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 NEWS: CHICAGO TRIBUNE BUSINESS NEWS
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   NEWS: CHICAGO TRIBUNE BUSINESS NEWS
Chicago Tribune Business News
May 22, 2020

All Illinois child care facilities can open with limits as soon as next week, Gov. J.B. Pritzker says
All Illinois child care facilities can reopen at limited capacity as soon as late next week under changes to the state's coronavirus health guidelines that Gov. J.B. Pritzker announced Friday.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 22, 2020

Column: An exclusive look at the reborn Cook County Hospital: Once facing the wrecking ball, the West Side landmark is about to reemerge, beautifully remade
Old Cook County Hospital emerges anew after a beautiful renovation that has transformed into a hotel and medical office building. The hospital has long been a symbol of compassionate care for the poor.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 22, 2020

State unemployment office notifying more than 32,000 gig workers whose personal information was possibly exposed
The state's unemployment office said it is notifying gig workers whose personal information may have been exposed during a data breach last week.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 22, 2020

No more ping pong and free food at the office? Tech giants are embracing remote work, and others may follow.
For a preview of the future of office work, watch how the biggest tech companies are preparing for a post-pandemic world.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 22, 2020

Big box stores were already pulling ahead of mall-based retailers like Macy's. ‘The pandemic is now pushing it to the brink.'
Big box stores like Best Buy, Target and Walmart have capitalized on their digital expertise to stay relevant during the pandemic, while Macy's and other mall-based clothing chains like Victoria's Secret are struggling to adapt.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 22, 2020

Amazon angles to grab back customers
As millions more Americans turned to online shopping during the pandemic, Amazon struggled to keep up with the demand, and its rivals pounced. Target's online sales shot up 141% last quarter, while Walmart's rose 74%. Etsy's were up almost 80% in April.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 22, 2020

Trade show display maker lost 90% of revenue amid the pandemic. Now it's making office barriers, and business is looking up.
Nimlok Chicago, which makes exhibits for conventions, has lost 90% of its revenue amid the coronavirus pandemic. But the same materials it uses to make trade show displays can be repurposed for social distancing measures, and the company has pivoted.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 22, 2020

Deere profits, revenue plunge but beat Wall Street expectations
On a per-share basis, Moline, Illinois-based Deere & Co. said it had profit of $2.11. The results surpassed Wall Street expectations. The average estimate of seven analysts surveyed by Zacks Investment Research was for earnings of $1.77 per share.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 22, 2020

Deere profit, revenue beat Wall Street expectations
On a per-share basis, Moline, Illinois-based Deere & Co. said it had profit of $2.11. The results surpassed Wall Street expectations. The average estimate of seven analysts surveyed by Zacks Investment Research was for earnings of $1.77 per share.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 22, 2020

Facebook starts planning for permanent remote workers
Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook's chief executive, told workers during a staff meeting that was livestreamed on his Facebook page that within a decade as many as half of the company's more than 48,000 employees would work from home.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 22, 2020

Salons, gyms desperate to reopen navigate complexities of Pritzker's Illinois stay-at-home order
Depending on who you ask, salons that offer hair extensions can open in Illinois despite Governor J.B. Pritzker's COVID-19 stay-at-home order. Those that don't, can't. The same is true for gyms in hotels, which can open, while independent gyms aren't supposed to yet, although at least five already have.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 21, 2020

Shareholders approve hedge fund Alden's seats on Tribune Publishing board amid efforts to break up newspaper chain
Shareholders of Tribune Publishing formally elected two representatives of hedge fund Alden Global Capital to the newspaper chain's board Thursday, as the man with the third-largest stake in the company seeks to break it up.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 21, 2020

Malort made from beer released Friday as a creative solution to a serious problem: kegs expiring due to coronavirus
Malort made from Anti-Hero is a playful solution to a serious problem for breweries large and small as bars and restaurants largely remain closed: What to do with all those useless kegs?

