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Editorial Results (free)

1. US Homebuilder Sentiment Climbs Higher in May -

U.S. homebuilders are feeling more optimistic about their business prospects, reflecting a recent surge in sales of newly built homes and a lingering shortage of previously occupied homes on the market.

2. Los Angeles Could Land Olympic Games, But Which Year? -

LOS ANGELES (AP) – Leaders in Los Angeles will guide their International Olympic Committee guests from the Hollywood Hills to Santa Monica Beach to a construction site that will someday be a $2.6 billion NFL stadium that can also host soccer games.

3. Survey: US Businesses Added Solid 177,000 Jobs in April -

WASHINGTON (AP) – U.S. businesses added 177,000 jobs last month, a private survey found, a solid gain that suggests the economy is still expanding despite recent signs of slower growth.

4. Memphis Office Market Off to Good Start -

Though small to mid-sized leases comprised the majority of leasing activity, the Memphis area office market got off to a healthy start in 2017, according to Cushman & Wakefield/Commercial Advisors’ first quarter Marketbeat report.

5. Pace of US Hiring Tumbles, Yet Jobless Rate Hits 10-year Low -

WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. jobs report for March report delivered a mixed message Friday as hiring fell to its slowest pace in nearly a year. Yet at the same time, the unemployment rate fell to its lowest level in nearly a decade.

6. A Robust February Jobs Report Points to Resilient US Economy -

WASHINGTON (AP) – U.S. employers added a robust 235,000 jobs in February and raised pay at a brisk pace – signs that a resilient economy has given many companies the confidence to hire in anticipation of solid growth ahead.

7. Last Word: Reappraisal Roller Coaster, Closing the Airport Post Office and District 95 -

Four years ago was a very different time in the world of property reappraisals. For the first time in the memory of most, if not all, of the local elected officials looking at how much money they would have, the 2013 reappraisal of property for tax purposes didn’t grow or at least remain level. Values were down reflecting the depths of the recession and more importantly the housing crash.

8. Veteran Attorney Bartlett Joins Shea, Moskovitz & McGhee -

Attorney Gray Bartlett has joined Shea, Moskovitz & McGhee, where his practice areas include criminal defense, asset forfeiture and federal criminal law. Prior to joining the firm, Bartlett practiced for 17 years with Ballin, Ballin & Fishman PC.

9. US Banks in Strong Shape as 4th-Quarter Profit Jumps -

WASHINGTON (AP) – U.S. banks' earnings in the final quarter of 2016 rose 7.7 percent from a year earlier, as lending continued to grow and banks set aside less for losses on loans for the first time since late 2015.

10. Last Word: Lovell's Fall, Critical Focus Debut and Super Lice -

That didn’t last long – the political career of state Representative Mark Lovell. About six weeks into a two-year term of office six months after he upset veteran Republican state Rep. Curry Todd, Lovell resigned Tuesday in Nashville. But the Legislature probably isn’t done with him yet. Even if it turns out the Legislature is done in terms of dealing with him directly, it will probably be talking about him for longer than the six weeks he was a legislator.

11. US Job Openings Remain at Mostly Healthy Level in December -

WASHINGTON (AP) – The number of open jobs was mostly unchanged in December from the previous month, leaving openings at a healthy level.

The Labor Department said Tuesday job openings were flat at 5.5 million in December. Total hiring rose slightly to 5.25 million, while the number of people quitting fell.

12. Trump Inherits a Healthy Job Market, With Solid Hiring -

WASHINGTON (AP) – President Donald Trump has inherited a healthy-looking job market from his predecessor, with the U.S. economy registering a burst of hiring in January and an influx of Americans looking for work.

13. Ford CEO Hopeful That Trump Will Ease Gas Mileage Standards -

DEARBORN, Mich. (AP) – Ford Motor Co.'s top executive is hopeful that President Donald Trump could ease government fuel economy requirements and reduce corporate taxes to help the auto industry grow and create jobs.

14. What are the Odds? Blackburn is Still the Favorite -

Tennessee has its search firm and its search committee is in place to find the replacement for Dave Hart as the university’s athletic director.

