Ivory Coast painter gives new life to e-waste

ABIDJAN (Reuters) – Desire Koffi often walks through Koumassi, a popular district of Ivory Coast’s main city Abidjan, to collect old mobile phones that he buys from people for 500 CFA francs ($0.8726) a pair. Back home, the 24-year-old Ivorian artist dismantles the phones with a hammer to pull out the screens and keyboards. He uses them for his paintings. One can take him up to three or five days of work. Koffi grew up in Koumassi and says he was drawn to recycling and incorporating e-waste in his art, after…

‘The Favourite’ corset dresses go on display at Kensington Palace

LONDON (Reuters) – A selection of costumes worn by the cast of period film “The Favourite” went on display at London’s Kensington Palace on Friday, in the same rooms where the royal characters the movie is based on once walked. Olivia Colman, soon to be seen in hit Netflix drama “The Crown”, plays Britain’s 18th-century Queen Anne in the costume piece with plenty of laugh-out loud moments, a role for which she has won critical acclaim as well as award accolades. The British actress portrays her as a frail, insecure…

‘The Favorite’ corset dresses go on display at Kensington Palace

LONDON (Reuters) – A selection of costumes worn by the cast of period film “The Favourite” went on display at London’s Kensington Palace on Friday, in the same rooms where the royal characters the movie is based on once walked. Olivia Colman, soon to be seen in hit Netflix drama “The Crown”, plays Britain’s 18th-century Queen Anne in the costume piece with plenty of laugh-out loud moments, a role for which she has won critical acclaim as well as award accolades. The British actress portrays her as a frail, insecure…

Trump picks Mulvaney as chief of staff – for now

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. President Donald Trump on Friday moved to end speculation that he was having a hard time finding a new chief of staff, naming his budget chief Mick Mulvaney to the top post on a temporary basis. Mulvaney, a hard-charging conservative and former congressman, will be the third person in two years to try to bring order to what has often been a chaotic White House. Trump named him after two other prominent candidates withdrew from consideration in the space of a week. “For the record, there…

North Carolina Republican says he hired consultant at heart of fraud probe

(Reuters) – The North Carolina Republican embroiled in a vote fraud controversy said on Friday he hired the political operative at the center of a probe into possible absentee ballot irregularities in a disputed U.S. congressional election. FILE PHOTO: Mark Harris attends a debate between the four top-polling Republican candidates in North Carolina for the U.S. Senate, at Davidson College in Davidson, North Carolina April 22, 2014. REUTERS/Davis Turner/File PhotoNorth Carolina’s board of election has refused to certify Republican candidate Mark Harris as the winner of the Nov. 6 vote…

Cramer Remix: Adobe and Costco are broken stocks, not broken companies

Pessimism among investors shouldn’t deter people from carefully buying shares of high-quality companies that have endured massive declines, CNBC’s Jim Cramer said Friday after a widespread sell-off in the stock market. div > div.group > p:first-child »> On Thursday, survey results from the American Association of Individual Investors showed that pessimism among retail investors was at its worst in some 5½ years, a symptom of the market’s volatility in recent months. But Cramer, a longtime stock-picker whose mantra is « there’s always a bull market somewhere, » urged investors «…

A 10% rally for the S&P 500 is possible by year-end: Fundstrat’s Tom Lee

There’s still time for the S&P 500 to catch a 10 percent rally going into the new year, Fundstrat Global Advisors’ Tom Lee told CNBC Friday. div > div.group > p:first-child »> « Obviously we’re working with a really short time frame, but we know that markets have been moving very quickly in the last couple of months, » the managing partner and head of research said on « Fast Money. » « I think, to me, anything that happens between now and year-end is a lot more about positioning…

Anti-harassment groups share $20 million CBS handout after Moonves exit

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – CBS Corp on Friday named the Time’s Up anti-sexual harassment group and 17 other organizations that will share a $20 million donation stemming from the exit of its chief executive Les Moonves following allegations of sexual misconduct. FILE PHOTO: CBS chairman Moonves arrives for « The Late Show with Stephen Colbert » at CBS chairman Les Moonves arrives for « The Late Show with Stephen Colbert » at the Ed Sullivan Theater in Manhattan, New York, September 8, 2015. REUTERS/Brendan McDermidTime’s Up and the body representing…