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 21, 2020

Illinois unemployment rate hit 16.4% in April, a 44-year high, as coronavirus-related job losses multiplied
Illinois' unemployment rate rose to 16.4% in April, up from 4.2% in March, due to the COVID-19 health crisis, according to the state's Department of Employment Security. The state's April unemployment rate was the highest recorded since the government began collecting data using current methodologies in 1976.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 21, 2020

Illinois Tollway reaches railroad deal, paving the way for construction of a beltway around O'Hare
The long-awaited dream of western access to O'Hare International Airport came a step closer to reality Thursday, when the Tollway board OK'd agreements with two major railroads near O'Hare.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 21, 2020

Maskless Trump visits Michigan Ford plant, despite state and company policy
Pandemic politics shadowed President Donald Trump's trip to Michigan on Thursday.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 21, 2020

As U.S. tentatively reopens, job market remains grim, financial fear remains high. ‘This recovery is going to take a while.'
More than 1 in 5 Americans said they had little or no confidence in their ability to pay the next month's rent or mortgage on time, a Census Bureau survey found. Even in states that have been reopened the longest, like Georgia, not enough shoppers are visiting stores and restaurants to support significant rehiring, said David Gilbertson, an executive at Kronos, a workforce management software company.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 21, 2020

Macy's warns of $1 billion in losses, highlighting pandemic plight of mall stores
Macy's dire preliminary report offers the latest evidence that the pandemic is widening the divide between big-box stores like Walmart and Target and mall-based clothing chains.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 21, 2020

Netflix will start automatically canceling inactive accounts
If Netflix members do not confirm that they want to keep subscribing, the company said, it will automatically cancel their subscription.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 21, 2020

US existing home sales plunge 17.8% in April
Sales of existing homes plunged 17.8% in April with the real estate market still in the grips of the coronavirus pandemic. The National Association of Realtors said Thursday that last month's decline pushed sales down to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.33 million units, the slowest pace since September 2011.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 21, 2020

Admiral Theatre is among a bevy of adult businesses suing to get a PPP loan. So far, the nightclubs are winning.
The Admiral Theatre in Chicago is one of a number of adult nightclubs across the Midwest suing the SBA to overturn the agency's restriction against sexually oriented businesses and receive a Paycheck Protection Program loan.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 21, 2020

Federal meatpacking safety recommendations are largely unenforceable
Federal recommendations meant to keep meatpacking workers safe as they return to plants that were shuttered by the coronavirus have little enforcement muscle behind them, fueling anxiety that working conditions could put employees' lives at risk.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 21, 2020

Illinois struggles to keep up with crush of unemployment claims. ‘It's been a mess from day one.'
The state's unemployment insurance office says it has doubled the number of workers in call centers that assist those seeking jobless benefits, while complaints from applicants about busy signals and other problems continue.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 21, 2020

Will Trump wear a face mask at Michigan Ford plant? The company and the state's attorney general think he should.
Ford says everyone in its factories must wear personal protective equipment, including masks, and that its policy has been communicated to the White House.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 21, 2020

Nearly 39 million US layoffs during pandemic; more than 1 million Illinois jobless claims since mid-March
More than 2.4 million people applied for U.S. unemployment benefits last week in the latest wave of layoffs from the coronavirus outbreak. With the latest report, Illinois crossed a new threshold as more than 1 million residents have sought unemployment insurance benefits since mid-March. In the most recent week that ended May 16, 72,816 people in the state filed initial claims for benefits.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 21, 2020

Nearly 39 million US layoffs during coronavirus pandemic; more than 1 million Illinois jobless claims since mid-March
More than 2.4 million people applied for U.S. unemployment benefits last week in the latest wave of layoffs from the coronavirus outbreak. With the latest report, Illinois crossed a new threshold as more than 1 million residents have sought unemployment insurance benefits since mid-March. In the most recent week that ended May 16, 72,816 people in the state filed initial claims for benefits.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 21, 2020

‘Under the cover of night' elite Francis W. Parker School bought condos in covert bid to expand, Lincoln Park neighbors allege in lawsuit
An elite private school near Lincoln Park Zoo allegedly used straw buyers to purchase units in a nearby condominium building in an effort to expand its real estate territory, according to a lawsuit filed Wednesday.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 20, 2020

