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Editorial Results (free)

1. Economic Gauge Up for 3rd Straight Month -

A measure of the U.S. economy's health rose in March for the third consecutive month, a sign of stronger growth after harsh winter weather caused the economy's pace to slow.

The Conference Board said Monday that its index of leading indicators increased 0.8 percent in March after a 0.5 percent rise in February and modest 0.2 percent gain in January. It was the best showing since a 0.9 percent gain in November.

2. No Bluffing -

Each season the last home game at FedExForum is Fan Appreciation Night and a Grizzlies’ player is charged with grabbing the microphone and walking to center court to say a few words before tip-off.

3. Yellen: Fed Stimulus Still Needed for Job Market -

NEW YORK (AP) – Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen said Wednesday that the U.S. job market still needs help from the Fed and that the central bank must remain intent on adjusting its policy to respond to unforeseen challenges.

4. Congress is Giving States the Transportation Blues -

DAYTON, Ohio (AP) – On the road in a tour bus this week, the U.S. transportation secretary is spreading some bad news: the government's Highway Trust Fund is nearly broke. If allowed to run dry, that could set back or shut down projects across the country, force widespread layoffs of construction workers and delay needed repairs and improvements.

5. Netflix's Comcast Deal Improves Quality of Video -

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) – Netflix's videos are streaming through Comcast's Internet service at their highest speeds in 17 months, thanks to tolls Netflix pays Comcast for a more direct connection to its network.

6. Trendcasting and Innovation -

Did you wake up this morning to realize that the world has changed and your business has not changed with it? If you are a regular reader of this column you know we discuss growth strategy and innovation and all of the challenges that accompany those pursuits. We see many companies of all sizes that are dying a slow death in a saturated market with outdated business models. They fail to get out ahead of what’s next.

7. Growing Demand for US Apartments Pushing Up Rents -

These are good times for U.S. landlords. For many tenants, not so much.

With demand for apartments surging, rents are projected to rise for a fifth straight year. Even a pickup in apartment construction is unlikely to provide much relief anytime soon.

8. 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.

9. 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.”

10. Visiting Teams Show Blueprint for Tigers -

Now that we’ve all had a few days to digest the premature end to the Tigers’ season, let’s see what we can learn that might help going forward.

Two days after Memphis again lost in the round of 32 in the NCAA Tournament, coach Josh Pastner struck a different tone when answering questions from the media.

11. Report: Digital Sites Bring Momentum to News -

NEW YORK (AP) – Growing digital outlets are bringing "a sense of momentum" to the news business even as long-term problems continue to plague the industry, a journalism think tank said on Wednesday.

12. Another Five-Peat -

“Never in the history of competitive crossword puzzle solving has there been a rivalry like the one between Tyler Hinman and Dan Feyer.” Thus begins a write-up of last week’s American Crossword Puzzle Tournament at time.com.

13. US Home Prices Dip in January for 3rd Straight Month -

WASHINGTON (AP) – U.S. home prices dipped in January for a third straight month, likely because of slower sales in recent months caused by cold weather, a limited supply of homes and higher mortgage rates.

14. Commission Votes Down Family Planning Services Rebid Resolution -

Shelby County Commissioners voted down a bid Monday, March 24, to rebid the county’s contract for federally-funded family planning services with Christ Community Health Services.

And the commission rejected an August referendum item on eliminating any residency requirement from the Shelby County Charter for county government employees as well as Shelby County Schools teachers.

15. Health Care Law Has Uneven Impact on Companies -

Sarah Curtis-Fawley will have to offer insurance to her workers at Pacific Pie Co. because of the health care overhaul, and the estimated $100,000 cost means she may have to raise prices or postpone opening a third restaurant.

16. 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.

17. 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.

18. Wins Come in Various Ways -

One night at FedExForum, the Grizzlies beat Portland by 10 points as they shoot a season-best 56 percent, three players score 17 or more points, and energizer James Johnson never gets on the floor.

19. Commission to Vote on Crosstown Funding -

Shelby County Commissioners will vote Monday, March 10, on $5 million in public infrastructure funding for the Crosstown redevelopment project.

