AAA predicts gas soon to get cheaper
Steady oil prices and the end of strong summer demand should start pushing gasoline prices down.
The auto club AAA predicts that the national average will drop 14 cents to $2.70 a gallon this fall.
The current average of $2.84 is up 46 cents from a year ago, but down from the peak national average of $2.96 a gallon in May. AAA says motorists in the West and in Pennsylvania and Connecticut pay even more — over $3.
Relief could be coming. Benchmark U.S. crude is around $69 a barrel — that's up sharply from a year ago but down $5 a barrel since early July.
Also, refineries are expected to switch in mid-September to winter-blend gasolines, which are cheaper to produce than summer blends.
VW recalls 8,416 Atlas, Passats cars
Volkswagen is recalling 8,416 2018 Atlas SUVs and Passat sedans because brake caliper bracket mounting bolts on these vehicles may not have been tightened sufficiently, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
Volkswagen plans to notify owners of the 2018 Atlas and 2017-18 Passat models, and dealers will inspect the brake caliper bracket bolt tightness, replacing and re-torque the bolts as necessary, free of charge, the agency said.
Also, brake caliper fasteners, bleeder valve, and brake hose bolts will be checked and torqued to the correct specification, if necessary. For Passat vehicles, dealers will also inspect the parking brake cable for proper connection, free of charge.
The recall on the Chattanooga-made vehicles is expected to begin Oct. 14. Owners may contact Volkswagen customer service at 1-800-893-5298.
Micron invests $3 billion to expand Virginia plant
One of the world's largest semiconductor companies is making a $3 billion investment in northern Virginia to expand its manufacturing facility and add 1,100 jobs.
Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam announced the expansion plans for Micron Technology at an event Wednesday in Manassas.
Boise, Idaho-based Micron decided to expand its existing facility in Manassas after considering offers from competing domestic and international locations, including Singapore.
State economic development officials say Micron's expansion is one of the largest manufacturing investments in modern Virginia history.
Micron's decision comes as northern Virginia continues to court Amazon as it seeks a location for a $5 billion headquarters that could employ as many as 50,000.
About 1,200 people currently work at the Manassas plant, which builds memory chips and other digital storage devices.
Brexit chief says deal may be delayed
The U.K. and the European Union may not meet their self-imposed October deadline for a divorce deal, Britain's Brexit minister said Wednesday.
But Dominic Raab said he remained "stubbornly optimistic" that there would be agreement before Britain leaves the bloc in March.
Separately, his EU counterpart, Michel Barnier, sparked a rally in the pound when he said the bloc was willing to offer Britain terms it had never extended to any non-member country.
Raab said a deal in October remains the goal, but there is a "possibility it may creep beyond that." The Brexit secretary told a House of Lords committee that the two sides were aiming for October, "but there is some measure of leeway."
Raab said Britain and the bloc were 80 percent of the way to a withdrawal deal, and urged the EU to show "pragmatism" in the negotiations. Britain and the EU aim to hammer out an agreement on divorce terms and the outlines of future trade by a European Council summit in October so that it can be approved by individual EU countries before the U.K. leaves the bloc on March 29.