<![CDATA[NBC Chicago - Chicago Business News - Money, Financial & Corporate News]]>Copyright 2017http://www.nbcchicago.com/news/business http://media.nbcnewyork.com/designimages/5-Chicago-Blue.png NBC Chicago http://www.nbcchicago.comen-usSat, 24 Jun 2017 00:27:12 -0500Sat, 24 Jun 2017 00:27:12 -0500NBC Owned Television Stations <![CDATA[Big Banks Survive Stress Tests]]> Thu, 22 Jun 2017 16:16:26 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-82842797.jpg

U.S. banks passed the first round of stress tests issued by the Federal Reserve to determine whether the banks could survive potential recessions, according to CNBC.

The results released Thursday showed that all 34 of the largest banks in the U.S. could keep lending to households and businesses in the event of two severe economic scenarios.

The tests are part of the Dodd-Frank reforms put in place after the recession to protect against another crisis. The measures signal economic health but are only the first in a two-step process.  



Photo Credit: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Diners Prefer Fast Food to Sit-Down Restaurants: Survey]]> Tue, 20 Jun 2017 15:35:57 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-509058622-chipotle.jpg

When it comes to food, more Americans are looking for convenience over quality these days.

NBC News reports that satisfaction with full-service restaurants has reached its lowest point in 10 years, according to a report on Tuesday from the American Customer Satisfaction Index. The survey of 5,500 Americans also found that fast food restaurants rated higher than full-service restaurants in customer satisfaction ratings.

Fast food restaurants, referred to as "limited-service," includes traditional chains, like Burger King, along with fast-casual restaurants, such as Chipotle and Panera Bread. Chick-fil-A earned the top-rated restaurant chain spot among limited-service establishments in the survey with a score of 87 out of 100 points. Cracker Barrel won among full-service restaurants with a score of 84.

Potential reasons for the decrease in satisfaction with full-service restaurants could be higher menu prices, increasing competition and lower grocery prices that have encouraged people to cook at home.



Photo Credit: Andrew Renneisen/Getty Images, file]]>
<![CDATA[$martMoney]]> Tue, 08 May 2012 09:08:56 -0500 ]]> <![CDATA[Amazon Buys Whole Foods: What That Means for Grocery Prices]]> Mon, 19 Jun 2017 15:01:35 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/whole-foods-market2.jpg

Analysts predict big changes for grocers following Amazon’s surprise purchase of Whole Foods, NBC News reported.

But they also say there is a clear winner here: Shoppers.

"This was a very exciting announcement because I think consumers will be the ones to benefit," said Lindsay Sakraida, director of content marketing at DealNews.

She predicts competitors will improve pricing, loyalty promotions and other inducements to try to keep customers from defecting to Amazon for pantry staples, dry goods and even fresh food.




Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Time Warner Just Handed Snapchat a $100 Million Lifeline]]> Mon, 19 Jun 2017 13:26:20 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/snapchat_1200x675.jpg

Snap, the company behind the social media app Snapchat, saw a spike in its shares on Monday after the announcement of a new deal with Time Warner.

The deal is valued at $100 million, people familiar with the matter told CNBC. The Wall Street Journal, which previously reported the news, said that talent like Ellen DeGeneres and Samantha Bee could be part of the arrangement.

Time Warner will make shows such as scripted dramas and comedies for the ephemeral messaging and augmented reality platform. Snapchat will also get ads from HBO, Turner and Warner Bros. over the next two years, the companies said in a statement.

The number of shows each day on Snapchat will grow from one per day to three per day by the end of this year, the companies said.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Dow Hits Another Record High at Open as Tech Stocks Bounce]]> Mon, 19 Jun 2017 09:00:10 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/wall-street-sign.jpg

The Dow Jones industrial average continued its march upward Monday, opening at a record high that tops last week's milestone of 21,391.97, CNBC reported.

The S&P 500 opened up 0.4 percent, leaving it just below a record of its own. And the Nasdaq composite rose as well, nearly 1 percent.