The commission meets at 1:30 p.m. at the Vasco Smith County Administration Building, 160 N. Main St. Follow the meeting @tdnpols, www.twitter.com/tdnpols.

20. Sales Pitch -

For every professional sports team, there are at least two running narratives: the one on the court or field of play and the one at the box office.

As Grizzlies fans watch the team finish out the season in pursuit of a playoff berth, everyone understands each victory is invaluable. But for the people in charge of filling the seats at FedExForum, so is every season-ticket holder.

21. Hopes Up for Sunnier US Economy Once Winter Fades -

WASHINGTON (AP) – When the weather warms up, so, too, will the U.S. economy.

That, at least, is the prevailing view of economists, who shrugged off a government report Friday that the economy was weaker last quarter than first thought.

22. 30-Year Mortgage Rate Up to 4.37 Percent -

Average U.S. rates on fixed mortgages rose for a third straight week as new data showed a surprisingly strong pace of new-home sales last month. Rates still remain near historically low levels.

Mortgage buyer Freddie Mac said Thursday the average rate for the 30-year loan increased to 4.37 percent from 4.33 percent last week. The average for the 15-year mortgage rose to 3.39 percent from 3.35 percent.

23. 30-Year Mortgage Rate Up to 4.37 Percent -

Average U.S. rates on fixed mortgages rose for a third straight week as new data showed a surprisingly strong pace of new-home sales last month. Rates still remain near historically low levels.

Mortgage buyer Freddie Mac said Thursday the average rate for the 30-year loan increased to 4.37 percent from 4.33 percent last week. The average for the 15-year mortgage rose to 3.39 percent from 3.35 percent.

24. Score-Watching Grizz Can’t Lose Sight of Opponents -

Two hours before the Grizzlies played the Los Angeles Lakers on Wednesday, Feb. 26, at FedExForum, Memphis coach Dave Joerger talked about the last loss – at Charlotte – the game ahead, and that aggravating play that recently invaded Memphis living rooms, including Joerger’s own.

25. The MED Adopts Umbrella Name -

Two names are better than one, although the new name will get most of the headline treatment.

The Regional Medical Center at Memphis – popularly known as The MED for the last three decades – will have a new “umbrella” name: Regional One Health.

26. US Home Prices Dip for Second Straight Month -

WASHINGTON (AP) – U.S. home prices fell for the second straight month in December as brutally cold weather, tight supply and higher costs slowed sales.

The Standard & Poor's/Case-Shiller 20-city home price index declined 0.1 percent from November to December, matching the previous month's decline. The index is not adjusted for seasonal variations, so the dip partly reflects slower buying as winter weather set in.

27. Tigers Pledge Focus With Lesser Foes on Tap -

Absorb nothing. Or as players such as Tigers guard Chris Crawford like to say, don’t let it “soak.” Meaning win or lose, don’t dwell on it.

28. Few Eligible Patients Can Get Weight Loss Surgery -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Like 78 million other Americans, MaryJane Harrison is obese.

And like many critically overweight Americans, Harrison cannot afford to have weight loss surgery because her health insurance doesn't cover it. The financial burden makes it nearly impossible for her to follow the advice of three physicians who have prescribed the stomach-shrinking procedure for Harrison, who is four-feet, 10 inches and weighs 265 pounds.

29. Fears of Slowdown Sharpen Focus on US Jobs Report -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Fears of an economic slowdown are heightening anticipation of what Friday's U.S. jobs report for January might reveal.

Stock markets have sunk after signs of weaker growth in the United States, Europe and China. Turmoil in developing countries has further spooked investors. The upheaval has renewed doubts about the Federal Reserve's next steps.

30. US Economy Grew at 3.2 Percent Rate in Q4 -

WASHINGTON (AP) – The U.S. economy grew at a 3.2 percent annual rate in the October-December quarter on the strength of the strongest consumer spending in three years, an encouraging sign for 2014.