Hart announced last August he would retire June 30, and with Tennessee undergoing a transition in its chancellor’s position, the search for Hart’s replacement was put on the back burner.

15. Tennessee Preliminary Unemployment Rate Up in December -

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – Tennessee's preliminary unemployment rate for December rose slightly to 4.9 percent compared with November.

The Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development says total nonfarm employment in the state grew by 6,000 jobs over the month. The largest increases were in manufacturing, leisure and hospitality, and mining, logging and construction.

16. Shelby County Home Sales Prices Hit Record High -

The Memphis and Shelby County housing market remained healthy in 2016, where a record high in average home sales prices and a 15-year low in foreclosures helped make the housing crisis of last decade seem more and more like a distant memory.

17. US Job Openings, Quits Rise, Pointing to Modest Hiring Ahead -

WASHINGTON (AP) – U.S. employers posted more jobs in November and quitting also increased – signs that job gains and wages may increase in the months ahead.

The number of available jobs rose 1.3 percent in November from the previous month to 5.5 million, the Labor Department said Tuesday. That's below a post-recession peak of 5.8 million in April. Hiring rose 1.1 percent to 5.2 million.

18. Obama's Final Jobs Report: Big Pay Gain, Slower Hiring -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Americans' paychecks rose in December at the fastest pace in more than seven years as steady hiring and low unemployment led some businesses to pay more to attract and keep workers.

19. US Construction Spending Hits Highest Level in 10 Years -

WASHINGTON (AP) – U.S. builders boosted spending on construction projects for a second straight month in November, pushing activity to the highest level in more than a decade.

Construction spending rose 0.9 percent in November after a 0.6 percent increase in October, the Commerce Department reported Tuesday. The increase reflected solid gains in home construction, nonresidential building and government construction activity.

20. US Employers Post Fewer Jobs, Though Openings Stay Healthy -

WASHINGTON (AP) – U.S. employers posted fewer jobs in October than the previous month, but job openings are still at a mostly healthy level that points to steady hiring ahead.

Job openings slipped 1.8 percent to 5.5 million, the Labor Department said Wednesday . Hiring also fell to just under 5.1 million, while the number of people quitting declined to about 3 million.

21. Shelby County Home Sales Rise 30 Percent in November -

November was a strong month for home sales in Shelby County. November sales increased 30 percent, with 1,424 sales compared to 1,093 a year ago, according to Market Trend data compiled by real estate information company Chandler Reports.

22. US Homebuilder Confidence Holds Steady in November -

U.S. homebuilders' confidence held steady this month, though their expectations for sales into next year dimmed slightly.

The National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo builder sentiment index released Wednesday was unchanged at 63. That's two points below September's reading, which was the highest in nearly a year, and up one point from a year ago.

23. US Home Sales Rebounded in September Despite Tight Supply -

WASHINGTON (AP) — More Americans bought homes in September, many for the first time, despite a persistent shortage of properties for sale.

The National Association of Realtors said Thursday that sales of existing homes rose 3.2 percent from August to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.47 million, the strongest pace since June. Sales rose across the country: 5.7 percent in the Northeast, 5 percent in the West, 3.9 percent in the Midwest and 0.9 percent in the South.

24. US Economy Grew a Bit Faster in September, Fed Says -

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. economic growth accelerated slightly as summer ended and fall began, supported by modest hiring, an uptick in consumer spending, and steady homebuilding, according to the Federal Reserve.

25. US Home Construction Fell 9 Percent in September -

WASHINGTON (AP) — Homebuilders pulled back on construction for a second straight month in September, with a plunge in apartments offsetting gains in single-family homes. Building activity was weak in all parts of the country except the Midwest.

26. US Factory Production Rebounded in September -

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. manufacturers boosted output modestly last month, led by greater production of construction supplies, autos and petroleum products.

Factory production rose 0.2 percent in September, following a decline of 0.5 percent in the previous month, the Federal Reserve said Monday. The broader industrial production category, which includes mining and utilities, ticked up 0.1 percent.

27. US Home Sales Fell in August as Inventories Plummet -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Americans retreated from home-buying in August, as a worsening inventory shortage appears to be hurting sales and pushing prices higher.

