Friday’s business headlines

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — Here’s a look at Friday’s business headlines with Jane King.

Student loan forgiveness is now tax-free

Student loan forgiveness won’t trigger tax bills for borrowers anymore.

Formerly, any student loan debt canceled by the government was considered taxable.

That was changed as part of the stimulus bill passed this week.

Novavax vaccine 96% effective against COVID-19

Novavax’s COVID-19 vaccine was 96% effective in preventing cases caused by the original version of the coronavirus.

The vaccine was also about 86% effective in protecting against the U.K. variant.

There were no cases of severe illness or deaths among those who got the vaccine.

The vaccine could be cleared for use in the United States as soon as May.

Amazon planning 28 more Fresh stores

Amazon has opened 11 Amazon Fresh stores around the U.S., with plans for at least 28 more.

An Amazon spokesperson confirmed the location of five future stores, but declined to comment on the rest of the locations identified by Bloomberg from planning and permitting documents, state licensing rolls and news reports.

Amazon used detailed analyses of shopping habits to help sketch out a list of 15,000 products to fill the store shelves.

500,000 businesses opened during pandemic

New Yelp data showed nearly a half million businesses have opened in America during the coronavirus pandemic, an optimistic sign of the state of the U.S. economic recovery.

That’s down just 14% compared with the year-ago period. More than 15% of the new entities were restaurant and food businesses.

However, Yelp also said more than 260,800 businesses that had closed due to COVID-19 restrictions.