31. Grizzlies Making Key Strides -

Last Saturday, Houston Rockets coach Kevin McHale was looking back at his team’s 88-87 loss at home to the Grizzlies the previous night.

The teams were about to play again at FedExForum, a quirk in the schedule that essentially created a 24-hour two-game series.

32. Weekly Applications for US Jobless Aid Mostly Flat -

WASHINGTON (AP) – The number of Americans seeking unemployment benefits ticked up 1,000 last week to a seasonally adjusted 326,000, a level consistent with steady job gains.

The Labor Department says the four-week average, a less volatile measure, fell for the third straight week to 331,500. Both figures are close to pre-recession levels and suggest that companies are laying off few workers.

33. Shelby County Bankruptcy Filings Flat in 2013 -

Bankruptcies in Shelby County stayed below 13,000 in 2013 with a slight increase over 2012 and 2011, as tracked by The Daily News Online, www.memphisdailynews.com.

34. Time for Biz Housekeeping -

The new year is a time of growth planning, renewed focus and basic housekeeping. We encourage you to take this time to evaluate your business for pruning opportunities. Just like nature’s cycle, the old must die to make room for the new in the business realm as well.

35. Luttrell Talks School Funding as Reformation Continues -

Shelby County Mayor Mark Luttrell says Shelby County has seen more change and movement in education than any other community in the country.

36. Debt and Liability -

There is rarely a good answer to the question “How much?” in politics.

With issues including the unfunded pension liability, overall debt, and revenue estimates and their validity, City Hall’s overall money problem begins but hardly ends with the question. It won’t be that simple.

37. Rape Kit Backlog Triggers Calls for Change -

As the Memphis Police Department backlog of rape kits moves into federal court with the new year, there will be another attempt to change Tennessee laws to delay the statute of limitations in rape cases to start running when rape kits are processed.

38. Home Electricity Use in US Falling to 2001 Levels -

NEW YORK (AP) – The average amount of electricity consumed in U.S. homes has fallen to levels last seen more than a decade ago, back when the smartest device in people's pockets was a Palm pilot and anyone talking about a tablet was probably an archaeologist or a preacher.

39. The Year That Was -

2013 brought plenty of unique and out-of-the-ordinary moments, as well as the launch of new events, businesses and civic ventures that collectively made the Memphis experience richer.

Much of it was covered in these pages, including in recent days a U.S. Supreme Court justice eliciting chuckles from and sharing his constitutional philosophy with an audience of Memphis lawyers.

40. New Questions -

The winter break for students is usually when parents look for word of what changes are ahead in the next school year.

Changes in attendance zones, school closings, new programs, existing programs that might be moving or discontinued – those are the details for the school year to come in August that parents are looking for at the halfway point in the current school year.

41. US Economy Expands at 4.1 Percent Rate -

WASHINGTON (AP) – The U.S. economy grew at a solid 4.1 percent annual rate from July through September, the fastest pace since late 2011 and significantly higher than previously thought. Much of the upward revision came from stronger consumer spending.

42. NBA Notebook: December 20, 2013 -

The Grizzlies’ Nick Calathes Experiment, if you want to give it a name, continues. Brought in after playing four years in Europe to be Mike Conley’s backup at point guard, he has been playing more minutes in the wake of Conley’s bruised thigh.

43. Grizzlies Now the Team Getting Kicked Around -

It is no longer too early to determine the highlight of the Grizzlies 2013-2014 season.

It happened on Nov. 18 in Los Angeles when Tony Allen jumped and inadvertently kicked Clippers guard Chris Paul in the face.

44. Bright Spot -

The Memphis multifamily market turned in a strong performance during 2013, with enhanced investor interest and new units under construction.

Blake Pera, senior vice president of CB Richard Ellis Memphis’ multifamily division, classified the multifamily market in 2013 as healthy and continuing to improve.

45. Commission Votes Down School Board Pay Raise -

The issue of how much to pay elected officials was settled Monday, Dec. 16, by the Shelby County Commission on one front.

But the debate will still be around in another form in the new year.

