Business Briefs – February 22, 2017

End of the Euro? French Candidate Plots Return of the Franc

PARIS (AP) – What happens to the euro if Marine Le Pen actually gets elected president of France? The far-right National Front presidential candidate has made it clear that she wants France to control its own money, but an exit from the shared currency could spell financial disaster for both France and Europe.

Health Care’s Future: Turning Patients Into Savers, Shoppers

WASHINGTON (AP) – Many Americans who gained health coverage through the Affordable Care Act may soon have to save for medical bills and shop for care more than they have in the past. The fate of the health care law is up in the air, but experts say changes may include greater use of health savings accounts. While such plans may help patients save on doctor visits, they do little to lower overall health care spending.

Tesla Swings to Loss in 4Q After Profitable Third Quarter

DETROIT (AP) – Unable to string together profitable quarters, electric car and solar cell maker Tesla Inc. is reporting a loss for the last three months of 2016. Tesla reported a loss of $121.3 million, or 78 cents per share, for its fourth quarter. It was less than half the $320.4 million loss from a year earlier. Without one-time items Tesla lost 69 cents per share.

Tulsa’s Former Black Wall Street Tries to Remake Itself

TULSA, Okla. (AP) – A once-prosperous section of Tulsa that became the site of one of the worst race riots in American history is attempting to remake itself again after decades of neglect. Black leaders want to bring 100 new companies to the former Black Wall Street in north Tulsa by 2021, the 100th anniversary of its fall. The initiative seeks to recapture the entrepreneurial spirit that helped make it one of the country’s most affluent black areas.

Emails: EPA’s Pruitt Cozy With Fossil Fuel Industry

WASHINGTON (AP) – While serving as Oklahoma’s attorney general, new EPA chief Scott Pruitt was in frequent contact with fossil fuel companies and special interest groups working to undermine federal efforts to curb planet-warming carbon emissions. This was shown by emails released under court order after an Oklahoma judge ruled that Pruitt had been illegally withholding his official correspondence from the public for the last two years.

Industry: Philadelphia Soda Tax Killing Sales, Layoffs Loom

PHILADELPHIA (AP) – Some Philadelphia supermarkets and beverage distributors say they’re gearing up for layoffs because the city’s new tax on soft drinks has cut beverage sales by 30 percent to 50 percent, worse than the city predicted. Jeff Brown owns six ShopRite supermarkets. He tells The Philadelphia Inquirer he expects to cut 300 jobs.