Business


How many lifetimes to earn a top Georgia CEOs’ 2016 pay?

Assuming you start working when you turn 21 and stop just before your 65th birthday, we calculate how many working lifetimes it would take to earn the equivalent of just one year's total pre-tax pay for the chief executive officers of Georgia's top publicly-traded companies. We use CEOs' total 2016 compensation as reported to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, which includes the value of...


Wes Moss: 3 mistakes of unhappy retirees

Wes Moss: 3 mistakes of unhappy retirees

What do we talk about when discussing retirement planning? One of the most deep-seated human fears, “Will my money ever run out?” Hence, much of the discussion and debate centers on saving and investing to build a retirement war chest that will fund our post-career years. What is often overlooked, though, in this savings arms race is our quality of life in retirement. Will you be a happy...
Kempner: Atlanta-based practice offers would-be parents a sort of fertility 401(k)

Kempner: Atlanta-based practice offers would-be parents a sort of fertility 401(k)

The process of making babies is, biologically speaking, designed to be pretty dang glorious. But this isn’t a column about sex. It’s about efforts to expand the business of having babies later in life, an exercise sometimes loaded with anxiety and steep costs for would-be parents. An Atlanta-based medical practice backed by big investors wants to become a national powerhouse with a pitch...
Coca-Cola takes a chance on Coke Zero remake

Coca-Cola takes a chance on Coke Zero remake

As it grapples with consumers’ declining thirst for sugary drinks, Coca-Cola has decided to change the name, recipe and look of one of its most successful sodas, Coke Zero. The new version will be called Coca-Cola Zero Sugar, with the added word intended to underline its lack of an ingredient spurned by many. It’s also supposed to taste a bit more like regular Coke. It comes out in August...
Park over Ga. 400 in Buckhead moves forward

Park over Ga. 400 in Buckhead moves forward

An ambitious plan to build a park over Ga. 400 in the heart of Buckhead took a step forward when a self-taxing business group voted to fund the next phase of study, and to start the process to set up a nonprofit to manage development of the $250 million project. The 9-acre “deck park,” one of two proposed in Atlanta, would create green space and a central gathering place across a...
Coke: A new version of Coca-Cola Zero hits U.S. shelves next month

Coke: A new version of Coca-Cola Zero hits U.S. shelves next month

Coca-Cola said it is rolling out a new recipe, name and look in North America to replace one of its most successful products — Coca-Cola Zero. The Atlanta beverage giant announced the new version during its second-quarter earnings report. It will be called Coca-Cola Zero Sugar. The new cans and bottles, to roll out in August, will also mostly mimic Coca-Cola’s traditional red packaging...
Amazon to offer Sprouts groceries through Prime Now same-day service

Amazon to offer Sprouts groceries through Prime Now same-day service

Fresh off its announced acquisition of Whole Foods Market, Amazon said Wednesday it has now partnered with Sprouts Farmers Market to offer one- and two-hour delivery of products from the high-end grocer to its Prime members in the Atlanta area. The new offerings from Sprouts under Amazon’s Prime Now service comes as the e-commerce giant pushes deeper into its plans to offer same day delivery...
Take a look at new concepts for Buckhead park over Ga. 400

Take a look at new concepts for Buckhead park over Ga. 400

The Buckhead business district behind an ambitious plan to build a park over a portion of Ga. 400 voted Wednesday to fund the next phase of study and to set up a nonprofit organization to manage future development of the $250 million project. The 9-acre “deck park,” one of two proposed in Atlanta, would create green space and a central gathering place over a half-mile stretch of Ga...
Comcast rolls out mobile phone service in Atlanta stores

Comcast rolls out mobile phone service in Atlanta stores

Comcast said Wednesday it is rolling out its mobile phone service at its Atlanta retail stores this week as the company dives into the national cellular business. Xfinity Mobile will be sold at six Atlanta area Comcast retail outlets, and Atlanta is among the first markets in the Southeast where the communications giant is unveiling the service in its stores. “Our Atlanta customers continue...
Ukrainian conspirator in Atlanta hack sentenced

Ukrainian conspirator in Atlanta hack sentenced

A Ukrainian involved in a scheme that netted millions after hacking into an Atlanta payment processor was sentenced to 46 months in federal prison. Evgeny Tarasovich Levitskyy, 31, acted as one of the “cashers” who withdrew more than $9 million from 2,100 ATMs around the globe in less than 12 hours, according to the FBI. He is also known as Vinchenco, Vinch, and M.U.R.D.E.R.E.R., according...
How to get a job as a school bus driver in metro Atlanta

How to get a job as a school bus driver in metro Atlanta

As metro Atlanta students head back to school, they'll depend on a large contingent of bus drivers to safely get them to school and back home again. School bus drivers will also shuttle kids to and from field trips, athletic events and other activities. Navigating a school bus isn't always easy, but it can be rewarding work that offers a schedule that often appeals to parents, retirees, college...
Sierra Club: Georgia Power’s coal ash plan illegal

