Wednesday, September 22News That Matters

Business

Inside Facebook’s Push to Defend Its Image

Inside Facebook’s Push to Defend Its Image

Business
The changes have involved Facebook executives from its marketing, communications, policy and integrity teams. Alex Schultz, a 14-year company veteran who was named chief marketing officer last year, has also been influential in the image reshaping effort, said five people who worked with him. But at least one of the decisions was driven by Mr. Zuckerberg, and all were approved by him, three of the people said.Alex Schultz, Facebook’s chief marketing officer, has been influential in reshaping the company’s image.Credit...Tommaso Boddi/Getty ImagesJoe Osborne, a Facebook spokesman, denied that the company had changed its approach.“People deserve to know the steps we’re taking to address the different issues facing our company — and we’re going to share those steps widely,” he said in a state...
Self-Storage Industry Rebounds After Early Pandemic Decline

Self-Storage Industry Rebounds After Early Pandemic Decline

Business
Last fall, Blackstone acquired Simply Self Storage — with eight million square feet of rentable space — for $1.2 billion, adding to the $300 million it had already invested in the sector. And in April, Public Storage closed its $1.8 billion acquisition of ezStorage, adding 48 properties with 4.2 million of net rentable square feet.Updated Sept. 21, 2021, 11:36 a.m. ETWith both investor interest and consumer demand high, Edison Properties, which owns Manhattan Mini Storage, was said to be exploring the sale of its division, which has 18 locations and 3.1 million square feet, for an estimated $3 billion, or nearly $1,000 per square foot, Bloomberg News reported.Edison declined to discuss the sale, but the price tag is unsurprising, Mr. Sakwa of Evercore said, given the generally high co...
Boost for shoppers as major carbon dioxide supplier to restart production after govt talks

Boost for shoppers as major carbon dioxide supplier to restart production after govt talks

Business
The owner of two UK fertiliser plants whose shutdown sparked a food supply crisis has agreed to restart production after talks with the government.CF Industries produces carbon dioxide - a critical part of the food production process - as a by-product of manufacturing carried out at the sites in Billingham on Teesside and Ince in Cheshire. But the US firm said last week that it had stopped work at the plants because of the surge in gas prices while Norwegian company Yara also said it was reducing production at ammonia factories across Europe, including one in Hull. Image: CF Industries stopped work at its Billingham plant last week The CO2 shortage had created a crisis in the food industry because the gas, which is a by-product of the fertiliser manufacturing process, is used to st...
A Hollywood Producer and a Master of Adaptation

A Hollywood Producer and a Master of Adaptation

Business
Freedom, Maine, population 722, is about as far away from Hollywood as you can get. So when Erin French, who runs the uber-popular Lost Kitchen there, had boldface names flocking to her virtual doorstep looking to buy the film rights to her best-selling memoir, she approached them with a lot of trepidation and a bit of awe.“It was intense,” Ms. French said of the experience of selling her personal story of food, addiction and abuse, told in the 2021 book “Finding Freedom: A Cook’s Story; Remaking a Life From Scratch.” “Here you are, sitting in the middle of nowhere, a girl who felt like she had grown up a nobody, and then all of a sudden you’re having Zoom calls with Blake Lively. It was definitely a wild time.”In addition to Ms. Lively, Ms. French and her husband, Michael Dutton, met with...
Royal Dutch Shell Is Selling Its Permian Basin Oil Holdings to ConocoPhillips

Royal Dutch Shell Is Selling Its Permian Basin Oil Holdings to ConocoPhillips

Business
HOUSTON — Royal Dutch Shell sold its oil and gas production in the Permian Basin, the biggest American oil field, to ConocoPhillips for $9.5 billion in cash on Monday.The deal marks a turning point for Shell, which had put considerable effort into developing the 225,000-acre field since buying it from Chesapeake Energy nine years ago, expanding its production to about 200,000 barrels a day.The sale is the latest sign that Shell, like other European oil companies, is under pressure to sell off oil and gas production and move toward producing cleaner energy in response to growing concerns about climate change among investors and the general public.Shell is retreating from the Permian as American shale oil production is recovering. The Permian Basin yielded 4.7 million barrels a day in August...
Global Markets Swoon as Worries Mount Over Superpowers’ Plans

