Chicago man faces hate crime charge in synagogue vandalism

CHICAGO (Reuters) – A Chicago man has been arrested and charged with a felony hate crime for allegedly smashing the window of a city synagogue and putting swastika stickers on its front door, police said on Wednesday.

Is There Any Way To Slow Down A Solar Sail?

Say we accelerate a solar sail so much that it can escape our solar system – would there be any way to stop it when it gets to its destination? Or is it doomed for a flyby at best?

U.S. federal court dismisses appeal by Peabody creditors

CHICAGO (Reuters) – A U.S. federal appeals court dismissed an emergency appeal by opponents of Peabody Energy Corp’s reorganization plan on Wednesday, saying any complaints should be lodged after the plan is confirmed by the bankruptcy court.

Aritzia stock dips below key milestone after impressive debut, but analysts still see a buy

Less than four months after Aritzia Inc. raised $460 million in its initial public offering and a mere two weeks after it closed a $382 million secondary offering, the second week of February will be remembered for a more dubious achievement.

In that week, the share price of the company that describes itself as “an innovative design house and fashion retailer of exclusive brands” traded below $16 for the first time. In Aritzia’s time as a public company, $16 has some significance.

It was the price at which company sold subordinate voting shares in its IPO, the proceeds of which flowed to the selling shareholders. In other words, the company got none of the proceeds.

The $16 per share price was decided upon after the road show, because there was great interest from investors in owning a piece of a Canadian company that was formed in the mid-1980s and now has about 75 retail outlets both here and in the United States.

Initially the plan was to sell 20 million shares with each share priced in the $14-$16 a share range. Later the offer was upped to 25 million shares priced at $16, the top end of the range. One of those buyers, according to a filing, was Boston-based Fidelity which acquired almost 4.2 million shares – enough for a 13.21 per cent stake.

Toss in the 15 per cent over-allotment option – which was exercised – and the selling shareholders pocketed $460 million in gross proceeds. For the following three weeks, the shares traded above $18 – though volume, apart from the first day of trading when 1.5 million shares changed hands, was not that excessive. At year-end, the shares closed at $17.50 – meaning those who bought in the IPO were ahead while those who bought in the secondary market were probably under water.

Things remained normal until Jan. 9 when Aritzia reported its “strong” third quarter financials. Two days later, or about three months after its IPO closed, the company announced a $382 million secondary offering to be done via a bought deal. In that issue, the selling shareholders would pocket $350.7 million and the employees the rest.

It’s not the norm for a company to issue new stock so soon after completing either an IPO or a normal equity offering. Indeed in the final prospectus for its IPO under the section “Lock-Up Arrangements,” Aritzia’s directors and executive officers, and the selling shareholders agreed they would not sell any additional shares for 180 days – “without the prior written consent of the joint book-runners.”

So with permission granted, CIBC Capital Markets, Bank of America Merrill Lynch and TD Securities lobbed in a bought deal offer, which was accepted. The shares would resold at $17.45. At the time the shares were trading at $17.995.

For whatever reason – the large size, the relatively high price, the lack of a sufficient discount or the lack of time after the previous issue – the market didn’t like the deal and the shares embarked on a steady price decline. On Tuesday they closed below $16.

That decline has continued after the syndicate was forced to reprice the latest offering. A few days after the offering closed, the unsold stock was re-priced and found a home.

So what’s next? If the eight analysts who follow Aritzia are correct, the situation is a buying opportunity. All eight rate the company a buy and have posted one-year targets in the $22 – $26 a share range.

Financial Post

Samsung Plant Catches Fire Because Of — You Guessed It — Batteries

In what can only be described as a blaze of irony, batteries are being blamed for a fire that occurred Wednesday at a Samsung factory in China.

Samsung, which last month blamed batteries for its exploding Galaxy Note 7 smartphones, said the fire broke out in an area of the company’s Tianjin plant used to store faulty batteries and other waste products.

The Wuqing branch of the Tianjin Fire Department reported in a verified social media post that it sent 110 firefighters and 19 trucks to the scene.

The fire department specifically cited lithium batteries as the fuel behind the conflagration.

The Korean company called the fire “minor” and said that it didn’t affect production. Video posted on social media showed black plumes of smoke rising from a building. No injuries were reported.

Since the Galaxy Note 7 debacle, Samsung has worked to assure the public that its products are safe.

Last month, the company released the results of a lengthy investigation that revealed design flaws in two different sets of its batteries. Those flaws caused the products to heat up to dangerous levels, they said.

“Today, more than ever, we are committed to earning the trust of our customers through innovation that redefines what is possible in safety, and as a gateway to unlimited possibilities and incredible new experiences,” Dongjin Koh, Samsung’s president of mobile, said at the time.

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Legal battle over travel ban pits Trump’s powers against his own words

NEW YORK (Reuters) – A U.S. appeals court is weighing arguments for and against President Donald Trump’s temporary travel ban, but its decision this week may not yet answer the underlying legal questions being raised in the fast-moving case.

Winter Olympics 2018: Team GB medal chances ‘exciting’

Great Britain should be excited about their medal chances at the 2018 Winter Olympics, says chef de mission Mike Hay.

Intel will invest $7 billion to finish a factory it started in 2011

Intel announced today that it would spend $7 billion to complete Fab 42, a factory in Chandler, Arizona that will eventually be used to build chips on Intel’s 7nm manufacturing process. According to Intel’s release, the facility will “directly create 3,000 high-tech, high-wage Intel jobs for process engineers, equipment technicians, and facilities-support engineers and technicians who will work at the site,” and that a further 7,000 jobs will be created indirectly to support the facility. Intel CEO Brian Krzanich made the announcement at the White House with President Donald Trump; Krzanich briefly attracted controversy last summer when he canceled a Trump fundraising event.

In an e-mail to Intel employees after the announcement (PDF), Krzanich said he made the announcement at the White House as a show of support for “the Administration’s policies to level the global playing field and make US manufacturing competitive worldwide through new regulatory standards and investment policies.” Krzanich also noted that Intel was “one of the top five exporters and top two R&D spenders in the US—despite the fact that from a tax and regulatory position we have been disadvantaged relative to the rest of the world where we compete.”

Though Krzanich bemoans US taxes and regulations, it’s also worth noting that US government restrictions make it more difficult for Intel to build cutting-edge chip manufacturing facilities outside of the United States in the first place. Under the terms of the Wassenaar Arrangement, Intel needs to get government approval before it can export manufacturing equipment capable of making anything smaller than 45nm chips (that number changes over time as manufacturing processes improve). This is one reason why Intel only has one factory in China and why that factory was making then-outdated 65nm chips when it opened in 2010. It’s not that Intel can’t build advanced chip factories outside of the US, but it does appear to be easier overall to keep the most advanced processes in the US.

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