Housing has been a bright spot amid weak economic growth for much of this year. Sales totals continue to recover from the Great Recession. Buyers increasingly have pristine credit. But the primary weakness in housing has been a lack of properties for sale, a reflection of the lingering damage caused by the housing bubble that began to burst nearly a decade ago.

28. Hospitable Market -

The Memphis area hotel market continues on its solid run of the past few years, led by the Downtown submarket with strong occupancy and room rates. The pipeline for new Downtown hotel projects is loaded, with as many as 15 projects in various stages of development and hotel construction picking up in other parts of the county.

29. Americans Got Raise Last Year for First Time Since 2007 -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Americans finally got a raise last year after eight years of stagnating incomes.

The typical U.S. household's income rose 5.2 percent in 2015 to $56,516, the Census Bureau said Tuesday. Even with the solid gain, that remains below the median household income of $57,423 in 2007 when the Great Recession began. The median is the point where half of households fall below and half are above.

30. Slower Hiring in August Signals Fed Rate Hike Less Likely -

WASHINGTON (AP) – After two months of blockbuster gains, U.S. employers slowed their hiring in August to a modest increase of 151,000, reducing the likelihood that the Federal Reserve will raise interest rates when it meets this month.

31. US Construction Spending Unchanged in July -

U.S. construction spending was unchanged in July as weakness in spending on government projects offset gains in home building and the strongest month for non-residential construction on record.

Construction spending was flat in July but declines in May and June were revised to show slight gains, the Commerce Department reported Thursday. Spending in June is now reported up 0.9 percent while May showed an increase of 0.1 percent.

32. US Economy Grew at Tepid 1.1 Percent Pace in Spring -

WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. economy expanded at a sluggish 1.1 percent pace this spring as businesses sharply reduced their stockpiles of goods and spent less on new buildings and equipment. Yet most analysts forecast much faster growth in the summer and fall, fueled by healthy consumer spending.

33. US New-Home Sales Climb to Best Level Since Late 2007 -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Americans stepped up their purchases of new homes in July to the fastest pace in nearly nine years, the latest sign that low mortgage rates and a solid job market are helping support the residential real estate market.

34. The Week Ahead: August 22-28 -

This week, Habitat for Humanity gets a hand from some famous friends, the City Council talks marijuana, and TEDxMemphis returns with more "ideas worth sharing." And that's just a taste of what's in store in the week ahead...

35. US Home Construction Climbed to a 6-Month High in July -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Apartment construction in the Northeast fueled a jump in home building in July as the pace of housing starts nationwide reached the strongest pace in six months.

The rate of overall construction rose 2.1 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.21 million from 1.19 million in June, the Commerce Department said Tuesday. That was the highest level since February. Most of the gain came from an 8.3 percent acceleration in the construction of multi-family buildings. Construction of single-family houses edged up just 0.3 percent.

36. Steady Hiring is Now Benefiting a Broader Group of Americans -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Years of steady job gains have finally begun to benefit a wider range of Americans, including those with less education and in lower-paying jobs.

A second straight month of robust hiring – 255,000 jobs added in July – pointed to employer confidence that suggested that the economy is powering through a slump that struck early this year. The unemployment rate remained a low 4.9 percent, the Labor Department said Friday.

37. US Home Prices Rise at Steady Pace as Sales Heat Up -

WASHINGTON (AP) – U.S. home prices extended their steady upward march in May, spurred by rising sales and a dwindling supply of available houses.

The Standard & Poor's CoreLogic Case-Shiller 20-city home price index increased 5.2 percent in May compared with a year ago. That is down from a 5.4 percent annual gain in April but still above last summer's growth rate.

38. US Home Construction Posted Solid Gain in June -

Construction of new homes posted a solid increase in June, led by a surge of building in the Northeast and the West.

The Commerce Department said Tuesday that housing starts rose 4.8 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.19 million from a revised 1.14 million in May. The June reading was the highest level since February, but was down from 1.21 million a year earlier.

39. US Services Firms Grew in June at Fastest Pace in 7 Months -

WASHINGTON (AP) – U.S. services firms expanded last month at the fastest pace since November, good news for the U.S. economy.

