HP split, more GM recalls and a killer weekend for "Gone Girl" top our roundup of the morning's top business news stories.
“Gone Girl” Just Barely Kills Off “Annabelle” at the Box Office
Two dolls, one living, had a killer weekend at the box office, but “Gone Girl,” based on Gillian Flynn’s bestselling psychological thriller, triumphed over “Annabelle” with $38 million. The prequel to “The Conjuring” earned $37.2. Last week’s No. 1 film, “The Equalizer" starring Denzel Washington, came in third with $19 million, while the new animated film, “The Boxtrolls,” earned $12.4 million. “The Maze Runner” dropped to fifth with $12 million.
HP to Announce Company Split
The Wall Street Journal reported Sunday that business computer pioneer Hewlett-Packard plans to separate its personal computer and printer businesses from its technology services. HP could announce as early as Monday the company split. CEO Meg Whitman would serve as chairman of the PC and printer business and CEO of the separate company, which would be chaired by HP's current lead independent director Patricia Russo, according to several published reports. Founded 75 years ago in a Palo Alto, Calif. Garage, HP has been struggling to fend off competition from Oracle and IBM. The company, under Whitman, merged its PC business with its more lucrative printer one in 2012.
GM Issues More Recalls
In the latest round of recalls this year, General Motors is recalling more than 60,000 vehicles in North America, the biggest of which affects 46,873 vehicles in the U.S, the Associated Press reports. The recalls are Pontiac G8s from the 2008 through the 2009 model years and 2011-2013 models Chevrolet Caprice PPV left-hand-drive sedans imported from Australia. The ignition switch key may shift from the "run" position when touched by the driver's knee, GM said. One crash, but no injuries have been attributed to the problem. Another U.S. recall covers over 10,005 Cadillac CTS-V sedans from the 2004-2007 model years and 2006-2007 model Cadillac STS-Vs.The automaker also issued a recall for 304 of the 2014 model-year Chevrolet Sonics in the U.S., saying the vehicles may have a loose electrical connection in the steering column that could affect the performance of the driver-side air bag. In all, the latest recalls included 57,182 vehicles in the U.S. and 60,575 in North America.
China, East Asia Growth Forecasts Cut
The World Bank cut its 2014-2016 growth forecasts for developing East Asia and China, and cautioned of capital-flight risks to Indonesia while growth in China is seen slowing due to policy measures aimed at putting the economy on a more sustainable footing, Reuters reports. The Washington-based lender now projects the developing East Asia and Pacific (EAP) region to grow 6.9 percent in 2014 and 2015, down from the 7.1 percent rate it had previously forecast for both years. The bank also trimmed its 2016 growth forecast for the region to 6.8 percent from 7.1 percent. Growth in China is forecast to slow to 7.4 percent in 2014 and 7.2 percent in 2015, down from 7.7 percent in 2013. Growth in 2016 was seen at 7.1 percent. The World Bank had previously seen China's growth coming in at 7.6 percent in 2014 and 7.5 percent in 2015 and 2016.
IKEA Debuts “Five-Minute Assembly” Line
Swedish furniture company IKEA, known for the inscrutable instructions that accompany its hard-to-assemble furniture, will debut a new living room line, REGISSOR, that will not require any tools to assemble. The company touts that the new pieces, including a bookshelf, cabinets and a coffee table, can be assembled in less than five minutes. The REGISSÖR line will roll out this month.