California’s Contractor Law Stirs Confusion Beyond the Gig Economy

The costs for app-based businesses, many of which are not profitable, could be significant. Uber held a troubled initial public offering in May and has reported large losses and slowing revenue growth. Dara Khosrowshahi, Uber’s chief executive, has laid off hundreds of employees in recent months, including Tuesday, to cut costs. But some traditional businesses have argued that the mandate merely levels the playing field. Construction companies have long complained that they face unfair competition from rivals that classify workers as contractors so they can avoid paying payroll taxes and…

Confusion and Defiance Follow California’s New Contractor Law

The costs for app-based businesses, many of which are not profitable, could be significant. Uber held a troubled initial public offering in May and has reported large losses and slowing revenue growth. Dara Khosrowshahi, Uber’s chief executive, has laid off hundreds of employees in recent months, including Tuesday, to cut costs. But some traditional businesses have argued that the mandate merely levels the playing field. Construction companies have long complained that they face unfair competition from rivals that classify workers as contractors so they can avoid paying payroll taxes and…

California Bill Makes App-Based Companies Treat Workers as Employees

SACRAMENTO — California legislators approved a landmark bill on Tuesday that requires companies like Uber and Lyft to treat contract workers as employees, a move that could reshape the gig economy and that adds fuel to a yearslong debate over whether the nature of work has become too insecure. The bill passed in a 29 to 11 vote in the State Senate and will apply to app-based companies, despite their efforts to negotiate an exemption. California’s governor, Gavin Newsom, endorsed the bill this month and is expected to sign it…

California Labor Bill, Near Passage, Is Blow to Uber and Lyft

SACRAMENTO — A pack of Teamsters fanned out through California’s Capitol building last week, marching into legislators’ offices and pressing them to pass a bill that would force Uber and Lyft to treat their drivers as employees. The measure, Assembly Bill 5, would entitle gig workers to protections like a minimum wage and unemployment benefits. “Yes on A.B. 5! Yes on A.B. 5!” they chorused. The push was one of several door-knocking campaigns coordinated by labor groups that can now taste success after battling the ride-hailing companies for years. The…

Uber Posts $5.2 Billion Loss and Slowest Ever Growth Rate

SAN FRANCISCO — Uber set two dubious quarterly records on Thursday as it reported its results: its largest-ever loss, exceeding $5 billion, and its slowest-ever revenue growth. The double whammy immediately renewed questions about the prospects for the company, the world’s biggest ride-hailing business. Uber has been dogged by concerns about sluggish sales and whether it can make money, worries that were compounded by a disappointing initial public offering in May. For the second quarter, Uber said it lost $5.2 billion, the largest loss since it began disclosing limited financial…