Business | KNKX

Business

Business news and features from the Puget Sound region. Stay up-to-date with the latest business news and more.

Russel A. Daniels / AP Photo

Post-doctoral researchers at the University of Washington are trying to form a union to negotiate better wages and working conditions. 

Last year about 26 million boxes of Northwest cherries shipped to China, making it a top export market for Northwest cherry growers. When the cherries start coming off the tree in late May or early June, it will be the first crop to face new Chinese-imposed tariffs.

A public utility in north central Washington state wants to root out a new kind of outlaw: the rogue bitcoin miner.

With China threatening to slap the United States with tariffs on $3 billion worth of U.S. made products,  one group that is worried is Washington state’s apple farmers.

Google subsidiary Waze is launching a carpool app statewide in Washington Tuesday. The company is the latest to see opportunity in the carpool organizing business in the Pacific Northwest.

Elaine Thompson / AP Photo

The Seattle City Council is reconsidering a "head tax" on businesses to pay for housing and homeless services after council members failed to pass such a tax last year.

Updated at 11:15 a.m. ET

Newly enacted U.S. tariffs on aluminum and steel imports have sparked a sharp reaction from around the globe, with several nations warning of an all-out trade war.

President Trump on Thursday made good on a promise to impose a 25 percent tariff on imported steel and a 10 percent tariff on aluminum imports. The levies are to go into effect in 15 days.

"Amazon headquarters sphere domes" by Kiewic is licensed under CC by 2.0 https://bitly.com/

Business leaders in King and Pierce counties took stock of the local economy at two separate summits Thursday, as they sought ways to harness the region's record job growth to solve pervasive problems.

Updated at 4 p.m. ET

When President Trump pulled the U.S. from the Trans-Pacific Partnership, spurning the massive free trade agreement in one of his first acts in the Oval Office, most analysts figured the deal was dead.

Simone Alicea / KNKX

Millions of people rode ferries last year in Washington state, but there are serious concerns about staffing ferries as the workforce ages and people retire. One way to attract younger workers is making sure training is up-to-date.

Amazon really wants to come over to your house. Or at least make it to the front door.

The Seattle-based tech giant announced Tuesday it's made another move into the home security and surveillance business, acquiring Ring, a smart-doorbell maker that streams audio and video to cellphones.

The recent bite of arctic air is causing real worry for Northwest fruit farmers. They’re fretting over their trees’ tender buds. And it all might get worse as things warm up.

Courtesy of the Seattle Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce

As Tacoma's mayor, Marilyn Strickland was known for traveling the world to court investors and promote her city as a place to do business.

East of the Cascades in Washington and Oregon, it’s been about five to 10 degrees warmer than normal for most of the winter. Those unusually warm conditions have buds on fruit trees and grapevines starting to “push,” or emerge early.

And that has farmers worried.

Brie Ripley / KNKX

The company that provides school bus transportation to about 12,000 students in the Seattle school district and the union that represents drivers said in a joint statement that they've reached a tentative agreement. Drivers have been on strike for more than a week.

A three-judge panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals heard oral arguments Monday in two lawsuits against Seattle's law allowing drivers for companies like Uber and Lyft to unionize.

The lawsuits were dismissed by a District Court judge in August. But both groups are appealing to let the lawsuits proceed. 

The Airbus subsidiary behind a self-flying, battery-powered passenger drone says the prototype has made its first flight at Eastern Oregon Regional Airport in Pendleton.

Over the weekend, Washington state tightened the screws—again—on an Atlantic salmon farming operation. The state Department of Natural Resources Saturday terminated the lease for Cooke Aquaculture's Cypress Island fish farm near Anacortes.

Lyft, Uber Drivers May Face Fingerprint Background Checks

Feb 5, 2018

Uber and Lyft drivers may soon have to undergo tougher background checks in Washington state. Lawmakers are considering a proposal that would require drivers to pass a fingerprint background check before being allowed to operate.

Courtesy of the Seattle Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce

Since former Tacoma Mayor Marilyn Strickland left office weeks ago, political observers have wondered what's next for her.

Now, they have an answer.

Strickland, who was term limited after eight years in office, is taking over leadership of the region's largest business lobbying group, the Seattle Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce.

Washington state lawmakers are trying to figure out how to make benefits such as health insurance and retirement funds more accessible to people in the gig economy. 

There is a bill in the state House of Representatives that would introduce a system of "portable benefits" that follow workers from job to job.

Ted S. Warren / AP Photo

The three large glass domes at the heart of Amazon's downtown Seattle headquarters officially opened Monday. The spheres function as both another workspace for Amazon employees and an indoor rainforest.

Updated at 11:17 a.m. ET

Health care costs are "a hungry tapeworm on the American economy," Berkshire Hathaway Chairman and CEO Warren Buffett says, and now his firm is teaming up with Amazon and JPMorgan Chase to create a new company with the goal of providing high-quality health care for their U.S. employees at a lower cost.

A regulatory snafu in Washington state has industrial hemp farmers in limbo over planting a crop in 2018. Some of them are looking to shift acreage to Oregon.

Elaine Thompson / AP Photo

Amazon Go opened to the public Monday. The downtown Seattle convenience store uses cameras and sensors to track shoppers' purchases, eliminating the need for cashiers and check-out lines.

Amazon on Monday will open its automated grocery in Seattle to the public, replacing cashiers with a smartphone app and hundreds of small cameras that track purchases.

For the past year, the 1,800-square foot mini-mart has been open to the company's employees.

There is no waiting in line for check out at Amazon Go, as the store is called — instead, its computerized system charges customers' Amazon account as they exit the store.

A quartet of young companies from the Seattle area have raised tens of millions of dollars by tapping into a hot tech trend. They've invented new virtual currencies and sold digital coins to the public.

These token sales are largely unregulated and are sparking increasingly frequent government warnings.

"Moving day for Russell" by Scott Hingst is licensed under CC by 2.0 http://bit.ly/2Ft6FfX

State Farm Insurance is clearing out of Tacoma by the end of the year, the company said Thursday, meaning some 1,400 jobs will leave the city's downtown as local leaders name attracting employers as a top priority. 

Keith Cooper / Flickr

Here’s one more thing to worry about if you’re trying to buy a home in the hot Seattle real estate market: You could get duped into wiring your down payment to a fraudulent account.  Real estate professionals across the country and in the Puget Sound region report an alarming spike in wire fraud.

The price of bitcoin set another new all-time high Wednesday, shooting past $13,000. The meteoric rise in the value of bitcoin and lesser known virtual currencies is having a real world effect in the Pacific Northwest.

Entrepreneurs are bombarding the public utilities in Central Washington with requests for cheap hydropower to run bitcoin computers.

Pages