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Black Friday Took Wind Out Of Retail Sails

WASHINGTON, Dec. 7 (UPI) — U.S. retail receipts fell in the week ending Friday as consumers pulled back from a record sales day on Black Friday, a trade group said. Sales dropped 2.3 percent week to week although they were up 3.8 percent compared with the same week of 2010, the International Council of Shopping […]

Mortgage Activity Rises

WASHINGTON, Dec. 7 (UPI) — The Mortgage Bankers Association said U.S. mortgage activity rose 12.8 percent in the week ended Friday with long-term mortgage interest rates falling. Interest rates for 30-year, fixed-rate mortgages fell from 4.21 percent to 4.18 percent with points dropping from 0.49 to 0.48, the trade group said. Rates for 15-year, fixed-rate […]

Sun-Times To Charge For Online Content

CHICAGO, Dec. 7 (UPI) — The Chicago Sun-Times said Wednesday it would shift over to a subscription-based online publication although some of its pages would be available for free. Along with its affiliated Chicago publications, the newspaper’s Web site will allow 20 free visits per month for non-paying consumers and after that will block access […]

Politically Incorrect, But Profitable

NEW YORK, Dec. 5 (UPI) — Investors should not be squeamish when it comes to making money off smoking, drinking and gambling, a U.S. fund manager said. “You have to get beyond the point of saying, ‘I don’t like this’ or ‘I don’t like that,’” said Jerry Sullivan, manager of the Vice Fund, USA Today […]

Potato Chip Bag Tells A Story

PALO ALTO, Calif., Dec. 5 (UPI) — A study at Stanford University showed that the potato chip a U.S. consumer chooses says a lot about the consumer’s social status. “The red-state and blue-state models of our nation are written on the back of every bag of potato chips,” said Dan Jurafsky, a linguist who studied […]

U.S. Turns Into Gasoline Exporter

WASHINGTON, Dec. 5 (UPI) — U.S. oil companies are expected to be net exporters of refined petroleum products for the first time in decades, the government reported. The U.S. Energy Information Administration said the country produced more gasoline in September than it needed, exporting 430,000 barrels per day more than it imported, CNNMoney reported Monday. […]

Croatia To Become 28th EU Member

BRUSSELS, Dec. 6 (UPI) — Croatia will join the European Union July 1, 2013, under a decision approved by the EU General Affairs Council, a council spokesperson said Tuesday. Approved last week, the agreement on Croatia’s accession as the 28th member of the bloc was scheduled to be signed Friday during the European Union summit […]

Ireland’s Austerity Plan Seen As Model

DUBLIN, Ireland, Dec. 6 (UPI) — As European leaders work to repair torn economies, many are looking to Ireland’s austerity program that officials say is beginning to show results. A year after Ireland embraced severe cost- and budget-tightening measures and received a $93.3 billion bailout, officials note that the country’s budget deficit is shrinking and […]

Small Business Workers Want Retirement

COLUMBUS, Ohio, Dec. 3 (UPI) — Three-quarters of small business owners say so many Americans are financially unprepared for retirement it’s reached crisis levels, a survey says. A survey of small business owners by Nationwide Financial indicates small businesses may add to the problem because only 19 percent of these businesses offer their employees a […]

Upscale Burgers A Hot Item

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla., Dec. 3 (UPI) — Gourmet hamburgers with premium beef, high-quality cheese and other extra touches are a fast-growing item in the restaurant trade. Datassential, a Los Angeles company that tracks business trends, says the number of restaurants with hamburgers on the menu is up 4 percent since 2005, the South Florida Sun […]

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