Chicago Tribune : Business (32)

Before the breach, Equifax sought to limit exposure to lawsuits

Before Equifax discovered a massive computer breach that exposed sensitive information about millions of Americans, the company lobbied Congress on legislation to limit how much it could be forced to pay if sued by consumers, and it pressed lawmakers to roll back the powers of its regulators. ...

Centegra Health to eliminate, outsource hundreds of jobs

Financially troubled Centegra Health System plans to eliminate 131 jobs and outsource another 230 positions, the northwest suburban hospital system announced Tuesday. The layoffs and outsourcing come amid a time of financial stress for many hospitals nationwide and follow a year of steep losses...

Airlines cap fares ahead of Hurricane Maria

Three airlines are capping airfares on flights departing from cities likely to be affected by Hurricane Maria, after allegations that the industry jacked up prices as consumers tried to flee Hurricane Irma earlier this month. Hurricane Maria, the third hurricane to hit the region in recent weeks...

Walgreens to grow by 1,932 stores with Rite Aid deal

After years of trying, Walgreens Boots Alliance has received clearance from the Federal Trade Commission to expand its business through the purchase of 1,932 Rite Aid stores for $4.38 billion. The FTC had long resisted a deal between Deerfield-based Walgreens and competitor Rite Aid, forcing ...

Toys R Us: The birth — and bust — of a retail empire

In the early 1980s, a week before Christmas, a woman walked into a supermarket-size store in Tysons Corner, Va., and became so dumbfounded that she started talking to herself. "Where's the robot?" she said. "And the hairy monster?" A Washington Post story that recounted her muttering did not say...

Rauner boosting Amazon bids of both Chicago and St. Louis

Even as city and state officials head to Seattle for a Tuesday tour in a bid to land Amazon's second headquarters for Chicago, Gov. Bruce Rauner on Monday acknowledged his administration also will work with neighboring St. Louis on its bid to woo the internet giant.The decision by a ...

Bad behavior cost an airline passenger almost $100,000. It's about time.

A federal court recently ordered an unruly airline passenger to pay a fine of nearly $100,000 for disrupting a flight from Hawaii to New York City. My reaction: Hurrah! It’s about time. Instances of boisterous and uncontrollable passenger behavior on commercial flights are occurring with ...

Wisconsin governor signs $3 billion Foxconn bill into law

Gov. Scott Walker signed a $3 billion incentive package Monday for Foxconn Technology Group to build a flat-screen plant in southeastern Wisconsin, a deal he says will provide thousands of jobs for generations. The governor signed the bill during a packed ceremony at Gateway Technical College ...

Toys 'R' Us files for bankruptcy but keeps stores open

Toys 'R' Us, the big box toy retailer struggling with $5 billion in debt and intense online competition, has filed for bankruptcy protection ahead of the key holiday shopping season — and says its stores will remain open for business as usual. The company said the proceedings are a way for ...

For Chicago warehouse owners, Amazon effect is already big

It could be several months before Chicago finds out if it lands Amazon's 50,000-job second headquarters, but the e-commerce company is already making a big impact on the area's economy. Led by Amazon leases, there's been more warehouse space gobbled up in the Chicago area over the past year than...

Ingredion CEO is latest Chicago-area female CEO to leave post

Ingredion CEO Ilene Gordon will retire from the company next year, further thinning the ranks of top female executives of large corporations in the Chicago area. Gordon will conclude an eight-plus-year run in which she realigned the Westchester-based global ingredients company with changing ...

Smashing stereotypes shaped Mellody Hobson's quest for diversity

Mellody Hobson, in her mid-20s and a newcomer to the world of investment, walked into a vast office in Texas with two senior male colleagues for a meeting. At one end of the room was their host's desk, with two extra chairs. At the other, fully 30 feet away, was a separate area with a sofa. ...

Chicago-area mechanics are back to work after new contract ends almost 7-week strike

Mechanics at Chicago-area auto dealerships were back at work Monday after approving a four-year contract Sunday and ending a strike that was about to begin its eighth week. The walkout, which started Aug. 1, involved nearly 2,000 mechanics at almost 140 new-car dealerships throughout the Chicago...

McDonald's to switch out Happy Meal apple juice

The Happy Meal is getting a new apple juice. McDonald's says it will swap out Minute Maid juice cartons for an organic one by Honest Kids. Both brands are made by the Coca-Cola Co., but the Honest Kids juice has half the calories and less sugar. The move is the latest by the fast-food company to...

Chicago-area mechanics approve contract, ending almost 7-week strike

Mechanics at Chicago-area auto dealerships will be back at work Monday morning after approving a four-year contract Sunday and ending a strike that was about to begin its eighth week.  The walkout, which started Aug. 1, involved nearly 2,000 mechanics at almost 140 new-car dealerships ...

Wisconsin Gov. Walker to sign $3 billion incentive package for Foxconn

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker plans to sign into law a $3 billion incentive package for electronics giant Foxconn Technology Group. Walker announced Sunday that he will sign the bill on Monday at Gateway Technical College near Racine. That southeast part of Wisconsin is where the Taiwan-based ...

