Stories by Marisa Fernandez

Overstock CEO resigns due to romantic involvement with Russian agent

overstock ceo
Overstock CEO Patrick Byrne. Photo: Steven Ferdman/Getty Images

Patrick Byrne resigned as CEO of online retailer Thursday after the company publicly announced his relationship with admitted Russian agent Maria Butina, the New York Times reports.

The big picture: Writing in a letter to shareholders, Byrne said his disclosure "may affect and complicate all manner of business relationships." The relationship lasted from 2015 to 2018 and was mostly unknown until Overstock posted a news release last week. Byrne was involved in the federal inquiry into the 2016 presidential election that was handled separately from special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into Russian interference. He said he had helped law enforcement agents with their "Clinton Investigation" and "Russia Investigation," per NYT.

U.S. manufacturing sector contracts for first time since 2009

Workers assemble cars at the newly renovated Ford's Assembly Plant in Chicago,
Workers assemble cars at the newly renovated Ford's Assembly Plant in Chicago. Photo: Jim Young/AFP/Getty Images

The U.S. manufacturing sector contracted for the first time since 2009 in August, CNBC reports from data by IHS Markit.

Why it matters: The industry, which has flourished during the Trump administration, is not only facing ongoing concerns of a global economic slowdown, but is also staring down increased pressure from the U.S.-China trade war. The report also saw a slowdown in business growth, which IHS Markit's economics associate director told CNBC was its "most concerning aspect"

Go deeper: U.S. Steel plant in Michigan will temporarily lay off up to 200 employees

Mitch McConnell defends the Senate filibuster

mitch mcconnell
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell urged Democrats to stop considering abolishing the filibuster Thursday, arguing "America needs the Senate to be the Senate" in a New York Times op-ed.

The state of play: The Kentucky senator, responding to calls to from his predecessor Harry Reid and a number of 2020 contenders to end the filibuster to move forward Democratic proposals on gun control and climate change, said it was "their half-baked proposals and not the centuries-old wisdom that need retooling."