• Bankrupt Patriot Coal picks Blackhawk Mining as lead bidder

    Updated: 28 min ago

    CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — Blackhawk Mining LLC is offering to buy bankrupt Patriot Coal Corp. Patriot says it's teaming with Lexington, Kentucky-based Blackhawk on a $643 million bid. The "stalking horse" bid would set the floor for an auction process that lets competitors make better offers. The deadline to submit competing offers is Aug. 7. Patriot, based in Scott Depot, West Virginia, said Wednesday it outlined the proposal in U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of Virginia. Patriot has eight active mining complexes in West Virginia. The proposal doesn't involve Patriot's Federal No. 2 mine in northern West Virginia. That would involve a separate "stalking horse" transaction from a yet-undetermined

  • Working 9-to-5 becoming a less popular way to make a living

    Updated: 34 min ago

    NEW YORK (AP) — If you want an income, or you're an employer looking for help, it may be time to scrap the idea of the traditional 9-to-5 arrangement. For workers, it's become easier and less risky to go solo. Affordable health insurance plans, which kept many workers shackled to traditional jobs, are more accessible because of the Affordable Care Act. And companies are increasingly open to hiring freelancers and independent contractors. Many say independent workers bring fresh ideas without the long-term commitment. An industry dedicated to serving the companies that offer freelance and contract work and the people who fill those openings is growing. Gigs can be found at a number of websites, such as Upwork.com and Freelan

  • Landfill to take oilfield waste proposed in eastern Montana

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) — Montana officials are considering an application for a landfill in eastern Montana that would take oilfield waste, including naturally-occurring radioactive materials. Clay Butte Environmental, LLC is seeking approval to construct the landfill on a 143-acre site located about five miles north of Culbertson. It would have a capacity of almost 10 million cubic yards. The Montana Department of Environmental Quality said in a study of the proposal that the waste would have to be tested for radiation. If radiation levels exceeded certain thresholds, the waste would be rejected. The landfill also would take oil-contaminated soil from oil spills.

  • Pros and cons of freelancing for workers and companies

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    NEW YORK (AP) — Thinking of making the leap to freelance, or hiring an independent contractor? Here are some pros and cons to keep in mind: FOR INDEPENDENT CONTRACTORS/FREELANCERS Pros: — More control over the work you do. — Flexible schedule. — The possibility of making more money. Cons: — You're responsible for finding the next job. — Need to figure out health insurance, retirement savings and taxes. Must also keep track of payments from gigs. — Not having co-workers can get lonely. FOR COMPANIES Pros: — Independent contractors bring in fresh ideas without paying a full salary and benefits. — Contractors can focus on one problem or issue tha

  • San Francisco board rejects building suspension

    Updated: 2 hr ago

    SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — San Francisco Supervisors rejected a plan late Tuesday night to temporarily block construction of luxury condos in the city's Mission District. The moratorium would have affected two dozen projects in the district, which has witnessed skyrocketing prices amid a technology jobs boom. A one-bedroom flat can easily rent for more than $3,300 a month, and two-bedroom condos are listed for nearly $5,000. The San Francisco Chronicle reports (http://bit.ly/1Q67zla) hat the final vote at the end of a hourslong meeting was 7-4 in favor of the moratorium, but the measure required nine votes to pass as an "interim emergency ordinance." Disappointed supporters vowed to put the proposed moratorium on the

  • N. Korea races to boost power in time for party anniversary

    Updated: 2 hr ago

    PYONGYANG, North Korea (AP) — North Korea is racing to boost its electricity supply by up to 50 percent with the completion of several generating stations by the end of the year and is pushing alternative resources like solar — already used extensively in the countryside — to ease its chronic shortages, a government expert told The Associated Press in Pyongyang. In an unusually high-profile campaign, the North has mobilized legions of shock brigades to complete two large hydropower projects by Oct. 10. As is common with major North Korean construction efforts, the deadline is a date of national significance: the 70th anniversary of its ruling party.

  • Peabody Energy miner dies in southern Illinois

    Updated: 2 hr ago

    COULTERVILLE, Ill. (AP) — The death of a 59-year-old coal miner remains under investigation in southern Illinois. St. Louis-based Peabody Energy and the Randolph County coroner identified the miner as Glen A. Campbell of Sparta. A co-worker found him dead Sunday night at a location several miles into the company's Gateway Mine near Coulterville. Randolph County Coroner Randy Dudenbostel said that an autopsy is complete but he has not yet determined the cause of death. The federal Mine Safety and Health Administration and Occupational Safety and Health Administration are also investigating. Peabody Energy recognized Gateway Mine in 2009 and 2011 as the company's safest underground site. The mine employs about 175

  • Oil and gas turn their backs on coal as climate deal nears

    Updated: 3 hr ago

    STOCKHOLM (AP) — Chemistry books say there are three fossil fuels: coal, oil and natural gas. Lately you could get the impression that coal is the only one. As a global agreement to rein in climate-warming carbon emissions draws closer, oil and gas companies are increasingly talking about coal as the problem and describing themselves as a crucial part of the solution, together with renewable energy sources like wind and solar power. "We stand ready to play our part," six major European oil and gas companies including Royal Dutch Shell and BP said in a recent letter to U.N. climate officials working on a major climate deal set to be adopted in Paris in December. As they see it, their part includes gobbling up coa

  • Asia stocks dampened by Greek bailout saga, weak Wall Street

    Updated: 3 hr ago

    TOKYO (AP) — Asian stock markets were mostly lower Wednesday as Greece's bailout woes and a stagnant Wall Street performance dampened investor sentiment. KEEPING SCORE: Japan's benchmark Nikkei 225, which had been on a bull streak recently, edged down 0.3 percent to 20,473.51. South Korea's Kospi fell 0.7 percent to 2,063.16. Hong Kong's Hang Seng added 0.8 percent to 27,672.73 while the Shanghai Composite slipped nearly 0.1 percent to 4,906.30. Southeast Asian stocks were mixed. EUROPEAN AGENDA: Concerns about Greece's ability to meet debt payments to its bailout creditors have weighed on markets. If Greece defaults on its debt, that may mean a departure from the euro zone.