46. Commission Rejects School Board Pay Raises, Keeps Other Pay Levels Same -

In six hours, Shelby County Commissioners voted down the first of three readings on a proposed $20,000 pay raise for Shelby County Schools board members and kept the pay of the county Mayor, Sheriff, Trustee, Register, County Clerk and Assessor at the same level they are now.

47. Grizz Games Ending in Predictable Fashion -

Point guard Mike Conley stood at his locker after the Grizzlies had lost their third straight game, seen their home record drop to 5-9 (they were 32-9 at home last season), and their overall record fall to 10-13.

48. Paragon Sets Record Profit in Third Quarter -

The good news keeps coming for Paragon National Bank.

Between July and September, the Memphis-based community bank completed the most profitable quarter in its nearly eight-year history. It also was the bank’s 11th straight quarter of profitability, and Paragon attributed the result to things such as improved asset quality, balance sheet growth, expense reduction and better net interest margin.

49. Ballpark Deal Back on Council’s Agenda -

After getting a rough reception last week, the deal for the city of Memphis to buy AutoZone Park and the St. Louis Cardinals to buy the Memphis Redbirds baseball team returns to the Memphis City Council Monday, Dec. 9, for a vote.

50. Soulful Synergy -

What happened at the corner of McLemore Avenue and College Street in the 1960s is nothing short of extraordinary.

At the crossroads of segregated neighborhoods in South Memphis, two white business partners would open the doors wide to whites and blacks alike, who congregated to write and record songs that would set off a soul explosion heard around the world.

51. Grizz Bigs Taking Advantage of Opportunity -

Not so long ago, forward Ed Davis entering a Grizzlies game cued a barrage of negative tweets and even a few scattered boos.

Some were directed at Davis for what, at the time, had been a portfolio of poor play. Some were directed at Grizzlies management because, as the popular narrative went, they were desperate for Davis to play and play well because he was considered the biggest piece of the Rudy Gay trade.

52. RV Industry Shows More Signs of Recovery -

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) – RV manufacturers expect to pass another milestone in their steady recovery from the recession that landed the industry in a deep ditch.

Led by sales growth for towable RVs and pricier stand-alone motor homes, recreational vehicle makers expect to ship more than 300,000 units to dealers' lots this year for the first time since the economic downturn battered the industry in 2008 and 2009.

53. State Lease Bolsters One Commerce Square -

F. Scott Fitzgerald once said there were no second acts in American lives.

But One Commerce Square, the towering Downtown office building at Union Avenue and Main Street, is preparing for its third act.

54. Don’t Take Ballpark, Team for Granted -

Way back in the 1990s, when Downtown Memphis was The Peabody hotel and a bus station and not much more, Memphis Redbirds founder Dean Jernigan went on a tour of major-league ballparks.

55. Small Retailers Plan to Party Till They Profit -

NEW YORK (AP) – The parades and carnivals that draw people to downtown areas across the country this holiday season will be more than big celebrations. They're part of a strategy to get shoppers into small stores.

56. US Business Stockpiles Up 0.6 Percent in September -

WASHINGTON (AP) – U.S. businesses increased their stockpiles in September by the largest amount in eight months while sales posted a modest gain.

Business inventories rose 0.6 percent in September compared with August, the Commerce Department reported Wednesday. Sales rose 0.2 percent.

57. Arlington, Lakeland Schools Deals Show Complexity -

The Arlington and Lakeland school boards aren’t even in office yet and there is already a tentative agreement with Shelby County Schools on buildings and attendance zones for the two suburban districts.

58. Tigers Ready for Season’s First Test -

When the No. 11 University of Memphis Tigers had finished crushing Austin Peay in their season-opener, attention immediately turned to their Tuesday, Nov. 19, game in Stillwater against No. 7 Oklahoma State.

59. US Wholesalers Boost Stockpiles for Third Month -

WASHINGTON (AP) – U.S. wholesalers increased their stockpiles in September for the third straight month, an indication that they expect more demand from businesses and consumers.

Wholesale stockpiles rose a seasonally adjusted 0.4 percent, the Labor Department said Friday. That follows an increase of 0.8 percent in the previous month. August's increase was the highest in seven months.

