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Friday’s business headlines

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

Kroger CEO: Grocery shopping up to 4X cheaper than dining out

Rodney McMullen, the CEO of Kroger, says shopping at the grocery store can be up to four times cheaper than eating out.

That’s what helped the grocery chain beat fourth-fiscal-quarter profit expectations and provide a full-year outlook that was well above Wall Street forecasts.

McMullen says Kroger — the third largest general retailer in the U.S. — has been focusing on improving its pricing relative to key competitors.

Part of that investment in pricing comes from the personalization of coupons, which customers are using more and more.

Mortgage rates jump over 7%

The average rate on the 30-year fixed mortgage jumped back over 7% on Thursday, rising to 7.1%, according to Mortgage News Daily.

Rates went over 7% last October, hitting their highest level in more than 20 years.

Apple delays approval of Blue Mail

Apple has delayed the approval of an email-app update with AI-powered language tools over concerns that it could generate inappropriate content for children.

The app in question is called Blue Mail.

The dispute shows the broad concerns about whether language-generating artificial intelligence tools, such as ChatGPT, are ready for widespread use.

Ford wants to lock drivers out of vehicles for nonpayment

A newly-published patent application from Ford Motor Company shows the American automaker wants to be able to lock drivers out of their vehicles for nonpayment and even allow the vehicle to repossess itself.

The patent document, obtained by The Drive, was published in February and outlines different methods that would be taken if the vehicle owner misses payments.

Among the possible consequences: disabling the air conditioning or radio, emitting an unpleasant sound, and putting the car in “lockout” condition, meaning it can’t be driven.

Grads majoring in chemical engineering were top earners

The Federal Reserve Bank of New York released a report on the labor market for recent college graduates and found that graduates who majored in chemical engineering were the top earners in 2022, making a median of $75,000 in their early careers. Other engineering majors followed the trend.

The lowest-earning college majors were theology and religion, social services, performing arts, psychology, and leisure and hospitality.