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Editorial Results (free)

1. Triumph Bank Surpasses $500 Million in Assets -

Triumph Bank didn’t choose its new tagline, “Let’s talk growth,” earlier this year only because it sounded hopeful or was an ideal to strive for.

2. Contracts to Buy US Homes Slide in August -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Fewer Americans signed contracts to buy homes in August, suggesting that real estate sales will remain sluggish over the next few months.

The National Association of Realtors said Monday that its seasonally adjusted pending home sales index fell 1 percent over the past month to 104.7. Higher prices and weak wage growth has limited buying, as the index is 2.2 percent below its level from a year ago.

3. US Consumer Spending Up 0.5 Percent in August -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Americans boosted spending by a healthy amount in August, offering welcome evidence that the economy is on solid footing heading into the final quarter of the year.

Consumer spending in August rose 0.5 percent from the previous month after showing no gain in July, the Commerce Department reported Monday. It was the best result since spending also expanded 0.5 percent in June.

4. ATM Fees Keep Climbing, Survey Says -

LOS ANGELES (AP) – The penalty for using an ATM that is not affiliated with your bank rose 5 percent over the past year.

The average fee for using an out-of-network ATM climbed to a new high of $4.35 per transaction, according to a survey released Monday by Bankrate.com. That figure includes $2.77 that banks charge non-customers and $1.58 that banks levy against their own customers for using an outside ATM.

5. US Existing Home Sales Fall in August -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Fewer Americans bought homes in August, as investors retreated from real estate and first-time buyers remained scarce.

Sales of existing homes fell 1.8 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.05 million, the National Association of Realtors said Monday. That snaps a four-month streak of gains. August sales are down from a July rate of 5.14 million, a figure that was revised slightly downward.

6. Volatile Apartment Sector Reduces US Home Building -

WASHINGTON (AP) – U.S. home construction plunged in August, led by steep decline in the volatile apartment category. But single-family house construction, a larger and more stable portion of the market, fell only modestly.

7. Stock Gains Lift US Household Wealth to Record High -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Strong stock market gains and higher home prices boosted Americans' net worth in the April-June quarter to a record high, a trend that could encourage more spending.

U.S. households also took on the most new debt in five years, driven mostly by student and auto loans. More borrowing can be a sign of confidence, although greater student debt can pose a burden for younger households.

8. Coverage Gap Leaves Rural Tennessee Hospitals on Life Support -

Four rural hospitals have closed and dozens are at risk of shuttering: That’s the fallout, some say, from Gov. Bill Haslam’s decision not to join the Affordable Care Act in 2013 and tap into millions in promised federal funds for Tennessee’s financially-strapped health care institutions.

9. Cardinals Finding Way Back to Playoffs -

Everyone always says the expectations are highest in their clubhouse. But when the St. Louis Cardinals say it, well, it has a certain depth. The past decade has seen seven playoff trips and two World Series championships. And this season, the Cardinals are hunting their fourth straight Red October.

10. Woeful Period for US Markets -

September 8, 2014, S&P 2000 = 11 + 4 percent + 11 percent + 1.5 percent + 2.5 percent. The last five years have been consistently wonderful for the U.S. markets. Over the time period, the S&P 500 has advanced more than 17 percent annually. Only four bull markets (advances uninterrupted by a 20 percent decline) have lasted longer and returned more. What has this bull been eating?

11. About That Raise... US Executives Feeling Tight-Fisted -

WASHINGTON (AP) – The corporate executives who decide whether U.S. workers get meaningful raises have looked at the broader economy and have a message: Don't expect a pay increase anytime soon.

12. The Dollar Strikes Back -

Movements between the dollar, euro, and yen profoundly impact global flows of goods and capital. Given recent language and policy shifts from the U.S. Federal Reserve (FED), the European Central Bank (ECB) and the Bank of Japan (BOJ), let’s re-examine global currency trends.

