6 Most Important Things in Business Today

Newspaper chain Tronc Inc. (NASDAQ: TRNC) fired the publisher and several top editors at its flagship the Los Angeles Times. The company hired former Yahoo executive Ross Levinsohn to be the publisher. Tronc also fired several executives at the parent company and reassigned key duties. Like all major newspaper firms, Tronc has struggled with the drop in print revenue.

Troubled retailer Macy’s Inc. (NYSE: M) brought in a new president as its struggles with e-commerce competition and growth. Hal Lawton of eBay Inc. (NASDAQ: EBAY) will be the new Macy’s president. Macy’s also consolidated some of its headquarters functions and fired 100 people.

A report by Bloomberg says that the use of Facebook Inc. (NASDAQ: FB) among teenagers has faltered. The news service reports:

This year, the world’s largest social network will see a decline among teen users in the U.S., according to a forecast by EMarketer. It’s the first time the research company has predicted a fall in Facebook usage for any age group.

EMarketer predicts 14.5 million people from the ages of 12 to 17 will use Facebook in 2017, a drop of 3.4 percent from the prior year. Teens are migrating instead to Snap Inc.’s Snapchat and Instagram, the photo-sharing app that Facebook owns, the research company said Monday in a statement.

Samsung’s digital assistant software will soon be available virtually worldwide. According to CNBC:

Samsung expanded its digital personal assistant Bixby to over 200 countries and territories globally on Tuesday, as it looks to step up its challenge to rival products like Amazon Alexa and Apple Siri.

Bixby was unveiled earlier this year when Samsung introduced its flagship Galaxy S8smartphone. It was initially available in South Korea, then the U.S.

Now the electronics giant is rolling Bixby out to new regions including the U.K., Australia, Canada and South Africa.

Johnson & Johnson (NYSE: JNJ) lost a suit over whether ingredients in its baby powder caused ovarian cancer. The New York Post reports:

A Los Angeles jury on Monday ordered Johnson & Johnson to pay $417 million to a woman who claimed in a lawsuit that the talc in its iconic baby powder causes ovarian cancer when applied regularly for feminine hygiene.

The lawsuit was brought by a California woman, Eva Echeverria, who alleged Johnson & Johnson failed to adequately warn consumers about the potential cancer risks of talcum powder.

Huge global miner BHP Billiton PLC (NYSE: BHP) will get out of the shale industry in the United States. According to Reuters:

BHP Billiton (BHP.AX), the world’s largest miner, reported a surge in underlying full-year profits on Tuesday and said it would exit its underperforming U.S. shale oil and gas business, pleasing disgruntled shareholders who had called for a sale.

The Anglo-Australian mining giant, which is under pressure from U.S. hedge fund Elliott Management to rethink its investment in oil and boost shareholder returns, was buoyed by a recovery in industrial commodities markets.

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