ECONOMY

Experts say U.S. economy

likely has reached peak

The U.S. economy grew at a solid 3.1% annual rate in the January-March quarter — a pace that will likely prove to be the high-water mark for the year before growth weakens in the coming months.

That's the assessment widely shared by most economists in light of the rising threats facing the U.S. economy, from a raging trade war to cautious spending by consumers and businesses to a global slowdown.

 

SHIPPING

FedEx plans to begin

daily deliveries in 2020

FedEx plans to make deliveries seven days a week year-round starting in January because online shoppers want their stuff now, even on Sundays.

The company is also taking back nearly 2 million daily deliveries that the post office makes to homes for FedEx.

The company says that will increase efficiency of residential deliveries.

President and Chief Operating Officer Raj Subramaniam said the change will increase the company's ability to meet the demands of online shoppers and retailers.

"Consumers want packages over the weekend," Subramaniam said in an interview. "As soon as we went to six-day, we started hearing about seven-day."

 

AGRICULTURE

Midwest farmers endure

incredibly tough spring

Midwestern farmers are enduring a spring like no other.

Most of the nation's corn and soybeans are grown in the Midwest, and farmers in the region have for years struggled with low prices that got even worse due to a trade dispute between the U.S. and China.

Amid those problems, farmers haven't been able to plant because of seemingly endless storms.

President Donald Trump promised $16 billion in aid but that led to confusion because details about the payments won't be released until later.

 

BONDS

'Inverted yield curve'

has investors worried

Bonds are supposed to be the boring corner of the finance world, but even high-flying stock investors stop and pay attention when they fall into a particular, concerning pattern.

It's called an "inverted yield curve," and it happens when investors are willing to accept lower yields for long-term U.S. government bonds than for short-term debt.

It's been a relatively reliable predictor for recessions, and it's happening.

 

RIDESHARING

Uber loses $1 billion

during first quarter

In its first financial report since its lackluster debut on Wall Street, Uber said Thursday that its revenue rose to $3.1 billion in the first quarter of 2019, up 20% from the same time last year, beating expectations of analysts polled by FactSet. But the ride-hailing giant posted $1 billion in losses as it fights to maintain its share of the market.

San Francisco-based Uber, like its main U.S. competitor Lyft, has spent heavily on rider promotions and driver incentives to gain market share, one reason the companies have struggled to reach profitability. Both are dealing with intense competition, high costs to pay drivers, increased regulation by cites and a long, uncertain road to the development of autonomous vehicles.