  • Tech Tips: Your guide to the myriad of phone-upgrade options

    Updated: 3 hr ago

    NEW YORK (AP) — Upgrading your phone is no longer as simple as paying $100 or $200 and extending your service contract by two years. Phone companies have been shifting away from contracts and trying to get you to pay full price — $600 to $700 for a high-end phone. Installment plans are available, along with a leasing option from Sprint. To understand your options, it's best to break down the typical monthly phone bill into three components: — The cost of the phone, which can be the monthly installment, or zero for a traditional contract plan. — A per-phone "access" charge for unlimited voice and texts. With contract plans, you're paying $40 to connect a smartphone. With full-price or leasing plans, you're

  • NYSERDA proposes long-term renewable energy commitment

    Updated: 3 hr ago

    ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — The New York State Energy Research and Development Authority has submitted a blueprint for boosting renewable power like solar and wind. The authority proposes a $1.5 billion public investment over ten years for the next generation of large-scale renewables. Officials say the goal behind the investment is to make renewable energy inexpensive and subsidy free. The energy authority recommends long-term budget commitments and centralized project solicitations, among other principles. The proposal is being made to regulators at the New York State Department of Public Service.

  • 5 Things to Know about the Salton Sea

    Updated: 4 hr ago

    WATER TRANSFERS TO SAN DIEGO ARE DRYING UP CALIFORNIA'S LARGEST LAKE The sale of water from California's Imperial Valley to San Diego deprives the Salton Sea of farm runoff, its main source of inflows. After 2017, San Diego and other local water agencies are no longer required to deliver water to the Salton Sea to help offset the losses. The state of California has agreed to spearhead efforts to restore the lake and offset environmental damages from the water sale. In 2007, it proposed a $9 billion plan to create a horseshoe-shaped lake in the northern basin and saline habitat in other parts of the lake. Less ambitious plans have also been floated, but little has been done.

  • LA could become latest US city to pass $15 minimum wage

    Updated: 4 hr ago

    LOS ANGELES (AP) — Los Angeles is set to take a final vote on becoming the latest big U.S. city to endorse a hike in the minimum wage. The City Council is extremely likely to make the move Tuesday, and it has the endorsement of Mayor Eric Garcetti. It comes two weeks after a 14-1 preliminary vote on the wage. The vote would bring a $15-an-hour wage by 2020 — more than double the current federal minimum. Seattle and San Francisco recently passed laws to reach the same minimum wage over several years, and Chicago passed one last year that plateaus at $13. Earlier this week, the California Senate approved a plan to again raise the statewide minimum wage, lifting it to $13 an hour in 2017 and tying it to the rate

  • Arvest Consumer Sentiment Survey shows Oklahomans optimistic for 2015

    FROM STAFF REPORTS | Published: Wed, Jun 3, 2015

    Oklahoma consumers also showed an increase in confidence as it relates to business conditions over the next five years.

  • Achievers: Oklahoma City metro-area achievers

    FROM STAFF REPORTS | Published: Wed, Jun 3, 2015

    Achievers: Oklahoma City metro-area achievers.

  • Chisholm Trail Crawfish Festival cooks up fun in Yukon

    FROM STAFF REPORTS | Published: Wed, Jun 3, 2015

    The Chisholm Trail Crawfish Festival will be at the Kirkpatrick Family Farm, 1001 S Garth Brooks in Yukon.

  • Grandad's, an Uptown Oklahoma City beer bar and music venue, to reopen with new focus

    By Steve Lackmeyer, Business Writer | Updated: 8 hr ago

    Grandad’s, a popular beer bar and country western music venue in Uptown, is set to reopen under different ownership i:n Oklahoma City.

  • Oklahoma City's Western Avenue to host new music and street festival

    By Nathan Poppe, Entertainment Writer | Published: Wed, Jun 3, 2015

    West Fest will close a portion of Western Avenue in Oklahoma City to make way for food trucks and free concerts Sept. 19.

  • Oklahoma business brief for June 3

    Published: Wed, Jun 3, 2015

    Oklahoma business brief for June 3, 2015

  • Oil and gas, livestock prices for June 3

    Published: Wed, Jun 3, 2015

    OIL AND GAS PRICES Oklahoma crude oil prices as of 5 p.m. Tuesday: Oklahoma Sweet: Sunoco Inc. — $57.75 Oklahoma Sour: Sunoco Inc. — $45.75 Oklahoma oil and gas drilling activity posted May 18: COMPLETION Grady: Vitruvian II Woodford LLC; Castle No. 1-35H Well; SW1/4 SE1/4 SE1/4 SE1/4 (SL) of 35-04N-06W; 8,146,000 cu-ft gas per day 125 barrels oil per day; TD 19,399. Vitruvian II Woodford LLC; Johnson Rogers No. 2-17X8H Well; SE1/4 NW1/4 NW1/4 NW1/4 (BHL) of 08-04N-05W; 261 barrels oil per day 3,746,000 cu-ft gas per day; TD 22,289. Vitruvian II Woodford LLC; Parks No. 2-14X23H Well; SE1/4 NW1/4 SE1/4 NE1/4 (SL) of 14-04N-06W; 428 barrels oil per day 6,315,000 cu-ft gas per