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VOL. 125 | NO. 4 | Thursday, January 7, 2010

Daily Digest

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Bloomingold LLC Buys Three East Memphis Lots

Bloomingold LLC has bought for $2.2 million two parcels on Reese Road and one on Kirby-Whitten Road. The seller was Double A Oil Co. LLC. The sale closed Dec. 29.

The addresses of the parcels are 2560 Reese Road, 2570 Kirby-Whitten Road and a vacant tract on Reese Road.

The property at 2560 Reese Road is a 1.37-acre tract at the northeast corner of Reese and Kirby-Whitten roads. The Shelby County Assessor of Property’s 2009 appraisal was $1.1 million.

The property at 2570 Kirby-Whitten Road is a 1.17-acre lot that sits on the east side of Kirby-Whitten. Its 2009 appraisal was $1.3 million.

The vacant tract on Reese Road is a 1.66-acre parcel on the north side of Reese. The 2009 appraisal of the land was $339,800. All three properties are zoned commercial.

In conjunction with the sale, Bloomingold filed a $2.2 million loan through Merchants and Farmers Bank. Hussein Umlani signed the trust deed as the chief manager of Bloomingold, which lists a Collierville address with the Tennessee Secretary of State.

Source: The Daily News Online & Chandler Reports

Rebekah Hearn

MLGW to Consider Contract With RJ Young Co.

The agenda for today’s Memphis Light, Gas and Water Division board of directors meeting is a light one.

Among the six items on tap is a resolution awarding a four-year contract for copy machine rental to RJ Young Co. in the amount of $612,948 and a resolution rejecting bids the utility received for various sizes of polyethylene pipe.

The MLGW board will meet today at 3 p.m. in the boardroom of the MLGW Administration Building, 220 S. Main St.

Andy Meek

MLGW to Restore Power In Light of Frigid Temps.

Memphis Mayor A C Wharton Jr., interim Shelby County Mayor Joe Ford and Memphis Light, Gas and Water Division President Jerry Collins have announced that power will be restored to residents in Memphis whose utilities have been cut off for lack of payment.

The decision was made in response to the low temperatures in Memphis.

Residents whose power has been terminated because of non-payment will receive automated calls to the telephone number associated with their MLGW account.

Representatives of MLGW will be out checking residences for those they are unable to reach.

The individual officially listed on the MLGW account will be able to grant permission to have their services reconnected.

Residents who have had their utilities cut off or think their utilities have been cut off should call 544-6549.

– Taylor Shoptaw

Saint Francis Donates Outerwear

Employees of Saint Francis Hospital-Memphis have donated 245 gloves, scarves and hats to the Memphis City Schools Homeless Children and Youth Program.

The employees collected the clothing items during a holiday celebration, then presented them to Dolores Flagg, the coordinator of the program.

Saint Francis Hospital-Memphis is a 519-bed full-service hospital operated by Tenet Healthcare Corp.

Tom Wilemon

Service Sector Sees Growth

A gauge of the U.S. service sector returned to growth last month, aided by the holiday season’s retail sales. The expansion reflected a slowly improving economy – but it was too slight to generate much hiring.

The Institute for Supply Management, a private trade group, reported Wednesday its service index rose to 50.1 in December from 48.7 in November. A level above 50 signals growth. Seven industries out of 18 reported growth, led by agriculture and retail.

The ISM’s employment gauge, which hasn’t grown in two years, shrank again in December, though at a slower pace than in November. It reached 44 in December, compared with 41.6 a month earlier.

Job generation throughout the economy has been weak even as layoffs have slowed. Economists expect the U.S. Labor Department to report Friday that the unemployment rate ticked up to 10.1 percent in December from 10 percent in November and that the economy lost a net total of 8,000 jobs.

The ISM said the four service-sector groups that added jobs in December were retail, finance and insurance, public administration and a category of other services. Retailers added temporary workers, as they normally do for holiday shopping seasons.

The overall service-sector gauge returned to growth in September for the first time in 13 months. But the comeback has been fitful amid scant gains in consumers’ incomes and weak bank lending. The ISM’s service-sector gauge is closely watched because service jobs make up more than 80 percent of non-farm U.S. employment.

The ISM report said finance and accounting was another area that added jobs.

The ISM report said new orders, a signal of future business, expanded for the fourth straight month, though less quickly than in November. Business activity also grew, as did the prices paid by businesses. That may mean service companies will pass their higher costs on to consumers, collecting higher revenue.

– The Associated Press

Stores to Post Modest December Gains

Holiday shoppers bought a little more jewelry, electronics and boots but passed by the women’s clothing racks, according to figures released Wednesday.

The latest figures from MasterCard Advisors’ SpendingPulse also offered confirmation that shoppers were deliberate in their spending. The data service tracks all forms of payment, including cash.

Still, retailers are feeling somewhat encouraged, entering 2010 with fewer clearance racks and expecting fourth-quarter profits to improve compared with last year, when many lost money.

SpendingPulse had said on Dec. 28 that retail sales rose 3.6 percent from Nov. 1 through Dec. 24, compared with a 2.3 percent drop in the year-ago period. Adjusting for an extra shopping day between Thanksgiving and Christmas, the number was closer to a 1 percent gain. Holiday figures through Dec. 31 were not provided.

Sectors that saw improved sales from Nov. 29 through Saturday, compared with a year ago, according to SpendingPulse:

Online sales soared 17.7 percent. For the year, that category rose 12.2 percent.

Footwear, up 6.2 percent. For the year, it was unchanged.

Electronics, up 7.3 percent in December. It fell 0.5 percent for the year.

Luxury sales, excluding jewelry, up 5.5 percent. They fell almost 8 percent for the year.

Jewelry, up 6.9 percent in December, down 4.1 percent for the year. High-end and low-end jewelry chains fared well, but mid-tier jewelry stores struggled.

– The Associated Press

PROPERTY SALES 51 333 19,446
MORTGAGES 68 383 22,433
BUILDING PERMITS 138 688 40,004
BANKRUPTCIES 34 238 12,486