"I don't know where the optimism is coming from. That's not to say we should be negative. I just don't see any reason for excessive optimism or pessimism right now," said Randy Frederick, vice president of trading and derivatives at Charles Schwab.

Technology stocks were bouncing back from a rough week, with Facebook, Amazon, Apple, Netflix and Google-parent Alphabet all up about 1 percent in early trading.



Photo Credit: AP Photo/Mark Lennihan, File]]>
<![CDATA[Suburban City Council to Vote Again on Minimum Wage Hike]]> Mon, 19 Jun 2017 07:14:15 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/212*120/des+plaines+pic.png

Yet another Chicago suburb is slated to vote on whether it will opt out of an ordinance requiring Cook County business owners to raise minimum wage for workers.

The Des Plaines City Council is expected to vote Monday night as aldermen in the northwest Chicago suburb take up the measure for a second time in a so-called “do over” vote.

The suburban city council group had narrowly passed the law during their last meeting, voting in a surprising move to raise wages and require paid sick days, but a second vote was ordered after arguments from business owners in the area.

Dozens of suburbs have already voted to opt out of the Cook County wage hike, choosing to instead stay with state law mandates for wages. Among them are Tinley Park, Oak Lawn, Oak Forest, Palatine, Schaumburg, Mount Prospect and Arlington Heights.

The Cook County ordinance is set to take effect July 1, requiring businesses to pay $10 per hour and offer paid sick leave for full-time employees. It also calls for subsequent increases of $1 per hour each year until 2020, when the minimum wage will sit at $13 an hour.

The current state minimum wage is $8.25.

Minimum wage employees who believe a raise is long overdue are overwhelmingly in favor of the ordinance, but critics say it will lead to fewer jobs.

It’s estimated that by 2019, the wage bumps will have brought hundreds of thousands out of poverty and added $860 million to the city’s economy.

While some believed the county should wait for the state to approve a minimum wage increase, the Cook County Board said it decided to take on the issue because the “federal government and General Assembly have failed to act.”

“The fact is that the City of Chicago has already committed to a minimum wage increase. Since then, the drumbeat for a countywide wage increase has grown louder,” Commissioner Richard Boykin said in a statement. “If there is one trend that is more harmful to our Cook County economy more than any other, it is uncertainty.”

Boykin noted that while he sympathizes with "the arguments presented in opposition to this measure," he is "mindful of the challenge to our small businesses that is presented by a lack of uniformity in our wage laws."

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<![CDATA[US Treasury Department Releases FAQ on Cuba Changes]]> Fri, 16 Jun 2017 13:49:25 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-79836422.jpg

The Department of the Treasury's Office of Foreign Assets Control released a series of frequently asked questions regarding President Donald Trump's changes to the U.S. policy toward Cuba Friday, as the president announced the changes in Miami.

Frequently Asked Questions on President Trump’s Cuba Announcement:

1. How will OFAC implement the changes to the Cuba sanctions program announced by the President on June 16, 2017? Are the changes effective immediately?

OFAC will implement the Treasury-specific changes via amendments to its Cuban Assets Control Regulations. The Department of Commerce will implement any necessary changes via amendments to its Export Administration Regulations. OFAC expects to issue its regulatory amendments in the coming months. The announced changes do not take effect until the new regulations are issued.

2. What is individual people-to-people travel, and how does the President’s announcement impact this travel authorization?

Individual people-to-people travel is educational travel that: (i) does not involve academic study pursuant to a degree program; and (ii) does not take place under the auspices of an organization that is subject to U.S. jurisdiction that sponsors such exchanges to promote people-to-people contact. The President instructed Treasury to issue regulations that will end individual people-to-people travel. The announced changes do not take effect until the new regulations are issued.

3. Will group people-to-people travel still be authorized?

Yes. Group people-to-people travel is educational travel not involving academic study pursuant to a degree program that takes place under the auspices of an organization that is subject to U.S. jurisdiction that sponsors such exchanges to promote people-to-people contact. Travelers utilizing this travel authorization must maintain a full-time schedule of educational exchange activities that are intended to enhance contact with the Cuban people, support civil society in Cuba, or promote the Cuban people’s independence from Cuban authorities, and that will result in meaningful interaction between the traveler and individuals in Cuba. An employee, consultant, or agent of the group must accompany each group to ensure that each traveler maintains a full-time schedule of educational exchange activities.