Sierra Club: Georgia Power’s coal ash plan illegal

The Sierra Club said Georgia Power’s plans to close its toxic coal ash ponds will dump heavy metal-laden wastewater into the state’s rivers and lakes and violate the federal clean water law. Georgia Power is planning to shut down 29 ponds that hold coal ash, a waste product of burning coal that can contain toxic metals such as mercury, lead, arsenic and other toxins, according to the environmental...
Sierra Club plans lawsuit over Georgia Power plants’ wastewater

Sierra Club plans lawsuit over Georgia Power plants’ wastewater

The Sierra Club said Georgia Power’s plans to close its toxic coal ash ponds will dump heavy metal-laden wastewater into the state’s rivers and lakes and violate the federal clean water law. Georgia Power is planning to shut down 29 ponds that hold coal ash, a waste product of burning coal that can contain toxic metals such as mercury, lead, arsenic and other toxins, according to the environmental...
Savannah and Brunswick ports set record for fiscal year

Savannah and Brunswick ports set record for fiscal year

The Georgia Ports Authority said Monday it broke a new record in the number of shipping containers it moved in the past fiscal year, buoyed by what its executive director described as organic growth as well as new business from larger ships plying the waters of the East Coast. The authority moved 3.85 million twenty-foot equivalent (TEU) container units in the 12 months ended in June, up 6.7...
Looking for a job? These are Atlanta’s highest-paying jobs with the most openings right now

Looking for a job? These are Atlanta’s highest-paying jobs with the most openings right now

When it comes to job hunting, Atlanta is considered a land of bountiful opportunity. And according to LinkedIn data, the most in-demand jobs in the city right now can potentially earn you an income upward of $120,000. Based on the top 100 job titles with the highest number of jobs currently listed in the Atlanta area, LinkedIn analysts found the 10 highest-paying career opportunities in...
‘We’re back,’ SunTrust exec says after stronger profits

‘We’re back,’ SunTrust exec says after stronger profits

SunTrust Banks said rising consumer lending and higher interest earnings on loans have helped the Atlanta bank’s bottom line despite slowing demand from business customers. Meanwhile, Georgia’s largest bank has been adding employees through internal growth and a 2016 acquisition, even though it is still shutting bank branches at a healthy clip. SunTrust’s workforce has grown by more...
‘We’re back,’ says SunTrust executive after stronger profits

‘We’re back,’ says SunTrust executive after stronger profits

SunTrust Banks said rising consumer lending and higher interest earnings on loans helped the Atlanta bank’s bottom line despite slowing demand from business customers. Meanwhile, Georgia’s largest bank has been adding employees through internal growth and a 2016 acquisition, even though it is still shutting bank branches at a healthy clip. SunTrust’s workforce has grown by more than...
Hartsfield-Jackson launches contracting process for new retail shops

Hartsfield-Jackson launches contracting process for new retail shops

Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport is inviting companies to submit proposals for more than 80 new retail shops around the domestic terminal and concourses. The Atlanta airport is seeking proposals for contracts for ten different packages of retail concessions locations. The airport plans to hold a pre-proposal conference for interested companies on Aug. 3 at noon at the Georgia International...
Study: Atlanta and Georgia pensions get mixed grades

Study: Atlanta and Georgia pensions get mixed grades

Despite the booming stock market in recent years, most state and local government pension plans fell further behind their retirement obligations in 2016, according to a new study released Thursday. That included some local pensions, such as Georgia's largest public pension plan, the $65.7 billion Teachers Retirement System of Georgia. The typical government pension’s funding level — or...
Ga. banks less stressed, but lending slowdown a worry

Ga. banks less stressed, but lending slowdown a worry

Judging from regulators’ recent actions and stock market movements, you might think banks big and small have made a turn onto Easy Street. All the largest U.S. banks, including Atlanta-based SunTrust Banks, recently passed this year’s Federal Reserve “stress tests” aimed at ensuring they could survive a severe recession. That unlocked their plans to boost dividends and stock...
Developer plans major renovation of Buckhead luxury hotel

Developer plans major renovation of Buckhead luxury hotel

A Texas firm plans an extensive renovation of the W Atlanta-Buckhead hotel after its recent purchase of the 12-story building. Woodbine Legacy Investments acquired the W Atlanta-Buckhead hotel on Peachtree Road near Atlanta Financial Center for $73 million. The 291-room hotel also includes the rooftop bar Whiskey Blue and Cook Hall restaurant. The Buckhead property is one of three W hotels in...
Ga. job growth bounces back in June

Ga. job growth bounces back in June

Like a tired driver with a fresh jolt of caffeine, the Georgia economy punched the gas in June and powered to a strong month of job growth and the lowest unemployment rate since the fall of 2007. The state added 27,400 jobs, while the jobless rate slipped from 4.9 percent in May to 4.8 percent in June, the state Labor Department reported Thursday. That job growth was more than double the average of...
Developer steps down from Ohio project as Atlanta deals ramp up

Developer steps down from Ohio project as Atlanta deals ramp up

Atlanta developer Carter is stepping down from its 10-year role as the lead developer in a massive project in Cincinnati, a move that comes as the group gears up for a pair of high-profile projects in its hometown. Carter said Thursday it will not serve as the master developer in future phases of The Banks in Cincinnati, an ambitious riverfront development it has led since 2007 outside stadiums for...
Court allows Trump travel ban enforcement, but says it must allow broader exemptions

Court allows Trump travel ban enforcement, but says it must allow broader exemptions

WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court on Wednesday allowed the Trump administration to enforce its refugee ban for now, but said it must allow broader exemptions to the president's travel ban for family members, including grandparents. The justices in a short order refused the administration's request that it stay a lower court's decision that said the Trump administration had too severely interpreted...
Delta plans to relaunch Atlanta-Shanghai flights

Delta plans to relaunch Atlanta-Shanghai flights

Delta Air Lines plans to relaunch flights from Atlanta to Shanghai, reinstating a crucial economic link between the Southeast and China. Atlanta-based Delta aims to launch the service a year from now, in July 2018, with 291-seat Boeing 777-200LRs. The launch of the route is subject to government approval, and Delta is submitting its application Wednesday for the route. There are currently no nonstop...
Mortgage lender to pay $4.2 million after Atlanta-based probe

Mortgage lender to pay $4.2 million after Atlanta-based probe

A former California mortgage lender agreed to pay $4.2 million to settle civil fraud allegations that its lending practices in the Southeast caused taxpayers to lose millions of dollars when homeowners defaulted on their loans after the Great Recession. The U.S. Attorney’s Office in Atlanta said that one in eight of Prospect Mortgage Company’s mortgage loans went into default...
For Delta and other companies, social media can be toxic minefield

For Delta and other companies, social media can be toxic minefield

It was the airline complaint heard ‘round the Twittersphere. Conservative pundit Ann Coulter paid $30 extra for more legroom in the exit row and pre-booked an aisle seat on a Delta Air Lines flight from New York’s LaGuardia Airport to West Palm Beach, Fla. Delta moved her from her preferred aisle seat to a window seat in the same row. On the cab ride from the airport, Coulter...
Reports: Atlanta home prices still higher than last year

Reports: Atlanta home prices still higher than last year

This week, two reports are singing harmony about the metro Atlanta housing market: there are fewer homes sold, while the ones that are selling are going for higher prices. While the reports issued by both the Atlanta Realtors Association and Re/Max Georgia differ slightly, they tell similar stories and they start the same way – with a drop in inventory. That is, the number of homes listed...
Coulter vs Delta tweetstorm continues

Coulter vs Delta tweetstorm continues

Conservative pundit Ann Coulter continued a war of words against Delta Air Lines on Monday after she was moved from a seat that she had pre-booked and paid extra for. Coulter wanted an aisle seat in the exit row with extra legroom, and reserved such a seat. Atlanta-based Delta moved her to a window seat in the same exit row. Ever since that fateful Saturday night flight, Coulter has unleashed a string...
Portman ponders two more Midtown Atlanta towers

Portman ponders two more Midtown Atlanta towers

Portman Holdings, which already has a Midtown Atlanta tower called Coda in the works, said Monday it is in “pre-development” for two additional towers at Georgia Tech’s Technology Square. The project would include a pair of skyscrapers totaling more than 610,000 square feet of office space, 140 residences, retail space, a bank and more than 1,000 parking spaces. The proposed development...
Portman considering two new towers in Midtown Atlanta near Tech Square

Portman considering two new towers in Midtown Atlanta near Tech Square

Portman Holdings already has a Midtown Atlanta tower in the works called Coda. But perhaps the tower at Georgia Tech will be more like Portman’s prelude for bigger things to come. The Atlanta-based development firm on Monday said it is in “pre-development” for two additional towers adjacent to Coda at Georgia Tech’s Technology Square. The project would include a pair of...
Wes Moss: Ignore Wall Street’s retirement numbers and create your own

Wes Moss: Ignore Wall Street’s retirement numbers and create your own

Fear is a powerful marketing tool. Yes, sex sells, but striking doubt or terror into the public’s heart can be even more effective. Need proof? Ask yourself how much you need to retire without eating cat food for dinner or greeting Wal-Mart shoppers at age 87. To hear Wall Street tell it (or sell it), you need to amass between $1 million and $2.5 million in retirement savings if you want an...
Southwest is OK being No. 2 at ATL, CEO says

Southwest is OK being No. 2 at ATL, CEO says

Southwest Airlines is the No. 2 carrier at Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport, and CEO Gary Kelly acknowledged he’s not jockeying to bump Atlanta-based Delta Air Lines from its leading position here. “We’re never going to be the No. 1 airline here in terms of the most seats or most flights or the most number of passengers, but we are a very significant No. 2,” Kelly said...
CBO: White House budget wouldn't eliminate deficit or do much to grow economy

CBO: White House budget wouldn't eliminate deficit or do much to grow economy

WASHINGTON — The Congressional Budget Office said Thursday that President Trump's first budget plan would not eliminate the deficit over 10 years or grow the economy at all by 2021, casting doubt on the administration's controversial economic assumptions that were supposed to bolster key parts of the White House's agenda over the next year. CBO projected that the sweeping spending reductions...
Why you should change your Verizon PIN right now

Why you should change your Verizon PIN right now

Verizon confirmed Wednesday that data belonging to 6 million customers was leaked online in June. News of the incident was first reported by ZDNet. In a statement on the company's website, Verizon said the leak was caused by an employee of one of the company's vendors who accidentally allowed external access to information put in a cloud storage area. ZDNet reported that the data was leaked on an...
Qatar Airways boss sorry for ‘grandmothers’ remark

