed President Barack Obama in the Oval Office and numerous other political leaders in his studio in Washington, D.C., urging them to take action on civil and human rights issues, has died at his home in Washington. He was 74.His family announced the death on Thursday but did not specify when it occurred. In December, Mr. Madison said in a statement that he was taking a leave from his daily show, on SiriusXM satellite radio, after learning that his prostate cancer had returned; it had been in remission since it was first diagnosed in 2009.Mr. Madison was ranked the No. 6 most important talk show host in the country in 2023 by Talkers magazine on its Heavy Hundred list. He was also the highest-ranked no...
Walmart to Add 150 U.S. Stores in Five-Year Expansion Drive
Business

Walmart to Add 150 U.S. Stores in Five-Year Expansion Drive

Walmart will add 150 stores in the United States over the next five years, a major expansion drive for the retail giant.The company said the move, which it announced in a statement on Wednesday, would involve millions of dollars in investment. Walmart employs roughly 1.6 million people in the United States, and said it hires hundreds of people each time it opens a new store.Walmart had just over 4,600 stores nationwide at the end of October, down from more than 4,700 a year earlier. The company has not opened a new U.S. store since late 2021.Most of the stores that Walmart plans to open will be newly built, while others will be conversions of existing locations to new formats. The first two new stores will open in the spring, in Florida and Georgia, and the company is completing constructi...
N.C.A.A. Investigates Booster Club Funding for College Sports
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N.C.A.A. Investigates Booster Club Funding for College Sports

The N.C.A.A. is investigating the University of Tennessee’s football program for recruiting violations involving a group of outside donors, signaling an escalation of efforts to rein in the growing influence of money flooding into college sports, according to documents and people familiar with the case.The investigation is focused on Tennessee’s high-profile donor collective, a group of alumni and wealthy boosters who support the team by channeling payments and other benefits to players. The inquiry is looking at, among other things, the group’s role in flying a high-profile recruit to campus on a private jet while the football team was wooing him, one person familiar with the case said.Having the booster group pay for the trip by the recruit, Nico Iamaleava, now Tennessee’s starting quart...
Hottest Job in Corporate America? The Executive in Charge of A.I.
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Hottest Job in Corporate America? The Executive in Charge of A.I.

In September, the Mayo Clinic in Arizona created a first-of-its-kind job at the hospital system: chief artificial intelligence officer.Doctors at the Arizona site, which has facilities in Phoenix and Scottsdale, had experimented with A.I. for years. But after ChatGPT’s release in 2022 and an ensuing frenzy over the technology, the hospital decided it needed to work more with A.I. and find someone to coordinate the efforts.So executives appointed Dr. Bhavik Patel, a radiologist who specializes in A.I., to the new job. Dr. Patel has since piloted a new A.I. model that could help speed up the diagnosis of a rare heart disease by looking for hidden data in ultrasounds.“We’re really trying to foster some of these data and A.I. capabilities throughout every department, every division, every work...
Jon Franklin, Pioneering Apostle of Literary Journalism, Dies at 82
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Jon Franklin, Pioneering Apostle of Literary Journalism, Dies at 82

Jon Franklin, an apostle of narrative short-story-style journalism whose own work won the first Pulitzer Prizes awarded for feature writing and explanatory journalism, died on Sunday in Annapolis, Md. He was 82.His death, at a hospice, came less than two weeks after he fell at his home, his wife, Lynn Franklin, said. He had also been treated for esophageal cancer for two years.An author, teacher, reporter and editor, Mr. Franklin championed the nonfiction style that was celebrated as New Journalism but that was actually vintage narrative storytelling — an approach that he insisted still adhere to the old-journalism standards of accuracy and objectivity.He imparted his thinking about the subject in “Writing for Story: Craft Secrets of Dramatic Nonfiction” (1986), which became a go-to how-to...
Airlines Hoping for More Boeing Jets Could Be Waiting Awhile
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Airlines Hoping for More Boeing Jets Could Be Waiting Awhile

Boeing hoped 2024 would be the year it would significantly increase production of its popular Max jets. But less than a month into the year, the company is struggling to reassure airline customers that it will still be able to deliver on its promises.That’s because the Federal Aviation Administration said on Wednesday that it would limit the plane maker’s output until it was confident in Boeing’s quality control practices. On Jan. 5, a panel blew off a Boeing 737 Max 9 body shortly after takeoff, terrifying passengers on an Alaska Airlines flight and forcing the pilots to make an emergency landing at Portland International Airport in Oregon. Almost immediately, the F.A.A. grounded some Max 9s.Since then, details have emerged about the jet’s production at Boeing’s facility in Renton, Wash.,...
Amid a Housing Crunch, Religious Groups Unlock Land to Build Homes
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Amid a Housing Crunch, Religious Groups Unlock Land to Build Homes

Emma Budway, a 26-year-old autistic woman who is mostly nonverbal, had been living with her parents in Arlington, Va. She longed for her own place, but because she earned little income, she could not afford to move out. So when the opportunity came to move into a two-bedroom apartment in December 2019, she jumped at the chance.Now Ms. Budway lives at Gilliam Place, an affordable housing complex built on property that Arlington Presbyterian Church owns. “My world has gotten so much larger,” she said.Ms. Budway is the beneficiary of a growing real estate trend: Across the nation, faith-based organizations are redeveloping unused or derelict facilities to help rectify a housing affordability crisis while also fulfilling their mission to do good in the world.With the exception of a few well-he...
Americans’ Economic Confidence Is Returning. Will Biden Benefit?
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Americans’ Economic Confidence Is Returning. Will Biden Benefit?

Low approval ratings and rock-bottom consumer confidence figures have dogged President Biden for months now, a worrying sign for the White House as the country enters a presidential election year. But recent data suggests the tide is beginning to turn.Americans are feeling more confident about the economy than they have in years, by some measures. They increasingly expect inflation to continue its descent, preliminary data indicates, and they think interest rates will soon moderate.Returning optimism, if it persists, could bolster Mr. Biden’s chances as he pushes for re-election — and spell trouble for former President Donald J. Trump, who is the front-runner for the Republican nomination and has been blasting the Democratic incumbent’s economic record.But political scientists, consumer se...
The Baltimore Sun’s New Owner Has the Newsroom on Edge
Business

The Baltimore Sun’s New Owner Has the Newsroom on Edge

A few years ago, desperate to avoid being acquired by a hedge fund, staff members of The Baltimore Sun made public pleas for a local entrepreneur to buy their publication.That request was recently realized: A Maryland businessman, David D. Smith, bought the storied newspaper, returning the 186-year-old newspaper to local hands for the first time in nearly 40 years.But Mr. Smith may not be quite what The Sun’s journalists were hoping for. According to interviews with current and former employees at the newspaper, Mr. Smith’s purchase has already raised alarm among many inside and outside the newsroom, who fear he will impose his political interests on the organization as a final coda to a once proud newspaper that has been facing a long decline.Mr. Smith is the executive chairman of the con...