4. How do the changes announced by the President on June 16, 2017 affect individual people-to-people travelers who have already begun making their travel arrangements (such as purchasing flights, hotels, or rental cars)?

The announced changes do not take effect until OFAC issues new regulations. Provided that the traveler has already completed at least one travel-related transaction (such as purchasing a flight or reserving accommodation) prior to the President’s announcement on June 16, 2017, all additional travel-related transactions for that trip, whether the trip occurs before or after OFAC’s new regulations are issued, would also be authorized, provided the travel-related transactions are consistent with OFAC’s regulations as of June 16, 2017.

5. How do the changes announced by the President on June 16, 2017 affect other authorized travelers to Cuba whose travel arrangements may include direct transactions with entities related to the Cuban military, intelligence, or security services that may be implicated by the new Cuba policy?

The announced changes do not take effect until OFAC issues new regulations. Consistent with the Administration’s interest in not negatively impacting Americans for arranging lawful travel to Cuba, any travel-related arrangements that include direct transactions with entities related to the Cuban military, intelligence, or security services that may be implicated by the new Cuba policy will be permitted provided that those travel arrangements were initiated prior to the issuance of the forthcoming regulations.

6. How do the changes announced by the President on June 16, 2017 affect companies subject to U.S. jurisdiction that are already engaged in the Cuban market and that may undertake direct transactions with entities related to the Cuban military, intelligence, or security services that may be implicated by the new Cuba policy?

The announced changes do not take effect until OFAC issues new regulations. Consistent with the Administration’s interest in not negatively impacting American businesses for engaging in lawful commercial opportunities, any Cuba-related commercial engagement that includes direct transactions with entities related to the Cuban military, intelligence, or security services that may be implicated by the new Cuba policy will be permitted provided that those commercial engagements were in place prior to the issuance of the forthcoming regulations.

7. Does the new policy affect how persons subject to U.S jurisdiction may purchase airline tickets for authorized travel to Cuba?

No. The new policy will not change how persons subject to U.S. jurisdiction traveling to Cuba pursuant to the 12 categories of authorized travel may purchase their airline tickets.

8. Can I continue to send authorized remittances to Cuba?

Yes. The announced policy changes will not change the authorizations for sending remittances to Cuba. Additionally, the announced changes include an exception that will allow for transactions incidental to the sending, processing, and receipt of authorized remittances to the extent they would otherwise be restricted by the new policy limiting transactions with certain identified Cuban military, intelligence, or security services. As a result, the restrictions on certain transactions in the new Cuba policy will not limit the ability to send or receive authorized remittances.

9. How does the new policy impact other authorized travel to Cuba by persons subject to U.S. jurisdiction?

The new policy will not result in changes to the other (non-individual people-to-people) authorizations for travel. Following the issuance of OFAC’s regulatory changes, travel-related transactions with prohibited entities identified by the State Department generally will not be permitted. Guidance will accompany the issuance of the new regulations.

10. How will the new policy impact existing OFAC specific licenses?

The forthcoming regulations will be prospective and thus will not affect existing contracts and licenses.

11. How will U.S. companies know if their Cuban counterpart is affiliated with a prohibited entity or sub-entity in Cuba?

The State Department will be publishing a list of entities with which direct transactions generally will not be permitted. Guidance will accompany the issuance of the new regulations. The announced changes do not take effect until the new regulations are issued.

12. Is authorized travel by cruise ship or passenger vessel to Cuba impacted by the new Cuba policy?

Persons subject to U.S. jurisdiction will still be able to engage in authorized travel to Cuba by cruise ship or passenger vessel. Following the issuance of OFAC’s regulatory changes, travel-related transactions with prohibited entities identified by the State Department generally will not be permitted.

