Monday, March 30, 2015

Comcast gets social to shake bad customer-service reputation

NEW YORK — Comcast is adding more social media representatives as it tries to work on its reputation for inefficient, unresponsive or just plain rude customer service. It is tripling the size of its social media team to 60, and could add more. That’s just a tiny percentage of the thousands of customer service people […]

April 05, 2015 | Posted in Business and Real Estate | Tagged | Leave a reply

Finance Lab: He’s $90,000 in debt and six years from retirement

  English Brent Taylor is just a few years from retirement, but before he can take it easy, he needs to tackle a burden more seniors are carrying: debt. At 67, Taylor is working to pay off close to $90,000 in debt before he leaves his full-time job with the help desk for James Madison […]

More want local beef, but fewer want tough job of cutting it

DES MOINES, Iowa — Kent Weise loves his work, but after 38 years slaughtering cattle, lugging carcasses that can weigh more than 1,000 pounds and slowly, methodically slicing cuts of meat, he understands why few people want to go into the business anymore. “It’s killing cows. It’s blood and guts,” said Weise, who runs a […]

March 15, 2015 | Posted in Business and Real Estate | Tagged , | 1 Reply

Aerosmith to perform at Hall of Fame weekend

CANTON, Ohio — Appropriately, the first Pro Football Hall of Fame concert on inductions weekend will be headlined by Hall of Fame rockers Aerosmith. The inaugural Concert for Legends will he held Aug. 7 at the Hall of Fame Stadium. “The Hall is thrilled to have legends of the music world honor the legends of the […]

Early Look: How does Apple Watch stack up vs rival watches?

Anick Jesdanun SAN FRANCISCO — Apple made a strong case for how you can use its upcoming Apple Watch, and the device stacks up well against the competition. If you’ve waited for the Apple Watch to decide on a smartwatch, here are some things to consider in weighing whether you really need one. You’ll need […]

Holmes keeps the lead; McIlroy loses his temper

DORAL, Fla. — J.B. Holmes kept his lead. Rory McIlroy lost his cool. Holmes was 11 shots worse than his tournament record-tying 62, finishing with a tee shot in the water and a double bogey on the 18th hole Friday for a 1-over 73. That still was enough to take a two-shot lead over Ryan […]

Gordon wins 1st pole at Las Vegas in final start at track

LAS VEGAS — Jeff Gordon, preparing for his final start at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, won the pole for Sunday’s race — his first career pole at the track. It’s the 79th pole of Gordon’s career and leaves just Kansas and Kentucky as the only active tracks where he’s yet to win a pole. Kentucky […]

Chrysler recalls minivans, SUVs to fix ignition switches

DETROIT — About 703,000 Fiat Chrysler SUVs and minivans will have to go back to the shop to fix malfunctioning ignition switches that can cause the vehicles to stall unexpectedly. Chrysler also is warning owners to remove everything but the ignition key from their key rings until repairs can be made. The switches can slip […]

Recalls this week: hand vacuum accessories

Attachments for a hand vacuum are being recalled because of a defective interior fan that can break out of the housing unit. Other recalled consumer products include a baby bassinet and motion lamps that look like a coral reef. Here’s a more detailed look: HAND VACUUM ACCESSORIES DETAILS: The vacuum accessory was sold with the Dirt Devil Scorpion Turbo […]

AP Exclusive: Fuel-hauling trains could derail at 10 a year

BILLINGS, Mont. — The federal government predicts that trains hauling crude oil or ethanol will derail an average of 10 times a year over the next two decades, causing more than $4 billion in damage and possibly killing hundreds of people if an accident happens in a densely populated part of the U.S. The projection […]

Smart spending: Psychology on order: How restaurants get you to spend more

Candice Choi NEW YORK — You may think you’re immune to transparent sales pitches like “Do you want fries with that?” But the tactics restaurants use to nudge you into spending a little extra may be subtler than you realize. Here’s a look at a few ways companies get you to spend (and eat) more […]

