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The Journal Gazette

Thursday, November 08, 2018 1:00 am

Briefs

Increase in borrowing tapers off

News services

WASHINGTON – Americans increased their borrowing by a solid amount in September. But the gain was less than half the big August surge as borrowing in the category that includes credit cards fell.

Consumer borrowing rose by a seasonally adjusted $10.9 billion following a jump of $22.9 billion in August, the Federal Reserve reported Wednesday. The August gain had been the strongest increase in nine months.

The September advance was below economists' expectations for a $16.5 billion gain. The category that covers auto loans and student loans rose a solid $11.2 billion. The category for credit cards fell by $311.6 million after having risen $4.6 billion in August.

Consumer borrowing is closely tracked for signs of consumers' willingness to take on more debt to finance their purchases.

BMW profits fall 24% in 3rd quarter

Germany luxury automaker BMW said Wednesday that its net profit fell 24 percent in the third quarter as the company spent more on new technology and faced market disruptions due to other companies failing to get vehicles certified in time for new European Union emissions tests.

Net profit fell to 1.40 billion euros ($1.6 billion) from 1.84 billion euros in the year-ago quarter. The figure was short of the 1.61 billion euros foreseen by analysts surveyed by financial information provider FactSet. Revenues rose 4.7 percent to 24.74 billion euros.

Ex-Intel CEO named head of CDK Global

The former CEO of Intel is being named as the top executive at CDK Global, a company that provides technology to auto dealers. Brian Krzanich resigned from Intel in June after the company learned that he had carried on a consensual relationship with an employee. He had held the top job at the tech company for just over five years. He joined Intel Corp. in 1982 as an engineer.

Companies have become more diligent about enforcing rules governing intercompany relationships in the #MeToo era.

Krzanich, 58, replaces Brian MacDonald at CDK Global, which has annual revenue of about $2 billion.

Based outside of Chicago in Hoffman Estates, Illinois, CDK provides technology and marketing services to auto dealers in more than 100 countries. It serves about 30,000 retailers and most automotive manufacturers.

Survey: New tech could cost jobs

A new survey suggests the digital technologies sweeping through the corporate world could mean some job losses at big companies, but it's unclear what impact they will have on consumer prices.

Retailers told the European Central Bank, which carried out the survey, that e-commerce should lower prices for shoppers. But producers of goods foresaw more chances to raise prices thanks to new technologies such as 3D printing and internet-connected devices.

The bank asked 74 of the biggest companies in Europe how the think new technologies are likely to affect the economy in coming years.

On balance, the businesses saw digitalization having a “small negative impact” on jobs, while shifting labor needs from low-skilled to high-skill employees.

The ECB probed the price issue because its mission is to keep inflation under control near its goal of just under 2 percent.