Guidance will accompany the issuance of the new regulations.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[The Costs Of Being A Dad]]> Fri, 16 Jun 2017 12:57:45 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/dad-generic-and-son-shaving.jpg

Welcome to parenthood. You are a proud new father, simultaneously overjoyed and terrified. Since you are now responsible for another human being, you should know that the estimate of what it will cost to raise your child is approximately a quarter of a million dollars, without accounting for inflation.

If you would like to send him or her to college, you will probably need at least that much more. 

A report from the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) estimated the cost of raising a child from birth to age 17 at $233,610 ($284,570 adjusted for inflation). That is for the average middle-income couple; costs ranged from families in the Northeast that will spend around $264,090 to residents in the urban Midwest and rural regions who will spend about $227,400 and $193,020, respectively. 

Unfortunately, that figure is not likely to drop, and inflation-adjusted wages are not filling the gap. Costs are up across the board, and certain areas are taking an increasingly large share of the costs – especially health care, childcare and education (pre-school through high school). 

That ratio will continue to climb based on recent trends, especially with respect to childcare. 

Child Care of America (CCA) has put out an extensive report breaking down the demographics of childcare costs by state and the variations with respect to income and style of child care. Combining their data with Department of Labor statistics, CCA estimated that just in the last year, childcare costs outpaced family income by up to a factor of eight.

The CCA report shows that childcare costs and housing are the two largest components of household expenses by far – varying slightly by region, but each one is approximately twice the expenses of transportation and food, and around five times the expenses of utilities and health care. 

The percentages from the USDA report do not show childcare as quite as large of a component. Housing tops the percentages of child-raising costs at 29 percent, followed by food at 18 percent, childcare and education at 16 percent, transportation at 15 percent, health care at 9 percent, and clothing at 6 percent. Miscellaneous costs compose the remaining 7 percent. 

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) sets 10 percent of family income as a general benchmark for affordable childcare. Yet in the CCA study, only 10 states averaged less than 10 percent of family income for child care — the Dakotas, plus the southern block of Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Kentucky, Tennessee, Georgia, and South Carolina. 

The actual expenses of childcare are mostly independent of how much you earn. As a result, the disproportionate rise in childcare costs hurts low-income and single-parent families the most. It's no surprise that the steep bill that comes with raising a child can put a strain on your family's finances. 

Single dads have a difficult enough time handling childcare with a single income (as do single moms), because if they can't find affordable childcare or programs through their work, they have no choice but to rely on friends, relatives, or some form of unlicensed childcare. 

For married couples, there will be a threshold earnings value for the lower-earning spouse where it makes economic sense to stay home and care for children – but it may be hard for them to re-enter the workplace if they do. These are not always mothers, as there are increasing numbers of stay-at-home fathers with breadwinning mothers. 

It's okay to feel a little overwhelmed and terrified as a new father — there will be plenty more anxious moments along the way, but there will be even more moments filled with joy and wonder. Although it won't show up in your bank account, you are likely to get a great return on your investment of fatherhood. Have a happy Father's Day.

This article was provided by our partners at MoneyTips.com. Read more from MoneyTips:





Photo Credit: File-Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA['White Skittles' for U.K. Pride Month Are Drawing Backlash]]> Thu, 15 Jun 2017 12:07:54 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/skittles-and-tesco-crop.jpg

An all-white, limited edition of Skittles sold in the U.K. has ignited internet debate over what some critics are calling a tone-deaf marketing scheme to celebrate LGBT Pride month.

Skittles partnered with British retail chain Tesco for the second year to offer an all-white version of the candy in a black-and-white bag, following the launch of the #onerainbow campaign at London Pride last year.

Ads said that because "only one rainbow matters this pride," the multicolor candy would be going colorless in order to celebrate LGBT Pride month. It's celebrated every year in June—often with rainbow flags.

This year, some social media critics were not so happy with the brand's all-white campaign, saying the move erases racial diversity within the LGBT community.

"Happiness, fun and inclusion are at the heart of who we are," a U.K. spokesperson for Wrigley, the company that makes Skittles, said in a statement. "Any suggestion that this support for Pride is in any way racist is clearly wrong.”

