Kodak shares soar on cryptocurrency move

Kodak, with roots in the early days of film-based photography, is getting into the digital licensing and cryptocurrency market as part of a partnership with WENN Digital.

The companies are launching blockchain technology with KodakOne and KodakCoin.

Rochester, N.Y.- based Kodak, founded in 1880, is the latest company to enter the cryptocurrency market as bitcoin makes gains. Bitcoin has surged from less than $1,000 a year ago to more than $14,000.

The Kodak systems will allow photographers to register work that they can license and then receive payment. The initial coin offering will open Jan. 31.

Shares of Eastman Kodak more than doubled Tuesday to close at $6.80. Over the past year, the stock has shed more than 70 percent of its value.

— Bloomberg News


Toyota recalls more vehicles over air bags

Toyota is recalling 601,000 more vehicles in the United States to replace defective Takata air bag inflaters.

The automaker said the recall covers the Toyota Corolla and Matrix, Scion xB, Lexus IS250 and 350, and the Lexus IS-F from 2009, 2010 and 2013. Also covered are the 2010 and 2013 Toyota 4-Runner, the Lexus IS250C and 350C and the Lexus GX460, as well as the 2009 and 2010 Toyota Yaris and Lexus ES350, and the 2013 Toyota Sienna.

The recalls come after Takata revealed that an additional 3.3 million inflaters are defective. Its inflaters, which can explode with too much force and hurl shrapnel, have caused the deaths of least 20 people worldwide.

— Associated Press


Skills gains predicted in developing nations

Emerging-market economies will drive skill gains in the global labor force in the coming decades, potentially reducing inequality among nations, a new World Bank report predicts.

The number of skilled workers — those with nine or more years of education — is projected to rise 30 percent, to 2.16 billion, by 2040, up from 1.66 billion in 2011, the report says. "The . . . rising share of educated workers in emerging and development economies will likely lift global potential growth and be accompanied by a further decrease in global income inequality," the report says.

The number of skilled workers in developed economies will actually shrink, falling to 594 million in 2050 from 603 million in 2011 as the population ages, based on the projections.

That shift "could constitute a shock to global labor markets," according to the report. "Since better skills are associated with higher income, the world under the baseline scenario will continue to become more equal."

— Bloomberg News

Also in Business

Duke Energy will pay an $84,000 penalty and work to end leaks of potentially toxic waste from three North Carolina coal-burning plants. An agreement announced Tuesday and signed by a Duke Energy executive includes the penalty for leaks detected at pits holding liquefied coal ash at the Rogers, Allen and Marshall power plants. The deal with the state regulator settles violations involving leaky spots detected before 2015 that allow tainted waste into groundwater and the adjoining Catawba and Broad rivers.

The Sprouts Farmers Market supermarket chain said Tuesday that it will offer home delivery through Instacart, becoming the latest grocer to partner with the start-up. Sprouts, which delivers to homes in eight U.S. cities through a partnership with Amazon Prime Now, said it would add Instacart service to other U.S. markets, beginning with select Zip codes in Phoenix and Tucson on Tuesday. (Amazon chief executive Jeffrey P. Bezos owns The Washington Post.)

— From news reports

Coming today

10 a.m.: Commerce Department releases wholesale trade inventories for November.