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Tech analyst predicts Amazon will buy Target in 2018

Plus: Al Franken officially resigns Senate seat; there’s a traffic jam of ships on Lake Superior; 117 people arrested for DWI in Minnesota on New Year’s Eve; and more.

REUTERS/Carlos Jasso

Well, that would be one way to get HQ2: Rhett Jones at Gizmodo says: “Gene Munster is a market analyst and founder of Loup Ventures. Munster is known for his decade-long bullishness on Apple’s stock. He tends to be right that it’ll go up, but he invariably overshoots by how much. He’s also the man you can thank for years of rumors that Apple is coming out with its own TV and most recently he’s been predicting an Apple car is coming in 2021. Still, his early optimism about the iPhone means the markets listen to him. And after he dropped his list of tech predictions for 2018 on Monday, Target’s stock is rising based on his belief that Amazon could swoop in and purchase the retail giant.”

But: Get real, says Brian Sozzi at The Street: There is a less than 5 percent probability that this deal happens. Some very basic reasons: … It would be a waste of time for Amazon to even perform its due diligence. If regulators didn’t let Staples and Office Depot merger, they would never let Amazon buy up one of the most prominent (and largest) retailers in the United States. … Amazon and Target are not cultural fits. Bezos is likely learning the impact of cultures not fitting with the integration of the free-spirited bunch at Whole Foods. … Target is a competitor to Amazon. Amazon will likely be in the business of buying complementary assets at big premiums in the future, not overpaying for ones that could cannibalize its core business.”

And you thought the Crosstown was bad … Says Dan Kraker for MPR, “The frigid temperatures and end-of-season shipping rush on the Great Lakes have led to a traffic jam of giant 1,000-foot ships on Lake Superior outside Duluth. On New Year’s Day there were nine huge freighters anchored outside the Aerial Lift Bridge in Duluth — arranged like in a game of Battleship — steam from the lake billowing around them, all waiting to load up with iron ore pellets in Duluth, Two Harbors, or Superior, Wis. And another dozen or more ships are scheduled to arrive in the next week to load up with taconite pellets.”

This is why staying home and binge-watching “Black Mirror” isn’t such a bad idea. Says Mara Gottfried in the PiPress, “Law enforcement around Minnesota arrested 117 people for DWI over New Year’s Eve, according to the Minnesota Office of Traffic Safety. The arrests occurred between 6 p.m. Sunday and 8 a.m. Monday.”

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It’s official. MPR’s Mark Zdechlik reports: “Al Franken has officially resigned his Senate seat, effective as of noon central time Tuesday. A top Franken staffer said the senator submitted his resignation letter to Gov. Mark Dayton Tuesday morning. That leaves Minnesota with just one U.S. Senator from now until the time Lt. Gov. Tina Smith is sworn in, which is expected around noon Wednesday. She’ll hold the seat until a special election in November determine who will serve the balance of Franken’s second term, which ends in 2020.”

A downside to the Vikings surprising season (besides the dread of assuming it will all end with some ignominious gut-punch, of course): KSTP-TV reports: “With the Minnesota Vikings in the playoffs and the Super Bowl now just 32 days away, football is center stage. And with that comes the prospect of ticket scammers. The team says 10 to 20 people might be scammed into buying fake tickets to any given game, but last weekend that number soared to roughly 100.”

Kinda, maybe related: the ‘Bold North’ is becoming the closed North. From MPR’s Tim Nelson: “The streets immediately surrounding U.S. Bank Stadium closed Tuesday, including parts of Chicago and 11th avenues, Fourth and Sixth streets, as well as Fifth Street east of the stadium. Those roads will remain closed through Feb. 11, a week after Super Bowl. More closures will follow in two weeks, when the Nicollet Mall closes for Super Bowl-related activities. Eighth Street on either side of the mall will also close later that week. Streets around the Minneapolis Convention Center will also close the week before the big game to accommodate the Super Bowl Experience, the NFL theme park that accompanies the championship every year.”