The Institute for Supply Management said Wednesday that its non-manufacturing index rose to 56.5 in June from 52.9 in May. Any reading above 50 signals growth. Production, new orders and export orders grew faster in June. Employment grew last month after contracting in May.

40. Goal of Owning Home Still Strong, and 8 Other Housing Trends -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Americans still want to own homes – if they can afford to. That's the finding of a report being released Wednesday by the Harvard University Joint Center for Housing Studies.

41. US Home Prices Rise in March as Spring Buying Season Begins -

WASHINGTON (AP) – U.S. home prices kept climbing in March as the spring home buying season began, but so far the higher costs haven't thwarted sales.

The Standard & Poor's/Case-Shiller 20-city home price index increased 5.4 percent in March compared with a year earlier, according to a report released Tuesday. That is the same annual gain as in February.

42. US Economy Showing Signs of Life After Slow Start to Year -

WASHINGTON (AP) – The U.S. economy is showing signs of more life after a less-than-stellar start to the year.

The government said Friday that first-quarter growth, while disappointing, wasn't as bad as first thought. And a number of more recent indicators are showing decent gains in key areas like consumer spending and housing.

43. One Family -

An unprecedented private investment aims to restore a commercial heart to the Soulsville USA neighborhood, where a pair of sprawling buildings take up nearly a full block across from the Stax Museum of American Soul Music. It isn’t an eyesore, but inactivity within those walls has been a drag on the community.

44. US Builders Increase Home Construction in April -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Builders ramped up construction of new homes in April, suggesting that the market remains solid despite sluggish economic growth at the beginning of the year.

Housing starts climbed 6.6 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.17 million units, the Commerce Department said Tuesday. The increase makes up for much of March's 9.4 percent drop in starts, a decline that partially reflected the volatile swings in residential construction on a monthly basis.

45. Hiring Slowdown in April May Signal Caution About US Economy -

WASHINGTON (AP) – American employers signaled their caution about a sluggish economy by slowing their pace of hiring in April after months of robust job growth.

At the same time, companies raised pay, and their employees worked more hours – a combination that lifted income and, if sustained, could quicken the U.S. expansion.

46. More Americans are Expected to Remodel Their Homes This Year -

WASHINGTON (AP) – A rising number of Americans are preparing to renovate their homes this year, a potential boost for the economy, according to projections released Thursday by Harvard University's Joint Center for Housing Studies.

47. Applications for Jobless Aid Rise But Stay at Healthy Level -

WASHINGTON (AP) – More Americans applied for unemployment benefits last week, but their numbers remained at low levels consistent with a healthy job market.

THE NUMBERS: The number of people seeking jobless aid rose by 7,000 to a seasonally adjusted 265,000, the Labor Department said Thursday. The less-volatile four-week average rose by 750 to 268,000. The number of people collecting unemployment checks was 2.24 million, down nearly 7 percent from a year earlier. Weekly claims have now been below 300,000 for 54 straight weeks, longest streak since 1973.

48. New-Home Sales Lag in February, Inventory Remains Low -

February home sales in Shelby County rose 18 percent over February 2015 while the average sales price fell 6 percent to $135,216.

With 1,111 total sales for the month, home sales revenue increased 10 percent year-over-year, according to data from real estate company Chandler Reports, chandlerreports.com.

49. US New-Home Sales Tumble in January, Big Decline in West -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Americans stepped back from buying new homes in January, as purchases plunged sharply in western states where prices are typically higher.

The Commerce Department said Wednesday that new-home sales fell 9.2 percent last month to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 494,000. Most of the decline stemmed for a 32.1 drop in sales in the West. Sales also slipped in the Midwest, while edging up in the Northeast and South.

50. US Home Market: Sales, Prices Up But Not Enough Supply -

WASHINGTON (AP) – U.S. home sales are climbing. Prices are rising, too. So the outlook for the housing market is golden, right?

Not entirely.

A series of reports released Tuesday pointed to potential cracks in the foundations of America's residential real estate market.

