Must-Read Money Stories for Monday, Nov. 28

by November 28, 2016
Online sales for Black Friday topped $3 billion for the first time, while brick-and-mortars saw another year of falling sales and foot traffic. (Image "Black Friday" by Powhusku on Flickr, CC by 2.0.)

Online sales for Black Friday topped $3 billion for the first time, while brick-and-mortars saw another year of falling sales and foot traffic. (Image “Black Friday” by Powhusku on Flickr, CC by 2.0.)

Internet triumphs another Black Friday

Deal-hunting shoppers flocked to cyberspace over the weekend in numbers that helped push online sales on Black Friday over the $3 billion-mark for the first time, while brick-and-mortar sales conversely dipped more than 10 percent that day, according to preliminary retail analytics data as reported by Reuters. The trends also persisted in days leading up to Black Friday—online sales combined with Thanksgiving Day, for instance, spiked 18 percent yet dropped 5 percent at brick-and-mortars. With more record-sales figures expected on Cyber Monday, analysts and retailers themselves are spending another year questioning the relevance of the one-day Black Friday tradition.

Wells Fargo seeks binding arbitration for ex-customers

In a class-action lawsuit filed in the wake of its sales practices scandal this fall, Wells Fargo & Co. wants the plaintiffs—a tally of about 80 customers accusing the banking giant of breach of contract, fraud and other claims—to undergo binding arbitration by way of court order, according to this Associated Press article published by U.S. News & World Report. Wells Fargo, which agreed in September to pay a $185 million-fine tied to unauthorized customer accounts, filed its request with a Utah federal court the day before Thanksgiving, saying customers agreed to submit such disputes to arbitration in paperwork they filled out when initially opening accounts.

Johnson & Johnson pursues takeover of Swiss drugmaker

Johnson & Johnson is preparing its wallet for another big takeover attempt, this time involving Swiss drugmaker Actelion Ltd. for a price tag in the ballpark of nearly $20 billion, the companies disclosed Friday according to Bloomberg. Although an unusual move for Johnson & Johnson—which has boosted its pharmaceutical sales by 40 percent since 2010 through licensing deals and in-house product development—the appeal of the Swiss drugmaker is two new lung medicines that are expected to be potentially groundbreaking, Bloomberg reports.

Secret Service may pay rent at Trump Tower

The U.S. Secret Service, primarily responsible for protecting the First Family, is reportedly scoping out two floors at Trump Tower to become rent-paying tenants when Donald Trump takes the Oval Office in January, according to the Christian Science Monitor. The space would serve as one of the Secret Service’s command centers, which would cost about $3 million in taxpayer money that would subsequently go directly into Trump’s personal business.