Others still said they appreciated the marketing gesture and that the backlash was undeserved.

"This campaign allows us to have great fun with our brand while also raising awareness of an important issue," the Wrigley statement said, adding that the campaign allows the Pride rainbow to take center stage.




Photo Credit: Tesco.com
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<![CDATA[Nike to Cut About 2 Percent of its Global Workforce]]> Thu, 15 Jun 2017 10:15:03 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/nikeshoesdisplay_1200x675.jpg

Nike has announced a new business structure which includes cutting 2 percent of its global workforce on Thursday, CNBC reported.

Shares of Nike's stock were falling more than 2 percent Thursday morning following this announcement.

The new structure will focus on serving consumers in 12 cities across 10 countries and simplifying its business in North America, Europe, Middle East and Africa; Greater China; and Asia Pacific and Latin America.

Additional plans include a faster pipeline to serve shoppers with customization options.

 "Nike's leadership and organizational changes will streamline and speed up strategic execution," Nike said in a statement Thursday.




Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Gymboree Files For Bankruptcy]]> Mon, 12 Jun 2017 15:26:37 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/DIT_NAT_GYMBOREE_BANKRUPT_061217_3-149729151860300001.jpg

Children's clothing retailer Gymboree has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy and says it may close up to 450 stores.

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<![CDATA[Layoffs Could Total 1,000 as AOL and Yahoo Complete Merger]]> Wed, 07 Jun 2017 18:47:38 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/AP_410810447126.jpg

Layoffs are expected to take place across AOL and Yahoo that could number up to 1,000 jobs, or 20 percent of the combined company, sources told Recode.

The merger between the two companies — after Verizon bought both in succession to add tech and content to its mobile services — is expected to be completed in the next week. The shareholder meeting to approve the deal takes place tomorrow.

The layoffs were expected, given that both companies have a lot of redundancies, including in human resources, finance, marketing and general administration.

CNBC's parent NBCUniversal is an investor in Recode's parent Vox, and the companies have a content-sharing arrangement. 



Photo Credit: AP Photo/Richard Drew]]>
<![CDATA[Mom Seeks Friends: New App Matches Moms]]> Wed, 07 Jun 2017 05:25:40 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/momswithkids_1200x675.jpg

A new app on the tech scene allows for new moms from different walks of life to connect with each other nearby in a Tinderesque fashion, reported NBC News. 

Peanut, a new app created by mom Michelle Kennedy, looks to solve that by providing a platform where moms can meet other moms in their area.

Moms sign up, build a profile, select up to three categories to describe themselves ("wine time," "bookworm," "single mama," and "spiritual gangsta" are some of the options), and then find potential matches.

"When I became a mom and was looking to [socialize], everything felt very old school. All of a sudden online forums were my only option," Kennedy told NBC News. "I thought, 'I am not the only woman of my generation who has a child and wants to use a cool, sleek, modern product to meet other moms.'"

Kennedy has previously worked at Bumble and Badoo.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Here's What to Expect From Apple’s Big Event Next Week]]> Fri, 02 Jun 2017 12:36:07 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/applecompany_1200x675.jpg

Next week Apple is set to have its developer's conference, known as WWDC, where tech experts are expecting Apple to discuss new hardware and software, CNBC reported.

Most likely, Apple will reveal its new iOS 11 operating system ahead of its new iPhone launch later this fall. The tech giant typically unveils the fresh version of iOS during WWDC and then runs it through developer testing until around September when it pushes it out for everyone to use.

Little is known about what Apple will include in iOS 11, but possible improvements are expected for Siri, which has started to lag behind competitors like Google Assistant and even Amazon Alexa.



Photo Credit: Spencer Platt/Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Taxpayers May Have Overpaid by $1B for EpiPen: Senator]]> Wed, 31 May 2017 15:56:49 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/epipen1.jpg

American taxpayers may have overpaid by as much as $1.27 billion for EpiPen anti-allergy devices over the course of a decade, a U.S. senator said Wednesday. 