51. Urban Treasure -

They were at the 2007 National Recreation and Park Association conference in Indianapolis and they had been dutifully attending the seminars and taking notes. But one day this two-woman contingent from Memphis and the newly formed Shelby Farms Park Conservancy skipped out of the afternoon workshops.

52. Wade: Shelby County’s New-Home Inventory Not Meeting Demand -

Jules Wade, principal broker with Coldwell Banker Collins-Maury, is happy with residential real estate prices in 2015.

Last year the average sales price of a Shelby County home rose 6 percent over 2014, and the average residential sales price matched the previous high of 2006.

53. First Building Permit Pulled For Crosstown Concourse Build-Out -

495 N. Watkins St.
Memphis, TN 38104

Permit Amount: $15.6 million

Application Date: January 2016

54. Last Word: SOTU React, OPEB Comeback and NFL Nostalgia -

The day after the last State of the Union address by President Barack Obama here's a breakdown of the reaction from our delegation to Washington.
Democratic U.S. Rep. Steve Cohen emphasized Obama's references to criminal justice reform.
"I know he is also committed to criminal justice reform and I hope my colleagues will work together to put meaningful reform on his desk," Cohen said.
Republican U.S. Rep. Stephen Fincher tweeted, "We need a plan to keep America safe and make America strong. I did not hear that from the President tonight."
Republican U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander: "If Pres. Obama focuses on what he agrees on with Congress instead of what we disagree on, there's quite a bit we could get done in 2016."
Republican U.S. Senator Bob Corker urged the "swift release" of U.S sailors being held overnight by Iran in a border dispute just before the speech.

55. Shelby County Mortgage Activity Solid in 2015 -

The Shelby County mortgage market had a strong 2015, and lenders expect the momentum to continue for the foreseeable future.

Among loans made at the time of purchase, banks and mortgage lenders made 9,368 mortgages in Shelby County during 2015, up 11 percent from the 8,470 mortgages during 2014, according to the latest data from real estate information company Chandler Reports, chandlerreports.com.

56. The Week Ahead: Dec. 14, 2015 -

How was your weekend, Memphis? Here’s our weekly rundown of local happenings you need to know about, from the annual AutoZone shareholder convergence Downtown to the new Star Wars movie...

57. Another Month of Solid US Hiring Clears Way for Fed Hike -

WASHINGTON (AP) – If the Federal Reserve needed any final evidence that the economy is ready for higher interest rates, it got it on Friday.

A solid November job gain of 211,000 showed that despite weak overseas growth and struggling U.S. factories, the U.S. economy appears healthy enough to withstand a Fed hike from record-low rates later this month.

58. Fed Says More Consumer Spending, Housing Boost US Growth -

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Federal Reserve says the U.S. economy grew at a modest pace this fall, lifted by higher consumer spending and more home sales and construction.

The Fed said Wednesday in its latest snapshot of the economy that nine of its 12 regional banks reported growth was modest or moderate from early October through mid-November. The New York Fed said growth leveled off, while it slowed in Boston and was mixed in Kansas City.

59. US Construction Spending Rises to Highest Level in 8 Years -

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. construction spending jumped in October, fueled by solid gains in home building and the largest increase in federal construction in nine years.

The Commerce Department said Tuesday that construction spending rose 1 percent in October from the previous month to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of more than $1.1 trillion. That's the highest level since December 2007 when the Great Recession began.

60. Shelby County Home Sales Edge Down in October -

Memphis and Shelby County home sales decreased 9 percent this October compared to the same month last year, but the decline could be related more to a lack of inventory than a lack of interest.

There were 1,344 sales recorded for October, compared with 1,472 recorded for the same time last year, according to data from real estate information company Chandler Reports, chandlerreports.com

61. The October US Jobs Report, By the Numbers -

WASHINGTON (AP) — The job market boomed in October. Employers added 271,000 jobs, and the unemployment rate fell to 5 percent, the lowest level in seven years.

The flurry of hiring is likely to give the Federal Reserve confidence to go ahead with a long-anticipated increase in short-term interest rates in December.

62. US Factories Grow at Slowest Pace in 2½ Years; Hiring Falls -

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. factory activity grew last month at its slowest pace since May 2013 as manufacturers pared their stockpiles and cut jobs.

