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Alphabet Is in a Tumultuous Time, but the Business Keeps Booming

SAN FRANCISCO — Google’s parent company, Alphabet, had a tumultuous 2018, with employee revolts, antitrust fines, tough privacy regulation in Europe and heightened political scrutiny in Washington.Through it all, the company managed to produce strong financial results with the numbing consistency of the New England Patriots in the Super Bowl.On Monday, Alphabet said revenue rose 22 percent to $39.27 billion in its most recent quarter, while profits swung to $8.95 billion. Last year, Alphabet reported a loss after it took a $9.9 billion charge for the repatriation of foreign earnings after changes in the tax code.Alphabet’s financial consistency is easily explained. Google owns the internet’s ultimate beachfront…

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Pilot in Southern California plane crash was retired police officer

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - A retired Chicago police officer was piloting a small plane that broke apart shortly after takeoff in Yorba Linda, California, and crashed into a house, killing four people, officials said on Monday. The twin-engine Cessna 414 reached an altitude of about 7,800 feet (2,400 meters) before plummeting to the ground on Sunday at high speed, National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) investigator Maja Smith said at a news conference. “A few witness reports say they saw the airplane coming out of a cloud at a very high speed before parts of the airplane such as tail and then subsequently wings started to break off,”…

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How to Safeguard Your Tech, and Your Money, While Traveling

Travel companies were hit by one data breach after another last year — firms including Marriott, British Airways, Delta Air Lines and the travel booking site Orbitz.Marriott estimates that as a result of its breach — in which the reservation database of Starwood-branded hotels in its portfolio was hacked — 383 million guest records could have been affected and 5.25 million unencrypted passport numbers were possibly compromised. And experts expect breaches in the travel sector will continue.“Travel companies are a prime target of cyberthefts” because they have “highly sensitive, personally identifiable information,” said Eva Velasquez, chief executive of the Identity Theft Resource Center, a national nonprofit organization…

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The North Magnetic Pole’s Mysterious Journey Across the Arctic

The north magnetic pole is restless.Distinct from the geographic North Pole, where all the lines of longitude meet at the top of the world, the magnetic pole is the point that a compass recognizes as north. At the moment, it’s located four degrees south of the geographic North Pole, which lies in the Arctic Ocean at 90 degrees north. But that wasn’t always the case.In the mid-19th century, the north magnetic pole floated much further south, roaming around Canada. For the past 150 years, however, the pole has been sprinting away from Canada and toward Siberia. That change of address cannot be ignored, given that magnetic compasses…

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Armada of tankers with Venezuelan oil forms in U.S. Gulf: sources, data

HOUSTON/MEXICO CITY (Reuters) - A flotilla loaded with about 7 million barrels of Venezuelan oil has formed in the Gulf of Mexico, some holding cargoes bought ahead of the latest U.S. sanctions on Venezuela and others whose buyers are weighing who to pay, according to traders, shippers and Refinitiv Eikon data. FILE PHOTO: The Suezmax sized oil tanker Karvounis lies at anchor stranded off the coast of Louisiana for lack of a bank letter of credit to discharge its cargo of Venezuelan heavy crude, south of Port Fourchon, Louisiana, U.S. August 17, 2017. REUTERS/Jonathan Bachman/File Photo The Trump administration’s move to impose sanctions last week was meant…

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Venezuela’s Guaido says Maduro trying to move public funds to Uruguay

Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido walks at the National Assembly before a news conference in Caracas, Venezuela February 4, 2019. REUTERS/Manaure Quintero CARACAS (Reuters) - Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido said on Monday Nicolas Maduro’s government was trying to move up to $1.2 billion from state development bank Bandes to its subsidiary in Uruguay, though he did not present evidence. Guaido, who last month invoked a constitutional provision to declare himself president and has won the support of most the Western hemisphere, has repeatedly accused Maduro’s government of stealing public funds. Venezuelan traders say Maduro’s government has been using the Bandes subsidiary in Uruguay to get around…

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EU nations back Venezuela’s Guaido as anti-Maduro bloc grows

MADRID/CARACAS (Reuters) - Major European nations joined the United States on Monday in recognizing opposition leader Juan Guaido as Venezuela’s legitimate head of state, while a separate regional bloc meeting kept up the pressure on socialist President Nicolas Maduro. Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido walks at the National Assembly before a news conference in Caracas, Venezuela February 4, 2019. REUTERS/Manaure Quintero The coordinated recognition by 11 nations - Britain, Germany, France, Spain and seven more European Union members - followed the expiration of an ultimatum for Maduro to call a new presidential election, aligning them with Washington and against Russia and China. The 14-nation so-called Lima Group,…

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Tesla to buy battery tech maker Maxwell Technologies for $218 million

(Reuters) - Tesla Inc has agreed to buy energy storage company Maxwell Technologies Inc for $218 million in an all-stock deal that could help the electric car maker produce batteries that hold more energy and last longer at a time when it needs to cut costs and faces growing competition. A Tesla car is seen in Santa Monica, California, United States, October 23, 2018. REUTERS/Lucy NicholsonTesla is rapidly increasing production of its Model 3 sedan and needs to lower the price to reach a broader customer base than its pure luxury vehicles. Maxwell executives told investors in January that it had developed and patented a “dry electrode”…

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Jury begins deliberating fate of alleged Mexican cartel boss ‘El Chapo’

(Reuters) - Jurors began deliberations in the trial of Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman, accused of running one of the world’s most infamous drug cartels, in Brooklyn federal court on Monday morning. The accused Mexican drug lord Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman is seen during his trial in this courtroom sketch in Brooklyn federal court in New York City, U.S., January 31, 2019. REUTERS/Jane Rosenberg Guzman, 61, is accused of leading Mexico’s Sinaloa Cartel, which became one of the most powerful drug trafficking organizations in the world. He twice escaped from prison in Mexico, and will face the possibility of life in a U.S. prison if convicted. The 11-week…

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Tech boost pushes Wall Street to session highs

(Reuters) - Wall Street gained on Monday to hit session highs boosted by technology shares ahead of Alphabet’s earnings, the last FAANG stock to post quarterly results. Workers move a Google logo during the opening of the new Alphabet's Google Berlin office in Berlin, Germany, January 22, 2019. REUTERS/Hannibal HanschkeFAANG earnings have been a mixed bag so far, with Apple Inc and Facebook Inc posting better-than-expected quarterly results last week, while Netflix Inc and Amazon.com Inc forecast downbeat current-quarter numbers. Google parent Alphabet Inc rose 1 percent, and more than 2.5 percent gains in high-flying tech names such as Apple Inc and Microsoft Corp boosted the Nasdaq,…

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