Business Briefs – April 26, 2018

Facebook Advertisers Shrug Off Its Privacy Scandal

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) – Facebook’s troubles with Russian election meddlers, “fake news” and misused data have dominated headlines globally and caused endless headaches for the social media site. But it’s not affecting the site’s bottom line, as advertisers continue to flock to Facebook in droves. There is some indication that ad spending actually increased after the Cambridge Analytica scandal. Facebook is the second largest digital publisher in the world, behind Google, and raked in $39.94 billion in 2017.

Drugmaker Takeda Agrees to Buy Shire for $64 Billion

LONDON (AP) – Japanese drugmaker Takeda has reached a tentative agreement to buy Ireland-based Shire Plc for 46 billion pounds ($64 billion). The deal, if completed, would be one of the biggest pharma deals to date. Shire, which has most of its operations in the U.S., focuses on rare diseases, a field that has become of increasing interest to pharmaceutical companies as patents on established drugs expire.

Ford Promises More Savings as 1Q Earnings Rise 9 Percent

DEARBORN, Mich. (AP) – Ford’s net income rose 9 percent in the first quarter due largely to a lower income tax rate as it promised additional cost efficiencies in the coming years. The automaker says it made $1.74 billion, or 43 cents per share, compared with $1.59 billion, or 40 cents per share a year ago. Ford also says it has found another $11.5 billion in cost cuts and efficiencies, bringing the total to $25.5 billion expected by 2022.

Visa 2Q Profits Jump, Helped by More Spending on Its Network

NEW YORK (AP) – Payment processing giant Visa is reporting a sharp jump in its fiscal second-quarter profits from a year earlier, as more shoppers spent money on Visa’s network across all its major markets.

The San Francisco-based company said it earned $2.61 billion in the period ending March 30, or $1.11 a share. The company’s net income rose by 26 percent when a one-time charge tied to the purchase of Visa Europe is excluded from the year-ago results.

Visa’s profit beat the expectations of analysts, who forecast earnings of $1.01 a share.

The amount of money spent across Visa’s network rose by 11 percent to $2.716 trillion. Visa earns a small fee from each transaction run on its network.