That is nearly three times the $465 million that EpiPen’s owner, drugmaker Mylan, last October said it agreed to pay the federal government to settle claims it overcharged the government-run Medicaid system for the devices. 

As CNBC reports, Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, said it looks like Mylan overcharged taxpayers for years by knowingly classifying the brand-name EpiPen as a generic drug, resulting in the company paying a lower rebate rate to Medicaid.

A spokeswoman for Mylan had no immediate comment.



Photo Credit: AP (File)]]>
<![CDATA[How Best Buy Escaped the Retail Apocalypse]]> Thu, 25 May 2017 18:52:10 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/Best+Buy+General+copy.jpg

Shares of Best Buy surged more than 20 percent Thursday after the company posted unexpected sales growth in same store locations.

Best Buy is a retail anomaly because it's an enjoyable place to shop, CNBC reported.

Best Buy has worked with partners like Google and Samsung to establish small sections of the store where each can show off new products. Visit a Samsung area, for example, and you'll find the latest smartphones and tablets, virtual reality headsets and accessories.



Photo Credit: Alexandra Clark/AP, File]]>
<![CDATA[Race Car Costs: The High Price of Fielding a Racing Team]]> Thu, 25 May 2017 10:54:23 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/indy500.jpg

Gentlemen, start your engines — of your money-munching machines.

While waiting for the flag to drop at the Indianapolis 500 this Memorial Day weekend, are you fantasizing about becoming a race car driver? You may have the driving skills, but you also need sponsors, a support team, and most importantly, money. Lots and lots of money. Monster truckloads of money. 

Spending varies greatly by types of racing as well as with individual teams, as open-wheel racing (Formula 1 or IndyCar), NASCAR Sprint Cup, and lower levels all have their own peculiar economic structure. Racing teams do not often reveal their costs or open their books for competitive reasons, but a few reporters have taken a peek under the hood. 

Michael Ballaban of Jalopnik.com was allowed access to the finances of one racing team competing in the 2015 Tudor (now WeatherTech) SportsCar Championship, and concluded that an average race team probably costs around $1 million per year, "give or take a couple hundred thousand." Should a car be totaled during the season, add another $400,000 to that sum for a full replacement. It’s not easy for racing teams to get cheap auto insurance

Major components cost tens of thousands of dollars, including engines and gearboxes at around $43,000 each, and the chassis/brake assembly at $65,500. You may think fuel is a huge expense, and it is significant at around $40,000-$50,000 per year, but it pales in comparison to tire costs: a season of racing tires (around 90 full sets) run teams around $225,000 per year. That's nearly a quarter-mill on tires only. So the next time you get a flat, don't complain.

Another large cost that can be overlooked by outsiders is entry fees. Ballaban estimated a bit over $100,000 in entry fees for the year. Simple things jack up the costs as well. Items like plane tickets, hotel rooms, and food for your team plus shipping logistics for your car and accessories can approach $10,000 per race. 

Want to race in NASCAR? Get ready to pony up. A 2014 article from Street & Smith's SportsBusiness Journal covered the finances of the Stewart-Haas (Tony Stewart and Gene Haas) racing team and found competition costs for a race at more than $1.4 million. That included the costs of the cars, which should last for more than one competition, but sometimes don't. The vehicles totaled $980,000, given the need to maintain primary and backup cars for each race. Each primary car cost approximately $200,000, with engine costs at roughly half of that total, and a chassis at $25,000. 

The team budgets $400,000 for firesuits for the year, but that didn't include the cost of dry cleaning: $2,400 per race. Even the ice bill for the weekend totaled $900. Don't forget to add team expenses that topped $125,000: flights and 44 hotel rooms took up over $82,000; transport for the cars, rental cars for the crew and support team, and other auxiliary transportation costs surpassed $30,000. The haulers that transport the car cost approximately $400,000 each and are replaced every five years. 

The cost of a NASCAR team through the season appears to be in the eight-digit range. An older Florida Times-Union report suggested that the costs approach $400,000 per week — if true, for a 38-week season, that is over $15 million in annual expenses. 