Illinois restaurants and bars can go al fresco as soon as next Friday as Gov. J.B. Pritzker nods to reopening pressure
The outdoor dining option represents a slight softening of the plan for Pritzker as many neighboring states have moved much faster to allow restaurants to reopen.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 20, 2020

Elite private school Francis W. Parker sued over purchases of neighboring Lincoln Park condos
An elite private school near the Lincoln Park Zoo allegedly used straw buyers to purchase units in a nearby condominium building in an effort to expand its real estate territory, according to a lawsuit filed Wednesday.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 20, 2020

Struggling with severely reduced ridership, Metra offers a new $10 daily pass
Struggling with severely reduced ridership due to the coronavirus pandemic, Metra hopes to draw in some passengers with a $10 daily pass.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 20, 2020

Former Green Beret and son arrested, accused of smuggling ex-Nissan boss Carlos Ghosn out of Japan in a box
A former Green Beret and his son were arrested in Massachusetts on charges they Carlos Ghosn out of Japan in a box.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 20, 2020

Car loan giant Santander reaches $550M settlement with Illinois, 33 other attorneys general
Thirty-four attorneys general announced a $550 million settlement Tuesday with auto loan financing company Santander over allegations it knowingly targeted consumers who were likely to default on its loans. Consumers who defaulted as of last year will be allowed to keep their car if it has not been dispossessed, and they are eligible for waivers for unpaid balances.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 20, 2020

'They're putting their health at risk': South Dakota pork plant workers get cheers as they return after coronavirus shutdown
"They're putting their health at risk just like the hospital workers are to continue on with this work, so I hope they feel appreciated," said Becky Olson, a Sioux Falls resident who held a sign outside the entrance to a Smithfield pork processing plant where a coronavirus outbreak infected over 800 people.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 20, 2020

'They're putting their health at risk': South Dakota pork plant workers get cheers as they return after coronavirus shutdown:
"They're putting their health at risk just like the hospital workers are to continue on with this work, so I hope they feel appreciated," said Becky Olson, a Sioux Falls resident who held a sign outside the entrance to a Smithfield pork processing plant where a coronavirus outbreak infected over 800 people.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 20, 2020

Demand for RVs grows as coronavirus crisis changes the way we travel. ‘I can see so many people doing it this summer.'
The travel industry has taken it on the chin during the coronavirus crisis, but the RV market is showing signs of resiliency. As a hunkered down populace starts to venture out again, RVs could be all the more appealing in the new normal.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 20, 2020

Summer travel rebound? Southwest Airlines adding more flights in June.
Southwest Airlines is making major increases in seat capacity for June and July, even while competitors are cutting. Its financial and network strategy may put it in a better than anticipated position to emerge from the pandemic.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 20, 2020

Column: Two-tower plan for former Chicago Spire site expected to win key approval Thursday
Related Midwest's two-tower plan for the former Chicago Spire site is expected to win a key approval Thursday.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 20, 2020

Column: Two-tower plan for former Chicago Spire site moves a step closer to groundbreaking
Related Midwest's two-tower plan for the former Chicago Spire site cleared a key political hurdle Thursday, receiving approval from the Chicago Plan Commission.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 20, 2020

Target CEO on pandemic business: ‘Last quarter was unlike anything I have ever seen'
Target reported Wednesday that comparable-store sales, which include online purchases, rose 10.8% for the three-month period that ended May 2.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 20, 2020

At Leak & Sons Funeral Homes, a South Side institution, ‘Our families are saying they won't allow this pandemic to toss their loved one away'
Leak & Sons Funeral Homes, started 87 years ago, has faced a surge of business from the coronavirus pandemic as COVID-19 social distancing directives have altered long-standing funeral traditions.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 20, 2020

Three Floyds closes legendary brewpub indefinitely due to coronavirus, even as Indiana moves to reopen businesses
Three Floyds closes brewpub indefinitely due to coronavirus concerns, even as Indiana moves to reopen businesses

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 20, 2020

Column: Listen up, Mayor Lightfoot: Readers want their lakefront back. They're tired of dodging runners and rats.
The lockdown isn't just preventing people from getting to the shoreline for a little exercise or meditation. It's flooding some neighborhoods with joggers, walkers and bicyclists who normally would go to the lakefront.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 19, 2020