13. Shelby County New-Home Permits Drop 7.8 Percent in July -

The local homebuilding industry can still mystify a veteran builder and developer like David Goodwin Jr.

Goodwin and other homebuilders expected 2014 to be a healthy year for the industry, especially entering the spring and early summer.

14. Applications for US Unemployment Aid Fall to 298,000 -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Fewer people applied for U.S. unemployment benefits last week, another sign the job market is improving.

The Labor Department said Thursday that weekly claims for jobless aid fell 14,000 last week to a seasonally adjusted 298,000. The prior week's figures were revised up slightly to 311,000.

15. Consumer Prices Edge Up 0.1 Percent in July -

WASHINGTON (AP) – U.S. consumer prices rose in July at the slowest pace in five months, held back by a drop in gasoline prices.

Consumer prices edged up a seasonally adjusted 0.1 percent last month, after larger gains of 0.3 percent in June and 0.4 percent in May, the Labor Department reported Tuesday. It was the smallest increase since a similar 0.1 percent rise in February.

16. Wal-Mart Cuts Profit Outlook -

BENTONVILLE, Ark. (AP) – Wal-Mart Stores Inc. cut its annual profit outlook on Thursday amid sluggish sales, higher-than-expected health care costs and the need to invest more in its e-commerce operations.

17. Amazon Debuts Mobile Payment App and Card Reader -

NEW YORK (AP) – Amazon is taking direct aim at mobile payment systems such as Square by introducing the Amazon Local Register, a credit-card processing device and mobile app designed to help small business owners accept payments through their smartphones and tablets.

18. US Productivity Recovers After Steep First-Quarter Fall -

WASHINGTON (AP) – U.S. workers were more productive in the April-June quarter and labor costs rose slightly, a sharp turnaround from grim first-quarter figures.

The Labor Department said Friday that that productivity increased 2.5 percent at a seasonally adjusted annual rate, after plummeting 4.5 percent in the first quarter. That was the steepest drop in 31 years, and reflected a sharp 2.1 percent contraction in the economy. Economists blamed most of that shrinkage on temporary factors, such as harsh weather and a cutback in stockpiling by businesses.

19. Fannie, Freddie Post Profits in Second Quarter -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Government-controlled mortgage companies Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac posted profits for the April-June period as the U.S. housing market continued to recover. Gains in recent years have enabled them to fully repay their government aid after being rescued during the financial crisis in 2008.

20. US Job Growth Eases but Tops 200,000 for a Sixth Month -

WASHINGTON (AP) — A sixth straight month of solid 200,000-plus job growth in July reinforced growing evidence that the U.S. economy is accelerating after five years of sluggish expansion.

21. As US Job Market Strengthens, Many Don't Feel It -

WASHINGTON (AP) — For millions of workers, happy days aren't quite here again.

Though the U.S. unemployment rate has plunged since the start of last year to a five-year low of 6.1 percent, the Gallup Organization has found that consumers' view of the economy is the glummest it's been in seven months.

22. Average US 30-Year Mortgage Rate at 4.12 Percent -

WASHINGTON (AP) — Average U.S. mortgage rates declined slightly this week, hovering near their lows for the year.

Mortgage company Freddie Mac said Thursday that the nationwide average for a 30-year loan slipped to 4.12 percent from 4.13 percent last week. The average for the 15-year mortgage, a popular choice for people who are refinancing, declined to 3.23 percent from 3.26 percent last week.

23. More Vigorous US Economy Appears to Be Emerging -

WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. economy has rebounded with vigor from a grim start to 2014 and should show renewed strength into next year.

That was the general view of analysts Wednesday after the government estimated that the economy grew at a fast 4 percent annual rate in the April-June quarter. Consumers, businesses and governments joined to fuel the second-quarter expansion. The government also said growth was more robust last year than it had previously estimated.