Wall St. tumbles on global growth worries, J&J decline

(Reuters) – Wall Street’s three major indexes tumbled on Friday and the Dow confirmed a correction as weak data from China and Europe stoked fears of a global economic slowdown, while Johnson & Johnson shares were the biggest drag after Reuters reported the company knew for decades that its Baby Powder contained asbestos. The S&P 600 .SPCY small cap index confirmed it was in a bear market after closing 20.05 percent below its Aug. 31 peak, falling 1.6 percent on the day. The Johnson & Johnson (JNJ.N) report, which the…

Special Report: J&J knew for decades that asbestos lurked in its Baby Powder

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – Darlene Coker knew she was dying. She just wanted to know why. Darlene Coker is shown on a kitchen table full of many personal pictures of her family life in California, U.S. August 15, 2018. Picture taken August 15, 2018. REUTERS/Mike Blake She knew that her cancer, mesothelioma, arose in the delicate membrane surrounding her lungs and other organs. She knew it was as rare as it was deadly, a signature of exposure to asbestos. And she knew it afflicted mostly men who inhaled asbestos dust…

Google is selling the Home Hub and two Home Mini speakers for just $129

Google just launched an aggressive deal that might be all many people need to outfit their house or apartment with Google Assistant this holiday season. For a limited time, the company is selling a Home Hub smart display and two Home Mini smart speakers at a total price of $129. The Hub ordinarily retails for $149, with the speakers going for $49 each. Obviously both products have been discounted at times during the holiday season — including right now at various retailers. But this bundle from the Google Store seems…

Top VC deals: Plaid is worth $2.65 billion; The Riveter raises capital to expand women’s coworking

SoftBank’s Vision Fund and Alibaba Group led a $1.1 billion financing round in Indonesian e-commerce firm Tokopedia. The company operates Indonesia’s largest marketplace for physical and digital goods and offers digital financial services. div > div.group > p:first-child »> Fintech company Plaid announced a $250 million funding round, led by Kleiner Perkins’ partner Mary Meeker, who will also be joining Plaid’s board. Andreessen Horowitz and Index Ventures were among the new investors, while early backers Goldman Sachs, NEA and Spark Capital also participated. The deal values Plaid at $2.65 billion,…

Amazon has explored getting into consumer health diagnostics — testing for disease at home

Amazon’s secretive special projects group has considered products for consumers to conduct medical tests in the home, which could take the company into the health diagnostics space, according to a person familiar with the company’s plans. div > div.group > p:first-child »> Two people say the company was in discussions this year to buy a venture-backed diagnostics start-up called Confer Health, but those talks did not result in a deal. According to its web site, Confer develops hardware for at-home tests starting with fertility and infections like strep throat. Their…

TPG and Intel in talks to sell McAfee to Thoma Bravo for significantly more than $4.2 billion

Private equity firm Thoma Bravo is in early discussions to acquire security software company McAfee from TPG and Intel for a significant premium over the company’s 2016 $4.2 billion valuation, according to people familiar with the matter. div > div.group > p:first-child »> Talks may still fall apart and a deal announcement isn’t expected soon, said the people, who asked not to be named because the discussions are private. McAfee, founded by John McAfee in 1987, historically developed cybersecurity software for personal computers and servers, protecting users from malware and…

Exclusive: T-Mobile, Sprint see U.S. security approval for deal after Huawei concessions – sources

WASHINGTON/NEW YORK (Reuters) – T-Mobile US Inc and Sprint Corp expect their merger to be approved by a U.S. national security panel as early as next week, after their respective parent companies said they would consider curbing their use of equipment from China’s Huawei Technologies, people familiar with the matter told Reuters. FILE PHOTO: People walk past a Huawei shop in Beijing, China, December 11, 2018. REUTERS/Thomas Peter/File PhotoU.S. government officials have been pressuring T-Mobile’s German majority owner, Deutsche Telekom AG, to stop using Huawei equipment, the sources said, over…

