Business & Economy

Business & Economy
5:41 pm
Mon October 7, 2013

European Vote Could Hurt NC Tobacco Exports

Tobacco at Strickland Farms
Credit Leoneda Inge

U.S. tobacco growers are watching new regulations being considered across the Atlantic.  The European Parliament is set to vote on guidelines that would curtail the use of additives in tobacco that provide flavorings to the plant. 

Burley tobacco -- produced mainly in Kentucky -- contains a number of additives that change the taste.  North Carolina has some burley growers, but mostly exports flue-cured tobacco.  N.C. State extension economist Blake Brown says any new regulations could hurt tobacco farmers.

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Business & Economy
8:17 am
Fri October 4, 2013

PNC Survey Shows Weak Business Optimism

Credit PNC Bank

A PNC survey shows small to mid-sized business owners across the state are less optimistic about doing business than they were six months ago.  The PNC Economic Outlook survey shows 8 percent of business owners intend to add full-time employees.  Nationwide, it’s 16 pecent.

PNC Economist Mekael Teshome says  North Carolina business owners continue to report weak sales and are being extremely cautious.

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Business & Economy
5:15 pm
Thu October 3, 2013

Harris Teeter Shareholders Sign Off On Kroger Merger

Credit Mike Kalasnik via Flickr, Creative Commons

Harris Teeter shareholders have approved a plan for Kroger to acquire the Matthews-based grocery chain.  Harris Teeter officials said in a statement that 83 percent of the votes cast by shareholders were in favor of the $2.5 billion merger agreement.   The acquisition by Ohio-based Kroger still has to be approved by federal regulators. 

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The State of Things
12:11 pm
Thu October 3, 2013

Duke Energy's Rate Hike Stirs Controversy

Duke Energy provides electricity for most of North Carolina since the 2012 merger.
Credit Duke Energy

Energy and environment reporter Bruce Henderson updates us about the controversy over the Duke Energy rate hike

  

Attorney General Roy Cooper is challenging a rate hike by Duke Energy. The North Carolina Utilities Commission approved the increase of 4.5 percent by Duke Energy last week.

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Business & Economy
6:48 am
Wed October 2, 2013

Lorillard Expanding E-Cigarettes

Electronic tobacco products are expected to have record sales in 2013.
Credit dikiy via Flickr, Creative Commons

Greensboro-based Lorillard Tobacco has acquired the British electronic cigarette company SKYCIG. Lorillard purchased the e-cigarette company for about $48 million.  

The takeover marks the second significant purchase Lorillard has made of an e-cigarette company this year. Electronic, or e-cigarettes, come in an assortment of flavors and are becoming very popular.  Analysts project the industry to have record sales of two billion dollars this year.

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Business & Economy
5:00 am
Thu September 26, 2013

"American Underground" Selected For Google Tech Hub

Smashing Boxes is one of several tech companies working out of The American Underground in Durham.
Credit Leoneda Inge

The American Underground in Durham’s American Tobacco Historic District has been selected by Google to be a part of its “Entrepreneurs Tech Hub Network.”

The American Underground was launched three years ago – a home away from home for many young techies.  The "Terminator 2 Judgment Day" pinball machine gets a workout.

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The State of Things
11:31 am
Wed September 25, 2013

Bank Of America Ordered To Pay Restitution

Credit http://farm5.staticflickr.com/4088/4945979824_1da08997f6.jpg

  

Bank of America discriminated against more than 1,000 black job applicants, a U.S. Department of Labor Judge held Monday.

The ruling ordered the bank to pay $2.2 million dollars to applicants who were turned down for positions in Charlotte. Host Frank Stasio talks to Charlotte Observer banking reporter Andrew Dunn about the case.

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Business & Economy
4:00 pm
Tue September 24, 2013

The Smithfield, Shuanghui Pork Deal Is Done

Smithfield Foods says it will keep its name after the sell to Shuanghui International Holdings Ltd.
Credit MPR

Pork processor Smithfield Foods has officially been sold.  It is reportedly the largest purchase ever of a US company by a Chinese company.

Today 96% of Smithfield Foods shareholders voted to sell the pork processor to Shuanghui International Holdings Ltd. of Hong Kong.  The deal is worth $7.1 billion.

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Business & Economy
5:09 pm
Fri September 20, 2013

NC Jobless Rate Dips Slightly in August

North Carolina jobless rate for August 2013 is 8.7%.
Credit NC Policy Watch

The state’s jobless rate in August 2013 is the lowest it’s been in the past year.  But there is still a big loss in payroll jobs.

North Carolina’s unemployment rate is 8.7%, down 0.2 of a percentage point from July and nearly a full point down from this time last year.  The national jobless rate is 7.3%.

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Business & Economy
5:01 pm
Fri September 20, 2013

U.S. Panel Rules Shrimp Industry Not Harmed By Imports

Fresh shrimp catch at O'Neal's Sea Harvest in Wanchese
Credit Leoneda inge

A governmental panel has ruled that the U.S. shrimp industry isn't being injured by foreign imports. The news is a blow to North Carolina's shrimp industry.

Earlier today, the U.S. International Trade Commission voted four to two that the domestic shrimp industry has not been harmed by imports from China, Ecuador, India, Malaysia and Vietnam.

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