24. Fed Weighs Key Issues But May Reveal Little -

WASHINGTON (AP) — This much is clear: The Federal Reserve will make another cut this week in its monthly bond purchases, which have been aimed at keeping long-term loan rates low.

This much is not: When will the Fed start tightening its interest-rate policy to thwart any runaway inflation? How will it do so? And when will the Fed start paring its enormous $4 trillion-plus investment portfolio — a step that will put upward pressure on interest rates?

25. Average US 30-Year Mortgage Rate at 4.13 Percent -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Average U.S. long-term mortgage rates were stable to slightly higher this week, remaining near their lows for the year.

Mortgage company Freddie Mac said Thursday that the nationwide average for a 30-year loan was 4.13 percent, unchanged from last week. The average for the 15-year mortgage, a popular choice for people who are refinancing, edged up to 3.26 percent from 3.23 percent last week.

26. Across US Job Market, Layoffs are Becoming Rare -

WASHINGTON (AP) – The risk of losing your job is getting smaller and smaller.

As the U.S. economy has improved and employers have regained confidence, companies have been steadily shedding fewer workers. Which is why applications for unemployment benefits have dwindled to their lowest level since February 2006 – nearly two years before the Great Recession began – the government said Thursday.

27. IMF Sees US Growth at Weakest Since Recession -

WASHINGTON (AP) – U.S. economic growth this year will likely be at the weakest pace since the Great Recession ended, the International Monetary Fund said, mostly because of a sharp, weather-related contraction in the first quarter.

28. US Economy, Though Sluggish, May Now Be Sturdier -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Out of a seemingly hollow recovery from the Great Recession, a more durable if still slow-growing U.S. economy has emerged.

That conclusion, one held by a growing number of economists, might surprise many people. After all, in the five years since the recession officially ended, Americans' pay has basically stagnated. Millions remain unemployed or have abandoned their job searches. Economic growth is merely plodding along.

29. US Home Sales Increase 2.6 Percent in June -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Sales of previously owned homes rose for a third straight month in June, pushing activity to the highest level in eight months and providing evidence that housing is regaining lost momentum.

30. 30-Year Mortgage Rate Near Historic Low -

Average U.S. mortgage rates declined slightly this week, with rates remaining near historic lows.

Mortgage company Freddie Mac reported Thursday that the nationwide average for a 30-year loan dipped to 4.13 percent, down from 4.15 percent last week. The average for the 15-year mortgage, a popular choice for people who are refinancing, edged down to 3.23 percent, compared with 3.24 percent last week.

31. 30-Year Mortgage Rate Near Historic Low -

Average U.S. mortgage rates declined slightly this week, with rates remaining near historic lows.

Mortgage company Freddie Mac reported Thursday that the nationwide average for a 30-year loan dipped to 4.13 percent, down from 4.15 percent last week. The average for the 15-year mortgage, a popular choice for people who are refinancing, edged down to 3.23 percent, compared with 3.24 percent last week.

32. Bankruptcy Filings Drop Below 3,000 -

For the first time since 2011, the number of Memphis-area bankruptcies filed in the second quarter dropped below 3,000.

Between April 1 and June 30, the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Western District of Tennessee saw 2,959 bankruptcies in which the person or business listed a Shelby County address. That’s a 6.4 percent decrease from the 3,164 filed during the second quarter of 2013, according to The Daily News Online, memphisdailynews.com.

33. Latest Fed Survey Sees Improved Economy -

WASHINGTON (AP) – The economy kept expanding in all regions of the country in June and early July, helped by strength in consumer spending, a Federal Reserve survey released Wednesday indicates.

34. Ehrhart Touts Liberty Bowl to SEC Schools -

HOOVER, Ala. – Steve Ehrhart has work to do.

The 56th AutoZone Liberty Bowl isn’t until Dec. 29, but the bowl’s executive director knows the time is now to make his case to SEC athletic directors.