Qatar Airways boss sorry for ‘grandmothers’ remark

Qatar Airways CEO Akbar Al Baker, who has sparred with Delta Air Lines executives over policy issues in recent years, is apologizing for referring to U.S. airline flight attendants as “grandmothers.” “I should like to apologize unreservedly to those offended by my recent remarks which compared Qatar Airways cabin crew with cabin crew on U.S. carriers,” Al Baker said Wednesday...
Trump trade battles could bruise NW Georgia

Trump trade battles could bruise NW Georgia

DALTON, GA. — Beneath the “Buy American” roadside signs, a globalist heart beats in this corner of northwest Georgia. In the late 1980s, factories began eagerly hiring Mexican immigrants to help fuel a boom in the so-called Carpet Capital of the World. Automation and the 2008 recession pared a lot of jobs. But now plants of all sizes are back at it, producing about half the world&rsquo...
Should job market influence what colleges teach and how?

Should job market influence what colleges teach and how?

Should colleges warn theater or philosophy majors their field of study is unlikely to lead to a good-paying job? Should career prospects and earnings become part of discussions with students enrolling in universities and colleges, which have long resisted becoming job training programs? And should trends in the job market influence what and how colleges teach? A new study out of the Georgetown University...
Georgians’ auto premiums are through the roof, say consumer researchers

Georgians’ auto premiums are through the roof, say consumer researchers

Auto insurance rates have risen by 54 percent in Georgia since 2011, faster than in any other state, according to a consumer research firm. The spike in auto premiums is more than double the national average over the last six years, and has made insurance too expensive for many Georgians to handle, said ValuePenguin in a recent report. Nationwide had the biggest rate increase (107 percent) during...
We’re No. 2! Georgia scores high on best-for-biz list

We’re No. 2! Georgia scores high on best-for-biz list

Georgia just missed taking the No. 1 spot in an annual “top states for business” ranking by financial network CNBC. The state came in 2nd behind Washington, where technology and innovation, high quality of life and a strong workforce helped offset a higher cost of living and middling infrastructure. The CNBC ranking compiles scores in 10 weighted categories that affect business performance...
ClubCorp, operator of Atlanta’s Commerce Club, being sold to Apollo

ClubCorp, operator of Atlanta’s Commerce Club, being sold to Apollo

ClubCorp, a Dallas operator of golf courses and social clubs — including more than two dozen in the metro Atlanta area — has agreed to sell itself to funds tied to private equity giant Apollo Global Management. ClubCorp said its board agreed to a $1.1 billion deal that would take the company private. The deal is expected to be completed before the end of the year. The sale comes amid turmoil...
Kempner: Once a tip-free zone, Uber caves on gratuities. Now what?

Kempner: Once a tip-free zone, Uber caves on gratuities. Now what?

Uber apparently wants to do right by its drivers and be a real pal to them. Which it plans to do by putting pressure on customers. Once a gloriously guilt-free, no-tip-expected zone, Uber now wants us to give its drivers tips. Will the shifting, confounding world of tipping ever settle down? If Uber can’t hold fast, who can? Uber announced it now will include a gratuity option...
Fliers’ right to video gets push from recent airline incidents

Fliers’ right to video gets push from recent airline incidents

When things go wrong on an airline flight, a picture is worth a thousand words — and a video can be worth even more. That’s become evident over the last several months, amid a string of viral videos showing passengers getting booted off flights, altercations between crew and passengers and the United Airlines passenger dragged off a plane. With smartphone cameras in the...
Film industry spends $2.7B in Georgia, state says

Film industry spends $2.7B in Georgia, state says

That animated peach seen more and more often at the end of film and television credits represents more than the production being filmed in Georgia — it represents billions of dollars the industry has spent in the state. Gov. Nathan Deal announced Monday that a record $2.7 billion was spent in Georgia by film and television production companies during the 2017 fiscal year. “Spider-Man:...
Atlanta’s tourist allure rising, by some measures

Atlanta’s tourist allure rising, by some measures

Metro Atlanta’s luster as a tourist destination has grown a bit shinier this year, according to a study by a company that tracks bookings and searches. Demand for Atlanta stays was up 24.2 percent during the past three months compared to the same period of last year – after rising 16.9 percent during the first three months of the year, according to Hotels Combined. The 12-year-old...
Hospice firm pays $2.4 million after Atlanta whistleblowers cry fraud

Hospice firm pays $2.4 million after Atlanta whistleblowers cry fraud

A hospice company agreed to pay $2.4 million to settle allegations by two Atlanta whistleblowers that the company had falsely billed taxpayers after paying kickbacks to doctors for patient referrals. The U.S. Attorney’s Office in Atlanta said Compassionate Care Hospice Group falsely billed Medicare and Medicaid in the alleged scheme. The company is registered in Florida but headquartered in...
Metro Atlanta wages stall despite tighter job market

Metro Atlanta wages stall despite tighter job market

While Atlanta’s job growth has been faster than the nation’s, wage gains here are not keeping up, according to a survey toting up millions of paychecks. The U.S. jobs report Friday touted strong hiring, and although metro Atlanta’s economy continues to grow, a report from Glassdoor Economic Research showed weakness on the wage front. The jobs-wage contradiction is not just an Atlanta...
New Atlanta Fed chief says data will be his guide