New CEO for Chicago public radio station WBEZ lands ‘once-in-a-lifetime' gig, with plans to build on local news
Chicago Public Media has named Andi McDaniel as new president and CEO of WBEZ-FM 91.5, with plans to keep the NPR's station focus on local news.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 19, 2020

Johnson & Johnson to end talc-based baby powder sales in North America after facing nearly 20,000 lawsuits filed by cancer patients
Johnson & Johnson has spent decades casting doubt on reports of asbestos in baby powder and other talc body powders. But in recent years, thousands of people have sued the company over claims that it did not properly warn them of the risks of using baby powder.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 19, 2020

Mariano's parent Kroger will not seek repayment from workers it overpaid during COVID-19 outbreak
Mariano's parent company, Kroger, will not seek repayment from employees the grocery chain overpaid for time they took off to self-quarantine.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 19, 2020

Chicago McDonald's workers file class-action lawsuit alleging COVID-19 failures put employees and customers at risk
Five Chicago McDonald's workers filed a class action lawsuit Tuesday against McDonald's in Cook County Circuit Court alleging an "inadequate" response by the restaurant chain to the COVID-19 pandemic endangered employees and customers.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 19, 2020

Pier 1 going out of business, plans liquidation sales at its 540 stores
Fort Worth, Texas-based Pier 1 Imports said that it was unable to find a buyer for its business after filing for bankruptcy protection in February.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 19, 2020

United, Southwest report signs of hope for air travel rebound
United Airlines and Southwest Airlines have reported a pickup in travel demand and fewer cancellations.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 19, 2020

Pier 1 winding down business, plans liquidation sales
Pier 1 Imports, which filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in February, said that it's winding down its business after stores are able to reopen and it can conduct liquidation sales.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 19, 2020

Column: The Farnsworth House, a modernist masterpiece, is threatened anew by floodwaters
Farnsworth House threatened anew by floodwaters

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 19, 2020

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin faces grilling about coronavirus PPP lending
Lawmakers from both parties have criticized the Payroll Protection Program, which initially provided $349 billion in forgivable loans to small companies but has been plagued by a host of problems.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 19, 2020

Darden Restaurants reopens nearly half its dining rooms; employees to return to Orlando headquarters
Darden Restaurants said Tuesday that 49% of its dining rooms had reopened as of May 17 and it expected more than 65% of them to open with limited capacity by the end of May.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 19, 2020

Map: Where to buy legal weed in Chicago and across Illinois
Now that recreational pot is legal in Illinois, these are the places that are able to sell it.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 19, 2020

Pandemic pivot: How Chicago-area businesses and workers are managing the coronavirus crisis
The coronavirus pandemic is forcing Chicago-area companies and workers to face harsh realities about their paychecks and their place in the local economy. The Tribune is reaching out to hear, and share, their stories.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 19, 2020

Why has American Airlines added a 29-mile flight? Your tax dollars at work.
American Airlines has added a 29-mile flight to its schedule between airports that serve the ski communities of Vail and Aspen, Colorado — a route created to fulfill the requirements of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 19, 2020

All this food with nowhere to go. Restaurant distributor finds new demand in supermarkets, carryout and home delivery
With dine-in restaurants facing an uncertain future, Chicago Oriental Wholesale Market is shifting its focus to growing its takeout, home delivery, supermarket and virtual kitchen customers.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 19, 2020

Walmart profit surges, Kohl's revenue plummets as coronavirus sorts retail winners and losers
Walmart online sales in the U.S. jumped 74%, fueled by a rush on canned foods, paper towels and other supplies needed as people sheltered in place. Same-store sales rose 10% at U.S. Walmart stores.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 19, 2020

This Amazon warehouse is its most infected with COVID-19, but the company won't give exact figures
In the less than two months since then, the warehouse in the foothills of the Pocono Mountains of northeastern Pennsylvania has become Amazon's biggest COVID-19 hot spot.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 19, 2020