35. Yellen Says Economy Still Needs Fed Support -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen said Tuesday that the economic recovery is not yet complete and for that reason the Fed intends to keep providing significant support to boost growth and improve labor market conditions.

36. Downside of Low US Mortgage Rates: Less Selling -

WASHINGTON (AP) — Would-be home sellers across the country are grappling with a once-in-a-lifetime problem: They have mortgage rates so absurdly low it would hurt them financially to sell.

37. Economists Lower Forecasts for US Growth -

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. business economists have sharply cut their growth forecasts for the April-June quarter and 2014, though they remain optimistic that the economy will rebound from a dismal first quarter.

38. US Unemployment Aid Applications Fall to 304,000 -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Fewer people sought U.S. unemployment benefits last week, driving down the level of applications to nearly the lowest in seven years.

Weekly applications for unemployment aid dropped 11,000 to a seasonally adjusted 304,000, the Labor Department said Thursday. That's not far from a reading of 298,000 two months ago, which was the lowest since 2007, before the Great Recession began.

39. US Companies Post Most Jobs in 7 Years in May -

WASHINGTON (AP) – U.S. employers advertised more jobs in May than in any month in the past seven years, a sign that this year's strong hiring trend is likely to continue.

More Americans also quit their jobs, a good sign because it usually occurs when workers find new and higher-paying jobs. It also opens up more positions for those out of work.

40. How GM's Ignition Switch Redesign Went Wrong -

DETROIT (AP) – General Motors' deadly ignition switch flaws emerged from an effort to improve its cars.

As the company began developing new small cars in the late 1990s, it listened to customers who complained about "cheap-feeling" switches that required too much effort to turn. GM set about making switches that would work more smoothly and give drivers the impression that they were better designed, a GM switch engineer testified in a lawsuit deposition in the spring of 2013.

41. Why a Grim US Economic Picture is Brightening -

WASHINGTON (AP) – When the government updates its estimate Wednesday of how the U.S. economy fared last quarter, the number is pretty sure to be ugly. Horrible even.

The economy likely shrank at an annual rate of nearly 2 percent in the January-March quarter, economists estimate. That would be its bleakest performance since early 2009 in the depths of the Great Recession.

42. Calm Amidst the ‘Storm’ -

The S&P 500 continues to inch ever so closer to the 2,000 mark, while volatility measures remain historically low. Furthermore, there have been 43 consecutive days where the S&P 500 has registered a daily return mark within the -1 percent to +1 percent band.

43. CEOs More Optimistic on Hiring, Sales -

Optimism among chief executives of large U.S. companies has reached a two-year high, driven by a more positive outlook toward hiring and sales.

The Business Roundtable said Tuesday that its CEO outlook index rose to 95.4 in the second quarter, up from 92.1 in the first quarter. That is the highest level since the second quarter of 2012.

44. Parking Wars -

It’s been a hot, humid and restless spring at Overton Park.

The park has been crowded, but not as crowded as expected given the political tempest over parking on Overton’s greensward.

45. CEOs More Optimistic on Hiring, Sales -

Optimism among chief executives of large U.S. companies has reached a two-year high, driven by a more positive outlook toward hiring and sales.

The Business Roundtable said Tuesday that its CEO outlook index rose to 95.4 in the second quarter, up from 92.1 in the first quarter. That is the highest level since the second quarter of 2012.

46. Average US 30-Year Mortgage Rate Up to 4.20 Percent -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Average U.S. rates on fixed mortgages rose this week for a second straight week but remained near historic lows.

Mortgage buyer Freddie Mac said Thursday the average rate for a 30-year loan increased to 4.20 percent from 4.14 percent last week. The average for the 15-year mortgage jumped to 3.31 percent from 3.23 percent.

47. Pay Raises Go Mainly to Those in Select Industries -

NEW YORK (AP) – If you hope to get a raise that finally feels like one, it helps to work in the right industry.

