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VOL. 40 | NO. 21 | Friday, May 20, 2016

Is Nashville flipped out?

Real estate squeeze is making life tough for area house flippers

It’s easy to watch a renovation show on HGTV or the DIY Network, see how much money can be made and think, “Hey, I can do that.”

Want to flip? It takes money to enter this game

When it comes to buying a house to flip, there are a few options to come up with the money to finance it.

Got to have good team, reliable subcontractors

Wendy McKinney is one of those people who watches renovation shows on HGTV and cringes, yelling at new flippers as if they were a sorority girl going for a stroll in a scary movie.

Friendship with Wolfe led to DIY reality show

Nashville’s Troy Dean Shafer, host of DIY Network’s “Nashville Flipped,” had met with a number of different production companies over six years before landing the show.

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EVENTS

Wilson County Meet the Mayor. Wilson County Mayor Randall Hutto is available for open discussion with members of the community every last Wednesday of the month at the Chamber of Commerce office. Wednesday, 1:30-3 p.m., Chamber of Commerce, 149 Public Square. Information. www.lebanonwilsonchamber.com

more events »

SAM STOCKARD: VIEW FROM THE HILL

Outsourcing savings estimates strain ‘credulity’

Terry Cowles flashes a photo of ceiling lamp fixtures on the screen and tells state legislators a vendor’s state Capitol team used its electrical training to remove, repair and reinstall fixtures, saving taxpayers $15,500.

DAVID CLIMER: OUT OF LEFT FIELD

Shoop’s simple task: 11-win defense

When Butch Jones hired Bob Shoop away from Penn State in January to oversee Tennessee’s defense, he offered some challenging marching orders.

RICHARD COURTNEY: REALTY CHECK

A lot could go wrong with real estate boom

April sales numbers, released recently by the Greater Nashville Association of Realtors (GNAR), are staggering. As has been the case for years, sales are up and inventory is down; however, this month’s numbers are some of the more astonishing of recent times.

REAL ESTATE

Top Middle Tennessee residential transactions for April 2016

Top residential real estate sales, April 2016, for Davidson, Williamson, Rutherford, Wilson and Sumner counties, as compiled by Chandler Reports.

Average 30-year mortgage rate ticks up to 3.58 percent

WASHINGTON (AP) — Long-term U.S. mortgage rates were little changed this week at or near their lows for the year.

US home sales growth driven mostly by Midwest

WASHINGTON (AP) — Midwestern homebuyers helped spark a national increase in real estate sales during April, a sign that demand for housing remains steady despite rising prices and tight inventories.

NEWSMAKERS

Bradley attorneys elected Tennessee Bar Foundation fellows

Bradley Arant Boult Cummings LLP Nashville partners – William L. Norton, III and Todd Presnell – have been elected as fellows of the Tennessee Bar Foundation, an association of 818 attorneys from across the state.

BEHIND THE WHEEL

Lighter Maxima gets more power, better mpgs

Nissan’s most expensive car, the Maxima, is re-engineered and restyled for 2016 for a more luxurious and sporty experience and, thanks to a more powerful V-6, delivers 300 horsepower for the first time.

FAMILY TRAVEL

Late flights, airport drama all a part of traveling

The turbulence is real as we slowly descend into Providence, Rhode Island. I wasn’t planning to descend into Providence, Rhode Island, but it’s funny how air travel can throw a wrench into well-hatched plans.

GUERRILLA MARKETING

Taking advantage of the subscription economy

Today, you can buy almost anything on subscription, including dog toys from BarkBox, razors from Dollar Shave Club, streaming video content from Netflix, music from Spotify, beauty samples from Birchbox, ready-to-make meals from Blue Apron and even rental cars from Zipcars.

CAREER CORNER

It’s OK to call interview timeout, recommend friend

Business networking can be a tricky subject. With that in mind, I received a great question from a reader I want to share with you. The reader writes, “A recruiter recently reached out to me about a particular job they are hiring for. I’m not a good fit for it, but I know someone who is. Should I say anything, or should I keep my mouth closed?”

I SWEAR

Is it no ‘Ifs, ands or buts’ or ‘ifs, ans or buts?’

A wordier version of this column ran in 2008. That would have been shortly after the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette ran a certain editorial in which it asserted that to say there are “no ifs, ands or buts” is wrong. The correct phrase, it averred, is “no ifs, ans or buts.”

KAY'S COOKING CORNER

That time of year: Fresh salads, easy dinners

Spring and summer are my favorite seasons. I love the many different greens of all the trees and grass, and the many different colors of flowers, whether they are growing wild along a path in the woods, laid out in a perfect pattern in a garden or cut and in a vase, adding a beautiful touch to a room.