Can Chicago's food halls survive the pandemic? Owners and chefs consider the future of what had been a hot format.
It doesn't appear that food halls in Chicago will be able to open any time soon. But many restaurateurs are looking forward to them returning.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 18, 2020

Business owners now face misdemeanor charge if they reopen in spite of Gov. J.B. Pritzker's stay-at-home order
Gov. J.B. Pritzker sought to downplay a new enforcement tool he filed last week that allows the state to cite nonessential businesses with a misdemeanor for opening up to customers in violation of his COVID-19 executive orders.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 18, 2020

State Farm cuts auto rates by $2.2 billion as Americans continue to stay home during the COVID-19 pandemic
State Farm announced Monday it will cut its auto insurance rates by $2.2 billion as Americans continue to drive less as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 18, 2020

University of Chicago Medicine receives $10M gift for research in cancer treatment
University of Chicago Medicine announced Monday it received a $10 million gift from a Chicago area investor to fund research for cellular therapy used to fight certain types of cancer.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 18, 2020

Uber laying off another 3,000 workers, raising more questions about the company's future in Chicago
Uber Technologies is laying off 3,000 additional workers and closing about 45 offices around the world as the coronavirus pandemic continues to take its toll on the company's main profit generator, its ride-share business.The news throws into question the tech giant's plans for Chicago.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 18, 2020

Column: Venice postpones big architecture show, putting Chicago in a bind
Does the Chicago Architecture Biennial delay to 2022 because the Venice show has postponed due to COVID-19?

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 18, 2020

New ‘grocery concept' coming to vacant Fair Oaks Ford land, Chirico announces in state of city address
A developer is working with a national retailer to bring a "new grocery concept" to the vacant Fair Oaks Ford property on Ogden Avenue in northeast Naperville, Mayor Steve Chirico announced Monday in his annual state of the city address.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 18, 2020

J.C. Penney plans to close more than 240 stores
J.C. Penney said it plans to close about 30% of its stores: It plans to shut 192 stores by February 2021, and then 50 additional stores in the year after that.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 18, 2020

Five reasons your stimulus check may have been for less than you expected
As much as you'd like to be happy about seeing a stimulus check in your mailbox — or spotting the direct deposit in your bank account — you might be wondering why you didn't see more money.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 18, 2020

The pandemic is boosting a stagnant meal kit industry. But will interest persist when people are no longer stuck at home?
Meal kit services are enjoying a surge in demand as legions of people cook from home more than ever amid COVID-19 lockdown orders and restaurant closures.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 18, 2020

‘He's got to instill a sense of urgency': Fed chair Jerome Powell expected to bring spend-more message to Congress
The trick for Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell will be to make his case for more spending delicately, not overstepping his role as an unelected central banker and not appearing to take sides in the partisan battle over how much more Washington should do.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 18, 2020

SoftBank racks up losses, including WeWork investment; Alibaba's Jack Ma quits board
Japanese technology company SoftBank Group Corp. racked up a loss of 961.6 billion yen ($9 billion) for the fiscal year through March, on red ink related to its Vision Fund investments including troubled office space-sharing venture WeWork.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 18, 2020

Moderna's COVID-19 vaccine trial shows promising early results, it says
The first coronavirus vaccine to be tested in people appears to be safe and able to stimulate an immune response against the virus, its manufacturer, Moderna, announced Monday.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 18, 2020

After ending extra hazard ‘hero' pay, Kroger to give bonus to front-line workers
Just days after announcing it would end hazard "hero" pay to front-line workers, Kroger says it will give them extra "thank you" bonuses. The bonus is $400 for full-time workers and $200 for part-time workers to be paid out in two installments on May 30 and June 18.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 17, 2020

Fed chairman says recovery may ‘stretch' through end of 2021
Jerome Powell, the Federal Reserve chairman, said that while he expected the U.S. economy to recover from the sharp and painful downturn brought about by the coronavirus, that process would take time — potentially until the end of 2021.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 17, 2020

‘Pharma Bro' Martin Shkreli denied prison release by judge, who calls him ‘delusional'
A judge rejected the request of convicted pharmaceutical executive Martin Shkreli to be let out of prison to research a coronavirus treatment, noting that probation officials viewed that claim as the type of "delusional self-aggrandizing behavior" that led to his conviction.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 17, 2020