Global Markets Swoon as Worries Mount Over Superpowers’ Plans

Business
Investors on three continents dumped stocks on Monday, fretting that the governments of the world’s two largest economies — China and the United States — would act in ways that could undercut the nascent global economic recovery.The Chinese government’s reluctance to step in and save a highly indebted property developer just days before a big interest payment is due signaled to investors that Beijing might break with its longstanding policy of bailing out its homegrown stars.And in the United States, the globe’s No. 1 economy, investors worried that the Federal Reserve would soon begin cutting back its huge purchases of government bonds, which had helped drive stocks to a series of record highs since the coronavirus pandemic hit.The sell-off started in Asia and spread to Europe — where exp...
Global stock markets slide on cocktail of economic worries

Global stock markets slide on cocktail of economic worries

Business
Global stock markets have fallen sharply on a cocktail of worries led by a potential crisis brewing in China - and added to by gas supply concerns in Europe.Fears over the future of Chinese property giant Evergrande - and the possibility that its problems could have wider knock-on effects in the world's second biggest economy - sent Asian markets sharply lower overnight. Stock indices in Europe followed suit, with France's Cac 40 and Germany's Dax each losing about 2% of their value and Wall Street also heading south later, with New York's Dow Jones down by 2%. Image: The FTSE 100 fell to a two-month low Worries about Evergrande have been growing as it scrambles to raise funds to pay its lenders, suppliers and investors.Regulators have warned that its $305bn of liabilities could sp...
US to relax travel rules for vaccinated passengers from UK and EU

US to relax travel rules for vaccinated passengers from UK and EU

Business
Vaccinated passengers will be able to enter the US from the UK and EU from November onwards, the White House has confirmed. The new rules would be part of broader policy changes for international travel and will apply to fully vaccinated people - meaning those who have received two doses of a COVID-19 vaccine. All foreign travellers will need to demonstrate proof of vaccination before boarding, as well as proof of a negative COVID-19 test taken within three days of the flight, said White House COVID-19 coordinator Jeff Zients. Image: The UK lifted travel restrictions for US passengers entering the UK in July It will end an 18-month patchwork of travel restrictions imposed by former president Donald Trump at the start of the pandemic.President Biden will also tighten rules for unvac...

Global Supply Shortages Reach All the Way to a Haitian Aid Group

Business
In the face of bewildering and enduring shortages of goods throughout the global economy, even aid organizations like food banks and clothing distributors are caught in the chaos. Many are struggling to secure what they need, amplifying scarcity in vulnerable communities.In Haiti, one of the world’s poorest countries, an effort to increase household incomes is confronting a new problem stemming from the global supply chain upheaval — a shortage of shoes.The Haitian American Caucus, a nonprofit organization, imports donated, used shoes from the United States and sells them at low-cost to women who hawk them on sidewalks and in markets, earning crucial cash for their families.The caucus is distributing almost 100,000 pairs of shoes a month, but it could manage four times as many if only more...

How the U.S. Helped, and Hampered, the Escape of Afghan Journalists

Business
On Aug. 20, Joel Simon, the head of the Committee to Protect Journalists, and Mr. De Dora met via Zoom with Uzra Zeya, the under secretary of state for civilian security, democracy and human rights. They said they left the meeting convinced that the U.S. would do nothing to help.They went looking for help elsewhere, and met the same day with the deputy director of the Qatari government’s communications office, Sheikh Thamer bin Hamad Al Thani. Mr. Al Thani asked for a list of the Afghan journalists it considered most in danger, then sent word that a convoy should assemble at a safe location near the Kabul airport. On Aug. 23, the Qatari ambassador to Afghanistan led 16 journalists and their families from the safe house to the airport. They flew to Doha the next day. Many of the other journ...