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   WEST PALM BEACH, FL -- (Marketwired) -- 03/21/14 --
 Companies that pride themselves on being eco-friendly may have conflicted
 ideas between marketing with ad specialties and maintaining their green
 reputation. Eco-friendly customizable products at EmbroidMe provide a
 solution. Show your prospective customers that your brand aligned with
 the green movement with EmbroidMe's diverse selection of promotional
 items conveniently labeled "green" by the manufacturer.
   Every year, Earth day reminds us how important it is to take care of the
 environment. Promote your business as environmentally conscious with
 products made from recycled and sustainable materials. Pens made of
 post-consumer recycled paper with plastic derived from corn or pad covers
 made of recycled PET (PolyEthylene Terephtalate) are a great choice and
 easily paired with note pads made from recycled paper. Golf balls made of
 100% recycled tire rubber, LED flashlights with rechargeable batteries,
 or calendars made of recycled paper are just some examples of the
 eco-friendly customizable products found at EmbroidMe.
   Eco-conscious businesses can incorporate their mission into their attire
 and work uniforms, with shirts can be made of organic cotton, partially
 recycled cotton, post-consumer PET and recycled polyester. Even the
 customization process can go green when embroidered with cotton thread or
 imprinted with vegetable-based inks.
   "Customers appreciate seeing your logo and knowing you support a cause
 they care about," said Christine Marion, MAS, director of retail
 operations for EmbroidMe. "Our experienced on-site specialists and Eco
 Awareness programs are here to assist you."
   About EmbroidMe
  With hundreds of Resource Centers around the world,
 EmbroidMe is the most comprehensive source for promotional apparel,
 premiums, and advertising specialties, providing its promotional partners
 with full-service custom embroidery and screen-printing for apparel. For
 more information about customized promotional products and to view this
 and additional releases, visit the EmbroidMe News & Press Release section
 of embroidme.com. EmbroidMe's on-site specialists are ready to provide
 you with first-class service and products of the highest quality; just
 click EmbroidMe Locations to find the Resource Center nearest you.
   Media Contact:
 Christine Marion, MAS
 cmarion@embroidme.com
 P: 561-713-2503
   AP-WF-03-21-14 1926GMT

Posted 5:30 AM EDT on March 21, 2014

Eds: APNewsNow.
   BEAVERTON, Ore. (AP) -- Nike says strong global demand for its athletic goods helped third-quarter net income beat expectations as it readies for the upcoming World Cup in Brazil.
   The world's largest athletic clothing maker says that not counting income from discontinued operations, earnings rose 3 percent, to $685 million, or 76 cents per share, in the three months ended on Feb. 28. The year before, profit came to $662 million, or 73 cents per share. The discontinued operations added another $204 million in profit to last year's period. Analysts expected 72 cents per share, according to FactSet. Nike sold its Cole Haan and Umbro brands last year.
   Revenue rose 13 percent to $6.97 billion, beating analysts' expectation of $6.81 billion.
   The Beaverton, Ore.-based company said Thursday that future orders worldwide rose 12 percent.
   AP-WF-03-20-14 2110GMT