New Atlanta Fed chief says data will be his guide

Raphael Bostic, the new president of the Atlanta Federal Reserve Bank, comes into the job at a touchy moment both politically and economically. He also comes to it with a distinctive background and perspective. Bostic, 51, took the Atlanta post June 5 after the retirement of Dennis Lockhart. He is both the first black and first openly gay president of a regional Federal Reserve Bank. He has a Ph.D...
Kempner: 50 years later, ATMs try not to show their age

Kempner: 50 years later, ATMs try not to show their age

Remember when cash was king? When cash really ruled, ATMs seemed like one of the world’s great inventions for letting consumers be consumers. Now, banks and other financial companies are looking for new ways to make the machines do our bidding beyond cash withdrawals and checking balances. But a bunch of Americans, me included, don’t use ATMs much any more. A couple pups just out of college...
Atlanta-based Delta Air Lines named one of the best places to work in 2017

Atlanta-based Delta Air Lines named one of the best places to work in 2017

When it comes to winning the hearts of employees, strong values, an inspiring company culture, high quality leadership and competitive benefits are among the top attractive qualities that make a company one of the best in the nation to work for. Atlanta-based Delta Air Lines is one such company, recently recognized among the top best places to work in 2017 by research job site Indeed.com. To...
Titanic artifacts are up for bid after Ga. owner files Chapter 11

Titanic artifacts are up for bid after Ga. owner files Chapter 11

A bronze cherub — missing its left foot — that adorned the grand staircase of the RMS Titanic. An electric chandelier once elegantly suspended in the ceiling above the men-only first-class smoking room. A damaged brown bowler hat with a grosgrain ribbon and leather Gladstone bag owned by doomed passengers of the luxury passenger liner that sank on April 15, 1912 after striking an iceberg...
White House gender pay gap more than triples under Trump

White House gender pay gap more than triples under Trump

The pay gap between male and female White House staffers has more than tripled in the first year of the Trump administration, according to an analysis by economist Mark Perry of the American Enterprise Institute. The median female White House employee is drawing a salary of $72,650 in 2017, compared to the median male salary of $115,000. "The typical female staffer in Trump's White House...
Attorney General: Customers must pay Plant Vogtle charges up front

Attorney General: Customers must pay Plant Vogtle charges up front

Customers must keep paying a financing surcharge for the troubled Plant Vogtle nuclear project, according to the Georgia Attorney General’s office. Georgia Power has collected more than $2 billion in such finance charges from customers since 2011, according to Bobby Baker, a former state utility regulator and Atlanta attorney. Because of a 2009 state law enacted just after the Vogtle project...
Three pieces of financial wisdom Jay-Z drops in '4:44'

Three pieces of financial wisdom Jay-Z drops in '4:44'

Jay-Z's latest album includes deep reflections about how much he's matured personally and professionally. But the album also shares some insight on the financial lessons he learned while building up his brand and wealth over the years. In between confessions about his family and other personal mistakes, Jay-Z reflects on racial wealth inequality, the investments he's made over the years and the importance...
Starbucks plans expansion of Georgia factory

Starbucks plans expansion of Georgia factory

Coffee giant Starbucks plans to expand its manufacturing plant in east Georgia and add 100 jobs by the end of next year, according to a Thursday news release from Gov. Nathan Deal’s office. Starbucks plans to add about 140,000 square feet of new space and invest $120 million in the expansion of its coffee roasting plant in Augusta, the news release said. Starbucks said the expansion will allow...
Atlanta impact of $10B Worldpay deal unclear

Atlanta impact of $10B Worldpay deal unclear

Worldpay, the British payment processor with U.S. headquarters in Midtown Atlanta, has agreed to a $10 billion buyout offer by rival U.S.-based processor Vantiv. What the deal might mean for Atlanta is an open question. The agreement announced Wednesday would give Vantiv, based in Cincinnati, an international presence it lacks while also boosting its position as the No. 1 U.S. credit and debit card...
Southern Company chips in $1 billion after halting troubled “clean coal” plant

Southern Company chips in $1 billion after halting troubled “clean coal” plant

Southern Company said it injected $1 billion in additional capital into its Mississippi subsidiary after it decided last week, under pressure from state regulators, to pull the plug on a troubled “clean coal” plant. The Atlanta utility holding company’s shares have dropped about 7 percent since the Mississippi Public Service Commission told Mississippi Power last month that the utility...
You can now snort chocolate — but should you?

You can now snort chocolate — but should you?