The Institute for Supply Management said Monday that its index of factory activity slipped to 50.1 in October from 50.2 in September. The figures barely signal growth, which is any reading above 50.

63. Retail Market Boosted by Groceries, Small Business -

The third quarter of 2015 was a busy one for the retail sector with a lot of activity derived from grocery stores and small businesses.

Fundamentals are trending favorably with the total vacancy rate down to 12.6 percent compared to 12.9 percent in second quarter 2015. Net absorption rose from 134,251 square feet in second quarter to 160,229 square feet in the most recent quarter, and the rental rate increased from $8.62 to $8.72 per square foot, according to CB Richard Ellis Memphis data.

64. US Home Values and Rents Defying Global Slowdown -

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. housing appears to be insulated so far from the cooling global economy.

Home values and rental prices are steadily rising, fueled by strong demand and a tight supply of available properties, a pair of reports Tuesday showed. The solid demand drove sales growth early this year and spurred additional construction.

65. Memphis Retail Market Boosted by Groceries, Small Business -

The third quarter of 2015 was a busy one for the retail sector with a lot of activity derived from grocery stores and small businesses.

Fundamentals are trending favorably with the total vacancy rate down to 12.6 percent compared to 12.9 percent in second quarter 2015. Net absorption rose from 134,251 square feet in second quarter to 160,229 square feet in the most recent quarter, and the rental rate increased from $8.62 to $8.72 per square foot, according to CB Richard Ellis Memphis data.

66. US Homebuilder Sentiment Improves in October -

U.S. homebuilders are feeling more optimistic about the housing market, lifting their confidence this month to the highest level in 10 years.

The National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo builder sentiment index released Monday rose this month to 64, up from 61 in September. The last time the reading was higher was October 2005 at 68.

67. Shelby County Home Sales Slip, Construction Sees Boost -

September real estate slumped in Shelby County, but according to real estate professionals, it’s nothing they haven’t seen before.

“Good times and bad, people still want to own homes,” said Felix Bishop, broker and vice president with Crye-Leike Real Estate Services.

68. US Homebuilding Slows in August After Hot Streak -

WASHINGTON (AP) — Builders broke ground on fewer houses and apartment complexes in August, a possible sign that the housing market may be levelling off after accelerating for much of the year.

69. US Jobless Rate Falls to 7-Year Low; Fed Move Still Unclear -

WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. unemployment rate fell to a seven-year low in August as employers added a modest 173,000 jobs, a key piece of evidence for the Federal Reserve in deciding whether to raise interest rates from record lows later this month.

70. Measure of US Economy's Future Health Slips in July -

WASHINGTON (AP) — An index designed to predict the future health of the U.S. economy declined slightly in July yet still pointed to modest growth in the months ahead.

The Conference Board said Thursday that its index of leading indicators dropped 0.2 percent in July, after healthy gains of 0.6 percent in both June and May.

71. Home Depot Separates Itself From Retail Crowd in 2Q -

NEW YORK (AP) — Homes are getting a lot of TLC from their owners of late, which means better sales for businesses like Home Depot.

The world's largest home improvement retailer reported second-quarter results on Tuesday that surpassed Wall Street expectations, thanks largely to consumers opening their wallets. But Home Depot knows it's a change in mindset that is spurring homeowners to action.

72. US Homebuilder Sentiment Improves in August -

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. homebuilders grew slightly more optimistic about the housing market in August, putting their confidence at levels last seen a decade ago during the debt-fueled housing boom.

73. US Economy Posts Solid 2.3 Percent Growth Rate in Q2 -

WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. economy posted a solid rebound in the April-June quarter after a harsh winter, led by a surge in consumer spending and a recovery in foreign trade that bode well for the rest of the year.

74. US Home Sales Surged in June to Fastest Pace in 8-Plus Years -

WASHINGTON (AP) — Americans bought homes in June at the fastest rate in over eight years, pushing prices to record highs as buyer demand has eclipsed the availability of houses on the market.

