US dollar surges as Fed signals interest-rate hike

The US dollar gained ground Wednesday as the Federal Reserve released minutes from its September meeting that indicate another rate increase is likely in 2018.

Teachers tie real-world activities to STEM

Educators are tapping real-world experiences to teach science, technology, engineering and math lessons. The Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association offers curricula and resources to teach students about flight, while iFly offers indoor skydiving experiences to students learning about velocity, force and motion.

CFTC commissioner: Smart contracts coders might be liable for violations

Commodity Futures Trading Commission member Brian Quintenz said code developers involved with smart contracts or similar blockchain-based projects could be held accountable if CFTC regulations are violated. At issue is whether coders "could reasonably foresee, at the time they created the code, that it would likely be used by US persons in a manner violative of CFTC regulations," Quintenz said.

Time Out to open US food halls in 2019

Time Out Group will expand its food hall concept to the US next year, after building the business model in Portugal for four years. The first US location, slated to open in Miami Beach, will include 17 concepts from local chefs and food halls will follow in Boston, Chicago and New York later in 2019.

Incompatible EHR platforms could affect patient care, study finds

A study in BMC Health Services Research showed that the lack of interoperability in EHR systems could hinder the adoption of such technologies and affect patient care improvements. Researchers found that hospitals are more likely to exchange clinical summaries with other facilities in the region if they use the same vendor, driven by the ease of communication between their EHR systems.

Facebook gets tougher on clickbait ads

Facebook has announced that it will ban or demote ads that have clickbait headlines but no substantive information on landing pages; that policy will also apply to ads that use sensationalized language or low-quality content. The platform said that advertisers who continually post low-quality content could be penalized across all campaigns.

Walmart looks to lighting, floor wax to cut costs

Walmart has switched its stores to a less-expensive floor wax that requires less buffing, a move that will save the retailer more than $20 million a year, Chief Financial Officer Brett Biggs said. The company is focused on small changes to create big savings -- swapping out fluorescent bulbs for LED lights over time is forecast to ultimately save $200 million.

New privacy tool gives Apple users access to data

In a move that mirrors Apple's response to General Data Protection Regulation mandates in Europe, Apple users in the US will now be able to download, delete or change data the company has collected on them.

FDA issues draft guidance on medical device cybersecurity

A draft guidance has been issued by the FDA in hopes of improving cybersecurity protection for medical devices through the update of recommendations for device design, labeling and documentation, as well as the enhancement of the premarket review process. The guidance, which replaces the first one released by the agency four years ago, covers de novo requests, premarket notifications, product development protocols, premarket approval applications and humanitarian device exemption applications.

Hulu may offer smaller TV bundle sans cable networks

Hulu CEO Randy Freer recently said that the service may offer smaller bundles of programming that would include news and sports while limiting cable content to on-demand shows. The move could let Hulu eliminate network carriage fees and attract customers looking for cost-friendly options.

Video: $1.6B LAX terminal renovation breaks ground

Over the next decade, American Airlines will spend $1.6 billion to renovate its terminals at Los Angeles International Airport. The project, which broke ground Oct. 17, will entail upgrading check-in facilities at Terminal 5, connecting terminals on both sides of the building and combining the baggage claim and check-in areas.

US energy trade balance improves amid export growth

The American energy trade gap has diminished considerably over the past 10 years, with the value of energy imports only about 1.5 times higher than exports in 2017, compared with the 2003-2007 period when imports were running 10 times greater than exports in value, according to the US Census Bureau. Crude oil is still the biggest energy import into the US, while petroleum products represent the primary export at 70% of the total value of 2017's US energy exports.

Basic economy might be bad for fliers, but it's smart strategy

The airline industry is an example of how offering clear pricing tiers, starting with a cheap option that offers little or no perks, sets customer expectations and helps them decide whether to spend more, write Thomas A. Stewart and Patricia O'Connell. "By creating a class of service many passengers shun, basic economy appears to have made ordinary service seem less bad," they write.

W Hotels' Brazil debut coming in 2021

W Hotels will arrive in Brazil in 2021 with the opening of the W Sao Paulo. "Brazil is beautiful in every way, from the diversity in design and architecture to the endless varieties of dishes to the people themselves. Everyone wants to be a part of the action, and W is no exception," said Anthony Ingham, W Hotels Worldwide's global brand leader.