Business briefing

The daily business briefing: October 2, 2017

Facebook prepares to give Congress Russia-linked ads, U.K. rushes to help 110,000 travelers stranded by airline, and more

1

Facebook to hand over Russia-linked ads to Congress

Facebook plans Monday to give congressional investigators more than 3,000 political ads purchased by Russia-linked groups during the 2016 election campaign. Facebook faced pressure from leading lawmakers to release the material. Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.), the highest ranking Democrat on the Senate Intelligence Committee, believes the ads could yield information on how Russia sought to influence last year's presidential election, a spokesperson said. "I think we may just be seeing the tip of the iceberg. [Facebook has] had a fairly narrow search," Warner said last month. The Senate Intelligence Committee has invited Facebook, Google, and Twitter to testify at a Nov. 1 hearing, although none of the companies have yet said they would attend.

2

U.K. rushes to help 110,000 travelers stranded by Monarch Airlines collapse

British authorities scrambled Monday to bring home 110,000 travelers stranded after Monarch Airlines collapsed and canceled all flights in the country's biggest airline failure ever. Monarch shut down after failing to reach a deal with regulators to extend its license to sell overseas package vacations. The Civil Aviation Authority leased 30 aircraft to return Monarch customers from Turkey, Spain, Sweden, and other destinations, at no additional cost. Transport Secretary Chris Grayling said the effort amounted to the country's biggest ever peacetime repatriation. "This is a hugely distressing situation for British holidaymakers abroad, and my first priority is to help them get back to the U.K.," Grayling said in a statement.

3

Disney and Altice reach deal to keep programming on Optimum cable

Walt Disney Co. and Altice USA, the nation's fourth largest cable TV operator, have reached a tentative programming deal that will keep ESPN, ABC, and other Disney channels from being cut to 2.6 million New York-area customers of Altice's Optimum cable service, the companies said Sunday. Disney and Altice have been negotiating over prices for the channels as both sides struggle to adjust as audiences drop cable service in favor of cheaper streaming services. The details were not immediately available, but Disney reportedly got fee increases for ESPN and other channels. Altice had offered higher fees in September but called Disney's demands at the time "outrageous."

4

Magazine publisher Si Newhouse dies at 89

Publisher S.I. "Si" Newhouse Jr., chairman emeritus of Condé Nast, died Sunday after a long illness. He was 89. Newhouse and his younger brother, Donald, inherited Advance Publications from their father, Samuel Newhouse. Si Newhouse ran the company's magazine division, Condé Nast, which includes Vogue, Vanity Fair, and The New Yorker. The Newhouse brothers expanded the media empire into one of the nation's largest privately held companies. Si Newhouse steered the magazines but also was known for giving high-profile editors broad editorial control. "Today is a day of emotion, of genuine loss," said his family in a statement. "Si was always the first person to come to the office, arriving well before dawn and bringing to each day a visionary creative spirit coupled with no-nonsense business acumen."

5

Dollar rises as tax-cut plan and Yellen statement lift spirits

The dollar surged on Monday and U.S. stocks were set to start the week with slight gains. Analysts said the GOP tax-cut plan and Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen's call for continued gradual interest rate hikes despite low inflation were boosting investor optimism. European stocks rose but the euro and Spanish stocks dropped after a violence-marred independence referendum in Catalonia, where the regional government vowed to move next toward a unilateral declaration of independence. "There's a high chance that Spain may be headed towards a new crisis, especially if Catalonia's president, Carles Puigdemont, declares independence as he has promised to do in the next 48 hours," said Hussein Sayed, chief market strategist at FXTM, in a note to clients.

Recommended

Group of 7 pledges almost $20B in aid for Ukraine
G7 officials discuss Ukraine aid package.
cash infusion

Group of 7 pledges almost $20B in aid for Ukraine

Biden's trip to Asia, explained
President Biden.
Briefing

Biden's trip to Asia, explained

Monkeypox comes to America
A monkeypox warning.
Briefing

Monkeypox comes to America

The global movement to give nature 'rights'
Scales.
Briefing

The global movement to give nature 'rights'

Most Popular

College student who delivered baby before graduation surprised at hospital
Jada Sayles receives her diploma.
major milestones

College student who delivered baby before graduation surprised at hospital

Russian state TV military analyst backpedals criticism of Ukraine invasion
Mikhail Khodarenok
'the colonel has been reined back in'

Russian state TV military analyst backpedals criticism of Ukraine invasion

Elon Musk reportedly offered to trade a horse for an erotic massage
Elon Musk
A horse?

Elon Musk reportedly offered to trade a horse for an erotic massage