CBS, Viacom remarriage?
Ten years after splitting into separate entities, Viacom Inc. and CBS Corp may be trying corporate matrimony once again, unnamed sources told Reuters. Confidential early talks reveal that the two corporations’ biggest shareholder, National Amusements Inc., could propose merger talks as early as this week—a move analysts say could help reverse the downtrend in ad revenue and TV ratings at Vicom, which owns networks such as Comedy Central and MTV. The benefits are less clear for CBS, although together, the pair could save $400 million post-merger as the TV industry continues consolidating.
Chipmakers prep for another takeover
In yet another perpetually consolidating industry, semiconductors Qualcomm Inc. and NXP Semiconductors NV could be under the same corporate roof within months. The Wall Street Journal, citing unnamed sources, reported Thursday that Qualcomm is trying to takeover NXP in a deal estimated at more than $30 billion. That’s one of the biggest price tags of this year’s growing list of Wall Street acquisitions and mergers. More than $75 million-worth of M&A deals have racked up so far in the chipmaker industry at a time when rising competition and downward growth trends remain persistent.
More gloom for Wells Fargo
Wells Fargo & Co. has agreed to a $4 million settlement with the U.S. Justice Department for illegally repossessing hundreds of vehicles it financed for military members over seven years. That’s in addition to another $20 million in fines from the bank’s regulator, Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, for a decade’s worth of transgressions, according to Bloomberg. The Justice Department disclosed the news Thursday, which marks another blow for Wells Fargo. Earlier this month the bank agreed to pay $185 million in fines for the two million unauthorized customer accounts that were opened by employees trying to meet sales goals.
Paid sick leave for government contractors
Federal government contractors may soon be required to give their employees up to seven days of accrued sick leave every year. When fully implemented, it would directly impact roughly 1.1 million individuals. The mandate was issued Thursday by rule under the U.S. Justice Department—an alternative strategy being employed by the Obama administration after similar efforts have stalled for years in Congress, according to the New York Times.