Business Briefs: Ford warns owners of some Rangers

Business Briefs: Ford warns owners of some Rangers

January 12th, 2018 by Staff and Wire Reports in Business Around the Region

Ford warns owners of some Rangers

Ford is telling owners of about 2,900 2006 Ranger pickup trucks not to drive them after discovering that a man was killed in a wreck involving an exploding Takata air bag inflator.

The death occurred July 1 in West Virginia.


Kenneth Allen

Kenneth Allen

Photo by Contributed Photo /Times Free Press.

Retired coal executive joins TVA board

Kenneth Allen, a retired coal executive from White Plains, Ky., officially assumed his role as a member of the Tennessee Valley Authority board of directors Thursday after taking the oath of office in a ceremony in Bowling Green, Ky.

Allen, one of the new board members confirmed last month by the U.S. Senate for the 9-member panel, will serve a term that extends through May 18, 2021.

Allen most recently served as the executive vice president of operations and chief operating officer at Armstrong Coal Co.

"I have been employed in the coal industry for five decades and I am very proud of that," Allen said in an earlier statement. "But I also recognize the changes in our environment and I recognize the changes in our culture across the country. TVA has done a great job in the diversity of its power supply."

President Trump has yet to fill the remaining vacancy on the TVA board, which oversees America's biggest government utility.


Digital currencies dip on Korea concern

The price of bitcoin fell and another popular currency, ethereum, wobbled after South Korea, a hotbed for currencies like bitcoin, said it was weighing a trading ban.

The country's justice minister said South Korea plans to ban trading in virtual currencies, but the presidential office said later that a ban is only under review.

Building maker moves to Tennessee

A company that manufactures metal buildings is laying off about 100 Mississippi employees as it moves some production to Tennessee.

Layoffs will happen at Kirby Building Systems in Starkville. Nucor Corp., which acquired Kirby in 2007, is transferring its metal building manufacturing operations to Portland, Tenn.


States won't reveal Amazon incentives

Many state and local governments competing for Amazon's second headquarters are refusing to disclose the tax breaks or other financial incentives they are offering the online giant.

More than 15 states and cities, including Chicago, Cleveland and Las Vegas, have turned down requests from The Associated Press to detail the promises they've made. Many of them say they don't want their competitors to know what they're offering.


Mortgage rates up to 3.99 percent

The cost of borrowing money to buy a home rose this week, but remains at historic lows.

Mortgage buyer Freddie Mac says the average rate on 30-year fixed-rate mortgages rose to 3.99 percent, from 3.95 percent last week.

U.S. stocks rise to another record

U.S. stocks brushed aside their first wobble of the year and got back to setting records on Thursday.

Energy stocks led the way after the price of oil touched its highest level since 2014. The gains for indexes marked a return to calm, after a whiff of nervousness wafted through markets a day earlier as interest rates rose.

After rates held steady on Thursday, the Standard & Poor's 500 index marked its seventh gain in the last eight days.


University finance head took bribes at Columbia

A former official at Columbia University's Teachers College pocketed at least $350,000 by carrying out a decades-long scheme that dished out hundreds of thousands of dollars in financial aid in exchange for kickbacks from three students, authorities said Thursday.

Melanie Williams-Bethea, director of financial aid at Teachers College until last May, was charged with running the scam since 2008 with students she knew socially.

A criminal complaint said the 47-year-old Queens resident earned at least $350,000 illegally as she socialized with the women, including vacationing with one student in the Dominican Republic, Hawaii, New Orleans and Anguilla. They also took a cruise together in the Caribbean in 2011, authorities said.


Federal deficit shrinks last month

The federal government recorded a budget deficit of $23.2 billion in December, smaller than a year ago. But for the first three months of this budget year, the deficit is 7.2 percent larger than the same period last year.

Private forecasters expect this year's deficit to be well above last year's deficit of $665.8 billion, reflecting increased spending in such areas as defense and hurricane relief and reduced revenues as last month's major tax cut package takes effect.

The tax measure will trim personal and individual taxes by $1.5 trillion over the next decade, with individual taxpayers starting to see the reductions in February based on revised withholding tables prepared by the Internal Revenue Service.