Home Business and Economics This Week In Business: IKEA, Citigroup, and More

This Week In Business: IKEA, Citigroup, and More


IKEA Targets Mexican Cities For New Stores

Right now, Swedish furniture store IKEA is scouting some of Mexico’s biggest cities for new store locations. Currently, the chain is looking at sites in Mexico City, Guadalajara, and Monterrey, the three biggest cities in Mexico. However, they are also looking at the country as a whole.

They want to move into Latin America to combat the recent competition for its core US and European markets. The company is likely going to release their plans within a month. However, they declined to go into financial specifics. In addition to the planned stores, IKEA Mexico also opened offices in Mexico City.

Citigroup Fined $25m USD

The US OOC fined Citigroup for $25M USD on Tuesday. The OOC claims that Citi violated the Fair Housing Act, and denied potential borrowers based on race, color, or other factors. Starting in 2012, Citi implemented a policy that provided reduced pricing for mortgage borrowers. The program worked on relationship pricing.

However, the OOC said that problems with the program resulted in many people being denied the benefit. As a result, the errors affected many different borrowers based on gender, race, et cetera, which is in violation of the FHA. “Citi has no tolerance for discrimination in any form,” Citi said in a statement.

Fed Says No 2019 Rate Rise

As it currently stands, the US Fed doesn’t expect to raise interest rates again in 2019. After a two day meeting, policymakers decided that because of slow US economic growth, there is no need to raise the rates. “Recent indicators point to slower growth of household spending and business fixed investment in the first quarter,” they said.

Google Fined €1.5Bn By EU

In the third large fine on the search giant in two years, the EU fined Google €1.5Bn, or $1.7Bn USD. The fine states that Google abused market dominance by restricting the access of third party advertisers. In response, Google changed their AdSense contracts with partners. However, the EU said that this was in direct defiance of anti-trust laws. Google has yet to make a comment.

Marriott To Open 1,700 Hotels

Marriott announced plans on Monday to open 1,700 hotels across the globe. In addition, they plan to give $11Bn back to their shareholders by 2021. After reaching low estimates in the fourth quarter of 2018, the move brought their shares up 3%. “During the three-year period, the company plans to pay $1.9 billion to $2 billion in dividends and buy back shares worth $7.6 billion to $9 billion,” Marriott said.