Bumble rethinks how we connect online
9/29/2016 SmartBrief/Marketing

Building a successful dating app is tricky, as companies strive to attract a critical mass of users while preventing some of the harassment and negative behaviors that sometimes occur on these networks. Bumble's dating app gives only women the power to make the first move -- and the company is expanding into friendship and business-networking offerings.

Rate of student-loan defaults decreases

The overall rate of students defaulting on their federal loans has dipped from 11.8% last year to 11.3%, according to a report from the US Education Department. However, the default rate for students from private, nonprofit colleges rose slightly from 6.8% to 7%, while for-profit students defaulted at a rate of 15%, down from 15.8% a year ago.

US shutdown averted with interim spending bill

Members of the House and Senate passed a stopgap funding measure, averting a potential shut down of the US government and freeing lawmakers to leave the capital to campaign. The measure, which provides funds through Dec. 9, allocates $1.1 billion to deal with the Zika virus but doesn't include any of the restrictions on Planned Parenthood clinics that left earlier negotiations deadlocked.

Kroger CEO: Grocers must please diverse array of shoppers

Grocers will have to meet the needs of many different types of shoppers, from in-store browsers to online delivery customers, Kroger Chairman and CEO Rodney McMullen told attendees at a conference this week. "[W]hat we're trying to do is to make sure that it's a completely seamless experience for the customer, regardless of where they go," he said.

Health IT implementation tied to high costs, survey finds
9/28/2016 Medical Economics

A Medical Group Management Association survey showed that medical groups must spend more than $32,500 annually per full-time physician in the practice to install, manage and maintain health IT tools, including EHR systems. Practices can minimize reductions in productivity caused by EHR adoption by investing the money and time necessary to maximize the technology's benefits, says MGMA's Rob Tennant.

Starbucks showcases social heroes in digital videos
9/29/2016 Mobile Marketer

Starbucks has released an "Upstanders" series on social media and its app. The show features people who go above and beyond to make a difference in society.

American Eagle names a permanent finance chief

American Eagle Outfitters has hired former Polo Ralph Lauren executive Bob Madore as its new chief financial officer, replacing interim CFO Scott Hurd. Madore has worked in retail for more than 20 years and his resume includes stints at New York & Co. and Nine West Group.

Industry heavyweights band together on AI
9/29/2016 TechCrunch

Amazon, Alphabet, Facebook, IBM and Microsoft have come together to form "Partnership on AI," a group that aims to be inclusive of businesses of all sizes and to openly share research on AI topics such as privacy and ethics.

Right to Try Act signed into law in Calif.
9/29/2016 The Hill

California Gov. Jerry Brown signed into law "right to try" legislation that allows drug manufacturers to provide terminally ill patients with investigational drugs not yet approved by the FDA. The Right to Try Act covers terminally ill patients who have been previously treated with other FDA-approved drugs.

Will set-top changes be enough to get programmers onboard?

Federal Communications Commission Chairman Tom Wheeler has reportedly tweaked his set-top-box proposal to get programmers onboard, removing the FCC's oversight role from the proposal. However, the revised plan would allow the FCC to review the app standards process and step in if necessary; programmers have said they will not back the proposal if the FCC has any involvement.

Deal clears way for mixed-use development in Baltimore
9/29/2016 WJZ-TV (Baltimore)

About 250 acres of waterfront in South Baltimore will be home to the Port Covington mixed-use project with manufacturing space, residences, playgrounds, parks and headquarters for Under Armour. Baltimore's mayor has signed off on $760 million in tax breaks for the developer, who must still negotiate federal and state funding for infrastructure.

Oil output rises in Texas while gas production falls for July

The Texas Railroad Commission reports that oil output rose in July while gas production dropped. Preliminary results showed Karnes County led in oil production and Webb County led in natural gas.

American Airlines rolls out no-cost Preferred Seat access for business travelers
9/28/2016 Travelbiz

Corporate travelers are now able to access Preferred Seats aboard American Airlines flights at no additional cost, regardless of their loyalty rewards status. These seats offer standard economy legroom.

Hotel pipeline includes almost 2M rooms, report says
9/29/2016 Hotel Management online

More than 11,000 hotels with nearly two million rooms are in development worldwide, up 3% over last year, according to Lodging Econometrics' Global Construction Pipeline Trend Report. Despite the increase, multiple economic and political variables concern the industry.