Posted 5:27 AM EDT on March 20, 2014

PALO ALTO, CA -- (Marketwired) -- 03/06/14 --
 PunchTab, the leading omni-channel loyalty and engagement platform,
 announced today the release of their Android SDK. The SDK is a free
 toolkit that provides Android mobile and tablet developers the capability
 to add customized loyalty and engagement programs to any app to help
 increase usage, purchase, awareness, and brand engagement.
   With tens of thousands of apps hitting the market every month and
 billions of dollars spent on mobile marketing, the world of mobile
 development has become a congested, competitive marketplace to carve out
 success. Generating user awareness and continued use remain critical
 challenges for organizations that utilize mobile applications to engage
 customers, or add mobile as part of larger omni-channel initiatives.
 Android developers can now implement PunchTab's loyalty and engagement
 infrastructure in mobile apps, incentivizing users to take actions that
 meet marketing agendas and business goals.
   "Mobile is the most important channel for brands when it comes to
 engaging consumers with relevant, real-time messages and offers.
 According to a recent study, 83% of consumers expect to make more
 purchases via mobile in the next 12 months, a 15% increase from today's
 current statistics -- this is a critical proof point of how important
 mobile has become for brands. Awareness, engagement, and enhanced loyalty
 are essential components in the success of a mobile app," said PunchTab
 Founder and CEO Ranjith Kumaran. "With our Android SDK we can provide
 Android developers with the same high-quality, easy-to-use functionality
 that the PunchTab platform offers to over 19,000 active programs on our
 platform."
   The Android opportunity is significant. Google Play accounted for almost
 75 percent of total app downloads in 2013 and according to Distimo,
 Google Play's revenue share has actually been growing at the expense of
 Apple's. Since June 2013, Google Play's revenue jumped 51 percent. The
 statistics are a window into the continuously growing Android mobile
 application market that does not appear to be slowing down. Brands have
 taken notice and with the PunchTab Android SDK, they have an opportunity
 to reach even more consumers on mobile.
   Analyst and TIME tech columnist, Ben Bajarin estimates that over one
 billion Android smartphones will be sold in 2014, and by the end of 2014
 mobile web users will be three times that of the desktop web. "Mobile can
 no longer be a side strategy for brands, it needs to be a central
 strategy as it's an essential element for maintaining consumer
 engagement. The Android opportunity is one that cannot be overlooked,"
 Bajarin reports.
   PunchTab's Android SDK offers mobile developers a free toolkit with an
 easy to integrate static library and customizable features to most
 effectively meet bottom line business goals. Developers can easily
 reward-enable engagement, repeat usage, social sharing, and more.
   For more information on PunchTab's developer kit visit
 www.punchtab.com/developer.
   About PunchTab, Inc.
  Founded in January 2011, PunchTab is an
 omni-channel loyalty and engagement platform that enables agencies,
 brands, and enterprise organizations to incentivize user behavior and
 drive business success. PunchTab's customers use the company's flexible
 solutions to deepen audience engagement, drive purchase, and build
 awareness by leveraging everything from social sharing and UGC and
 awareness campaigns, to sophisticated B2E and B2B programs. PunchTab
 offers both an out-of-the-box product and a fully customizable,
 white-labeled solution that can reward any action with virtual, social
 and real-world rewards. For more information, please visit
 www.punchtab.com.
   Media Contacts:
 Ben Barenholtz
 Sparkpr for PunchTab
 ben@sparkpr.com
 415.241.5207
 Robyn Hannah
 PunchTab
 robyn@punchtab.com
 408.823.3863
   AP-WF-03-06-14 1315GMT

Posted 12:49 PM EST on March 06, 2014

HOFFMAN ESTATES, IL -- (Marketwired) -- 02/28/14 --
 ADP Dealer Services, Inc., a division of ADP(R) and a leading global
 technology solutions provider dedicated to helping dealerships drive
 measurable results across every area of their operation, announced today
 that due to the overwhelming interest and positive feedback they received
 surrounding their Fixed Ops Expos, they will be launching a new round of
 Dealer Solutions Expos for automotive retail dealers. They will be
 thought leadership events designed to show what successful dealerships
 are doing to change the way they do business in order to meet
 technology-driven consumers' demand.
   Last year, over 600 dealers attended 25 expos across the country, touting
 them as very insightful and informative. One dealer described their
 experience as the "best three-hour time investment I've made in a long
 time."
   ADP Dealer Services will offer dealers a unique opportunity to join an
 interactive discussion with industry thought leaders as well as their
 peers during each event. The first subject will feature automotive retail
 expert, Mike Stoll, presenting, "How to Optimize Your Front Office for
 Maximum Customer Retention" and business security expert, Jim Foote,
 presenting "Who Let the Data Out?". They will each share strategic best
 practices and insider knowledge designed to give attendees a competitive
 edge around customer retention and security.
   These expos are a key pillar in Dealer Services' strategy to provide
 insights that help their dealer clients transform how vehicles are
 marketed, sold, and serviced using technology.
   The Dealer Solutions Expos is open to all dealership management across
 the country and will begin in early March, extending throughout 2014. For
 more information or to register for an event in your area, please visit
 our website, email events@adp.com or call 866.722.1844.
   About ADP
  With more than $11 billion in revenues and more than 60 years
 of experience, ADP(R) (NASDAQ: ADP) serves approximately 620,000 clients
 in more than 125 countries. As one of the world's largest providers of
 business outsourcing and Human Capital Management solutions, ADP offers a
 wide range of human resource, payroll, talent management, tax and
 benefits administration solutions from a single source, and helps clients
 comply with regulatory and legislative changes, such as the Affordable
 Care Act (ACA). ADP's easy-to-use solutions for employers provide
 superior value to companies of all types and sizes. ADP is also a leading
 provider of integrated computing solutions to auto, truck, motorcycle,
 marine, recreational vehicle, and heavy equipment dealers throughout the
 world. For more information about ADP, visit the company's Web site at
 www.adp.com.
   The ADP logo and ADP are registered trademarks of ADP, Inc. All other
 marks are the property of their respective owners. Copyright Copyright
 2014 ADP, Inc.
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   Media Contact:
 Michelle Benko
 ADP Dealer Services
 michelle.benko@adp.com
 847.485.4389
   AP-WF-02-28-14 1106GMT

