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This Week in Business: Shortage, WeWork, and More


US Companies Facing Worker Shortage

US companies responded to the lowest unemployment rate and worker shortage in 50 years by focusing on automation in factories. Currently, companies are trying to confront the shortage of low-cost workers by investing in software and machines. Because of the investments, wage growth has stayed in line even with low unemployment.

In addition, these robots can complete simple tasks like filling prescriptions or packing boxes. “We’ve hit the level where you don’t need great engineering skills to deploy automation because the software has made it so much easier to use,” said Jeremie Capron, head of research at ROBO Globa. “You’re seeing not only large multi-national groups automate, but those technologies are increasingly available to smaller and mid-sized businesses.”

WeWork Accepts Takeover By Softbank

Japanese investment giant Softbank announced plans to takeover WeWork. WeWork reportedly accepted an offer in which Softbank would buy billions worth of shares. Overall, the deal is worth $8Bn. Plus, in exchange for his shares, founder Adam Neumann agreed to back the rescue plan over a rival offer from JP Morgan.

Neuman will also step down from WeWork’s board. Due to ongoing financial trouble, Neumann was forced to step down as CEO. The company, which rents out office space, has grown from a single office in New York City to more than 500 locations around the world.

Stock Market Gains On High Earning Reports

The S&P 500 and the Dow Jones indexes rose on Tuesday, as high earning reports eased discomfort over the fragile China-US trade war. The S&P hovered around 3,000 points, extremely close to July’s record high. “I think the fact that we are encroaching on record territory in the face of all these issues speaks to the resilience of the domestic economy and more importantly the companies in the U.S.,” said Mike Loewengart, vice president, investment strategy at E*TRADE Financial Corp.

Exxon Accused Of Misleading Investors

The state of New York accused oil giant Exxon Mobil of misleading investors. In a lawsuit brought up against the company, the state claims that Exxon didn’t properly explain the potential costs of climate regulation to its business. In response, Exxon said it shared the necessary information. They also said that the lawsuit is politically motivated. “It’s a major milestone as a part of a growing wave of cases that Exxon and other major oil companies are facing, not only here in the United States, but in fact in jurisdictions around the world,” said Carroll Muffett, president of the Center for International Environmental Law.

Hasbro Shares Drop Due To Tariff Costs

Hasbro shares dropped below Wall Street quarterly estimates. Currently, the toymaker is trying to battle rising tariff costs on Chinese imports. “Obviously, the tariff and tariff environment has created some short-term disruption to our growth trajectory,” Hasbro Chief Executive Officer Brian Goldner said.