First came Four Loko, the alcoholic energy drink dubbed "blackout in a can." Now meet Coco Loko, a "snortable" chocolate powder being marketed as a drug-free way to get a buzz. The product, created by Orlando-based company Legal Lean, includes cacao powder, as well as gingko biloba, taurine and guarana, which are commonly found in energy drinks. Nick Anderson, the 29-year-old founder...
Payments giant Worldpay gets $10B offer from Vantiv

Payments giant Worldpay gets $10B offer from Vantiv

Worldpay, a London-based payments processing company with U.S. headquarters in Atlanta, has agreed in principal to a nearly $10 billion buyout offer from rival processing firm Vantiv, according to reports Wednesday morning. The Wall Street Journal and other business media said the deal would create a trans-Atlantic payments giant with a combined market value of more than $20 billion. Worldpay had...
Metro Atlanta rents rise, still lag home prices

Metro Atlanta rents rise, still lag home prices

Rents have been rising in Atlanta, but not fast enough to outpace the rise in housing prices. Moreover, even after several years of climbing rents, the region’s apartments remain more affordable than in many other big U.S. metro areas. “Some other large cities have seen more substantial increases,” said Andrew Woo, data scientist for ApartmentList, a San Francisco-based...
Rising home prices imperil Atlanta’s draw

Rising home prices imperil Atlanta’s draw

Rising home prices threaten to chill one of metro Atlanta’s most valuable selling points: the affordability of housing. In four of the five core counties of the region, it takes more than 25 percent of average wages to make monthly payments on a median-cost home, according to a parsing of the data by Attom Data Solutions. Among core counties, the mismatch of income and price is worst in Gwinnett...
These metro Atlanta companies are making big hires this July

These metro Atlanta companies are making big hires this July

Looking for a new job this summer? These companies with Atlanta-area locations are adding new employees this July, with positions ranging from health care workers to work-at-home customer service associates. Check out these companies that are making big hires this month: Aldi, the German grocery chain that's known for its low prices, has more than 100 stores in Georgia, including more than 20 in metro...
Popular cancer pill goes generic, so why haven’t patients' costs gone down?

Popular cancer pill goes generic, so why haven’t patients' costs gone down?

Donald Jones used to pay at least $500 a month for a brand-name drug, Gleevec, that's kept his leukemia at bay for five years. Lately, he's been paying almost as much for a generic version of the same pill. It's not supposed to work that way. For decades in the U.S., generic drugs have been cheap, effective alternatives to expensive brand-name treatments. That's changing with drugs like Gleevec, Novartis...
Southern Co. units to take over at Vogtle in July

Southern Co. units to take over at Vogtle in July

Georgia Power and Southern Company’s nuclear arm said they expect to take over formal management of the Plant Vogtle nuclear project in late July after a key contractor ditches its contract with the Atlanta utilities in bankruptcy court. Under a recently completed new agreement with Georgia Power and Southern Nuclear, Westinghouse Electric will continue to provide engineering and other support...
Wes Moss: How Whole Foods-Amazon deal may impact grocery industry jobs

Wes Moss: How Whole Foods-Amazon deal may impact grocery industry jobs

I recently glimpsed the future of grocery shopping in America. It showed up at my front door in the form of smiling, energetic Rena, a personal shopper for an online grocery buying and delivery service called SHIPT. Rena and SHIPT took great care of my family and our weekly food shopping. The experience left me with a positive outlook for the future of how we consume food in America and what it might...
PSC: Vogtle work farther behind, but improving

PSC: Vogtle work farther behind, but improving

Construction progress on the troubled Plant Vogtle nuclear project appears to be improving since Southern Company and Georgia Power began picking up the pieces after a key contractor’s recent bankruptcy, state regulators said. “I’ve never seen so many bodies at work,” said Steven Roetger, an analyst in charge of monitoring the project for the Georgia utility regulator&rsquo...
Summer turnabout: Lower gas prices for metro Atlanta

Summer turnabout: Lower gas prices for metro Atlanta

Looks like you will have a little more coin to spend on sparklers, dogs and your beverage of choice this year. As Atlantans gear up for the Fourth of July holiday — and for long drives to relatives, friends or the beach — the price of gasoline has dipped lower than it was in the heart of the winter. That just doesn’t happen, said Patrick DeHaan, senior petroleum analyst for Gas Buddy...
Georgia CEOs get their biggest raises in years

Georgia CEOs get their biggest raises in years

Georgia CEOs did rather well in the pay department last year, getting their best raises in at least five years even though their companies’ profit growth was anemic overall. The median raise was 10.6 percent last year, to median compensation of just under $10 million, for chief executives at Georgia’s 30 largest public companies analyzed by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Two-thirds...
Kempner: Gwinnett CEO’s paycheck has shareholders fuming, again

Kempner: Gwinnett CEO’s paycheck has shareholders fuming, again

It’s not easy to be a good listener if you don’t like the message, especially when it’s something like: “Stop blowing our money.” For example, there’s a publicly traded company in Gwinnett where the board of directors continues to lavish pay on its CEO at a rate that would make the bosses of much larger Fortune 500 companies blush, as I pointed out in a recent...
Southern Co. hits off switch on ‘clean coal’ experiment

Southern Co. hits off switch on ‘clean coal’ experiment

Southern Company is suspending efforts to get a troubled Mississippi plant running properly that had been touted as the future for “clean coal” power plants. The Atlanta utility company said Wednesday it is “immediately suspending start-up and operations activities” for the coal gasification unit at its Mississippi Power subsidiary’s Kemper plant. The power plant, which...
Vogtle critics want regulator to study bankruptcy’s effects on project

