Stock futures fell sharply as U.S.-China trade worries persisted with more companies suspending business with Chinese telecom giant Huawei.US Marketsread more
A Ministry of Commerce spokesperson does not single out any U.S. action, but it's been a tense couple of weeks for the trade war.World Politicsread more
Tesla was set for its seventh straight day of losses after more analysts joined the growing list of those concerned with its finances.Investingread more
"For them to say that they don't work with the Chinese government is false," Secretary of State Mike Pompeo tells CNBC.Politicsread more
With Tesla shares skidding, two experts weigh in on what could be next for the automaker and its volatile stock.Trading Nationread more
U.S. tariffs on Chinese goods are hurting an unintended target as the country's trade war with China rages on, a study by the International Monetary Fund found.Marketsread more
Papa John's founder John Schnatter has been selling his shares in the company but remains its largest shareholder.Restaurantsread more
First-time claims for state unemployment benefits were expected to total 215,000 for the most recent week, up slightly from the 212,000 claims reported for the previous week.Economyread more
U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo joined CNBC's "Squawk Box" on Thursday.Energyread more
Chipotle Mexican Grill is about to take a hit from rising prices due to African swine fever, according to BMO Capital Markets.Marketsread more
CKE Restaurants' roots began in California roughly seven decades ago, but you won't see the parent company of Carl's Jr. and Hardee's expanding there much anymore.
What's causing what company CEO Andy Puzder describes as "very little growth" in the state?
In part it's because "the minimum wage is so high so it's harder to come up with profitable business models," Puzder said in an interview. The state's minimum wage is set to rise to $9 in July, making it among the nation's highest, and $10 by January 2016.
In cities in other states where the minimum wage has gone up considerably, Puzder said "franchisees are closing locations" after riding out lease expirations.
If the federal minimum hourly pay shoots up to $10.10 from the current $7.25—as many lawmakers and President Barack Obama are advocating—Puzder predicts fewer entry-level jobs will be created. If this happens, CKE would also create fewer positions, he forecast.
A recent nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office study also predicted mass job losses, estimating that a hike to $10.10 could result in a loss of about half a million jobs by late 2016, even as it lifted many above the poverty line.
"When the minimum wage increases, there are two things you can do," he said. "One is you can reduce the amount of labor that you use or you can increase your prices."
But with increased costs from food, taxes, fuel, health insurance and regulatory compliance, Puzder said businesses can only raise prices so much before customers become less willing to shell out.
Obamacare regulations, which impact businesses with 50 or more workers more than those with fewer employees, are also affecting CKE's franchise growth.
"I actually have franchisees...who've either gotten out of the business or refused to build two restaurants because with one restaurant you have less than 50 employees," he said. "With two, you have more than 50."
Instead, some cautious franchisees are considering alternatives to expanding their businesses.
"They're actually looking at other investments, which have less risk and lower costs—for example, bonds," he said.
Puzder says it's difficult to justify the risk of opening a business when government policies have hindered would-be entrepreneurs' ability to generate profits due to increases costs.
Indeed, jobs data reflects this hesitancy.
Over the past two decades, businesses with 500 or fewer workers created about two-thirds of net new jobs, according to CNBC's analysis of BLS data. This portion had dropped to about half by 2013.
"People don't just grow because it's Tuesday," he said. "They grow because they think they can make a profit."
To boost U.S. growth, Puzder says more business sympathetic policies need to be in place.
"I'm not saying the government should disappear or I hate the government," he said. "We need a government. We have a good government, but the government's gotten overzealous with respect to what it thinks it should do...The government needs to get out of the way."
—By CNBC's Katie Little