Historically, at this stage in the economy's recovery, pay would be rising in most sectors. But five years after the Great Recession officially ended, raises remain sharply uneven across industries and, as a whole, have barely kept up with prices. Overall pay has been rising about 2 percent a year, roughly equal to inflation.

48. US Businesses Ramped Up Job Searches in April -

WASHINGTON (AP) – U.S. companies advertised more jobs in April than in any month in six and a half years, a possible harbinger of strong hiring in the months ahead.

Employers posted nearly 4.5 million jobs, up strongly from 4.2 million in March, the Labor Department said Tuesday. It's the largest number of job listings since September 2007.

49. US Employers Add 217,000 Jobs; Rate Stays at 6.3 Percent -

WASHINGTON (AP) – U.S. employers added 217,000 jobs in May, a substantial gain for a fourth straight month, fueling hopes that the economy will accelerate after a grim start to the year.

50. Finals Presents Intriguing Question About Coaching -

So if the Miami Heat win a third straight NBA championship, it’s all about LeBron James and a cast of future Hall-of-Famers that includes Dwyane Wade, Ray Allen and, in a lot of people’s view, Chris Bosh.

51. US Home Price Gains Slow in April Amid Tepid Sales -

WASHINGTON (AP) – U.S. home prices rose in April compared with a year earlier, but the increase was the smallest annual gain in 14 months. Price gains have slowed this year as sales have faltered.

52. Average US 30-Year Mortgage Rate Falls to 4.14 Percent -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Average U.S. rates on fixed mortgages fell this week for a fourth straight week. The low rates could give a boost to the spring home-buying season, which has started slowly.

53. US Home Sales Rose 1.3 Percent in April -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Sales of existing U.S. homes rebounded slightly in April, but the pace of buying remained below last year's level.

The National Association of Realtors said Thursday that sales rose 1.3 percent from March to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.65 million. Purchases of homes over the past 12 months have dropped 6.8 percent.

54. US Home Building Climbed 13.2 Percent in April -

WASHINGTON (AP) – U.S home construction surged in April to its highest pace in five months. Almost all that increase came from the volatile apartment sector, a sign that Americans are still struggling to buy single-family homes.

55. Unemployment Rates Below 6 Percent in 25 US States -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Unemployment rates fell in nearly all U.S. states last month, and half the states now have rates below 6 percent. The figures are a sign of widespread, if slow, improvement in the nation's job market.

56. Average US 30-Year Mortgage Rate Dips to 4.2 Percent -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Average U.S. rates on fixed mortgages declined this week for a third straight week. The low rates could give a boost to the spring home-buying season, which has gotten off to a slow start.

57. Apple CEO Dares to be Different From Steve Jobs -

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) – "Think different" became Apple's creed during the late Steve Jobs' reign as CEO. Now, chief executive Tim Cook is embracing the idea while making decisions that would have seemed crazy to his fabled predecessor.

58. The Market Whisperer -

When economic analysis gets reduced to a binary choice between opposites like bullish or bearish, up or down, strong or weak, the complexity that helps explain the way things are gets lost in a thicket of sound byte-ready oversimplification.

59. Average US 30-Year Mortgage Rate Falls to 4.21 Percent -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Average U.S. rates on fixed mortgages fell this week for a second straight week as the spring home-buying season has gotten off to a slow start.

Mortgage buyer Freddie Mac said Thursday the average rate for the 30-year loan declined to 4.21 percent from 4.29 percent last week. The average for the 15-year mortgage eased to 3.32 percent from 3.38 percent.

60. Vote of Confidence -

After experiencing a strong fourth quarter in 2013, confidence in the Memphis office market remains high so far this year.

First quarter leases signed outnumbered tenant move outs and the Memphis market ended the quarter with 54,989 square feet of absorption, according to CB Richard Ellis Memphis.

61. Wells Fargo Sets $100 Billion Small-Business Lending Goal -

NEW YORK (AP) – Wells Fargo has set a goal of at least $100 billion in new loans to small businesses over the next five years.

