6 Most Important Things in Business Today

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Almost all cell phones and personal computers (PCs) are at risk for hacking. According to Reuters:

Security researchers on Wednesday disclosed a set of security flaws that they said could let hackers steal sensitive information from nearly every modern computing device containing chips from Intel Corp, Advanced Micro Devices Inc and ARM Holdings.

Merrill Lynch is eliminated trading of bitcoin. According to The Wall Street Journal:

Merrill Lynch has blocked clients and financial advisers who trade on their behalf from buying bitcoin, citing concerns over the cryptocurrency’s investment suitability.

The ban applies to all accounts and precludes the firm’s roughly 17,000 advisers not only from pitching bitcoin-related investments but also from executing client requests to trade the Grayscale Investment Trust bitcoin fund, according to a person familiar with the matter. The ban extends an existing policy barring access to newly launched bitcoin futures.

Tesla Inc. (NASDAQ: TSLA) missed sales estimates. According to The Wall Street Journal:

 Tesla Inc. underwhelmed Wall Street with sales of its new Model 3 sedans in the fourth quarter, raising questions about whether the Silicon Valley luxury electric-car company can spark production this year and transform into a mainstream auto maker.

The company on Wednesday said it sold 1,550 Model 3s in the final three months of the year, badly missing Wall Street’s already lowered expectations. Tesla again pushed backed its goal of making 5,000 Model 3s a week by another quarter, now expected by the end of the year’s first half.

Crude oil prices reached a three-year high. According to Bloomberg:

Oil extended gains from the highest close in three years as U.S. industry data showed crude stockpiles continued to decline and as OPEC production held steady last month.

Futures rose 0.9 percent to above $62 a barrel in New York after adding 2.1 percent on Wednesday. Inventories slid by 4.99 million barrels last week, the American Petroleum Institute was said to report. Government data Thursday is forecast to show supplies fell by 4.7 million barrels, which will be a seventh weekly decrease.

AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T) is about to offer super-fast 5G service. According to CNBC:

AT&T said on Thursday it will roll out next generation 5G mobile internet in a dozen U.S. cities by late 2018.

America’s second-largest wireless carrier said it expects to be the first U.S. company to introduce the technology if its timeline is achieved.

AT&T’s announcement comes after international 5G standards were agreed in December by 3GPP, the body that develops and governs cellular standards.

The Powerball jackpot jumped again. According to CNNMoney:

Wednesday night’s Powerball drawing once again failed to produce a jackpot winner.

The good news is that means there’s a chance for an even bigger prize in the next drawing Saturday night. The size of the jackpot jumped to an estimated $550 million from the $460 million prize heading into Wednesday’s drawing.