• Gas up 12 cents per gallon in Massachusetts

    Updated: 12 min ago

    BOSTON (AP) — Massachusetts gas prices continue to skyrocket, with self-serve regular soaring 12 cents per gallon in the past week alone. AAA Northeast reports Monday that gas has now jumped 31 cents per gallon in the past month to an average of $2.37. That's still $1.11 lower than at this time a year ago and 6 cents below the current national average. AAA says the rapid rise is due to seasonal maintenance at refineries and volatile global crude oil prices. AAA found self-serve regular selling for as low as $2.08 and as high as $2.55 per gallon.

  • Sonic shares driven up after strong 2Q sales report

    Updated: 23 min ago

    NEW YORK (AP) — Shares of Sonic climbed Monday after the drive-in restaurant chain said a closely watched sales measurement rose by double digits in the second quarter. The Oklahoma City-based company said sales at restaurants open at least a year grew 11.5 percent in the fiscal quarter. Sales at stores open at least a year are considered an important measurement of performance for retailers because they strip out results from stores that opened or closed within the last year to give a look at a company's remaining locations. The company said more customers came to its restaurants and credited the improvement to better sales of core menu items, new products, its advertising strategy and the stronger economy. The resul

  • University president tapped to head Philadelphia Fed

    Updated: 26 min ago

    WASHINGTON (AP) — The head of the University of Delaware has been selected to be the new president of the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia. The bank's board of directors says 56-year-old Patrick T. Harker will succeed Charles Plosser, who retired on March 1. Harker will take over on July 1. In addition to serving as president of the University of Delaware, Harker was a professor of business administration and a professor of engineering at the university. Plosser had announced last year that he would retire in March when he reached the bank's mandatory retirement age. He had been a leading "hawk" at the Fed — expressing concerns that the central bank has been too slow to raise interest rates and that this could t

  • Buffett declines to clarify plan to eventually replace him

    Updated: 32 min ago

    OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — Billionaire Warren Buffett didn't end the speculation about his eventual successor, but he reiterated Monday that Berkshire Hathaway's board has a plan in place. Buffett addressed a variety of topics on CNBC after releasing his annual letter to Berkshire shareholders over the weekend. Berkshire's Vice Chairman Charlie Munger spurred renewed interest in the replacement for the 84-year-old Buffett over the weekend because he singled out two candidates in his own letter to shareholders. Munger said Berkshire's reinsurance chief Ajit Jain and the head of its utility company, Greg Abel, would both be excellent choices to replace Buffett. "They are incredible managers, and we are lucky to have them,

  • US construction spending down 1.1 percent in January

    Updated: 52 min ago

    WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. construction spending fell in January, reflecting weakness in spending on office buildings and other nonresidential projects and in government activity. Construction spending fell 1.1 percent in January following a revised 0.8 percent increase in December, the Commerce Department reported Monday. Spending on home construction rose 0.6 percent but spending on nonresidential projects dropped 1.6 percent, reflecting declines in hotels, office buildings and the category that covers shopping centers. Spending on government projects also declined in January, falling 2.8 percent. Private economists had predicted a small overall gain in January.

  • US manufacturing slows as output and hiring weaken

    Updated: 55 min ago

    WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. factories expanded last month at their weakest pace in a year, with orders, hiring and production all growing more slowly. The Institute for Supply Management, a trade group of purchasing managers, said Monday that its manufacturing index slipped to 52.9 in February from 53.5 in January. It was the fourth straight drop and the lowest reading since January 2014. Still, any reading above 50 signals expansion. Measures of production and employment fell sharply, though they remained in expansionary territory. That suggests that factories are still adding jobs but at a slower pace than in January. U.S. manufacturers have been held back in recent months by weak growth in China, Europe and Japan.

  • Colorado oil, gas agency to vote on flood protection rules

    Updated: 59 min ago

    DENVER (AP) — The commission that oversees oil and gas regulations in Colorado is expected to vote Monday on new rules designed to limit spills in the event of major flooding like what hit the Front Range and eastern plains in 2013. The proposals before the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission include a requirement that all new wells be equipped with technology allowing them to be shut down remotely. Other rules include anchoring new and existing oil field tanks and some other equipment to resist toppling or floating away and installing berms made of steel or some other strong material to contain spills.

  • Bill Gates repeats at top of Forbes' list of billionaires

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    NEW YORK (AP) — The world's richest person got even richer this year. Forbes said Monday that Bill Gates's net worth rose to $79.2 billion in 2015 from $76 billion last year. That put him at the top of the magazine's list of the world's billionaires for the second consecutive year. The co-founder of Microsoft Corp. has topped the list for 16 of the last 21 years. In second place is Mexican telecommunications mogul Carlos Slim Helu, with a net worth of $77.1 billion. He had topped the list in 2013. Next is investor Warren Buffett, who moved up one slot this year with a net worth of $72.7 billion. In fourth place was Amancio Ortega, the Spanish co-founder of clothing retail chain Zara, with a net worth of $64.5 billion.

  • Russia, Ukraine hold emergency gas talks as cutoff looms

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    BRUSSELS (AP) — Russia and Ukraine's energy ministers are holding emergency talks after the Russian gas supplier said it would cut off deliveries to the war-torn country as soon as Tuesday if it does not get new payments. The European Union, which is mediating the talks in Brussels hoping to keep gas flowing despite the dispute, imports around 40 percent of its gas from Russia, half through conflict-torn Ukraine. Kiev and Moscow have fought out several gas price wars over the past years and concerns are mounting that any fresh cuts could again hit European supplies. Cash-strapped Ukraine is struggling to buy time and made a $15 million payment last week, but Moscow says that will cover only a day's worth of gas, leavi

  • High court to consider bias claim on loan guarantees

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    WASHINGTON (AP) — The Supreme Court will decide whether a bank discriminated against the wives of two Missouri real estate developers by requiring them to guarantee their husbands' business loans. The justices said Monday they will hear an appeal of Valerie Hawkins and Janice Patterson, who claim the bank discriminated against them based on their marital status in violation of the Equal Credit Opportunity Act. A federal judge ruled that the law protects only those who apply for credit and not those who guarantee to secure debt. The 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals agreed. The women argue that the court ruling conflicts with Federal Reserve Board regulations that say the law covers credit guarantees.