STATE LEGISLATURE

Sponsor of refugee lawsuit measure unhappy with Haslam

NASHVILLE (AP) — The sponsor of a resolution to require the state to sue the federal government over its refugee resettlement program is unhappy with Republican Gov. Bill Haslam for refusing the sign the measure.

STATEWIDE

State parks to offer free hikes for National Trails Day

NASHVILLE (AP) — Tennessee's state parks will offer free, guided hikes to celebrate National Trails Day early next month.

'Be Nice' campaign could become state license plate

FRANKLIN (AP) — A Nashville-area school district's "Be Nice" anti-bullying campaign could be about to spread all the way to state license plates.

NATIONAL/INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS

Stocks end solidly higher on Wall Street

NEW YORK (AP) — Stocks closed higher on Wall Street, as energy companies rose with the price of oil, while chemicals and mining company shares also gained.

CEO pay climbs again, even as their stock prices don't

NEW YORK (AP) — CEOs at the biggest companies got a 4.5 percent pay raise last year. That's almost double the typical American worker's, and a lot more than investors earned from owning their stocks — a big fat zero.

Health care CEOs lead the way in 2015 compensation

It pays to be healthy. Chief executives at health care companies in the Standard & Poor's 500 index made millions more in compensation last year than their counterparts in other industries. A look at the top and bottom-paid CEOs last year, by industry, as calculated by The Associated Press and Equilar, an executive data firm.

Female CEOs see pay rise, but numbers remain small

For the second year in a row, female CEOs earned more than their male counterparts and received bigger raises. But only a small sliver of the largest companies are run by women, and experts say gender parity at the top remains way off.

Top 10 highest-paid CEOs

Here are the 10 highest-paid CEOs for 2015, as calculated by The Associated Press and Equilar, an executive data firm.

The highest-paid CEOs by state

Here are the top-paid CEOs by state for 2015, as calculated by The Associated Press and Equilar, an executive data firm. The survey considered public companies with at least $1 billion in revenue that filed proxy statements with federal regulators on or before April 30, 2016. It includes CEOs who were newly hired, who often receive large grants as incentives. It does not include data for Alaska, Montana or West Virginia.

The biggest CEO pay raises and pay cuts of 2015

Here are the three CEOs who got the biggest pay raises last year, and the deepest pay cuts, as calculated by The Associated Press and Equilar, an executive data firm.

NATIONAL POLITICS

Puerto Rico clears first hurdle with committee vote

WASHINGTON (AP) — A bipartisan deal to help Puerto Rico manage its crippling finances cleared its first hurdle Wednesday with approval from a Republican-led House committee.


TUESDAY, MAY 24
COURTS

Court: State must provide TennCare applicants fair hearing

NASHVILLE (AP) — Tennessee's Medicaid program has to provide applicants with a fair hearing if it cannot process their requests on time, under an order that's been upheld by a federal appeals court.

STATE LEGISLATURE

Dem lawmaker's White House trip rejected by GOP officials

NASHVILLE (AP) - Tennessee state senators have been reimbursed for out-of-state travel for meetings from Florida to Alaska, and on topics ranging from school vouchers to the dangers of radical Islam. But GOP leaders say a Democrat's trip to the White House doesn't qualify.

STATEWIDE

Tennessee's newest prison halts admissions after problems

NASHVILLE (AP) - Tennessee's newest prison has had to halt new admissions after just four months of full operation.

MUSIC INDUSTRY

Pharrell Williams produces Little Big Town's upcoming record

NASHVILLE (AP) - Hit music producer and artist Pharrell Williams has produced the next album for country quartet Little Big Town, who will perform the first single on Tuesday's season finale of "The Voice" on NBC.

Lady Antebellum to host televised ACM Honors show

NASHVILLE (AP) - Grammy-winning country group Lady Antebellum will host the 10th annual ACM Honors show, which will be televised for the first time.

NASHVILLE AREA

Bridgestone abandons crisis-wracked Venezuela after 62 years

CARACAS, Venezuela (AP) — Tire maker Bridgestone is selling its business in Venezuela after six decades in the country, the latest blue chip company to abandon the country as a result of runaway inflation and strict currency controls.

REAL ESTATE

US new-home sales jump to highest level in more than 8 years

WASHINGTON (AP) — Americans ramped up their purchases of new homes in April to the highest level since January 2008, evidence of a strong start to the spring buying season.

AUTO INDUSTRY

Volkswagen to provide update on emissions settlement talks

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — A federal judge is set to get an update on ongoing settlement talks in the Volkswagen emissions cheating scandal after announcing a tentative deal last month for nearly half a million polluting Volkswagens in the U.S.

Detroit muscle cars aren't so strong in crash tests

DETROIT (AP) — Muscle cars may look cool, but they don't offer the best protection in a crash.

TECHNOLOGY

Coming soon to Twitter: More room to tweet

NEW YORK (AP) — Twitter is making some big changes, at least in the context of 140 characters or less.