Global growth worry hits stocks, but U.S. data lifts dollar

NEW YORK (Reuters) – A gauge of global stocks tumbled on Friday after weak economic data from China and Europe intensified global growth worries as investors weighed the broader impact of the trade dispute between the United States and China. Euro zone business ended the year on a weak note, expanding at the slowest pace in over four years as new order growth all but dried up, hurt by trade tensions and violent protests in France, a survey showed. [nL8N1YJ1W5] A separate survey showed French business activity plunged unexpectedly into…

Apple’s $1 billion Austin campus is the latest big investment from top tier firms: Texas governor

Major corporations such as Apple, which just announced a $1 billion investment into a new Austin campus, are buying into Texas, Gov. Greg Abbott told CNBC Friday. div > div.group > p:first-child »> The iPhone maker promises to develop a 133-acre complex to hold 5,000 employees, with room for an additional 10,000 more. It will be situated within a mile of Apple’s existing facility in the Texas capital. The Republican Abbott shrugged off Amazon’s decision last month to pass on cities in his state in favor of locating its second…

Worth the sting: Cuba’s scorpion pain remedy

HAVANA (Reuters) – Once a month for the last decade, Pepe Casanas, a 78-year-old Cuban farmer, has hunted down a scorpion to sting himself with, vowing that the venom wards off his rheumatism pains. A worker extracts venom from a scorpion to produce homeopathic medicine Vidatox at LABIOFAM, the Cuban state manufacturer of medicinal and personal hygienic products, in Cienfuegos, Cuba, December 3, 2018. REUTERS/StringerHis natural remedy is no longer seen as very unusual here. Researchers in Cuba have found that the venom of the blue scorpion, whose scientific name…

Google and Amazon will launch Apple AirPods competitors next year, top analyst says

TF International Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, who has accurately predicted Apple’s product launches, recently said he believes that Amazon and Google will launch products to compete with Apple’s AirPods some time during the second half of 2019. div > div.group > p:first-child »> Earlier this month, Kuo said AirPods are Apple’s most popular accessory ever. « We believe that AirPods’ success has drawn Google and Amazon’s attention and these two companies will launch AirPod-alike products in 2H19. The combined shipments of two brands will likely reach 10-20mn units in 2H19,…

American execs in China privately express fears of retaliation for Huawei arrest

A partner for a large New York law firm returned from a business trip to China just before Thanksgiving, shortly before the arrest of Huawei CFO Meng Wanzhou in Canada Dec. 1. div > div.group > p:first-child »> Asked by CNBC on Thursday if he’d like to comment on the arrest and its effect on his future China travel plans, the lawyer had two very different responses. « On the record? Of course, business is continuing as normal. Our relationships over there remain rock solid, and this case has no…

Bank analyst rips Robinhood’s new savings account plan, says regulators may get involved

Robinhood launched new accounts with an eye-popping interest rate this week. But one Wall Street analyst says the products could backfire with regulators. div > div.group > p:first-child »> The fintech start-up is offering what seems designed to look like a bank, UBS analyst Brennan Hawken said in a note to clients Friday. But that’s part of the problem. « The details of this product are thin, since it actually is launching in early 2019, but based on what we understand, it seems to be a potentially risky ploy that…

Adobe trades lower on concerns over Marketo acquisition

Adobe stock dropped as much as 5 percent in a down market for tech stocks on Friday, a day after reporting better-than-expected earnings for the fourth quarter of its 2018 fiscal year. Investors are concerned about the $4.75 billion acquisition of Marketo diluting earnings, as well as a write-down of some assets from the deal. div > div.group > p:first-child »> The company beat expectations on the top and bottom lines, excluding the impact of Marketo. Adobe reported $1.90 in earnings per share, excluding certain items, on $2.46 billion in…

Wall Street drops on global growth fears; J&J tumbles on Reuters report

(Reuters) – U.S. stocks fell on Friday as weak economic data from China and Europe rekindled fears of slowing global growth, with Johnson & Johnson leading the losses after Reuters reported the company knew for decades that asbestos lurked in its Baby Powder. Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in New York, U.S., December 11, 2018. REUTERS/Brendan McDermidThe company’s shares (JNJ.N) tumbled 11.46 percent, on pace for their biggest one-day percentage drop in 16 years. The stock was the biggest drag on the S&P…

