Chairman Edward Lampert's $4.6 billion offer to buy Sears includes a provision to release Lampert and entities he controls from liability for spinoffs, refinancing and other deals done since 2012. The deals are the subject of an investigation by the retailer and unsecured creditors.
An Ohio elementary school has started a science, technology, engineering and math class in which students build structures with Legos and learn computer skills. Parents' fundraising efforts contributed to the program, intended to teach students 21st-century skills, such as problem-solving, teacher Mary Ann Smiley said.
US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer said if a trade deal with China hasn't been agreed upon by March 1, the US will proceed with new tariffs. "As far as I am concerned it is a hard deadline," he said.
Grocers continue to increase their focus on local produce to ensure freshness, but also to keep up with increasing consumer demand for locally grown items. "We have 'locally grown' signage throughout the store that makes a call-out if the product is from the Midwest, since we are a Midwest-based company, or if it is specific to the state or area that store is in," said Fresh Thyme's Scott Schuette.
The latest figures from the CMS show that about 3.2 million people chose Affordable Care Act plans through the federal exchange in the first five weeks of open enrollment this year, down 11% from 3.6 million during the same period last year. The number of new consumers is down 17% from last year with only a week remaining in the open enrollment period, which ends Dec. 15.
Spotify has partnered with "The Ellen DeGeneres Show" in a deal that includes on-air integrations during the show and a hub on the music streaming platform curated by DeGeneres that will feature her favorite videos, playlists and her podcast. "We can't wait to unveil additional parts of this this long-term collaboration, and help each other reach new and existing fans in fresh and innovative ways," said Spotify's Dawn Ostroff.
China's JD.com and US tech company Intel will cooperate to develop new internet of things tools for the retail arena. The joint venture, dubbed the Digitized Retail Joint Lab, will work on digital projects for online-to-offline retail such as vending machines and focus on expanding their innovations globally.
The leader of a group that engaged in distributed denial-of-service attacks against websites and made bomb threats against schools has been sentenced in the UK to three years in prison. George Duke-Cohan, part of a group that called itself the Apophis Squad, could still face charges in the US.
The White House has issued a memorandum calling for reports and recommendations related to wireless technology, setting in motion a process intended to produce a national 5G connectivity strategy. At the same time, it made a blog post headlined "America Will Win the Global Race to 5G."
Rep. John Yarmuth, D-Ky., the incoming chairman of the House Budget Committee, is expected to introduce legislation in January that would have the federal government sell up to $300 billion in 40-year bonds to fund an infrastructure bank. The bonds measure could be rolled into a larger public works bill.
The Bureau of Land Management has proposed loosening Obama-era regulations protecting the greater sage grouse in seven Western states to open more land for oil and natural gas drilling and other activities.
Delta Air Lines has launched a biometric international terminal at Georgia's Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, featuring facial-recognition technology at check-in, the security checkpoint, boarding and Customs.
The Hotel Petaluma in Petaluma, Calif., held its third annual Gingerbread House Showcase and Competition over the weekend, with an array of imaginative renderings of sweet building materials and faux snow frosting. Children's creations shared the stage with elaborate replicas of local structures.