The bargain bin is back as shoppers seek out value and convenience. Discounter Target said sales at stores open at least a year rose 3.4% in the three months ended Aug. 3 while revenue and earnings also climbed. Its stock rose 20% Wednesday, the day its results were released. Target has been spending heavily to adjust to changes in shopping habits, and there were signs those improvements paid off. Digital sales were up 34% from a year earlier. Meanwhile, traditional department stores are still hurting; Nordstrom Inc. said that sales and profit slipped in the latest quarter.
Ford Motor Co.
Big auto makers are trying to figure out who is in the driver's seat when it comes to emissions rules: the White House or the state of California. President Trump in a tweet criticized Ford for a deal made last month with California regulators to meet new fuel-economy standards that are tougher than a proposal developed by his administration. California, home to the biggest auto market, has sued the administration over a rollback of Obama-era vehicle-emission standards. Ford's shares dropped 0.9% Wednesday, the day of the president's remarks.
Patrick Byrne ended his 20-year tenure as chief executive of Overstock.com in his typical provocative fashion. He stated in a letter that he was "too controversial" to stay in charge of the e-commerce and blockchain company and that "my presence may affect and complicate all manner of business relationships." Investors reacted by sending the company's shares 8.3% higher Thursday. The CEO's exit came less than two weeks after Mr. Byrne alluded in another letter to a romantic relationship with jailed Russian agent Maria Butina and covert activities on behalf of the U.S. government.
Big Tech is under the microscope yet again. A group of state attorneys general is preparing to move forward with a joint antitrust investigation of giant technology companies, The Wall Street Journal reported Monday. Facebook is likely to be a focus of the new investigation, along with Alphabet Inc.'s Google, Amazon.com Inc. and Apple Inc. The probe is expected to examine whether a handful of dominant technology platforms use their marketplace power to stifle competition. The Justice Department announced its own antitrust review last month. Shares of Facebook fell 1.3% Tuesday.
Advanced Micro Devices Inc.
Companies that manufacture parts and materials in China received a directive from President Trump on Friday: Come back home. The president said American firms were "hereby ordered" to start looking for alternatives to doing business in China after Beijing said it would impose tariffs on $75 billion worth of additional U.S. products. "We don't need China and, frankly, would be far better off without them," Mr. Trump said in a tweet. Semiconductor companies were among the hardest hit. Shares of Advanced Micro Devices fell 7.4%.
One of the world's largest PC makers is losing its CEO. HP boss Dion Weisler said he will step down this year for health reasons and eventually leave Silicon Valley to be with his family in Australia. He took over as CEO in 2015. He will be succeeded by Enrique Lores, a Spaniard who joined the company as an intern 30 years ago. Shares of the company fell 5.9% Friday. Mr. Weisler has led the seller of computer and printers since Hewlett-Packard Co. in 2015 split the company that Bill Hewlett and Dave Packard started in 1939.
Americans who shop at home-improvement retailers are helping shore up the U.S. economy during a time of rising global uncertainty. Lowe's beat analysts' estimates for second-quarter earnings and same-store sales. Its stock rose 10% Wednesday after releasing those numbers. Home Depot Inc. also topped expectations, and its CEO said "consumer confidence is near record-high levels."