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CBL lawsuit certified as class

A federal judge in Florida has partially approved a request to certify a class of past and present CBL & Associates Properties Inc, tenants in a suit against the shopping center developer, court papers show.

The lawsuit was filed in March 2016 by the firm Hagens Berman and alleged Chattanooga-based CBL inflated electricity charges for thousands of its mall tenants.

The suit, brought by Wave Lengths Hair Salon of Florida and doing business as Salon Adrian, alleged CBL overcharged tenants for years up to 100 percent more than the cost of electricity the tenants actually used.

Stacey Keating, CBL's director of public relations and corporate communications, said the case is without merit and "we will defend ourselves vigorously. We have already filed an appeal with the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals."

 

GM adds $22 million to Spring Hill plant

General Motors says it plans to invest another $22 million in its Tennessee manufacturing facility to build more engines.

The automotive manufacturer made the announcement Thursday about the growth at the Spring Hill facility.

The company says the investment will let the plant build 6.2-liter V8 engines with GM's dynamic fuel management technology, which uses 17 cylinder patterns to optimize performance.

GM is also finishing a $300 million investment at Spring Hill that will bring more than 200 new jobs to produce the new Cadillac XT6.

The facility opened in 1990 and employs about 3,800 people. GM says it has invested more than $2 billion at the complex since 2010.

 

Mortgage rates steady; 30-year stays at 4.45 percent

U.S. long-term mortgage rates held steady this week for the second straight week, sticking at their lowest levels in nine months after six weeks of decline.

Mortgage buyer Freddie Mac said Thursday the average rate on the benchmark 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage was unchanged from last week at 4.45 percent. Rates remain above last year's levels, however. The key 30-year rate averaged 4.15 percent a year ago.

The average rate this week for 15-year, fixed-rate loans held at 3.88 percent.

 

Renault board names Ghosn replacements

The board of French carmaker Renault on Thursday named two new leaders to replace industry veteran Carlos Ghosn, who resigned after weeks of detention in Japan.

The board chose Jean-Dominique Senard of Michelin to be chairman and Renault executive Thierry Bollore as CEO. Ghosn previously held both posts.

In a statement, the board expressed "its confidence in the new leadership" and wished it "every success in its mission."

Ghosn has been detained for more than two months in Japan, keeping him from fulfilling his duties at Renault.

The French government owns about 15 percent of Renault SA, making it an influential voice in its handling. And while Renault initially stood by Ghosn after his Nov. 19 arrest, the French government has pressed for him to be replaced.

"Our goal from the beginning of this case has always been to preserve Renault's interests and consolidate the alliance between Renault and Nissan," French Finance Minister Jean-Dominique Le Maire said. "The necessary decisions have been made."

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