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Extreme Makeover: Hudson Yards Edition

Hudson Yards is officially open to the public. What was once the site of warehouses, tenements, and rail yards is now home to the largest development in New York City since Rockefeller Center. From the initial idea to the opening this week, it’s taken nearly 20 years— and $25 billion — to create the sprawling 28-acre megaproject on the west side of Manhattan. The new neighborhood features supertall glass towers, luxury apartments, a high-end retail and restaurant hub, and a climbable...


Trump and Tariffs: Was it Worth The Fight?

It’s been about eight months since President Trump launched a trade war with China, and it looks like we might be approaching an agreement between the two nations. Trump says that trade relationship with China has been unfair to the U.S. To force a change, he’s put in place punishing tariffs on Chinese goods to gain leverage. But that’s also punishing some in the U.S., like farmers, automakers manufacturers and even some consumers. If the deal is made, the big question will be, was it all...


Tax Season Shocker

If you're depending on a tax refund this year to pay loans, make a down payment on a car or take a vacation, you might be out of luck. According to the IRS, average refunds have been lower compared last year. If the trend continues, many Americans will end up with a smaller refund or worse — they may owe the government. Residents in high-tax states, like New York and New Jersey could see a bigger swing because President Trump's tax code overhaul capped deductions for state and local...


Foreign Policy, Private Profits and Nuclear Technology in Saudi Arabia

This week, a report from the House Oversight Committee revealed that officials in the Trump administration pursued a plan to export nuclear technology to Saudi Arabia in order to build nuclear power plants. The report from House Democrats says the deal gained momentum during President Trump’s first days in office with help from then-national security adviser Michael Flynn. The efforts continued, despite warnings from ethics officials and staff at the National Security Council. Behind the...


The Fight for 5G

Imagine sitting down to watch a movie and downloading the file not in minutes, but mere seconds. 5G, short for "new fifth generation cellular networks" promises lightning-fast wireless service. That kind of connectivity is expected to open the floodgates for innovations beyond the home and possibly lead to a new technological and economic boom. For instance, it could make self-driving cars an everyday reality in cities around the country. The network has already been launched in several...


What’s in Store for Sears

Sears was once an iconic American retailer, selling everything from jewelry, to power tools, to ready-to-assemble houses. The 126-year-old company made its name through mail order catalogs eventually expanding to thousands of physical stores. In 2005, when Sears merged with department store Kmart, the combined retailer had over 300,000 employees and almost 3,500 stores. But the company has proved unable to keep up in the 21st century and has been losing money for years. In October, the...


The Future of (We)Work

In just nine years, WeWork has gone from a company that offers shared office space for startups and freelancers to a global company valued at $47 billion that provides offices to the likes of IBM, GE and NASDAQ. Not only that, it has added to its core business a handful of other — sometimes puzzling — companies, including WeLive, WeGrow and Made by We. With over 300 locations around the world, WeWork has ambitions to be a lot more than a co-working space, but can it make good on its vision...


No Soft Landing for a 'Hard Brexit'

In a historic vote, the House of Commons in the United Kingdom decided decisively against a plan for exiting the European Union. Members of Parliament voted 432 to 202 to reject Prime Minister Theresa May's Brexit deal, marking one of the largest margins of defeat in recent British history, with even many of her own Conservative party members voting against her plan. The following day, May faced, and survived, a challenge to her leadership in a no-confidence vote. For more than two years,...


One Man’s $100 Billion Vision for the Future

Tech companies are rapidly shaping our lives — often in ways we do not even realize. Artificial intelligence and automation are transforming sectors from manufacturing to transportation to real estate. One of the people creating that future is Masayoshi Son, the founder and CEO of the Japanese conglomerate SoftBank. In 2016, through the company, Son launched the $100 billion Vision Fund. According to a report from Bloomberg, that was greater than the entire US venture capital industry in...


Wall Street’s Automated Turmoil

After reaching records highs last year, the stock market went south in the final months of 2018. In the end, it was the worst year for markets since the 2008 crisis and the worst December since 1931. And the tumult is carrying over into the first week of trading in 2019. What exactly is causing the turmoil? The government shutdown, rising interest rates, and unresolved trade tensions are all contributing to the ups and downs, but one reason for the triple point drops might have to do with...