Vogtle critics want regulator to study bankruptcy’s effects on project

Critics of the troubled Plant Vogtle nuclear project say state regulators are ignoring the $8 billion elephant in the room, and want the agency to hold public hearings on the projects’ growing price tag and delays after a key contractor’s bankruptcy. Last week, Nuclear Watch South, an environmental advocacy group, filed a legal motion aimed at pushing the Georgia Public Service Commission...
UPS to freeze non-union pension plan

UPS to freeze non-union pension plan

UPS plans to freeze pensions for non-union employees, joining a parade of U.S. corporations that have altered or dumped traditional retiree payout plans. The freeze will go into effect in 2023, affecting about 70,000 administrative and managerial employees, according to UPS. The company plans to shift employees to a plan including extra company contributions to their 401(k) accounts. Employees will...
Boeing opens new innovation center at Georgia Tech

Boeing opens new innovation center at Georgia Tech

Aerospace giant Boeing announced Tuesday the opening of a new research center at Georgia Tech that the company said would help the company overcome technical hurdles in manufacturing. Chicago-based Boeing, maker of military equipment and passenger airliners such as the 737 and 787 Dreamliner, said the new facility would pair Tech students and Boeing researchers on help implement industrial automation...
Boeing research center at Georgia Tech to solve manufacturing problems

Boeing research center at Georgia Tech to solve manufacturing problems

Aerospace giant Boeing announced Tuesday the opening of a new research center at Georgia Tech that the company said would help the company overcome technical hurdles in manufacturing. Boeing, maker of military equipment and passenger airliners such as the 737 and 787 Dreamliner, said the new facility would pair Tech students and Boeing researchers on help implement industrial automation. The...
Banks are on the hunt for deals: two in Georgia on Tuesday

Banks are on the hunt for deals: two in Georgia on Tuesday

Two banks in Georgia and North Carolina both announced acquisitions Tuesday that will add territory in each other’s states. Blairsville-based United Community Banks said it is acquiring Four Oaks Fincorp. in a deal that will add 14 branches, mostly in the Raleigh, N.C., market. The deal for the parent company of Four Oaks Bank & Trust, mostly in stock, is valued at $124 million. Meanwhile, Franklin...
Big grocery chain 'looking for sites all across’ Georgia

Big grocery chain 'looking for sites all across’ Georgia

Grocery chain Lidl has announced plans to open a distribution center in Cartersville and create 250 jobs, suggesting that opening its first stores in Georgia are coming. That means fresh competition for shoppers loyal to chains such as Kroger, Publix, Wal-Mart, Ingles and Aldi. “Georgia is absolutely a focus for us,” company spokesman Will Harwood told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution...
German firm Newport has big plans to revitalize downtown Atlanta

German firm Newport has big plans to revitalize downtown Atlanta

A German development firm has acquired more than two dozen historic downtown buildings, with plans to buy about a dozen more, in a $200 million plan to bring the largely vacant and boarded up structures south of the Five Points MARTA station back to their former glory. The project by Newport US RE, the American arm of Newport Holding GmbH, could help to extend the revitalization of downtown from...
Atlanta airport concessionaire joins ICE employee screening program

Atlanta airport concessionaire joins ICE employee screening program

An Atlanta-based airport restaurant operator has joined a U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement program for stringent screening of workers’ documentation. Hojeij Branded Foods, which operates 22 restaurants at Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport, is the first airport restaurant operator in the country to be certified under the ICE Mutual Agreement between Government and Employers...
New Atlanta Fed president sees lighter burden for small banks

New Atlanta Fed president sees lighter burden for small banks

Banks — especially the smaller ones — can probably expect a lighter touch from regulators in the future, but not in areas that would weaken protections against another industry meltdown, according to the Atlanta Federal Reserve Bank’s new president. Earlier this month the U.S. Treasury Department unveiled a nearly 150-page report suggesting about 100 changes to banking and financial...
Hawks, partners in talks for land near Philips Arena

Hawks, partners in talks for land near Philips Arena

The Atlanta Hawks and partners are in talks to take control of parcels around Philips Arena for future development, people familiar with the matter told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Word of land negotiations, said to be advanced but not yet final, come just days after the Atlanta City Council approved a major piece of public financing to overhaul Philips Arena. On Monday, the council approved...
Consumer ‘disconnect’ puzzling, new Atlanta Fed chief says

Consumer ‘disconnect’ puzzling, new Atlanta Fed chief says

What people say and what people do are often different, but the contrast is especially evident in the economy right now, according to the new president of the Atlanta Federal Reserve Bank. Raphael Bostic, 51, took the post June 5 following Dennis Lockhart’s retirement. He said in an interview Thursday with The Atlanta Journal-Constitution that there is less economic activity and growth than...
Southern’s ‘clean coal’ headache worsens

Southern’s ‘clean coal’ headache worsens

As if Southern Co.’s Plant Vogtle problems weren’t enough, utility regulators are telling the Atlanta company’s Mississippi unit to pull the plug on its troubled “clean coal” plant and absorb billions in costs. Mississippi Power’s Kemper plant was designed as a first-of-its-kind power plant that would burn coal more cleanly, but it is years past its planned completion...
Southern Company’s “clean coal” headache worsens