60. Purchasing Power as a Mental Construct -

I frequently hear radio ads by mortgage companies touting the importance of “locking in low interest rates,” which will theoretically increase your “purchasing power.”

The idea is that with a monthly mortgage payment of $1,100 – assuming a 6 percent fixed rate for 30 years – you can afford a $184,000 home, whereas using a 5 percent interest rate and the same loan term enables, you can afford a $205,000 mortgage.

61. Wal-Mart Third-Quarter Profit Up, But Cuts Outlook -

NEW YORK (AP) – Wal-Mart shoppers – much like many Americans – still feel like they're in a recession.

In the uneven economic recovery, their bills are going up, but their wages are not. While the well-heeled crowd benefits from gains in the stock market, Wal-Mart shoppers are still struggling with a higher payroll tax. And shopping for bargains isn't a hobby, but a necessity.

62. US Trade Deficit Widens 8 Percent in September -

WASHINGTON (AP) – The U.S. trade deficit widened in September as imports increased to the highest level in 10 months while exports slipped. The wider gap suggests growth was somewhat slower over the summer than previously estimated.

63. College Football Notebook: November 15, 2013 -

It has been a challenging season at Mississippi State. And it’s about to get more challenging with No. 1 Alabama invading Starkville for a 6:45 p.m. game this Saturday.

“Alabama is a team that leads the nation in just about everything,” Bulldogs coach Dan Mullen said.

64. Looking for Last Season’s Grizz to Make Appearance … Now -

The Grizzlies are going out on a four-game road trip that starts with a Friday, Nov. 15, game in Los Angeles against the Lakers. Maybe a change of scenery will do them good. After a 3-5 start to the season that feels even worse than the record, a change of scenery is as good an idea as any.

65. TN eShare Direct Project Passes Milestone -

A growing number of local physicians are adopting Direct technology for the secure transferal of electronic medical records, and many more are expected to hop the wave in the next few months. Just in the first half of this month, the number of early adopters of the Direct system has surged from less than 1,000 to more than 1,400 in Tennessee.

66. Reverse Engineer for Patent Proof -

A patent is a property right over an invention, designed to prevent others from gaining free access to technology they did not develop. Owning a patent deters infringement but sometimes requires monitoring the marketplace to enforce its patent.

67. Activist Investor Loeb Says He has Stake in FedEx -

FedEx Corp. shares edged up Tuesday after activist investor Daniel Loeb said that he has taken a stake in the shipping company and met with its leadership.

68. Agape Helps Families Out of Homelessness -

Agape Child & Family Services continues to grow its Families In Transition program, which provides housing to homeless women who have children or are pregnant.

This year, the program will simultaneously serve 63 families, with an impact to more than 150 families.

69. Economy Expands in Third Quarter -

The U.S. economy expanded at a 2.8 percent annual rate from July through September, a surprising acceleration ahead of the 16-day partial government shutdown. But much of the strength came from a buildup in company stockpiling.

70. Company Restocking Lifts US Economic Growth -

The U.S. economy expanded at a 2.8 percent annual rate from July through September, a surprising acceleration ahead of the 16-day partial government shutdown. But much of the strength came from a buildup in company stockpiling.

71. Grizz Proving They Have a Lot to Prove -

To the question, how patient are Grizzlies fans willing to be, we now have a definitive answer.

Their patience broke as the third quarter ended Wednesday, Nov. 6, at FedExForum. Their Grizzlies – that gritty, lovable bunch that won 56 games last season and went to the Western Conference Finals – trailed the New Orleans Pelicans by 22 points.

72. Community Main Focus of Conrad’s Goals -

Since Kemp Conrad, principal with Cushman & Wakefield/Commercial Advisors LLC, took the position as president of Commercial Advisors’ asset services – a leading third-party provider of leasing, property management and project management services – revenues have increased by 215 percent.

73. Community Improvement at Heart of Conrad’s Goals -

Since Kemp Conrad, principal with Cushman & Wakefield/Commercial Advisors LLC, took the position as president of Commercial Advisors’ asset services – a leading third-party provider of leasing, property management and project management services – revenues have increased by 215 percent.