The bank, which announced the goal Thursday, plans a marketing and education program to make small businesses aware of its services. The company made nearly $19 billion in new small business loans last year.

62. The Heartbreak Hotel -

HEARTBREAK HOTEL. ON THE EDGE OF THINGS. “They’re calling this area The Edge, and it’s about to explode,” Ben said.

We were looking up at The Heartbreak Hotel, a stack of bricks where traveling salesmen a century ago would rest their sample cases for the night, rising three tired stories above the all-but-forgotten intersection of Monroe and Marshall – pretty much like Elvis sang – down at the end of Lonely Street.

63. Eastgate Set for Possible Makeover -

A venerable shopping center in East Memphis could be getting a significant makeover, according to a recent retail market report from CB Richard Ellis Memphis.

Eastgate Center LLC, the owner of Eastgate Shopping Center at Park Avenue and White Station Road in East Memphis, could make significant aesthetic improvements to the retail center beginning this year.

64. GOP Blocks Democrats' Minimum Wage Try in Senate -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Senate Republicans derailed a Democratic drive Wednesday to raise the federal minimum wage, blocking a cornerstone of President Barack Obama's economic plans and ensuring the issue will be a major feature of this fall's congressional elections.

65. AP Survey: China's Lending Bubble a Global Threat -

WASHINGTON (AP) — Just as the global economy has all but recovered from debt-fueled crises in the United States and Europe, economists have a new worry: China. They see a lending bubble there that threatens global growth unless Beijing defuses it.

66. Fed Likely to Reiterate Flexible Policy on Rates -

WASHINGTON (AP) — In her first weeks as Federal Reserve chair, Janet Yellen has made one thing clear: The Fed will keep all options open in deciding when to raise interest rates from record lows.

67. A Fading Middle-Class Perk: Lower Mortgage Rates -

WASHINGTON (AP) – For three decades, the U.S. middle class enjoyed a rare financial advantage over the wealthy: lower mortgage rates.

Now, even that perk is fading away.

Most ordinary homebuyers are paying the same or higher rates than the fortunate few who can afford much more.

68. Arkansas Unemployment Rate Dips Below 7 Percent -

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — State officials say Arkansas' unemployment rate has dropped below 7 percent for the first time in more than five years.

The Arkansas Department of Workforce Services says the state's unemployment rate dropped to 6.9 percent in March, down from 7.1 percent in February. Agency spokeswoman Becky Heflin says it's the first time Arkansas' jobless rate has been below 7 percent since January 2009.

69. Senate Nears Passage of Jobless-Benefits Bill -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Capping a three-month struggle, the Senate closed in Monday on passage of election-year legislation to restore jobless benefits for the long-term unemployed that expired late last year.

70. Manufacturing Grew More Quickly in March -

U.S. manufacturing grew at a slightly faster pace in March compared with February as factory output recovered from disruptions caused by severe winter weather. Manufacturers also received more orders, suggesting that production could strengthen a bit in the months ahead. The Institute for Supply Management, a group of purchasing managers, said Tuesday that its manufacturing index increased to 53.7 from 53.2 in February. Any reading above 50 indicates expansion.

71. US Home Market: Few Buyers and Not Enough Sellers -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Entering the 2014 spring buying season, the U.S. housing market faces an unusual dilemma: Too few people are selling homes. Yet too few buyers can afford the homes that are for sale.

72. US Trade Deficit Hits $42.3 Billion in February -

WASHINGTON (AP) – The U.S. trade deficit climbed to the highest level in five months in February as demand for American exports fell while imports increased slightly.

The deficit increased to $42.3 billion, which was 7.7 percent above the January imbalance of $39.3 billion, the Commerce Department reported Thursday.

73. Now Tack! -

In sailing, when the wind shifts direction, you must move your sails or risk losing the wind. The first indication of a shifting breeze comes from the telltales, strips of lightweight material attached to the sails that foreshadow a change in conditions. Recently, the market telltales have been active.