Data breach in new Illinois online unemployment system exposes private information
Data breach in new Illinois online unemployment system exposes private information

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 17, 2020

After 125 years, Oak Park's Pieritz Bros. office supply store to close; ‘It had to happen sometime'
After 125 years, Oak Park's Pieritz Bros. office supply store to close

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 15, 2020

J.C. Penney files for bankruptcy protection, becoming the latest — and biggest — retail casualty of the coronavirus pandemic
The coronavirus pandemic has pushed troubled department store chain J.C. Penney into Chapter 11 bankruptcy. It is the fourth major retailer to meet that fate.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 15, 2020

J.C. Penney files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, becoming latest retail casualty of coronavirus pandemic
The coronavirus pandemic has pushed troubled department store chain J.C. Penney into Chapter 11 bankruptcy. It is the fourth major retailer to meet that fate.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 15, 2020

Evanston subprime auto lenders charged with pocketing $5.3 million through alleged GPS resale scheme
Top officers at Evanston subprime auto lender charged with allegedly diverting $5.3 million to another company they created that sold GPS devices to track and repossess the vehicles

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 15, 2020

Quarantined returns. No guarantees you'll get a fitting room. Northwest Indiana shows how shopping will look when stores reopen.
In Indiana, stores that were closed for COVID-19 have started letting shoppers back inside, providing an early look at what local consumers can expect from their first in-person excursions for items other than groceries and household essentials.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 15, 2020

As coronavirus unemployment soars, Illinois rolls out new website to connect job seekers and employers
Job seekers and employers can connect through a new website Illinois introduced this week as the state deals with record unemployment applications because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 15, 2020

Coronavirus chaos — wrecked economy, less office space demand, scarce financing — challenges Chicago's megadevelopments
Chicago's decade-plus construction cycle has altered the skyline and emboldened developers to draw up some of the costliest real estate plans ever seen in the city. Now the coronavirus pandemic leaves in doubt whether those megaprojects can continue an already lengthy construction boom or if they'll be pushed into the next construction cycle — or never happen at all.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 15, 2020

Column: An open letter to Mayor Lightfoot: Time to rethink your lakefront shutdown
An open letter to Mayor Lightfoot: Rethink your lakefront shutdown.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 15, 2020

Shopping begins again in Northwest Indiana
In Illinois, retailers deemed non-essential are still limited to curbside service. But across the country, stores that closed during the COVID-19 pandemic have started letting shoppers back inside, providing an early look at what local consumers can expect from their first in-person excursions for items other than groceries and household essentials.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 15, 2020

McDonald's details what dining In will look like
The guide — titled "The Dine-In Reopening Playbook" — does not outline a strict timeline, giving franchisees some discretion to decide when to reopen, according to a copy reviewed by The New York Times.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 15, 2020

New York Stock Exchange trading floor to partially reopen after coronavirus closure
The New York Stock Exchange will partially reopen its trading floor later this month after closing it in late March due to the coronavirus.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 15, 2020

'It's like a hurricane came and leveled the entire economy': Retail sales fall 16.4%, a record
.S. retail sales tumbled by a record 16.4% from March to April as business shutdowns caused by the coronavirus kept shoppers away, threatened the viability of stores across the country and further weighed down a sinking economy.The Commerce Department's report Friday on retail purchases showed a sector that has collapsed so quickly that sales over the past 12 months are down a crippling 21.6%. The severity of the decline is unrivaled for retail figures that date back to 1992. The monthly decline in April nearly doubled the previous record drop of 8.3% — set just one month earlier.The sharpest declines from March to April were at clothing, electronics and furniture stores. A long-standing migration of consumers toward online purchases is accelerating, with that segment posting a 8.4% monthly gain. Measured year over year, online sales surged 21.6%.Other than online, not a single retail category was spared in April. Auto dealers suffered a monthly drop of 13%. Furniture stores absorbed a 59% plunge. Electronics and appliance stores were down over 60%. Retailers that sell building materials posted a drop of roughly 3%. After panic buying in March, grocery sales fell 13%.Clothing-store sales tumbled 79%, department stores 29%. Restaurants, some of which are already starting to close permanently, endured a nearly 30% decline despite shifting aggressively to takeout and delivery orders.For a retail sector that had already been reeling, a back-to-back free-fall in spending poses a grave risk. Department stores like Neiman Marcus and J.Crew have filed for bankruptcy protection. Hotels, restaurants and auto dealerships are in danger. Nearly $1 of every $5 spent at retailers last month went to non-store retailers.An April analysis by a group of academic economists found that a one-month closure could wipe out 31% of non-grocer retailers. A four-month closure could force 65% to close.The plunge in retail spending is a key reason why the U.S. economy is contracting. Purchases a