If you think that is chicken feed, perhaps Formula 1 racing is more your speed. Last year, Gene Haas of Stewart-Haas joined Formula 1 with two cars and spent a total of €117 million ($128 million), according to The News Wheel. That's just a fraction of the €386 million ($422 million) rung up by the top-spending Ferrari team. Gas 2 estimated in 2016 that an IndyCar cost roughly $3 million, including its chassis, transmission, brakes, engine, and tires, which are usually all mass-produced; a Formula 1 car's custom-built components drive the car's cost over $200 million. ESPN supports that IndyCar price, estimating a range of $3 million to $8 million per car, depending on the team. 

You need pretty good credit to get an auto loan for $3 million.  

A well-heeled sponsor is necessary in the upper levels of racing not to thrive, but just to survive. Prize money alone can't possibly pay the bills, and aside from the lowest local levels of racing, it is virtually impossible to be independent and field a racing team. 

But sponsors don't always get their money's worth. Danica Patrick, the only woman ever to win an IndyCar Series race, recently agreed to compete in two NASCAR races in a car and racesuit promoting the movie "Wonder Woman." It was a marketing match made in heaven. But one horrific crash later, and the car was totaled in its debut. So, if the Indy 500 puts me in the mood to put the pedal to the metal, I'm going to grab a roll of quarters and head to Chuck E. Cheese. 

This article was provided by our partners at MoneyTips.com. Read more from MoneyTips: 
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<![CDATA[Target Agrees to Settlement After Massive Data Breach]]> Tue, 23 May 2017 17:25:46 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-457903919.png

Years after a massive data breach that cost Target so much in both money and reputation, the company has agreed to a major settlement with 47 states, and Illinois at the lead.

Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan announced the $18.5 million settlement Tuesday, calling it the largest of its kind – fitting, as the 2013 breach remains the biggest of any retailer to date.

Headed up by Madigan, the states involved in the investigation wanted reassurance that despite all the data and money lost, something positive can come from the incident for consumer protections.

The breach hit right in the throes of the holiday shopping crunch three-and-a -half years ago, when authorities said cyber attackers accessed Target’s gateway server through credentials stolen from a third-party HVAC vendor around Nov. 12, 2013.

The hackers then used the credentials to access Target’s customer service database, according to Madigan, where they installed malware to capture data including names, telephone numbers, email addresses, mailing addresses, payment card numbers, expiration dates, credit card verification codes and encrypted debit pins.

In total, the breach impacted more than 60 million customers, including the payment information for 41 million people nationwide.

What Target lost in money is measurable, with more than $200 million paid back to banks and consumers. But as far as the company’s reputation goes – it’s unclear if the chain will ever recoup the trust that was lost.

"Target was absolutely the tipping point in the public's perception that ID theft is real, and retailers recognizing they could no longer not invest in data security,” Madigan said in an exclusive interview with NBC 5.

“Banks and retailers had to get it together and put into place chip and pin technology that countries in the rest of the world have been using 20 to 25 years,” she added.

The settlement also sets industry standards for better protecting consumers’ information from future breachers.

In particular, Target will now be required to develop and maintain an information security program, data security software and encryption policies.

The company must also hire an executive officer to execute the plan, as well as an independent third-party to conduct security assessments.

Essentially, the retail giant must engage in a constant effort to hack itself – to find the weak spots before the real hackers do.

The 2013 attack came through a simple phishing link that Madigan said exploited existing weaknesses in Target’s system.

"Target was unlucky in that that phishing scam was effective, and someone was able to get into their system and steal millions of people's info,” Madigan said. “But also there were things they should have been doing that even Target knew."

For its part, Target said it has been working with state attorneys general for several years to address issues raised by the data breach, and Madigan said the company has already rolled out most of the required changes.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Tesla Workers Suffer Fainting Spells, Dizziness: Report]]> Thu, 18 May 2017 20:48:15 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-479833756-Musk.jpg

Workers at Tesla's car factory in California have been fainting, experiencing dizziness and even having seizures, often requiring medical attention.