Ousted Nissan boss’ daughter takes documents, cash from apartment

SAO PAULO/TOKYO (Reuters) – The daughter of ousted Nissan chairman Carlos Ghosn early on Friday retrieved documents and cash from a corporate apartment in Rio de Janeiro, capping a legal battle over the items, which the carmaker maintains may contain evidence of wrongdoing. FILE PHOTO – Carlos Ghosn, Chairman and CEO of the Renault-Nissan Alliance, attends a news conference to unveil Renault’s next mid-term strategic plan in Paris, France, October 6, 2017. REUTERS/Charles Platiau/File PhotoThe midnight visit by Ghosn’s daughter Caroline, accompanied by two court officers and multiple Nissan lawyers,…

Instagram will start telling brands which products users bookmark

One year after forming a team to develop shopping specific features, Facebook’s Instagram is now beginning to develop analytics tools that brands could eventually use for ad targeting. div > div.group > p:first-child »> Instagram last month introduced a tool that lets users bookmark products they find on the social network. Now, Instagram is working on an insight tool that will show brands which of their items users are saving, said Layla Amjadi, Instagram product manager. Instagram intends to release this feature within the first half of 2019. « It’s…

French TV station apologizes after Bob Marley song gaffe

PARIS (Reuters) – French 24-hour news channel BFM TV has apologized for playing the song “I Shot the Sheriff” after police shot dead Cherif Chekkat, the suspect behind an attack on a Christmas market in Strasbourg that killed four people. Chekkat, 29, was on the run for two days after the market attack before police tracked him down to the city’s Neudorf neighborhood late on Thursday. He was killed after he opened fire on three officers. As the news channel broadcast a special program on Chekkat’s demise, including images from…

Joe Lieberman joins China’s ZTE to ease national security concerns amid lawmakers distrust

ZTE has reportedly hired former Sen. Joe Lieberman to help the Chinese telecom giant allay fears in Washington that it poses a threat to national security. He will spearhead an assessment of its products, as the company tries to ensure U.S. officials that it is not a spy for the Chinese government. div > div.group > p:first-child »> Politico reported Thursday evening that the hire makes Lieberman the third former U.S. lawmaker working for ZTE in Washington. Former Sen. Norm Coleman, R-Minn., and ex-Rep. Jon Chistensen, R-Neb., had also been…

French TV station apologises after Bob Marley song gaffe

PARIS (Reuters) – French 24-hour news channel BFM TV has apologized for playing the song “I Shot the Sheriff” after police shot dead Cherif Chekkat, the suspect behind an attack on a Christmas market in Strasbourg that killed four people. Chekkat, 29, was on the run for two days after the market attack before police tracked him down to the city’s Neudorf neighborhood late on Thursday. He was killed after he opened fire on three officers. As the news channel broadcast a special program on Chekkat’s demise, including images from…

Facebook says a bug affecting up to 6.8 million users exposed photos they hadn’t shared

A Facebook bug exposed photos from up to 6.8 million users using third-party apps, the company disclosed Friday. The exposed photos include those that users never finished sharing to the site, Facebook said. div > div.group > p:first-child »> The disclosure is one of several privacy breaches the company has shared over the past year. In March, reports from the New York Times and the Guardian shed light on how Cambridge Analytica used data on Facebook users to influence the 2016 U.S. presidential election. In September, it announced a security…

Google brings its shopping service to India, tapping into the country’s digital boom

Google has launched its shopping aggregator service in India, in a bid to take advantage of the country’s booming digital economy. div > div.group > p:first-child »> The tech giant said Thursday that Indian shoppers will now be able to browse deals using its Google Shopping home page, a mobile-friendly web app, a new « shopping » tab on its search engine and its image recognition app Google Lens. Google’s shopping tool lets users search for deals on a variety of products from numerous retailers. According to CNN, Amazon and…