Posted 5:27 AM EST on February 28, 2014

WASHINGTON, DC -- (Marketwired) -- 02/26/14 --
 The following is a statement by National Association of Realtors(R)
 President Steve Brown:
   "NAR supports reforms that promote economic growth, but we strongly
 oppose severely altering the rules that govern ownership and investment
 in real estate. Real estate powers almost one-fifth of the U.S. economy,
 employs more than 17 million Americans, and contributes a quarter of all
 federal and state tax revenue and as much as 70 percent of local taxes.
   "We are extremely disappointed with several of the provisions contained
 in U.S. House Ways and Means Chairman Dave Camp's tax reform draft
 released today, namely proposed limits on the mortgage interest deduction
 and capital gains, and the repeal of deductions for state and local
 property taxes. These proposed changes to the taxation of real estate
 will impact every single American, either directly or indirectly.
   "NAR will carefully analyze the details of the Chairman's plan so we can
 best educate Congress and the public about how this plan would impact the
 owners, consumers, and producers of both residential and commercial real
 estate."
   The National Association of Realtors(R), "The Voice for Real Estate," is
 America's largest trade association, representing 1 million members
 involved in all aspects of the residential and commercial real estate
 industries.
   Information about NAR is available at www.realtor.org. This and other
 news releases are posted in the "News, Blogs and Videos" tab on the
 website.
   For further information contact:
 Jenny Werwa
 202-383-1193
 jwerwa@realtors.org
   AP-WF-02-26-14 2105GMT

Posted 5:26 AM EST on February 26, 2014

Last Update on January 29, 2015 18:35 GMT

UNEMPLOYMENT BENEFITS

WASHINGTON (AP) -- The number of people seeking unemployment aid plunged last week to the lowest level in almost 15 years, a sign hiring will likely remain healthy.

The Labor Department says weekly applications dropped 43,000 to a seasonally adjusted 265,000, the lowest level since April 2000. That is also the biggest decline in two years. The four-week average, a less volatile measure, fell 8,250 to 298,500.

The latest drop may have been exaggerated by the federal holiday, which likely slowed the processing of some claims.

Applications are a proxy for layoffs, so the sharp decline means companies are cutting fewer jobs. The four-week average has fallen 11 percent in the past year. At the same time, hiring has picked up. Employers added almost 3 million jobs last year, the most since 1999.

MORTGAGE RATES

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Average long-term U.S. mortgage rates rose slightly this week after four straight weeks of declines, while remaining near historically low levels.

Mortgage company Freddie Mac says the nationwide average for a 30-year mortgage edged up to 3.66 percent from 3.63 percent last week. The new average rate is still at its lowest level since May 2013.

The rate for the 15-year loan, a popular choice for people who are refinancing, increased to 2.98 percent from 2.93 percent last week.

A year ago, the average 30-year mortgage stood at 4.32 percent and the 15-year mortgage at 3.40 percent. Mortgage rates have remained low even though the Federal Reserve in October ended its monthly bond purchases, which were meant to hold down long-term rates.

ECONOMY-HOUSEHOLDS

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Despite signs that the economy is returning to health, two new reports suggest that most Americans are walking a dangerous financial tightrope.

An analysis of Fed survey data by the Pew Charitable Trusts finds 47 percent of U.S. households say they spend all of their income, go into debt or dip into savings to meet their annual expenses.

The Pew analysis found that if a typical middle-class household had to weather a period of joblessness without any income, its available savings would be exhausted within 21 days. And if that same family also cashed in all their retirement investments to get by, they would burn through those assets within four months.

A separate economic scorecard released today says nearly 56 percent of U.S. consumers have subprime or near-prime credit scores, meaning they must pay a premium to borrow if they qualify at all for traditional loans and credit cards. And roughly 20 percent of households depend on "fringe financial services" such as payday lenders, according to the report by the nonprofit Corporation for Enterprise Development.

OBAMA-BUDGET

WASHINGTON (AP) -- The White House says President Barack Obama's budget will propose spending $74 billion more than current spending caps. That would be an increase of about 7 percent.

Obama plans to release his budget for the next fiscal year on Monday. The White House says Obama will propose $530 million for domestic programs, which is $37 billion more than the limits established by so-called sequestration.

Obama will also propose $561 billion for defense spending. That's an increase of $38 billion over the spending limits.

Obama wants to do away with the across-the-board cuts that Democrats and Republicans agreed to in 2011 in an attempt to reduce the federal deficit.

CONGRESS-KEYSTONE

WASHINGTON (AP) -- The Republican-controlled Senate is moving toward passage of a bipartisan bill approving the Keystone XL oil pipeline.

The move defies a veto threat and sets up the first battle with the White House over energy and the environment.

