Monday was biggest online shopping day
Shoppers spent more than $3 billion online this "Cyber Monday," making it the biggest online shopping day ever. Research firm comScore said shopping by phone, laptop or tablet jumped 21 percent to $3.11 billion Monday, fueled by a 53 percent surge in spending via mobile devices. The 10-year-old shopping holiday has lost some of its luster as retailers start sales even earlier than the traditional Thanksgiving and Black Friday sprees. Yet "Cyber Monday" has become ingrained in the minds of enough shoppers and it endures as the top online spending day of the year. It's the sixth year in a row that Cyber Monday has been top online sales day on record. Mobile spending, or sales via smartphones and tablets, jumped 53 percent to $838 million, making up 27 percent of total online spending. Top online shopping destinations included Amazon, Wal-Mart, eBay, Target and Best Buy.
Cabela's might be seeking a buyer
Cabela's, the outdoor sporting goods chain known for its elaborate in-store wildlife displays, may be seeking a buyer. The retailer has been under pressure since late October when the investment firm Elliott Management started pushing for money-generating maneuvers from Cabela's, possibly the sale of its credit card unit or the entire company. Elliott owns 6 percent of Cabela's shares and holds options to buy another 5 percent. The company has been attempting to cut spending due to weak sales and in September it laid off 70 people, eliminating about 4 percent of its corporate workforce. Cabela's operates Minnesota stores in Woodbury, Owatonna, Rogers and East Grand Forks.
Trucks recalled due to tire dangers
A semitrailer truck manufacturer is recalling more than 2,000 semis because they reach speeds greater than their tires are built to handle. The move by Peterbilt in the U.S. and Canada raises questions about the safety of thousands of other trucks on U.S. roads. Peterbilt says in government documents that it's recalling tractors from 2009 to 2016 because they can exceed 75 miles per hour, even though the maximum speed their Michelin tires can handle is 65 mph. The trucks mainly haul automobiles. Peterbilt says the tires can fail and cause a crash. Dealers will reprogram computers so the trucks can't go over 65.
Second patient death in drug study
Zafgen Inc. on Wednesday reported a second patient death in an ongoing study of its potential treatment for a rare genetic disorder linked to obesity. The Boston-based company's shares plunged more than 60 percent in trading Wednesday. The biotechnology company said the patient died from a blockage in an artery in the lung, or blood clots, in the late-stage study of beloranib. It reported a previous death in October in the same study, but the cause is unknown. The Food and Drug Administration placed a partial hold on the study following the first reported death. Beloranib is the company's lead drug candidate and is aimed at treating the rare genetic disorder called Prader Willi syndrome. The condition has multiple symptoms and is linked to obesity.
GE to pay $2.25M fine for air pollution
General Electric Co. has agreed to pay a $2.25 million penalty for releasing unsafe levels of air pollution from a hazardous waste incinerator in upstate New York and submitting false pollution control records. The U.S. Justice Department announced the settlement Wednesday for violations at GE's former silicone plant in Waterford, 10 miles north of Albany. The Justice Department says GE employees manually overrode the plant's automatic waste feed cutoff system nearly 1,900 times between 2006 and 2007. The override allowed GE to continue to burn hazardous waste in violation of its air pollution permits. The plant is now owned and operated by Momentive Performance Materials.