75. Apartment Construction Drives US Homebuilding Surge in June -

WASHINGTON (AP) – U.S. builders broke ground on apartment complexes last month at the fastest pace in nearly 28 years, as developers anticipate that recent jobs gains will launch a wave of renters

76. US Homebuilder Sentiment Hits Highest Level Since 2005 -

U.S. homebuilders' confidence in the market for new homes is back up to levels not seen since the height of the housing boom a decade ago.

The National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo builder sentiment index released Thursday rose this month to 60, the highest level since November 2005.

77. Unemployment Rates Rose in Half of US States Last Month -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Unemployment rates rose in 25 U.S. states last month, driven higher in many cases by more people who began looking for work but didn't immediately find jobs.

Rates fell in 9 states and Washington, D.C., and were unchanged in 16 states, the Labor Department said Friday.

78. Fed Likely to Signal Coming Rate Hike If Economy Strengthens -

WASHINGTON (AP) – With evidence that the U.S. economy is rebounding from a winter slump, the Federal Reserve will likely signal this week that an interest rate increase is coming – just not quite yet.

79. Do More Jobs Mean More Economic Security? Not for Some -

WASHINGTON (AP) – The U.S. economy is churning out a lot of jobs these days but not a lot of financial security for many of the people who hold them.

Pay growth, though improving, remains tepid. Many workers have few opportunities to advance. Others have taken temporary, part-time or freelance jobs, with little chance of landing full-time permanent work with benefits.

80. Shelby County Mortgage Market Up 16 Percent in May -

Lending has ticked up at Memphis-area banks, mortgage rates are still low and the supply of new homes remains limited.

Those are some of the reasons lenders cite when explaining why mortgage lending in Memphis continues to hum along above last year’s totals. Last month continued that trend, new figures show, with mortgage volume countywide getting a 16 percent boost in May compared to May 2014, according to real estate information company Chandler Reports, www.chandlerreports.com.

81. Fed Sees Moderate Economic Growth Around Country This Spring -

WASHINGTON (AP) – The U.S. economy was growing at a moderate pace in most regions of the country in April and May, as consumers ramped up spending at retailers and auto dealers, the Federal Reserve said Wednesday.

82. Survey: US Business Hiring Picks Up in May to 201,000 -

WASHINGTON (AP) – U.S. companies stepped up hiring in May, a private survey found, evidence that employers remain confident in the economy even after it contracted at the start of the year.

83. Farm Feast -

The first elementary school students came to Agricenter International for some hands-on education more than a decade ago. About 80 students went on a literal field trip, walking through the cotton, soybean and cornfields.

84. US Economy Rebounding With Solid, If Unspectacular, Job Gains -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Rebounding from a dismal start to the year, the U.S. economy added 223,000 jobs in April, a solid gain that suggested that employers are helping fuel a durable if still subpar recovery.

85. Report: State Water Pollution Enforcement Way Down -

State regulators issued 77 percent fewer enforcement orders against water polluters in 2014 than they did in 2008, according to the nonprofit Tennessee Clean Water Network.

The network has been tracking actions the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation takes against polluters since 2007, when the agency issued 219 enforcement orders. In 2008, that number rose to 231. But enforcement orders plummeted beginning in 2009, reaching just 53 in 2012; 50 in 2013; and 53 last year, according to a Tennessee Clean Water Network report released Wednesday, May 6.

86. Growth in US Services Firms Picked Up Speed Last Month -

WASHINGTON (AP) – U.S. service firms' growth accelerated in April, fueled by more orders, rising sales and an uptick in hiring. The figures provide solid evidence that the economy is recovering from its first-quarter stumble.

87. US Home Prices Accelerated in February as Sales Rise -

WASHINGTON (AP) – U.S. home prices climbed at a faster pace in February than the previous month, driven by higher sales and a limited supply of available houses.

The Standard & Poor's/Case-Shiller 20-city home price index rose 5 percent in February from 12 months earlier, S&P said Tuesday. That is up from a 4.5 percent pace in January.

88. Office, Industrial Real Estate Rebounds in First Quarter -

In a sure sign that the local economy is in rebound mode, the Memphis-area commercial real estate market is heating up with the industrial and office sectors producing strong gains.

Fueled by strong demand and tightening of available space, rental rates for Class A space in East Memphis, the city’s primary business district, are approaching pre-recession levels, according to a new report.

