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Private Housing Starts Up Slightly

WASHINGTON (UPI) — Housing project starts for private homes rose 2.3 percent above downwardly revised July estimate of 733,000 starts, the Commerce Department said Wednesday. A month earlier, the department said there were 754,000 private home construction starts in July. Housing starts for August are estimated at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 750,000, which […]

Home Loans In 2011 At 16-Year Low

WASHINGTON (UPI) — The U.S. Federal Reserve said home mortgage activity dropped 10 percent from 2010 to 2011, hitting the lowest home lending level since 1995. The Fed said banks approved 7.1 million mortgages in 2011 and compared with 7.9 million in 2010 and 6.2 million in 1995, 16 years earlier. Using data made available […]

Mortgage Rates Hit MBA Survey Lows

WASHINGTON (UPI) — U.S. mortgage activity fell slightly in the week ending Friday despite interest rates hitting 22-year lows, the Mortgage Bankers Association said Wednesday. The trade group said mortgage activity fell 0.2 percent from the previous week, although refinancing activity rose 1 percent from the previous week. Mortgage activity was flat despite interest rates […]

Retail Receipts Drop Week-To-Week

WASHINGTON (UPI) — The International Council of Shopping Centers said U.S. shoppers lost their momentum in the week ending Saturday due to warm weather and rising gas prices. “Customers appear to have taken a break as temperatures warmed up and gasoline prices continued to soar,” the trade group based in Washington said. The group said […]

U.S. Builders Are Cautiously Optimistic

WASHINGTON (UPI) — U.S. builder confidence rose for the fifth consecutive month in September, the National Association of Home Builders said Tuesday. Noting the confidence index had risen consistently, “there’s still a long way to go on the road to recovery,” said Barry Rutenberg, chairman of the trade group. “In particular, unnecessarily tight credit conditions […]

Northrop To Cut Southern California Jobs

LOS ANGELES (UPI) — Northrop Tuesday said it would trim its payroll by 590 jobs in Southern California due to cutbacks in defense spending. The workers, most of whom signed up for a voluntary job buyout program, will be gone by Dec. 14, the company said. Northrop employs 21,000 workers in its aerospace division, most […]

Kohl’s To Increase Seasonal Hiring

MENOMONEE FALLS, Wis. (UPI) — Kohl’s Department Store said it had plans to hire 52,700 seasonal workers at its 1,146 U.S. stores this year. That’s a 10 percent increase over seasonal hiring in 2011, CNNMoney reported Tuesday. On average, Kohl’s is planning to hire 41 workers per store and an additional 5,700 workers at distribution […]

FBI Cracks Code On Municipal Bid Rigging

NEW YORK (UPI) — U.S. officials said bankers accused of rigging bids in the municipal bond investment business sound like stereotypical gangsters, speaking in a private code. “They use certain codes — in some ways, they’re almost like the mafia or the drug dealers, except what they’re trading in is much more sophisticated,” said Doug […]

Obama Hits China With New WTO Case

CINCINNATI, (UPI) —  President Barack Obama on Monday touted his record on trade disputes with China and announced a new case filed against it on behalf of automobile workers. On a campaign trip to Cincinnati, Obama said his administration had filed its eighth case against China with the World Trade Organization, this one charging China […]

Shell Postpones Arctic Offshore Drilling

BELLINGHAM, Wash., (UPI) —  Oil giant Shell said it would not resume Arctic offshore oil drilling in northern Alaska this year after a containment dome was damaged during a test run. McClatchy Newspapers reported Monday that the containment dome aboard a barge called the Arctic Challenger was damaged in a testing scenario off the coast […]

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