The daily business briefing: November 12, 2019

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Harold Maass
The 737 Max jet
Stephen Brashear/Getty Images
The daily business briefing newsletter
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1.

Boeing says 737 Max jets will return to skies in January

Boeing announced Monday that its 737 Max jets would likely be approved to resume commercial service in January. The planes were grounded worldwide after two fatal crashes that were linked to a software issue in a flight control system. Boeing said it expects the Federal Aviation Administration within weeks to approve returning the jets to service. The aircraft maker previously said commercial service could begin as soon as December, and some airlines have said they will push the resumption even further, to install new software and ensure compliance with regulations. The FAA has not confirmed that service will resume in January, but Boeing shares rose 5 percent after the company's announcement. [Reuters]

2.

Goldman Sachs to re-examine Apple Card credit limits

Goldman Sachs said Monday it would review Apple Card credit limits for customers who received lower limits than they thought they deserved, but denied allegations that its algorithm resulted in gender bias. "We have not and never will make decisions based on factors like gender," Carey Halio, Goldman's retail bank CEO, said in a statement. "In fact, we do not know your gender or marital status during the Apple Card application process." The statement came after tech entrepreneur David Heinemeier Hansson fired off a series of tweets starting on Friday saying that he got an Apple Card credit limit that was 20 times higher than his wife's even though they file joint tax returns. Goldman Sachs handles credit decisions for the cards. [CNBC]

3.

Nissan sales drop sharply

Nissan Motor Co. reported Tuesday that its sales dropped by 76 percent in the latest quarter, in which the Japanese automaker faced ongoing turmoil following the ouster of former chief Carlos Ghosn. Nissan also slashed its full-year outlook by 35 percent, bringing it to an 11-year low. The company has reported falling profit since Ghosn was pushed out last year. In the latest quarter, operating profit from sales was 30 billion yen or $275 billion, down from 101.2 billion yen a year earlier and under the mean forecast of 47.5 billion yen from analysts surveyed by Refinitiv. Nissan has been hurt by a brand image tarnished by years of heavy discounting and fleet sales, especially in the U.S. [Reuters]

4.

U.S. stock futures gain ahead of Trump trade remarks

U.S. stock index futures edged higher early Tuesday as markets remained focused on global trade developments. Futures for the Dow Jones Industrial Average, which inched up and eked out a record high on Monday, were up by less than 0.1 percent, as were those of the S&P 500. Nasdaq futures gained about 0.2 percent. Investors are awaiting a speech by President Trump at the Economic Club of New York, where some expect him to hint at the prospects for a first phase of a trade deal to end the U.S. trade war with China. Stocks struggled on Monday as concerns bubbled up about whether the U.S. and China would sign a trade agreement in coming weeks, after Trump on Friday said he had not agreed to scrap new tariffs under a looming deal. [CNBC]

5.

Alibaba's Singles Day sale crushes record

Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba reported $38.4 billion in sales at its annual Singles Day shopping event, smashing the previous record of $30 billion set last year. The total amounted to six times the U.S. online sales on Black Friday last year. Brands such as L'Oreal and Nestle were among the big winners as shoppers grabbed products such as food supplements, facial masks, and baby milk powder, according to Alibaba data. The company said Tuesday that 299 brands exceeded 100 million yuan ($14.3 million) in gross merchandise value. The big sellers included smartphone makers Huawei and Apple, LVMH's Givenchy, home appliance maker Dyson, and sportswear makers Nike and Under Armour. [Reuters]