74. US Manufacturing Grew More Quickly in March -

U.S. manufacturing grew at a slightly faster pace in March compared with February as factory output recovered from disruptions caused by severe winter weather. Manufacturers also received more orders, suggesting that production could strengthen a bit in the months ahead.

75. Change Agents -

Greg Smith was a hard worker. Ran a carpet cleaning crew, didn’t mind putting in 10 or 12 hours a day to get the job done.

76. Yellen: Job Market Needs Low Rates 'For Some Time' -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen made clear Monday that she thinks the still-subpar U.S. job market will continue to need the help of low interest rates "for some time."

77. Caught in the Middle -

Even before the Affordable Care Act came along, Deborah Casey was living between a logistical rock and an economic hard place. Casey, a 61-year-old widow, draws a monthly Social Security check based on her husband’s earnings. She works part-time for Shelby County (no benefits), and to continue receiving the same amount in that Social Security check, she has to keep tabs on how much she makes. This is exactly how someone who wants to provide for herself winds up on a “fixed income.”

78. Tigers Don't Feel Like 'Cinderella' vs. 1 Seed Virginia -

RALEIGH, N.C. – The pressure valve that at times seems to control life for the Memphis Tigers had opened in the form of a 71-66 victory over George Washington in the NCAA Tournament’s round of 64.

79. Shelby County Building Permits Down Slightly in February -

With bitterly cold temperatures lingering over the Memphis area last month, homebuilders pulled slightly fewer housing permits in February when compared to the same month last year.

Shelby County homebuilders filed 67 permits in February, down from 73 permits in February 2013 but up slightly from 64 permits filed in January, according to real estate information company Chandler Reports, www.chandlerreports.com.

80. Fed Clarifies Guidance on Short-Term Rates -

WASHINGTON (AP) – The Federal Reserve sought Wednesday to clarify a question that investors have been trying to determine: When it might start to raise short-term interest rates from record lows.

81. US Consumer Prices Tick Up Just 0.1 Percent -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Cheaper energy kept U.S. consumer prices in check last month, despite a big rise in the cost of food, the latest sign that inflation is tame.

The consumer price index rose 0.1 percent in February, matching January's increase, the Labor Department said Tuesday. In the past 12 months, prices have risen just 1.1 percent, down from 1.6 percent in January and the smallest yearly gain in five months.

82. US Homebuilder Confidence Edges Higher in March -

U.S. homebuilders' confidence in the housing market edged higher this month, reflecting improved demand for new homes as the traditional spring home-selling season ramps up.

But the outlook for sales of single-family homes over the next six months dimmed slightly as builders continue to grapple with a shortage of skilled workers, ready-to-build land and rising building materials costs.

83. Yellen to Put Fed's New Leadership on Display -

WASHINGTON (AP) – The Janet Yellen era at the Federal Reserve begins in earnest this week with a two-day meeting, a policy statement and fresh economic forecasts. Yet all that will be a prelude to the marquee event: Yellen's first news conference as Fed chair.

84. Staging Success -

When the Live at the Garden summer concert series at Memphis Botanic Garden launches its 14th season in June, it will feature a new permanent stage and several other amenities.

Besides the new stage, the $6.1 million project now under construction includes a food court, box offices and a below-grade “pit” in front of the stage that can hold around 125 people.

85. 2014 Home Sales Off to Slow Start -

Shelby County home sales were up in February when compared to the same month last year but not enough to overcome January’s sluggish start, according to real estate information company Chandler Reports.

86. US Consumer Borrowing Up $13.7 Billion in January -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Consumers increased their borrowing in January on autos and student loans but cut back on their credit card use.

Consumer borrowing rose $13.7 billion in January following an even larger $15.9 billion rise in December, the Federal Reserve reported Friday.