74. FAA OKs Air Passengers Using Gadgets on Planes -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Airline passengers will be able to use their electronic devices gate-to-gate to read, work, play games, watch movies and listen to music – but not talk on their cellphones – under much-anticipated guidelines issued Thursday by the Federal Aviation Administration.

75. One Game Way Too Soon to Panic -

Outright panic or complete denial? That seems to be the choice.

You can be in the camp that is convinced the Grizzlies will miss the playoffs because – drum roll, please – they lost the first game and had one horrid, putrid, disgusting quarter!

76. Sales of Small Businesses Finally Make Big Gains -

NEW YORK (AP) – Sales of small businesses are finally making big gains.

Fred Barkman, who last year bought Spectra Laboratories, a company that tests land and water for toxins, is in the process of purchasing a second environmental lab. Both companies were owned by retirees who wanted to sell but had to wait for the economy to improve after the recession devastated the small business market.

77. Chafetz Helps Businesses Navigate Financial Straits -

When the economy took a swan dive five years ago, many companies found themselves on the bargain basement rack.

They weren’t all eager to be sold, however, nor were those flush with cash willing to immediately open the corporate pocketbook.

78. US Unemployment Aid Applications Drop to 350,000 -

WASHINGTON (AP) — The number of people seeking U.S. unemployment benefits dropped 12,000 to a seasonally adjusted 350,000 last week, though the total was elevated for the third straight week by technical problems in California.

79. Alabama, Parity Dominating SEC Football This Season -

The Southeastern Conference’s dominance is well known – seven consecutive national championships, the last two by Alabama. That dominance also has had depth. Last season, the SEC had six of the top 10 teams in the final Bowl Championship Series (BCS) standings.

80. US Airways Net Income Dips on Higher Taxes -

DALLAS (AP) — Higher taxes reduced US Airways' third-quarter profit, but the airline still beat Wall Street expectations on a combination of more traffic and higher average fares.

US Airways, the nation's fifth-biggest airline, pushed revenue higher by filling a larger percentage of seats. Including US Airways Express regional flights, passengers traveled nearly 5 percent more miles and they paid 4.4 percent more for every mile that they flew.

81. Grizzlies Make Appearance on Annual GM Survey -

The results from the 12th annual GM survey from NBA.com are in and the Grizzlies show up in several categories. But Tony Allen was the only player to finish first in a category as the league’s general managers voted him the league’s best perimeter defender.

82. Beauty in the Difficulty for Tigers This Season -

Conference USA’s Powers That Be, which is funny just to type, were not happy when the University of Memphis left for what eventually was named the American Athletic Conference.

The best indication of this?

83. Shelby County Foreclosures Drop 10 Percent in Quarter -

Regina Hubbard has clients regularly calling her asking about the availability of what she describes as “deal of a lifetime” foreclosure buys.

The clients who call with those homes in mind tend to want them in otherwise out-of-reach neighborhoods such as Collierville and Germantown.

84. Shelby County Schools to Apply for Head Start Funding -

A larger Head Start program run by the Shelby County Schools system would have a much smaller front office than the one through which Shelby County government administers the $23 million program.

And it would align the early childhood curriculum in Head Start centers with the curriculum used when those children start kindergarten in the Shelby County Schools system.

85. Analysts Give Early Read on Government Shutdown -

Brian Sullivan, president and chief investment officer of Regions Investment Management – a division of Regions Wealth Management – is expecting the federal government shutdown to be short-lived.

86. US Consumers Boost Spending 0.3 Percent -

U.S. consumers increased their spending slightly last month as their income grew at the fastest pace in six months. The figures point to only modest economic growth in the July-September quarter.

Consumers’ spending on goods and services rose 0.3 percent in August, the Commerce Department said Friday.

87. Average 30-Year Mortage Rate Drops to 4.22 Percent -

Average U.S. rates on fixed mortgages fell for the third straight week to their lowest point in three months, as a decline in consumer confidence and the onset of the government shutdown forced rates down.

