Global Glance: 3 things to watch from the Fed on Wednesday; Uber launches self-driving cars in San Francisco

Powered by The Associated Press

Here are today’s top business headlines from across the nation and world:

3 things to watch for from the Federal Reserve on Wednesday

WASHINGTON (AP) — By just about everyone’s estimation, the Federal Reserve will have an announcement to make Wednesday afternoon: It’s raising interest rates. The expected hike, the Fed’s first since last December, will signal its view that the U.S. job market and economy are nearing full health, with the unemployment rate at an unusually low 4.6 percent. It would also mean that rates on some consumer and business loans will likely increase modestly. What no one knows is what the Fed may say about the likely pace of future rate increases or perhaps about the economy’s prospects under the incoming Trump administration. Any answers – or at least hints – could come in a statement the Fed will release, in its updated economic forecasts and in a news conference by Chair Janet Yellen. Read more

EPA fracking report offers few answers on drinking water

WASHINGTON (AP) — Is hydraulic fracturing – better known as fracking – safe, as the oil and gas industry claims? Or does the controversial drilling technique that has spurred a domestic energy boom contaminate drinking water, as environmental groups and other critics charge? After six years and more than $29 million, the Environmental Protection Agency says it doesn’t know. A new report issued Tuesday said fracking poses a risk to drinking water in some circumstances, but a lack of information precludes a definitive statement on how severe the risk is. Read more

Uber self-driving cars hit the streets of San Francisco

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Uber is bringing a small number of self-driving cars to its ride-hailing service in San Francisco – a move likely to excite the city’s tech-savvy population and certain to antagonize California regulators. The Wednesday launch in Uber’s hometown expands a public pilot program the company started in Pittsburgh in September. The testing lets everyday people experience the cars as Uber works to identify glitches before expanding the technology’s use in San Francisco and elsewhere. Read more

With Tillerson, Trump keeps betting big on business leaders

WASHINGTON (AP) — In selecting Exxon Mobil CEO Rex Tillerson as his secretary of state, President-elect Donald Trump is making the same bet he asked voters to make on him: that a track record of business accomplishment will translate into success in government. Indeed, Trump, the first billionaire businessman to win the White House, is broadly testing that proposition across his administration. He’s tapped fast food executive Andy Puzder to lead the Labor Department, billionaire investor Wilbur Ross for Commerce, financier Steven Mnuchin as Treasury secretary and Goldman Sachs President Gary Cohn as his top economic adviser. And early Wednesday, the billionaire businessman confirmed that he’d settled on former Texas Gov. Rick Perry to be the next secretary of energy. Read more

US retail sales barely rise at start of holiday season

WASHINGTON (AP) — Americans increased their retail spending just slightly in November, a possible sign of lackluster holiday shopping. Retail sales rose only 0.1 percent in November, after a downwardly-revised 0.6 percent growth in October, the Commerce Department said Wednesday. Consumers bumped up their purchases at restaurants and furnishers last month. But they also trimmed spending at auto dealers and department stores, limiting the overall advance in retail sales. Read more

Want the state’s top business and entrepreneurship news in your inbox? Sign up here for our newsletters.

Leave a Reply

Have you heard?

Missouri Business Alert is participating in CoMoGives2019!

Find out how we plan to use your gift to enhance training and programming for our students