Dairy Farmers Struggle With Economic, Health Challenges

By Brian Baker Medill Reports Andrews University opened its dairy farm in 1907. For more than a century, the private college in southwest Michigan used the farm for educational purposes and relied on it for financial income. But after three consecutive years of losses, the university’s board voted in early June to close its dairy […]

Berkshire Hathaway’s Governance Unique Among Public Companies

By Brian Baker Medill Reports Todd Combs, an investment officer at Berkshire Hathaway Inc., received $376,750 in total compensation last year for serving on the board of directors at JPMorgan Chase & Co. That’s nearly 140 times what Bill Gates earned as a director on the board of Berkshire. “No Berkshire director is in it […]

Your Senator Filled Out An NCAA Bracket – You’ll Never Guess Who They Picked

By Brian Baker Medill Reports Shortly before the NCAA Tournament tipped off last Thursday, Virginia U.S. Senator Mark Warner sent a tweet that included a picture of his bracket. “Just filled out my #MarchMadness bracket. @UVA’s going all the way,” it read. The University of Virginia did not go all the way. Millions of Americans […]

Weekly jobless claims rise off lows as market awaits Friday’s Jobs Report

By Brian Baker Medill Reports Initial weekly jobless claims rose during the week ended March 3 after hitting the lowest level since December 1969 in the previous week. Jobless claims, which measure the number of Americans filing for first-time unemployment benefits, rose 21,000 to a seasonally adjusted 231,000 during the most recent week, according to […]

Japan’s top e-retailer hopes sports sponsorships increase U.S. awareness

By Brian Baker Medill Reports When the defending NBA Champion Golden State Warriors arrive for practice, they arrive at the Rakuten Performance Center in Oakland. When they put on their game jerseys, they put on a jersey with a Rakuten logo. In Spain, FC Barcelona, one of the world’s most recognizable soccer teams, also wears […]

Shares of Hanesbrands Fall After Outlook Disappoints Investors

By Brian Baker Medill Reports Shares of Hanesbrands Inc. fell nearly 11 percent Thursday after the company reported disappointing fourth quarter operating results and its 2018 guidance fell short of analyst estimates. The Winston-Salem, N.C.-based company reported a $384.6 million loss for the quarter ended Dec. 30 or $1.06 per diluted share, compared with net […]

Tax Reform Boosts AutoNation Results

By Brian Baker Medill Reports AutoNation Inc. reported quarterly results that beat analyst estimates due to strong profit growth on used vehicles, benefits from recent U.S. tax reform and business divestitures. Nevertheless, the stock dropped nearly 4 percent. The Fort Lauderdale, Fla.-based auto retail chain reported net income of $151.3 million or $1.64 per share […]

Caterpillar Reports Strong 4th Quarter Results

By Brian Baker Medill Reports Caterpillar Inc. reported strong quarterly earnings driven by improving end markets, particularly in North America, where demand for construction equipment and onshore oil and gas equipment boosted results that outpaced analyst estimates. The Deerfield, Ill.-based manufacturing giant reported adjusted earnings per share of $2.16 for the quarter ended Dec. 31 […]

Chicago Community Catalyst Fund Still Waiting to Make First Investments

Chicago City Treasurer Kurt Summers speaks with Christina Hachikian of the Rustandy Center at the Gleacher Center. Jan. 17, 2018. (Brian Baker/MEDILL)

By Brian Baker Medill Reports More than a year after it was first announced, the Chicago Community Catalyst Fund has not yet hired investment managers who will be charged with finding investment opportunities–mainly loans to existing small businesses–in underserved Chicago neighborhoods. Even then the rollout will be slow. The fund will deploy its first capital […]