Detroit Free Press / Business

Wednesday, Dec 13


Fed rate hike to drive up cost of borrowing on credit cards, other loans

A record high stock market — and an ultra-low U.S. jobless rate — gave the Federal Reserve more room to raise short-term interest rates by a quarter point on Wednesday. Short-term rates will move to a range of 1.25% to 1.50%. Banks are…

Friday, Dec 8


Detroit startup Lunar Wireless is saving smartphone users hundreds a year

Ka Thao of Warren once paid $60 a month for smartphone service. Since switching to a new pay-per-app service offered by a Detroit-based startup, Lunar Wireless, her monthly bills have plummeted to around $10. "I've been saving so much…

Thursday, Dec 7


Ford to build electric vehicles in Mexico, revamp Flat Rock plant for self-driving cars

Clarification: This version of the story clarifies Ford's plan for its electric car production in Mexico. Ford Motor Co. is shifting production of an all-electric vehicle to Mexico, while saying it will create 850 jobs by adding production…


Former Volkswagen manager Oliver Schmidt gets 7 years in diesel emissions cheating scandal

Detroit Free Press

A federal court judge in Detroit sentenced a former Volkswagen manager Wednesday to 7 years in prison and ordered him to pay $400,000 in the company's massive diesel emissions cheating scandal, but Judge Sean Cox made clear that justice…

Friday, Dec 1


A new American supercar? Aria says it will deliver a 1150-horsepower beast in 2019

Aria has built high-end concept cars for automakers such as Tesla, so the Irvine, Calif.-based company expects it can manage delivery of an American supercar in the next two years. The Aria FXE is making an appearance at the 2017 Los…


LA auto show Hits & Misses: From hybrid Jeeps to utility-free SUVs and truck-sized typos

The Los Angeles auto show delivers its share of innovation and stylish new designs, including some from a galaxy far, far away. A close look at the new vehicles debuting in L.A. also reveals a few head-scratching decisions, over-heated…

Wednesday, Nov 29


First look: 2019 Chevy Corvette is faster and more powerful than ever

LOS ANGELES – Chevrolet unveiled the fastest and most powerful convertible in the Corvette sports car's 65-year history at an event preceding the Los Angeles auto show Tuesday. The 2019 Corvette ZR1 convertible will arrive in dealerships…


First look: 2018 Jeep Wrangler adds capability, loses weight

The all-new 2018 Jeep Wrangler checks every box on its fans' list, and adds a few that haven't occurred to them yet. It's got more room, but a shorter turning radius – key to enthusiasts' off-road adventures and everybody else's parking…


Much new, but tradition preserved in 2018 Jeep Wrangler unveiled in LA

Detroit Free Press

What happens when you redesign an automotive icon for modern tastes? The new 2018 Jeep Wrangler, the defining vehicle of this durable brand, holds true to its rugged roots, with some modern touches, like a backup camera in the middle of…

Sunday, Nov 26


New Jeep Wrangler, 7-seat Lexus RX, fastest ever Corvette to star at LA auto show

Detroit Free Press

New SUVs in all shapes and sizes will dominate the Los Angeles auto show as new-car season shifts into high gear next week. From luxury models to affordable subcompacts to an all-new version of the Jeep Wrangler that created the whole SUV…

Saturday, Nov 18


Man's brilliant car ad for used 1996 Honda Accord goes viral

Trying to sell a used car can be a pain. The hassle of online classifieds, Facebook advertising and Craigslist can be a nightmare. But one California filmmaker — nay, genius — is getting the last laugh. Max Lanman took his case to YouTube…

Friday, Nov 17


'Ticking time bomb': Automakers leaving too many lethal Takata air bags on the road?

Detroit Free Press

The independent monitor for the massive Takata air bag recall wants automakers to do more to reach out to affected vehicle owners in order to get the vehicles repaired, saying "the words 'grenade' and 'ticking time bomb' accurately convey…


Holiday shopping: Fierce battles with Amazon could mean more negotiating power for you

Let the holiday showdown begin. Scuffles in years past centered on Black Friday fights as stressed-out consumers rushed the aisles to try to snag big-screen TVs. This year, big brand retailers — such as Walmart, Target and Kohl's — will be…

Thursday, Nov 9


Ford tries out exoskeletal vests to lessen strain for assembly line workers

Paul Collins is getting some extra help on the line at Ford's Michigan Assembly Plant, thanks to a special vest. Collins and other workers at the plant in Wayne, west of Detroit, wear the so-called EksoVest to alleviate some of the strain…

