High-ranking Snap execs fired over scandal

Snap fired several senior leaders, including former head of global security Francis Racioppi, following an investigation about an alleged affair that Racioppi had with an outside contractor. Corey Webeck, the former manager of global resiliency, was let go for his alleged role in the cover-up.

Some GI Bill tuition going to ineligible colleges

An audit by the US Department of Veterans Affairs, Office of Inspector General shows poor oversight has allowed more than $1.54 million in tuition money from the GI Bill to go to "ineligible or potentially ineligible" colleges and universities from February 2015 to January 2016. Daniel Elkins, director of the Veterans Education Project, says the report doesn't distinguish between colleges that fail to file proper paperwork and those lacking academic quality.

China's economic growth lowest in 28 years

China's GDP rose by 6.6% in 2018, the slowest expansion in nearly three decades, the government said. Factory activity, retail spending and investment all declined, the National Bureau of Statistics said.

Walmart picks more partners to expand grocery delivery

Walmart will team with Point Pickup, Skipcart, AxleHire and Roadie to grow its grocery delivery service in four states, as part of the retailer's ongoing efforts to bring grocery delivery to 1,600 stores. The company offers delivery from 800 stores with partners including Postmates, Deliv and DoorDash.

Swapping 30 minutes of sitting with physical activity cuts death risk

Replacing 30 minutes of sitting per day with physical activity lowers the risk of premature death by up to 35% in older adults, according to a study in the American Journal of Epidemiology. Moderate to vigorous activity was most effective, but even light-intensity activity was associated with a 17% lower risk of premature mortality.

Acxiom backs Apple CEO, US national privacy law

Data broker Acxiom has issued a statement that backs Apple CEO Tim Cook's call for US national privacy legislation. "What everyone must understand is that the cost of compliance for all businesses in the US will be punitive and detrimental to our economy if everyone must adhere to multiple and independent state laws versus a singular, united set of policies across the US," the statement says.

J. Crew Chairman Mickey Drexler to leave company

Mickey Drexler will step down as chairman of J. Crew, exiting the company after a 15-year stint, at a time when the retailer is also looking for a new chief executive. Drexler resigned the CEO post in 2017 and was succeeded by Jim Brett, who left late last year.

Google to buy Fossil smartwatch IP for $40M

Google will buy the intellectual property rights to Fossil's smartwatch in a deal worth $40 million. The purchase will include some of Fossil Group's research and development team moving over to Google.

Device makers seek transparency on Breakthrough Devices Program

Medical device makers are calling on the FDA's Center for Devices and Radiological Health to provide a database of products that have been approved under the Breakthrough Devices Program, as well as the rationale, as a way to increase transparency. At a recent FDA webinar, Steve Silverman, AdvaMed's vice president of technology and regulatory affairs, recommended publishing metrics including the total time to FDA decision and the number of requests granted versus denied.

AI to come to the fore for telecom sector in 2019

Artificial intelligence will be implemented in networks, industrial applications, services and virtualization in the coming year, analysts say. It will also play a part in 5G cellular communications, the internet of things and expanding bandwidth for video streaming, they note.

Atlanta issued $5.6B in building permits last year

Construction is booming in Atlanta, with a record $5.6 billion in construction permits issued in 2018. Permits grew from roughly $930 million in 2011 to more than $4.6 billion in 2017, covering public transit, apartments, office towers and more.

Colo. may boost local government involvement in decisions on oil, gas

New Colorado Gov. Jared Polis unveiled plans for legislation that would grant more power to local governments in decisions related to the state's $32 billion oil and natural gas industry. Polis said that solidifying local control would improve market confidence and investor certainty.

SpaceX moves one step closer to manned Crew Dragon flight

SpaceX took one step closer to a manned mission as the company raised a Falcon 9 rocket with its Crew Dragon capsule into position at its Florida launchpad. A test flight anticipated within about a month and the Crew Dragon will eventually take astronauts to and from the International Space Station.

Alaska Airlines introduces new West Coast wine menu

Alaska Airlines is introducing a new West Coast wine menu that includes a rotating selection of wines chosen for their superior taste. "We really looked into what would play well in the air when you're [30,000] or 40,000 feet up," said Jonathan Hardy, certified sommelier.