89. US Homebuilders' Outlook for Spring Sales Surges -

U.S. homebuilders are feeling more optimistic that sales will perk up in coming months as the spring home-selling season unfolds.

That would bode well for home construction, which slowed early this year as severe winter weather halted new projects in the Northeast and Midwest.

90. US Retail Sales Heat Up in March; Has Big Thaw Arrived? -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Americans increased their spending on autos, furniture, clothing and building materials in March, lifting retail sales for the first time in four months.

Retail sales jumped 0.9 percent last month, after declining 0.5 percent in February, the Commerce Department said Tuesday. The rebound suggests that shoppers are returning after an unseasonably cold winter froze sales.

91. Steady as She Goes: New Home Market Stays Stable -

New home construction in Shelby County, as tracked by permits, jumped in February when compared to February 2014 while the number of new home sales remained flat.

Builders filed 88 permits in February, up 22 percent from 72 permits filed in February 2014, according to real estate information company Chandler Reports, www.chandlerreports.com. The permits filed in February averaged 2,840 square feet and $188,729, compared to 3,252 square feet and $241,788 in February 2014.

92. US Job Openings Surge, Yet Employers Slow To Hire -

WASHINGTON (AP) – U.S. job openings surged in February to a 14-year high, yet employers filled fewer of those jobs than in the previous month.

On a brighter note, the Labor Department also said Tuesday that layoffs fell sharply. Taken together, the figures suggest that signs of a stumbling economy prompted U.S. businesses to pull back on hiring. But they weren't spooked enough to cut more jobs.

93. US Service Firms Grew at Slightly Slower Pace Last Month -

WASHINGTON (AP) – U.S. service firms expanded at a slightly slower yet still healthy pace in March, an encouraging sign after multiple reports last week pointed to a slowing economy.

The Institute for Supply Management said Monday that its services index slipped to 56.5 last month, from 56.9 in February. Any reading over 50 indicates expansion.

94. End of Robust Hiring Streak Raises Doubts About Job Market -

WASHINGTON (AP) – For months, the U.S. economy's strength has been flagging.

Manufacturing slowed. Fewer homes were built. Cheaper gas failed to ignite consumer spending. Yet month after month, employers kept on hiring vigorously.

95. US Home Sales Rebound Slightly in February -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Slightly more Americans bought homes in February, but tight inventories, affordability problems and nasty winter weather point to sluggish sales in the coming few months.

96. Applications for US Jobless Aid Barely Rose Last Week -

WASHINGTON (AP) – The number of people seeking U.S. unemployment benefits basically held steady last week, as the job market continues to outpace broader economic growth.

The Labor Department said Thursday that weekly applications for unemployment aid rose slightly by 1,000 to a seasonally adjusted 291,000. Jobless claims have been subdued for the past two weeks after winter storms caused them to spike at the end of February due to closed schools and construction sites.

97. Applications for US Unemployment Benefits Fall Sharply -

WASHINGTON (AP) – The number of people seeking U.S. unemployment benefits fell sharply last week, a sign that strong hiring will likely continue.

Weekly applications for unemployment aid dropped 36,000 to a seasonally adjusted 289,000, the Labor Department said Thursday. The drop nearly reversed a large increase from last month, which likely occurred because of cold weather and snowstorms.

98. Solid US Jobs Report: 295,000 Positions Added -

WASHINGTON (AP) – A burst of hiring in February underscored the resilience and confidence of U.S. businesses, which are adding workers at the fastest pace in 17 years. Yet the strong job gains did little to raise wages last month.

99. Restless Winter -

For most of its 103-year life as city property, the Mid-South Fairgrounds has been a place where Memphians remember why they came there in the past, as local leaders have periodically pushed to remake its landscape and in turn create more memories going forward.

100. A Robust US Job Market is Expected to Keep Delivering -

WASHINGTON (AP) – Even after the most vigorous three-month hiring spree in 17 years, U.S. employers are showing few signs of letting up.

Job growth for February, to be reported Friday, might not match the furious pace of November through January, when 1 million positions were added. Harsh winter weather likely discouraged some hiring.