The Equifax breach left many of us vulnerable. Here's how to protect yourself.

When your Social Security number has been exposed, you're vulnerable. When the bad guys know your address, driver's license number and age along with your Social Security number, the risk is even worse. Now that a massive data breach at Equifax has compromised that data for nearly half of ...

No reservations: Why Chicago's Restaurant City of the Year win could have a big impact on business

Chicagoans already know their city has a vibrant, diverse and rapidly growing restaurant scene. But what will it mean now that the rest of the country knows it too? If the reaction to Chicago last month being designated Bon Appetit’s Restaurant City of the Year — a recognition that goes to ...

More than 100 cities start courting Amazon for its HQ2

The Amazon gold rush is on. At least 101 cities, states, provinces and counties in the U.S. and Canada have indicated they are interested in the Seattle company’s second headquarters in the week since Amazon announced it was seeking bidders for the megaproject. They range from obvious ...

Morton Salt's Bahamas facility damaged by Hurricane Irma

Morton Salt's salt production facility on Great Inagua, the southernmost island of the Bahamas, sustained significant damage from Hurricane Irma last weekend, the company confirmed Thursday. The Chicago-based company employs 145 people at the island site, from which it harvests a massive amount...

Poverty fell, income rose last year in Illinois, Chicago

Poverty fell and median income rose substantially last year in Chicago and Illinois, mirroring national trends that suggest Americans were reclaiming financial strength after a long recovery from the Great Recession. The Chicago metro area saw its poverty rate drop to 12.4 percent in 2016 from...

Chase's $40M neighborhood revival plan will shake up local business giving

JP Morgan Chase’s new $40 million community investment program isn’t going to wipe out poverty on the city’s South and West sides. But it’s going to provide those neighborhoods with more options and opportunities, especially as other private investors follow the banking ...

NorthShore hospital system CEO Neaman to step aside

Mark Neaman will leave his role as president and CEO of NorthShore University HealthSystem in November after 26 years of leading the hospital system. Neaman, 66, who was at the helm of the health system during its recent, failed 2 1/2-year bid to merge with Advocate Health Care, will become ...

Emanuel says bid for Amazon HQ2 will be 'all hands on deck'

Mayor Rahm Emanuel laid out an ambitious full-court press on Thursday to woo Amazon to build its second headquarters in Chicago, saying the city is perfectly positioned to give the massive company everything it's seeking. In his first public comments since Amazon invited cities to vie to be its...

Insurers cutting back on drug coupons amid concerns over consumer costs

With many drug prices rising, consumers often pull out coupons or discount cards from drugmakers to save money when they buy medications at pharmacies. But some insurers, including in Illinois, are limiting how those discounts may be applied amid concerns they’re driving up health care costs ...

Lots of outrage, but little else will come out of Equifax security breach

Indignation over Equifax's massive customer data breach is sparking calls for a crackdown on that company and the credit reporting industry. Unfortunately, the odds of that happening are between slim and none. Yes, some influential lawmakers are livid and demanding action. They're using the ...

Illinois companies must make sites accessible for blind, visually impaired, lawsuits say

Three Illinois companies are accused of maintaining websites visually impaired consumers allegedly can't use in an age when online shopping is as important as walking into a store. A California woman has filed lawsuits against Kmart, Empire Today and Ace Hardware, alleging that running websites...

JPMorgan Chase to invest $40 million in Chicago's South and West sides

JPMorgan Chase plans to invest $40 million in Chicago's historically underserved South and West sides in an effort to tackle the city's poverty and violence through economic growth. The three-year initiative by the nation's largest bank is its second-biggest commitment to a single city, ...

Equifax concerns taxing customer service at Chicago-based TransUnion

TransUnion continued to have problems with its website Wednesday, a day after the Chicago-based credit reporting bureau acknowledged that service had been subpar for worried consumers seeking help in the wake of the Equifax data breach. TransUnion Chief Financial Officer Todd Cello told analysts...

Ad giant to anchor big new Fulton Market office building

Advertising giant WPP Group plans to move its Chicago offices to a proposed building in the Fulton Market district in a major deal that further cements the former meatpacking hub as an office market.WPP has leased 253,000 square feet from developer Sterling Bay, which plans to put an office ...

Illinois uninsured rate falls again — but for how long?

The number of people in Illinois without health insurance has dropped again — though some worry that trend is about to reverse amid uncertainty over the future of Obamacare. About 6.5 percent of Illinois residents — or about 817,000 people — were uninsured in 2016, according to the ...

University of Illinois Hospital nurse strike averted

The University of Illinois Hospital and about 1,200 of its nurses reached a new contract agreement early Wednesday, averting a planned strike. The nurses had planned to picket in front of the hospital Wednesday, but the hospital and nurses, represented by the Illinois Nurses Association, reached...