Must-Read Money Stories for Friday, Feb. 17

by February 17, 2017
Jay Y. Lee, the de-facto leader of South Korea-based Samsung Group, was arrested early Friday morning amid allegations of bribery, perjury and embezzlement. (Photo via Pexels.)

The de-facto leader of South Korea-based Samsung Group, was arrested early Friday morning amid allegations of bribery, perjury and embezzlement. (Photo via Pexels.)

Trump floats new labor secretary

President Trump announced his new nomination for labor secretary on Thursday, The New York Times reported. R. Alexander Acosta is a Florida law school dean and former assistant attorney general for civil rights. The nomination was announced one day after Trump’s first choice for labor secretary, Andrew F. Puzder, chief executive officer of CKE Restaurants, the parent company of Hardee’s and Carl’s Jr., dropped his bid to lead the Labor Department. The New York Times reported his confirmation was in question after attacks on his business record and personal conduct eroded support from key Republicans.

German grocer stakes major U.S. claim

The Washington Post reported on German grocer Lidl’s plans to open 100 locations up and down the East Coast. Already, the chain has 10,000 stores in 27 countries. Much like speciality grocers Aldi and Trader Joe’s, the chain offers a limited assortment of food, most of it private label, at very low prices. Lidl plans to open 20 stores this summer in Virginia, North Carolina and South Carolina. The American Lidl stores will be about 21,000 square feet, significantly larger than their counterparts abroad, according to The Washington Post. Lidl has hired some 1,400 workers, with plans to bring on 4,000 more as it rolls out more stores.

Sansung heir arrested

Jay Y. Lee, the de-facto leader of South Korea-based Samsung Group, was arrested early Friday morning amid allegations of bribery, perjury and embezzlement. Bloomberg reported the arrest halts Lee’s likely rise to chief executive at the world’s biggest smartphone maker. South Korean officials are investigating whether Lee, the vice chairman of Samsung Electronics Co., gave as much as $38 million to a close friend of South Korean President Park Geun-hye, in exchange for government support of his succession to lead Samsung Group. The smartphone maker was founded by his grandfather. Lee has been leading Samsung while his father, Lee Kun Hee, has been hospitalized since 2014.

Snapchat lowers IPO valuation

Reuters reported Snap Inc., owner of the popular disappearing-message app Snapchat, announced a lower-than-expected valuation range on Thursday as investors expressed concern over its business model. The social media company filed for an initial public offering earlier this month. It was widely expected to be valued between $20 billion and $25 billion. But that range is now $19.5 billion to $22.3 billion, Reuters reported. Investors have been trying to determine whether Snap’s business model more closely mirrors Facebook Inc. (which has figured out how to make money from its social media platform), or whether it is another Twitter, which is still looking for ways to turn a profit.

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