  • US stocks open slightly higher; Freescale jumps on deal

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    NEW YORK (AP) — The U.S. stock market headed higher Monday as deals and economic news gave stocks a lift. KEEPING SCORE: The Dow Jones industrial average rose 95 points, or 0.5 percent, to 18,228 as of 10:10 a.m. Monday. The Standard & Poor's 500 index rose six points, or 0.3 percent, to 2,111, while the Nasdaq composite edged up 28 points, or 0.6 percent, to 4,991. CHIPPY: NXP Semiconductors said Sunday it's planning to acquire Freescale Semiconductor in an $11.8 billion deal. The merger would create the largest supplier of microchips for cars. Boards of both companies have already approved the deal, but regulators still need to sign off on it. NXP's stock jumped $11.52, or 14 percent, to $96.40. Freescale soared $3.

  • US construction spending falls 1.1 percent in January with weakness in government projects

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    WASHINGTON (AP) — US construction spending falls 1.1 percent in January with weakness in government projects.

  • Norfolk Southern names James Squires as CEO

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    NEW YORK (AP) — Norfolk Southern has named company President James Squires as its next CEO. The railroad company says Squires will replace 63-year-old Charles Moorman on June 1. Moorman, who has been CEO for about nine years, will stay on as executive chairman of the company's board. Squires, 53, joined Norfolk Southern in 1992. He has held several positions in the law department. He was named president in 2013. Shares of Norfolk Southern Corp., based in Norfolk, Virginia, rose 58 cents to $109.74 in morning trading Monday.

  • US manufacturing grew in February at slowest pace in a year as orders and employment weakened

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    WASHINGTON (AP) — US manufacturing grew in February at slowest pace in a year as orders and employment weakened.

  • Dearth of jobs a barrier to post-bankruptcy Detroit's growth

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    DETROIT (AP) — When Alison Norris couldn't find work in Detroit, she searched past the city limits, ending up with a part-time restaurant job that's 20 miles away but takes at least two hours to get to via separate city and suburban bus systems. For many city residents with limited skills and education, Detroit is an employment desert, having lost tens of thousands of blue-collar jobs in manufacturing cutbacks and service jobs as the population dwindled. What's available to those without cars — about 40 percent of Detroit's population, according to federal figures — often are low-paying retail or sales positions far outside the city.

  • HP's big deal: Tech giant buys Aruba Networks for $2.7B

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Hewlett-Packard is buying wireless networking company Aruba Networks for about $2.7 billion, the biggest acquisition by HP in recent years. Palo Alto, Calif.-based HP said the deal will boost its commercial technology business as it prepares to split into two companies, one focused on selling commercial computer systems and the other selling personal computers and printers. Aruba, based in Sunnyvale, Calif., makes wi-fi networking systems for shopping malls, corporate campuses, hotels and universities. HP is paying $24.67 in cash for each Aruba share. That is slightly below its close of $24.81 on Friday.

  • In Stillwater, Oklahoma, the Wooden Nickel is not closing

    BY RICHARD MIZE, Real Estate Editor | Updated: 1 hr ago

    The future of the popular, fire-damaged store Wooden Nickel in Stillwater got lost in a story about the building now housing it.

  • Supreme Court won't hear appeal in foam class action case

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    WASHINGTON (AP) — The Supreme Court won't hear an appeal from a group of flexible foam manufacturers challenging one of the largest class action lawsuits ever certified. The justices on Monday let stand a lower court ruling that allowed a lawsuit to go forward that seeks more than $9 billion in damages against Carpenter Co., Woodbridge Foam Corp. and others. Buyers of flexible foam products including seat cushions, foam pillows and mattresses allege the manufacturers were involved in a decades-long conspiracy to fix the price of polyurethane foam. The companies claim there is not enough in common between various purchasers of the foam products to allow a class action to proceed. The 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals r

  • Gas prices increase 9 cents in Maine

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    PORTLAND, Maine (AP) — Gas prices have gone up 9.1 cents a gallon in the last week in Maine. Gasoline price-monitoring website GasBuddycom reports Monday that the average cost of a gallon of gas in Maine is up to $2.40, nearly 30 cents per gallon higher than in the past month, but still nearly $1.18 lower per gallon than at this time last year. The price per gallon in Maine is 2 cents below the national average. The Maine price is based on a survey of more than 1,200 gas stations.

  • US stocks open slightly higher; Freescale jumps on deal

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    NEW YORK (AP) — U.S. stocks are opening slightly higher as investors focused on earnings and deal news. The Dow Jones industrial average rose 50 points, or 0.3 percent, to 18,185 in early trading Monday. The Standard & Poor's 500 index rose two points to 2,106. The Nasdaq composite edged up 14 points, or 0.3 percent, to 4,978. Endo International gained 3 percent after the company reported earnings and revenue that beat analysts' forecasts. Freescale Semiconductor jumped 10 percent after agreeing to be acquired by Dutch chipmaker NXP Semiconductors. European markets edged lower as investor optimism faded over a weekend interest rate cut by the Chinese central bank. Oil prices fell slightly. U.S. crude