Southern Company’s “clean coal” headache worsens

As if Southern Co.’s Plant Vogtle problems weren’t enough, utility regulators are telling the Atlanta company’s Mississippi unit to pull the plug on its troubled “clean coal” plant and absorb billions in costs. Mississippi Power’s Kemper plant is a first-of-its-kind power plant that was supposed to burn coal more cleanly, but it is years past its planned completion...
Metro Atlanta jobless rate flat as hiring weakens

Metro Atlanta jobless rate flat as hiring weakens

The metro Atlanta unemployment rate held steady in May at 4.5 percent, the same level as in April, the state Labor Department reported Thursday. However, hiring was weaker than usual for the month, with 4,600 new positions added compared to an average of 15,000 during May over the previous five years. The economy is not threatening recession, but it isn’t robust, said Rajeev Dhawan, director...
Atlanta area retailers brace for Amazon-Whole Foods fallout

Atlanta area retailers brace for Amazon-Whole Foods fallout

Amazon’s $13.7 billion deal to buy high-end grocer Whole Foods Market sent shockwaves through the retail universe. Given Amazon’s history of disruption, experts say, the blockbuster transaction over time could influence the way consumers in Atlanta and elsewhere buy meats, veggies and dry goods, whether they shop at a Whole Foods or not. There are still plenty of unknowns about how Amazon...
Here’s how much Donald Trump made on his Jupiter property

Here’s how much Donald Trump made on his Jupiter property

President Donald Trump’s northern Palm Beach County golf course is making more money, according to recently filed financial documents. Trump last Friday voluntarily submitted his personal financial disclosure form to the Office of Government Ethics, offering the first look at his finances since taking office this year. According to the 98-page federal disclosure document, Trump National...
Kempner: Atlanta gourmet grocer aims to avoid an Amazon whooping

Kempner: Atlanta gourmet grocer aims to avoid an Amazon whooping

Paul Nair thought his four tiny gourmet and organic groceries in metro Atlanta competed directly with a really big rival: Whole Foods, which snagged nearly $16 billion in sales last year. But he had an odd reaction after learning his little Savi Provisions shops in Brookhaven, Midtown, Inman Park and Buckhead will soon face a far bigger competitor, one that has already shredded lots of retail...
Coca-Cola laying off 421 as part of earlier plan to cut 1,200 jobs

Coca-Cola laying off 421 as part of earlier plan to cut 1,200 jobs

Coca-Cola said it is laying off 421 people at its headquarters and two other Atlanta locations on July 15, according to a notice sent to state officials. The lay-offs, which include 334 at its headquarters near downtown Atlanta, are part of about 1,200 job cuts then-Coca-Cola President James Quincey announced just before he stepped in as the company’s new chief executive on May 1. The other...
Shareholders say “NO” to Georgia’s highest-paid CEO

Shareholders say “NO” to Georgia’s highest-paid CEO

Shareholders soundly rejected FleetCor Technologies’ pay plan that made the Norcross company’s CEO the highest-paid in Georgia last year. At FleetCor’s annual shareholder meeting on Wednesday, almost 63 percent of shareholders voted “no” in the company’s so-called “say on pay” vote, according to Dana Wise, with a pension advisory firm that criticized...
Start-up says its planes will get you from New York to London in 2.5 hours

Start-up says its planes will get you from New York to London in 2.5 hours

Business and first-class travelers could soon fly between London and New York aboard a supersonic commercial airplane in about 2.5 hours, according to one start-up — that's less time than it takes to watch a "Lord of the Rings" movie. Boom, an aerospace company based in Denver, said at the Paris Air Show on Tuesday that passengers could make the ultra-fast trip across the pond...
House lawmakers OK rescue for nuke projects’ tax credits

House lawmakers OK rescue for nuke projects’ tax credits

House lawmakers approved legislation that would add life to federal tax credits that could save hundreds of millions of dollars for the companies and non-profits behind the struggling Plant Vogtle nuclear project and a similar one in South Carolina. A resolution that removes a 2021 deadline for using the tax credits passed a voice vote Tuesday afternoon on the House floor. The proposed tax change...
Lawmakers aim to save $800M tax credit for Plant Vogtle

Lawmakers aim to save $800M tax credit for Plant Vogtle

House lawmakers are pushing legislation that would keep alive federal tax credits worth billions to the Plant Vogtle project and a similar plant in South Carolina. A resolution passed last week in the House Ways and Means Committee would remove the tax credit’s current deadline requiring the two nuclear projects to be completed by 2021. That extension could help preserve $800 million worth of...
UPS adding surcharges for holiday deliveries

UPS adding surcharges for holiday deliveries

UPS, grappling with the effect of rising home delivery volumes, plans to start levying peak surcharges for packages shipped to homes during the busiest periods of the holiday shipping season. Sandy Springs-based UPS’s surcharges will add 97 cents per packages shipped via second-day air residential service Dec. 17-23. For next day air residential service, there will be an 81 cent surcharge per...
Tight supply stifles metro housing sales

Tight supply stifles metro housing sales

Metro Atlanta housing got a healthy dose of same-old, same-old in two new reports. Same: Rising prices. Same: Fewer homes for sale. Old: Not the lists of homes for sale – they get snapped up awfully fast, according to a report from Re/Max Georgia. In other words, the story isn’t changing much. And the imbalance between supply and demand seems to be growing worse. The average time-on-market...
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