March 08, 2015 | Posted in Business and Real Estate | Tagged ,

Commission ideas draw bipartisan praise on hill

There is rising confidence across the Senate and House armed services committees that 2015 will be the year Congress passes legislation to modernize military compensation, with an alternative to traditional 20-year retirement and perhaps replacing the triple-option Tricare health program. After decades of rejecting military compensation studies, whether from teams of Pentagon analysts or independent […]

February 08, 2015 | Posted in Military | Tagged ,

Vaca graduate completes basic training

Air Force Airman Katherine D. Wilson graduated from basic military training at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland in San Antonio. Wilson is the daughter of Julia and David Wilson of Vacaville. She is a 2013 graduate of Vacaville High School.

February 08, 2015 | Posted in Military | Tagged ,

On the money: Government policy change aims to help first-time homebuyers

Alex Veiga Uncle Sam wants to make it more affordable for Americans to buy their first home. The recent policy changes affect government-backed home loans and could make it less costly for first-time buyers to come up with a down payment or to afford private mortgage insurance. The changes center on the Federal Housing Administration […]

January 18, 2015 | Posted in Business and Real Estate | Tagged ,

Raiders close to signing 1-year lease extension at Coliseum

ALAMEDA — The Oakland Raiders are close to signing a one-year extension to remain at the Coliseum for the 2015 season. Owner Mark Davis said Friday that an agreement has been reached and is just awaiting formal approval from the city, county and NFL before the team can officially sign it. The Raiders are searching […]

January 17, 2015 | Posted in Sports | Tagged ,

Review: IPhone user tries to go back to BlackBerry

Scott Mayerowitz NEW YORK — The BlackBerry’s blinking red light used to haunt me. Just when I thought I could relax, enjoy a nice dinner or go for a run, my BlackBerry would start blinking again, signaling a new message. I was an addict. Typing with one hand, hiding the BlackBerry under the dinner table? […]

January 11, 2015 | Posted in Business and Real Estate | Tagged ,

Recalls this week: candles, pajamas

A line of candles that can ignite the surface of the wax, posing a fire hazard, is among this week’s recalled consumer products. Here’s a more detailed look: CANDLES DETAILS: Four types of DD branded single-wick candles: Mason jars in 5- and 12- ounce sizes, decorative jars in 10- and 20-ounce sizes, 13-ounce coffee tins […]

January 11, 2015 | Posted in Business and Real Estate | Tagged ,

Fla. could become Deep South’s prime gay wedding destination

YULEE, Fla. — With gay marriage now legal in Florida, same-sex couples from around the Deep South crossed the border Tuesday as the Sunshine State became a prime regional destination for gay and lesbian weddings still banned back home. Out-of-state couples lined up outside county courthouses early Tuesday in the Panhandle and northern Florida counties. […]

January 11, 2015 | Posted in Business and Real Estate | Tagged

Review: Who needs a separate camera with these 3 phones?

Anick Jesdanun NEW YORK — Phones have gotten so good at taking photos that I rarely bring along a stand-alone camera anymore. Of course, a phone is never going to replace a full-bodied, single-lens reflex camera, otherwise known as an SLR. There’s just no way to squeeze a powerful, SLR-type lens into the small body […]

January 04, 2015 | Posted in Business and Real Estate | Tagged ,

Bad barley crop probably won’t affect 2015 beer prices

HELENA, Mont. — Problems with the 2014 malt barley crop in the western United States have resulted in the worst year for malting production in the nation, but beer drinkers likely won’t have to shell out an extra couple dollars for their favorite brews. Much of the nation’s large-scale brewing is done in the Midwest, […]

January 04, 2015 | Posted in Business and Real Estate | Tagged ,

Auto industry acts globally – except on recalls

DETROIT — When it comes to making and selling cars, the auto industry thinks and acts globally: There is near-seamless coordination between parts suppliers, factories and dealerships. But when an unsafe car needs to be recalled, that global coordination breaks down — in part because governments do not demand it. There are no international standards […]

January 04, 2015 | Posted in Business and Real Estate | Tagged ,