Tuesday, March 11, 2014
Massive ice storm snarling deliveries nationwide
Whether you’re ready to ship that holiday package across the country or waiting for your next shipment of cooking grease, now’s not the best time to be in a hurry.
Businesses small and large are waiting for pickups and consumers across the land are receiving notices that their packages will be delayed because of a massive icy blast that will eventually hit from coast to coast.
Consumer spending up 0.3 percent in October
U.S. consumers increased their spending in October even though their wages and salaries barely increased, raising questions about how strong the economy will grow at the end of the year.
Consumer spending increased 0.3 percent in October compared with September when spending rose 0.2 percent, the Commerce Department reported Friday. Wages and salaries rose a slight 0.1 percent after a much stronger 1 percent rise in September.
Consumer borrowing rose $18.2 billion in October
Americans boosted their borrowing in October, led by another big increase in auto and student loans and the biggest rise in credit card debt in five months.
The Federal Reserve said consumers increased their borrowing by $18.2 billion in October to a seasonally adjusted $3.08 trillion. That is a record level and follows a September increase of $16.3 billion.
The increase was led by a $13.9 billion rise in borrowing for auto loans and student loans. But borrowing in the category that covers credit cards rose by $4.3 billion following a decline of $218 million in September. It was the biggest monthly credit card gain since May and could be a sign that consumer spending will increase in coming months. Credit card borrowing has lagged other types of debt.
Oil gains 5 cents in week, gallon of gas rises penny
The price of oil rose again Friday on signs of a stronger job market and finished the week with a gain of more than 5 percent.
Those gains are showing up at the gas pump. The average price of a gallon of gasoline rose 1 cent to $3.26, the first increase in 10 days.
Benchmark U.S. crude for January delivery rose 27 cents at $97.65 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange, up $4.93 for the week.
HOFFMAN ESTATES, Ill.
Struggling Sears to spin off Lands’ End clothes business
Sears Holdings Corp. said Friday that it will spin off its Lands’ End clothing business as a separate company by distributing stock to the retailer’s shareholders.
It’s the latest move by the struggling retailer to turn around its results as it faces wider losses and increasingly displeased investors.
– The Associated Press