Wednesday, Nov 8


Ford signs $756M deal with Zotye to build electric car plant

In the latest sign of the increasing influence of Chinese consumer market, Ford on Wednesday signed a joint venture agreement with Zoyte Auto to build, market and distribute all-electric passenger vehicles in China under a new Chinese…

Tuesday, Nov 7


Your complete guide to health insurance and workplace open enrollment


One major advantage of working as a full-time, salaried employee is gaining access to a host of workplace benefits. At the same time, sorting through those benefits can be pretty confusing, especially when it comes to things like health…

Monday, Nov 6


Trump asks Japanese automakers to do something they've been doing for 35 years

Detroit Free Press

Honda began making cars in Marysville, Ohio in 1982. That first Accord off the line is the Henry.

Saturday, Nov 4


4 Michigan companies join Free Press Top Workplaces Circle of Excellence

Michigan's top business managers know intuitively that their employees add far more to the team than just hitting a sales goal or filing a report on time. While such goals are necessary, top managers also value creativity, dedication to…

Friday, Nov 3


A simple tax cut isn't all that simple, depending on your financial situation

The Tax Cut and Jobs Act may be pitched as a plan toward tax simplification but the long list of changes detailed in the more than 400 pages of the proposed legislation are far from easy to digest. Whether you're happy or not will depend…


Jesse Jackson calls for boycott of BMW, cites lack of diversity


GREENVILLE, S.C. — BMW's top leader in North America met this week with the Rev. Jesse Jackson to discuss the German automaker's efforts to promote diversity in its ranks, but the civil rights leader says people should stop buying BMWs…

Thursday, Nov 2


Nurses claim staffing levels at DMC Commerce Twp. hospital are dangerously low

The Michigan Nurses Association is suing the Detroit Medical Center's Huron Valley-Sinai Hospital in Commerce Township for what nurses claim are dangerously low staffing levels that endanger patients. The hospital, however, says staffing…


Detroit startup launches cheap nationwide pay-as-you-go smartphone service

A Detroit-based start-up firm has gone nationwide with its pay-as-you-go smartphone data service that has already lowered some metro Detroiters' phone bills to $15 a month. Lunar Wireless is set to roll out its service across the country…

Wednesday, Nov 1


Book World to close all 7 Michigan stores

Detroit Free Press

APPLETON, Wis. — Book World says it's closing all of its 45 stores in seven states, including seven stores in Michigan. The company cited a shift in consumer preference to online shopping. Michigan currently has Book World stores in…


Ford up 6.2%, FCA down 13%, GM slides 2.2% in October

U.S. sales for Fiat Chrysler Automobiles and General Motors fell 13% and 2.2%, respectively, in October, but Ford sales were up 6.2%. Even with drops in sales like those experienced by FCA, the numbers tell only part of the story because…

Monday, Oct 30


General Motors settles California suit over alleged defects concealment

SANTA ANA, Calif. — General Motors has agreed to a $13.9 million settlement with Orange County, California, after prosecutors accused the auto giant of concealing serious safety defects to avoid costly recalls and part replacements. The…

Sunday, Oct 29


Robots descending on Michigan industrial workplaces in record numbers

Robots descending on Michigan industrial workplaces in record numbers A growing number of "co-bots," or robots who work alongside assembly line workers, invade factory floors, boosting productivity and imperiling jobs. Check out this story…

Friday, Oct 27


Obamacare enrollment goes live in Michigan Nov. 1 with big changes

Having dodged multiple failed repeal-and-replace attempts this year, the Affordable Care Act, commonly known as Obamacare, will enter its fifth open enrollment period next week for individuals and families looking to buy health insurance…

Thursday, Oct 26

F-150 Pickups drive 3rd quarter earnings: Ford beats expectations

Ford announced Thursday a third quarter profit of $1.6 billion, which reflects a 63% increase from one year ago. On a per share basis, the Dearborn automaker earned of 39 cents per share, beating the 33 cents per share average, based on in…


Obamacare rates will skyrocket 27% in Michigan in 2018

State regulars have given the OK for Obamacare health insurance rates to jump by record amounts in 2018.

Tuesday, Oct 24


General Motors earnings down 32%, but better than expected in 3rd quarter

General Motors earned $2.5 billion before taxes in the third-quarter, down 32% from the $3.7 billion year-earlier pre-tax earnings, but better than most Wall Street analysts were expecting. On a net-income basis, the automaker lost $3…