The symptoms have led to more than 100 calls for ambulances since 2014, according to incident reports obtained by the Guardian newspaper, which first reported the story Thursday.

Company CEO Elon Musk acknowledged that workers are "having a hard time, working long hours, and on hard jobs," but he also said he cared deeply about their health and well-being.

In a blog post published Sunday, the company said: “Tesla's safety record is much better than industry average, but it is not enough.”



Photo Credit: Getty Images (File)]]>
<![CDATA[US Dollar Surges After Traders Speculate on Trump ]]> Thu, 18 May 2017 14:48:09 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/stockmarketsgeneric_1200x675.jpg

The U.S. dollar suddenly surged against the British pound and other currencies Thursday after the reemergence of former FBI Director James Comey saying Trump never asked to end the probe, reported CNBC.

The month old CSPAN video was interpreted as former FBI Director James Comey saying he was never pressured to end an FBI probe.

However, in the video, Comey is answering a question specific to the U.S. Attorney General or "senior officials at the Department of Justice," not President Donald Trump.

However, multiple traders said this was the trigger for the move higher in the dollar, as well as the Dow Jones industrial average, which hit a new high for the day shortly after the initial currency move.



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<![CDATA[Companies Stashing Bitcoin in Anticipation of Cyberattacks]]> Thu, 18 May 2017 07:11:47 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/bitcoins.jpg

Companies are stockpiling bitcoins in preparation of future "ransomware" attacks, which have grown exponentially over the past few years, NBC News reported. 

According to cybersecurity experts and firms, about a third of British companies in 2016 retained a cache of digital monies as part of a strategy to "regain access to important intellectual property or business critical data." 

They keep Bitcoin on hand — which currently exchanges for about $1,800 per unit — because government agencies don't necessarily have a fix for institutions once hackers have taken hold of their files, and its cybercriminals' preferred payment method.

The most recent cyberattack, known as "WannaCry," took hundreds of thousands of computers' data files hostage unless users paid a $300 to $600 ransom via Bitcoin.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Cisco to Cut 1,100 More Jobs Amid Worse-Than-Expected Outlook]]> Wed, 17 May 2017 18:28:18 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/CISCO_AP_16229651180299.jpg

Cisco announced Wednesday that it will be cutting 1,100 employees as part of its expanded restructuring plan.

The new job cuts come only months after the enterprise technology company cut 5,500 jobs — seven percent of its workforce, as CNBC reported. 

The announcement came as the company reported better-than-expected earnings for the fiscal third quarter, but worse-than-feared forward guidance. Shares fell more than 5 percent after hours.

Cisco said last year it plans to reinvest the savings from its restructuring plan into "key priority areas such as security, IoT, collaboration, next-generation data center and cloud."



Photo Credit: AP Images, File]]>
<![CDATA[Stocks Suffer Worst Day of the Year Amid White House Chaos]]> Wed, 17 May 2017 15:14:02 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/wall-street-sign.jpg

U.S. stocks closed sharply lower on Wednesday as investors digested the latest news out of Washington, with the Dow Jones averagine about 370 points lower, Goldman Sachs contributing the most losses, CNBC reported.

The broader S&P 500 and Nasdaq also lagged, dropping 1.8 percent and 2.6 percent respectively.

Stocks had rallied all year in part because of hope for lower corporate taxes. But "an impeachment proceeding would blow the market away," former General Electric CEO Jack Welch told CNBC.

"This is clearly Washington-driven," said Michael Shaoul, chairman and CEO of Marketfield Asset Management. "It's a lot like 1998-99, when the market had to deal with the [Monica] Lewinsky scandal."



Photo Credit: AP]]>
<![CDATA[Lucky Charms to Give Away Boxes with Marshmallows Only]]> Wed, 17 May 2017 12:45:31 -0500 http://media.nbcchicago.com/images/213*120/luckycharms.jpg

General Mills is holding a contest to give away 10,000 boxes of Lucky Charms filled with only marshmallows.

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