The Senate plans to vote later Thursday. It's the first measure taken up by the Republican-controlled Senate, and one of the first to draw a veto threat from the president.

The bill has 60 sponsors -- enough to pass, but not enough to override a veto.

The bill would authorize construction of the nearly 1,200-mile pipeline to carry oil primarily from Canada's tar sands to Gulf Coast refineries.

Critics argue the $8 billion project would spell disaster for global warming. Supporters call it a jobs bill that would boost energy security.

ARCTIC OFFSHORE DRILLING-SHELL

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) -- Royal Dutch Shell PLC says it will drill off Alaska's northwest coast in 2015 -- if it can get the permits it needs and drill safely.

Speaking in London, Chief Executive Officer Ben van Beurden said Thursday that Shell will move forward with its plan to use two drill vessels in the Chukchi (chuk-CHEE') Sea subject to getting permits and legal clearance.

Shell last drilled in Arctic waters off Alaska in 2012. One drill vessel ran aground off Kodiak. The contractor on a second was fined $12.2 million for environmental and maritime crimes.

The company is awaiting a resolution to a lawsuit that challenged the federal government's environmental review before it sold Chukchi leases in 2008.

CARS-ZERO DEATHS

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Safety researchers say the chances of dying in a crash in a late-model car or light truck fell by more than a third over three years, and nine car models had zero deaths per million registered vehicles.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety said that for 2011 models, there was an average of 28 driver deaths per million registered vehicle years through the 2012 calendar year, down from a rate of 48 deaths for 2008 models through 2009. A registered vehicle year is one vehicle registered for one year.

But the gap between safest and riskiest models remains wide. Three 2011 models had rates exceeding 100 deaths per million registered vehicle years.

The institute says Improved vehicle designs and safety technology helped reduced risk, but there were other factors too.

EARNS-FORD

DEARBORN, Mich. (AP) -- Ford's net income tumbled to $52 million in the fourth quarter because of trouble at its Venezuelan operations.

Ford's earnings, of a penny per share, compared with earnings of 75 cents per share in the fourth quarter a year ago.

Without one-time items, including the Venezuela charge and separation payments in Europe, Ford earned $1.1 billion in the quarter, down 15 percent from a year ago.

Pretax earnings of 26 cents per share beat Wall Street's forecast of 22 cents per share, according to FactSet.

Fourth-quarter revenue fell 4.5 percent to $35.9 billion.

For the full year, Ford earnings fell 56 percent to $3.2 billion, or 80 cents per share.

Dearborn-based Ford had repeatedly warned that its profits would be down in 2014 as it introduced 24 new vehicles.

DETROIT FORECLOSURES

DETROIT (AP) -- Hundreds of Detroit homeowners at risk of losing their property are flocking to hearings that offer them a last-ditch chance to avoid foreclosure from tax debts.

The homeowners nearly filled a long conference room in Detroit's Cobo Center while waiting for their cases to be heard. Many hoped to work out payment plans.

Detroit's neighborhoods have yet to recover from the national mortgage crisis. More than 60,000 city properties are in foreclosure, putting them at risk of being added to a huge glut of vacant houses.

Detroit is believed to have the largest number of foreclosures at any one time in the county.

Gov. Rick Snyder signed a bill this month that allows homeowners facing financial hardship to use a payment plan to pay off debts and avoid foreclosure.

GREECE-EU

ATHENS, Greece (AP) -- The European Parliament's president is to be the first European official to visit Athens, a day after announcements by Greece's nascent radical left government on rolling back a series of key budget commitments sent the country's stock market plummeting.

Martin Schulz arrives in Athens Thursday for meetings with government and opposition officials, a day ahead of eurogroup head Jeroen Dijsselbloem. Both visits are being closely watched for indications of how Alexis Tsipras' government intends to proceed in bailout negotiations.

Wednesday's hard line prompted a quick EU warning and sent local investors into a panic on the prospect that Greece might be cut off from its financial lifeline.

Ahead of his visit, Schulz wrote in an online article that Tsipras must "reach out for compromise both inside and outside the country."

RUSSIA-WORLD CUP BUDGET

MOSCOW (AP) -- Russia's Sports Minister says the government will cut the budget for hosting the 2018 World Cup as part of plans to slash state expenditure while recession looms.

The Russian government is cutting its spending by 10 percent across the board after the central bank predicted last month that the economy could contract by up to 4.7 percent this year.

Mutko, who is a FIFA executive committee member, said in comments reported by the Tass news agency that World Cup stadiums and associated infrastructure would be exempt from the cuts, but "various organizational issues" and "subsidies to the organizing committee" would be cut. He did not provide specific figures.

This month, FIFA President Sepp Blatter said he had been assured by Russian President Vladimir Putin that economic problems would not affect the tournament.

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