Malaysian '1MDB' Scandal And Goldman Sachs

On the other side of the globe, a corruption scandal has been rocking Malaysia for years involving a multi-billion government fund from which billions of dollars have gone missing. The fund, known as 1Malaysia Development Berhad, or 1MDB, was supposed to fund government-backed infrastructure projects, but investigators say it was instead used for the personal benefits of individuals, including the country's previous prime minister, Najib Razak. The money was allegedly used to buy a number...


Monopolies, Tech, and 'The Curse of Bigness'

It's a been a tough couple of years for technology companies. Facebook, Google, Twitter and others have faced criticism on many fronts, from accusations of bias to privacy concerns. Leaders of these companies have been called before Congress to testify about their businesses, most recently this week, when Google's CEO Sundar Pichai answered questions from members of the House Judiciary Committee. Underlying those concerns is the realization that tech companies have become so big, powerful...


Money and Art (But Whose Money?)

Last week's clash between U.S. law enforcement and Central American migrants along the border with Mexico took place thousands of miles from New York. But the controversy surrounding the conflict found its way to New York City through an unlikely place: the Whitney Museum. Two days after the event, the arts news site Hyperallergic reported that Warren B. Kanders, one of the museum’s top board members, owns Safariland, the company that made the tear gas used on the border. In response to...


Trump Talks Trade With China at G20

This weekend, President Trump will be in Argentina for a G20 summit which will include a dinner with Chinese President Xi Jinping. The meeting comes after months of escalating tariffs on Chinese goods imported to the U.S. But that simmering trade fight may come to a truce — or at least, a pause — as the president is reportedly feeling concerned about the long-term state of the U.S. economy. Though the American economy is generally strong, the stock market has had a rough few weeks and the...


Is New York's Deal With Amazon Worth the Money?

It's the talk of the towns. After a 14-month search, Amazon says it will have two new East Coast headquarters: one in Arlington, Virginia and the other in New York City. In each city, the company says it expects to create 25,000 jobs. But the expansion comes with a hefty price tag. In New York, the company has options to receive up to $3 billion in tax credits, abatements and capital grants from the city and state in return for building a new complex in Long Island City, Queens. These...


What a Blue House Does to Trump’s Economy

This Tuesday's election didn't quite end with the big, blue wave Democrats might have hoped for. But the flip from red to blue in the House of Representatives will change the political landscape and could affect fiscal policies. From financial regulations to trade to consumer protections to infrastructure spending — they’re all issues Democrats have been wanting to tackle following changes put in place by the Trump administration over the past two years. For example, California...


Wall Street's October Surprise

Within a hectic news cycle ahead of the midterm elections, a big story has emerged from Wall Street: October has turned out to be one of the worst months for the U.S. markets since the financial crisis ten years ago. Stocks plummeted and most of the gains of 2018 have been erased in a few short weeks. That all happened in the immediate run-up to Election Day. Knowing that people tend to vote their pocketbooks, how will a turbulent time on Wall Street play out in the voting booth? And...


Alternative to the Almighty Dollar?

For decades, the American dollar has been the international currency of choice for investors, for markets and even for other governments: Saudi oil, gold from China —it's all traded in dollars. But some recent developments indicate that the long-running supremacy of the dollar isn’t guaranteed. According to a new report from Bloomberg Businessweek, China is challenging the dollar with a crude oil futures contract denominated in yuan, Russia cut its holdings in U.S. currency and, most...


Tangled Relations: Saudi Arabia, Trump and U.S. Businesses

The disappearance of Washington Post contributor Jamal Khashoggi after visiting an embassy of Saudi Arabia in Turkey has brought renewed attention to what’s been true for years: the United States — and its president — has an important, and extremely complicated, relationship with Saudi Arabia. In recent years, U.S. businesses have developed even deep connections to the Middle Eastern country. Now, in the aftermath of Khashoggi’s disappearance, CEOs of some of the largest financial firms...


Cities Want Amazon. But Is HQ2 a Good Deal?

By the end of this year, Amazon says it will choose the city where it will build the company's second North American headquarters. Since it announced the project, cities across the country have jumped at the chance to host the mega-office. Now, Amazon has whittled the list of contenders down to 20, including New York City and Newark, N.J. The campus, wherever it lands, will be a big prize. Amazon says it will bring 50,000 employees earning high median incomes in addition to $5 billion in...