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 15, 2020

‘Sweet Home Chicago' telethon, sponsored by area CEOs, to support COVID-19 relief efforts Saturday
A group of business leaders from Chicago's financial, development and entertainment industries is banding together to raise funds for the Chicago Community COVID-19 Response Fund, as well as other local charities and coronavirus relief efforts.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 15, 2020

The Belvidere Jeep plant restarts June 1. Here's what the return to work will look like.
As the 3,800 workers at the Belvidere Assembly Plant return to work in phases starting June 1, they will face plenty of health and safety changes at the Jeep Cherokee factory.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 14, 2020

Chicago-area transit may look different this summer, with social distancing and the end of rush hour
Packed rush-hour trains and buses won't be coming back, as long as the threat of coronavirus remains, transit experts said. This could mean changes in how people commute.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 14, 2020

Chicago-area CEOs to support COVID-19 relief efforts with ‘Sweet Home Chicago' telethon Saturday
A group of business leaders from Chicago's financial, development and entertainment industries is banding together to raise funds for the Chicago Community COVID-19 Response Fund, as well as other local charities and coronavirus relief efforts.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 14, 2020

‘I was almost in tears': White Pines Resort guests mourn the closure of their beloved northwest Illinois retreat, a casualty of the coronavirus pandemic
The news came like a gut punch to White Pines' loyal guests: The resort's longtime owner said she's closing down for good because of the pandemic.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 14, 2020

Hotels vs. Airbnb: Has COVID-19 disrupted the disrupter?
The contest between hotels and home shares finds both struggling to convince the public that their rooms are virus-free.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 14, 2020

Uber, Lyft, airlines add face mask rules, but enforcement is tricky
American Airlines has told pilots that gate agents may deny passengers from boarding if they aren't wearing a mask but it doesn't expect crews to continue policing once they're in the air.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 14, 2020

Head of World Trade Organization to step down early amid lingering US-China tensions
The head of the World Trade Organization said Thursday that he will leave his post a year early.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 14, 2020

Tribune Publishing and union agree to three-week furloughs for Chicago Tribune newsroom employees
Tribune Publishing and the union representing the Chicago Tribune newsroom have agreed to a three-week furlough for all employees making $40,000 or more as a cost-savings measure during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 14, 2020

Some Illinois Facebook users could get $300 under massive biometric privacy settlement
Illinois Facebook users could soon be notified that they are part of class-action settlement, and are eligible to receive an estimated $150 to $300.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 14, 2020

As House readies vote on coronavirus package with second stimulus checks, some lawmakers push for guaranteed income programs
One of the most progressive lawmakers in the House and one of the most conservative in the Senate agree it's time for the federal government to cover workers' salaries.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 14, 2020

TikTok broke privacy promises, children's groups say
TikTok, the popular app for making and sharing short videos, has flouted an agreement it made with the Federal Trade Commission to protect the privacy of children on the service, a coalition of 20 children's and consumer groups said Thursday.

Chicago Tribune Business News
May 14, 2020

Extra pay for many essential workers is expiring, even as COVID-19 deaths mount. Labor groups fight to keep ‘hero pay.'
Temporary pay hikes for many essential employees working in grocery stores, warehouses and factories are set to end this week and labor groups want to see the wage increases extended, arguing the risk of contracting the virus on the job has not abated.

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