US gas consumption slumps in January
2/20/2017 Fortune

US gasoline consumption dropped to its lowest level in 15 years during January, putting sales at odds with strong consumer demand in other areas. However, the drop in demand was likely due to higher prices at the pump and not lower budgets for consumers, says Ellen Zentner, a Morgan Stanley economist.

What campus IT can learn from Snap's IPO
2/20/2017 InsideHigherEd.com

Campus technologists can improve their communication strategy and IT advocacy by studying the recent IPO filing from SnapChat, Joshua Kim writes. Transparency about risk and obstacles is the best way to demonstrate confidence in IT vision and generate support from skeptical stakeholders, according to Kim.

Will Trump tinker with economic stats?

Statisticians are worried the Trump administration will change methodology for economic reports in the name of political expediency, according to a blog post by a newly retired government employee. The White House is considering changing calculation of the trade deficit to better reflect its position on trade, sources say.

Kroger adds staff to stores as e-commerce grows

Kroger has added between 25 and 40 new jobs at stores that offer its click-and-collect ClickList service, starting with a full-time manager, lead selector and lead attendant to get the service up and running, said Jeff Evans, e-commerce manager of Kroger's Delta Division. The retailer has the potential to add additional jobs at its stores with the eventual launch of a home-delivery service, Evans said.

Study finds improving survival among extreme preemies

The survival rates among extremely preterm infants increased from 30% in 2000 to 36% in 2011, and the rate of those who didn't develop neurological impairments at ages 18 to 22 months rose from 16% to 20% over the same period, according to a study in the New England Journal of Medicine. Researchers said that survival improvements may be tied to wider steroid use among mothers and lower infection rates.

My Coke Rewards devotees worry about new loyalty program
2/20/2017 Bloomberg

Coca-Cola is revamping its loyalty program to move away from codes on caps and labeling to a digital-based rewards scheme focusing on experiences. Fans of My Coke Rewards are rushing to redeem their cap-based rewards while they still can, and consumers have been venting their frustrations on social media about the lack of clarity on what will come next.

Timberland prepares shoe line made from recovered waste
2/20/2017 GreenBiz.com

Timberland is partnering with Thread International to launch a line of sneakers and boots made from trash collected in Haiti. The shoes made from the "Ground to Good" fabric will be released this spring.

Google's Android Wear 2.0 dives deeper into fitness
2/20/2017 CNET

Google has updated its Android Wear platform to work better with the Google Fit app, which provides fitness tracking and on-watch app downloads. Android Wear 2.0 is designed to work across platforms, while Google Fit remains an Android-based app.

Boehringer's asthma treatment approved by FDA for pediatric use
2/17/2017 Pharmacy Times online

Boehringer Ingelheim's Spiriva Respimat, or tiotropium bromide, has been approved by the FDA for use as a long-term, once-a-day treatment for asthma in patients at least 6 years old. The drug was initially approved for the same condition for patients 12 years and older.

Sen. Hatch touts free and open internet in Innovation Agenda
2/17/2017 Broadcasting & Cable

Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, has released an Innovation Agenda that promotes a free and open internet. The industry is praising the agenda, which seeks patent reform, protects cross-border data flows and preserves "the open, competitive nature of the internet against unnecessary government regulation while promoting continued development of innovative online services."

OSHA suits back whistleblowers

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration filed two whistleblower defense lawsuits against companies it says fired workers for reporting safety violations. The lawsuits seek reinstatement or front pay, compensation of costs and expungement of personnel files for those who filed the claims.

Iberdrola signs 15-year PPA with Southern California Edison
2/20/2017 ReNews.biz (U.K.)

Iberdrola Renewables has secured a 15-year power purchase agreement with Southern California Edison for output from its 132-megawatt Tule wind farm in California, according to the company. The project is expected to begin operations this year.

Air Canada grows net profit in 2016
2/20/2017 Air Transport World

Air Canada's 2016 net profit has almost tripled that of 2015, with the company reporting $650 million. Revenue increased by 5.8% for the year.

Industry sees expansion of gifts, free services
2/20/2017 Hotel Management online

Complimentary amenities are a rising investment for the hospitality industry. Rooms-sector freebie spending growth has more than tripled that of overall operating outlays.