88. Holiday Shopping is Expected to Be Up ... Unless -

NEW YORK (AP) – Americans, who're increasingly optimistic about improving economic conditions, are expected to spend at a more rapid clip during the upcoming holiday shopping season than they did last year.

89. Average 30-Year Mortage Rate Drops to 4.22 Percent -

Average U.S. rates on fixed mortgages fell for the third straight week to their lowest point in three months, as a decline in consumer confidence and the onset of the government shutdown forced rates down.

90. US Consumers Boost Spending 0.3 Percent -

U.S. consumers increased their spending slightly last month as their income grew at the fastest pace in six months. The figures point to only modest economic growth in the July-September quarter.

Consumers’ spending on goods and services rose 0.3 percent in August, the Commerce Department said Friday. That’s up from a 0.2 percent gain in July, which was slightly more than the 0.1 percent reported last month.

91. US Pending Home Sales Fall for 3rd Straight Month -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Fewer Americans signed contracts to buy U.S. homes in August, the third straight decline. The drop could mean that higher mortgage rates are starting to deter some buyers.

92. US Economy Grew at 2.5 Percent Rate in Spring -

WASHINGTON (AP) – The U.S. economy grew at a 2.5 percent annual rate from April through June, an improvement from the first three months of the year. But economists are worried that growth may now be slowing.

93. History Not on Side of Ole Miss -

They are two Top-25 college football teams with undefeated records. Top-ranked Alabama and No. 21 Ole Miss, each 3-0 and 1-0 in the SEC, have that much in common. But not much else.

While the Rebels are the league’s hot story – they went into Texas and routed the Longhorns and are considered to have “a shot” at the Crimson Tide in Tuscaloosa – the two-time defending national champions seem to be under attack.

94. ‘Wading in’ on Manziel, Carpenter, Tiger Football -

Wading in and wondering why all the attention on Bo Pelini’s hissy fit? Lee Elia could have done better on his worst day … or worse on his best day. Point is, you’re way more entitled to a tirade when managing the Cubs than when coaching Nebraska football ... .

95. Art for Jobs Show Raises Funds for Advance Memphis -

The nonprofit group Advance Memphis, the work of which focuses on helping the poor in South Memphis move up the economic ladder, has made its mark on the inner city.

Since its founding in 1999, the organization has graduated some 600 people from its programs. About 100 people graduate from its job readiness training each year.

96. Pared-Down School Board Begins to Set Goals -

Countywide school board members began the process Tuesday, Sept. 3, of setting goals and a vision for the one year they will operate as a seven-member body.

And the four-hour retreat ended with a goal of working toward 100 percent literacy in reading for third-grade students in the school system.

97. Six Tips for Shortening the Sales Cycle -

A career in sales isn’t for the faint of heart. You must be thick-skinned in the face of adversity, have a dogged determination, and be prepared for some long days in the pursuit of the almighty sale. That’s why I have the utmost respect for sales professionals and have dedicated much of my career to helping them work smarter versus harder in an effort to close more sales more efficiently. Perhaps the fastest path for doing just that is by shortening the sales cycle.

98. YES Prep Has Big Plans for Memphis -

The Houston charter school operator founded by Chris Barbic, the superintendent of Tennessee’s Achievement School District, has ambitious plans for Memphis.

YES Prep is among the charter school operators being considered for the third year of the state-run district for the state’s bottom 5 percent of schools in terms of student achievement.

99. Mean Streets -

Alabama’s Nick Saban can walk anywhere he wants in the Southeastern Conference – college football’s roughest neighborhood – and no one can lay a finger on him.

His teams have won the national championship in three of the last four years. Overall, SEC teams have won the title seven consecutive years and the league is a dream destination for head coaches – until it turns into a grinding, weekly nightmare.

100. Ubiquiti Faces Tech Giants in Internet Push -

Some of the biggest technology companies have begun making moves toward the same goal being pursued by Ubiquiti Networks Inc., the wireless communications company founded by Memphis Grizzlies owner Robert Pera.