87. US Applications for Jobless Aid Reach 3-Month Low -

WASHINGTON (AP) – The number of people seeking U.S. unemployment benefits dropped 26,000 last week to a seasonally adjusted 323,000, the lowest level in three months as layoffs remain at pre-recession levels.

88. New Frontiers -

When the first Frontier Airlines jet kicking off regular service at Memphis International Airport arrives Friday, March 7, from Denver at gate C7, it will symbolize just how much the airport has changed. It is also an indication of how the airport continues to evolve.

89. US Service Sector Grew at Slower Pace in February -

WASHINGTON (AP) – U.S. service companies expanded more slowly in February as hiring levels declined in a cautionary sign for the economy coming out of winter.

The Institute for Supply Management said Wednesday that its service-sector index fell to 51.6 from 54 in January. Any reading above 50 indicates expansion.

90. US Home Prices Rose at Solid Pace in January -

WASHINGTON (AP) – U.S. home prices rose in January after three months of declines as a tight supply of properties likely supported prices despite slower sales.

Real estate data provider CoreLogic said Tuesday that prices rose 0.9 percent in January after dipping 0.1 percent in December. Over the past 12 months, home prices have risen 12 percent, the biggest year-over-year gain in more than eight years.

91. Apple CEO Tim Cook Teases, Reassures Shareholders -

CUPERTINO, Calif. (AP) – Apple CEO Tim Cook is still trying to convince shareholders that the iPhone maker remains a step ahead in the race to innovate, even though recent performance of the company's stock lags behind other technology trendsetters.

92. Estimated Q4 Economic Growth Rate Cut to 2.4 Percent -

WASHINGTON (AP) – The U.S. economy grew at a 2.4 percent annual rate last quarter, sharply less than first thought, in part because consumers didn't spend as much as initially estimated.

93. Cold Weather Causes Factory Output to Drop -

Harsh winter weather led to a steep drop in U.S. factory output in January. Manufacturers made fewer cars and trucks, appliances, furniture and carpeting, as the recent cold spell ended five straight months of increased production.

94. US Consumer Prices Rose 0.1 Percent Last Month -

WASHINGTON (AP) – U.S. consumer prices barely rose last month as a sharp increase in energy costs was offset by cheaper clothing, cars and air fares. The figures indicate inflation remains mild.

95. Butler Sevier Law Firm Expands Downtown -

Butler, Sevier, Hinsley & Reid PLLC law firm has expanded its presence at 88 Union Ave.

96. US Housing Construction Down 16 Percent in January -

WASHINGTON (AP) – U.S. home construction fell in January for a second month but the weakness in both months reflected severe winter weather in many parts of the country. The expectation is that housing will deliver another year of solid gains, helped by an improving economy.

97. Cold Weather Causes Factory Output to Drop -

WASHINGTON (AP) — Harsh winter weather led to a steep drop in U.S. factory output in January. Manufacturers made fewer cars and trucks, appliances, furniture and carpeting, as the recent cold spell ended five straight months of increased production

98. Cold Weather Causes Factory Output to Drop -

Harsh winter weather led to a steep drop in U.S. factory output in January. Manufacturers made fewer cars and trucks, appliances, furniture and carpeting, as the recent cold spell ended five straight months of increased production

99. Late-Payment Rate on Mortgages Falls in 4th Quarter -

LOS ANGELES (AP) – U.S. homeowners are doing a better job of keeping up with mortgage payments, a trend that has reduced the rate of late payment on home loans to the lowest level in more than five years.

100. US Job Openings Fall in December From 5-Year High -

WASHINGTON (AP) – U.S. employers posted fewer job openings in December and hiring slowed, adding to evidence that the job market weakened that month.

Still, the number of available jobs remained near a five and a half-year high. The Labor Department said Tuesday that openings slipped 1 percent to 3.99 million in December, from 4.03 million in the previous month. November was the first time that employers had posted more than 4 million open jobs since March 2008.