Shutdown all-but certain at midnight as spending bill lacks votes Getty Images President Donald Trump tweeted late Friday it “wasn’t looking good” for resolving a pending government shutdown. A House-passed bill that would keep the federal government operating through mid-February did not have enough votes to pass the Senate late Friday, making a shutdown at midnight all-but certain.
If a deal isn’t struck in less than an hour, the federal government would partially shut down for the first time since 2013.
Democrats have demanded that a funding bill address the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, which President Donald Trump has ordered an end to. Democrats want to extend the program, which spares certain undocumented immigrants from deportation.
A shutdown Saturday would coincide with Trump’s one-year anniversary in office.
Earlier Friday, Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer said he and Trump had made some progress after a meeting in the Oval Office.
The vote ..Read More →

The Uber-Waymo trial will be more boring than we thought, if it still happens The highly anticipated courtroom drama between a Silicon Valley tech titan and an ambitious ride-hailing upstart may end up hinging completely on arcane details about one crucial technology on the companies’ self-driving vehicles, thanks to a ruling this week—if that decision doesn’t lead to a last-minute detente.
Jury selection is set to begin Jan. 31 in the continuing civil litigation between belligerents Alphabet Inc.-owned Waymo and Uber Technologies Inc., nearly a year after the case was first filed. Alphabet GOOGL, +0.66% GOOG, +0.68% has accused Uber of stealing 14,000 confidential documents, through the acquisition of a company started by former Waymo employee Anthony Levandowski, who allegedly downloaded the files before he left the company.
The legal fight has already been a lurid affair involving alleged corporate espionage, a young company’s bare-knuckle approach to business, and dramatic court..Read More →

Putin enjoys ‘great’ dip in icy water of Lake Seliger in northwest Russia So, Russian President Vladimir Putin, how does it feel to plunge shirtless into an iced-over lake in northwestern Russia on a 20-degree Fahrenheit day in January? As brutal as it sounds?
‘No, it’s great.’ Vladimir Putin Putin, 65, was marking the Orthodox Epiphany late Thursday with the icy, ritual dip, as he’s done less publicly on a number of occasions, as his spokesman, Dmitry Peskov, reportedly told the Guardian.
This time around, Putin, who’s standing for re-election in March, welcomed Russian TV coverage of the event, in which, according to the Guardian, up to 2 million adherents of the country’s traditional religious denomination participate annually at sites all around the country as well as in neighboring Ukraine and other countries — to wit:

A goose attacks an Orthodox believer as he leaves the icy waters of a pond during the celebration of the Orthodox Epiphany holiday in Kiev More →

Presidential candidate fielding all manner of financial questions While one can apparently be elected president absent financial transparency, here’s a presidential candidate who’s taking quite another approach: Eric Wynalda.
Wynalda, a contender in the hotly contested race to become president of the Chicago-based U.S. Soccer Federation, is fielding and engaging with all manner of questions about his not-unblemished financial life, including, according to a recent New York Times report, a bankruptcy and the placement of liens placed against his personal assets.
What it mainly boils down to, according to the former professional player of the game and an American international, is this:
‘When you have an ex-wife that is attached to you financially, there is a lot of stuff you’ve got to go through. People have gone through divorces. I think they get it.’ Eric Wynalda Tony Quinn/MLS Eric Wynalda. Wynalda, best known in recent years for his television soccer commentary, is joined among c..Read More →

Ford earnings: Disappointing outlook, stock weakness among stumbling blocks Ford Motor Co. comes to the week of its fourth-quarter earnings release hobbled by weak guidance and lows for its stock.
The auto maker is scheduled to report results after the bell on Wednesday.
Ford’s guidance earlier this month has disappointed Wall Street, and analysts are likely to scour earnings for signs the company can weather the storm.
Bright points for Ford F, -0.58% include its best-selling pickup trucks and SUVs, the type of vehicles that U.S. residents have taken a marked liking in recent years at the expense of sedans and compacts. The company is also looking at launching compact SUVs this year, which have also grown in popularity.
“That’s where the profits are, and where the volumes are,” said Efraim Levy, an analyst with CFRA.
Related: Tesla’s roaring start to 2018 is costing short sellers $1 billion
Ford has played catch-up to rival General Motors Co. GM, -1.62% which is winning Wall..Read More →

IBM could struggle just to meet its disappointing outlook International Business Machines Corp. will be challenged in the short term to stabilize its margins, meet its somewhat disappointing outlook and maintain a minuscule tax rate, analysts said Friday.
IBM IBM, -3.99% shares started falling late Thursday and dropped 4% to close at $162.37 Friday, after the company offered a disappointing outlook along with an earnings beat and return to revenue growth following 22 straight quarters of declines. Friday marked the biggest one-day percentage drop for the stock in six months, when shares fell 4.2% on July 19, and wiped out gains from earlier in the week. By comparison, the Dow Jones Industrial Average DJIA, +0.21% , which counts IBM as a component, rose 0.2% Friday for a 1% weekly gain, and the S&P 500 index SPX, +0.44% advanced 0.4% for a 0.9% weekly gain.
In a conference call Thursday afternoon, IBM predicted 2018 operating earnings of “at least” $13.80 a share—the same earnings tot..Read More →

Gold rally brightens the outlook for mining stocks Gold mining stocks lagged behind gains for the precious metal last year, but they could overtake the gold rally in 2018.
“Gold miners have been underperforming gold for the last several years, which is not unusual during a bear market or falling price,” said Peter Spina, president and chief executive officer of “But over the prior few years as gold has moved hundreds of dollars off the low, miners have not led the gold price higher” and instead mostly kept up pace with the gold price.
That could soon change as analysts forecast a further rise in gold, and gold mining stocks start the year on a strong note.
The NYSE Arca Gold Bugs Index HUI, +0.20% which includes some of largest unhedged gold mining stocks, has already gained roughly 2.7% for the year so far. It only rose about 5.5% last year. The Philadelphia Gold and Silver Index XAU, +0.46% has added about 3.6% year to date, after a rise of 8.1% last year.
The gai..Read More →

Government shutdown could delay tax refunds and is Amazon Prime still worth it after the monthly price hike? Friday's top personal finance stories Happy Friday, MarketWatchers! Here are your top personal finance stories of the day.
Personal Finance Why we have trouble kissing bad relationships and investments goodbye The sunk cost fallacy extends from public transport and relationships to stocks student debt.

Millions of Americans are one pay check away from the street As income stagnates, millions of Americans are struggling to save money.

This is why poker players do so well on Wall Street A top pro poker player has joined the world’s largest hedge fund.

Is Amazon Prime still worth it after monthly price hike? The online retail giant just raised subscription fees again.

A Wall Street legend gave $75 million to philosophy majors and, yes, it’s a good investment Philosophy majors are more likely than other graduates to become CEOs.

Government shutdown could delay ..Read More →