Facebook drops news outlet input in 'trending topics' review

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Facebook says it is dropping its reliance on news outlets to help determine what gets posted as a "trending topic" on the giant social network, a move adopted after a backlash over a report saying it suppressed conservative views.

NATIONAL/INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS

Tech companies take the lead as US stocks surge

NEW YORK (AP) — U.S. stocks made their biggest gain since March on Tuesday as technology companies like Apple and Microsoft soared. Homebuilders also climbed after the government said sales of new homes reached an eight-year high last month. That was a sign the housing market and the broader economy are still in pretty good shape.

Goodbye, empty nest: Millennials staying longer with parents

WASHINGTON (AP) — Many of America's young adults appear to be in no hurry to move out of their old bedrooms.

Best Buy adds to chorus or woes in retail

NEW YORK (AP) — A strong start to the year from Best Buy was overshadowed by a lengthening string of declining quarterly sales and a pessimistic outlook that added to a chorus of woes from the retail sector.


MONDAY, MAY 23
STATEWIDE

State launches college counseling program for high schools

NASHVILLE (AP) - Gov. Bill Haslam has announced the launch of a $2.4 million program that will provide college counselors to 30 public high schools across the state.

STATE LEGISLATURE

Durham accuses reporter of trespassing

FRANKLIN (AP) — Embattled state Rep. Jeremy Durham has brought criminal trespass charges against a reporter for the Nashville Scene weekly newspaper, accusing her of trying to enter his Franklin home while seeking an interview.

MIDSTATE

China university to send 260 students to Murfreesboro

MURFREESBORO (AP) — Middle Tennessee State University says Guangxi (GWAHNG'-she) University in China will send 260 students to study at the Murfreesboro University for two years.

COURTS

High court ruling helps federal workers file job bias claims

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Supreme Court is making it easier for federal workers to file employment discrimination lawsuits after quitting their jobs over conditions they consider intolerable.

Appeals court reverses fraud finding against Bank of America

NEW YORK (AP) — Bank of America Corp. was not liable for fraud and subject to a penalty of more than $1.2 billion for its actions before the economy collapsed in 2008 despite a jury's finding to the contrary, a federal appeals court ruled Monday.

NATIONAL/INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS

US stocks close slightly lower as investors wait for Fed

NEW YORK (AP) — Stocks ended a quiet day slightly lower on Monday as investors sat on the sidelines waiting for more clues about whether the Federal Reserve might raise interest rates next month. Energy stocks  fell along with the price of crude oil.

Gas prices jump by 5 cents over past 2 weeks, averages $2.32

CAMARILLO, Calif. (AP) — The average price of gasoline has jumped by a nickel over the past two weeks to $2.32 a gallon for regular grade.

Tribune rejects second Gannett bid; sets the stage for talks

NEW YORK (AP) — Tribune Publishing rejected a second takeover bid from USA Today owner Gannett, but did say Monday that it was open to further talks.

Germany's Bayer makes $62 billion offer for Monsanto

BERLIN (AP) — German drug and chemicals company Bayer AG announced Monday that it has made a $62 billion offer to buy U.S.-based crops and seeds specialist Monsanto.

Viacom CEO sues to be restored to Redstone trust

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Viacom's embattled chief executive sued Monday to be restored as a director and trustee to entities that control Viacom Inc. and CBS Corp. after a weekend move by media mogul Sumner Redstone stripped him of the positions.

IMF calls for 'unconditional' debt relief for Greece

IMF calls for 'unconditional' debt relief for Greece


FRIDAY, MAY 20
STATE LEGISLATURE

Haslam signs bill to end Hall income tax

NASHVILLE (AP) - Republican Gov. Bill Haslam has signed a bill into law that will phase out the state's Hall tax on earnings from stocks and bonds.

Tennessee law strips university diversity office funding

NASHVILLE (AP) - A bill to strip funding from the diversity office at Tennessee's flagship public university became law without Gov. Bill Haslam's signature on Friday.

Haslam allows Tennessee refugees lawsuit to move forward

NASHVILLE (AP) - Republican Gov. Bill Haslam has decided not to veto a resolution demanding a lawsuit be filed over the federal refugee resettlement program in Tennessee.

Haslam decisions due on refugee lawsuit, diversity bills

NASHVILLE (AP) — Republican Gov. Bill Haslam must decide Friday whether to sign, veto or allow two contentious Tennessee bills to become law without his signature.

NASHVILLE AREA

Nashville mayor appoints first transgender city board member

NASHVILLE (AP) - Nashville Mayor Megan Barry appointed a transgender woman to the Metro Human Relations Commission - an apparent first for Tennessee.

STATEWIDE

Vanderbilt poll finds Trump with 9-point lead in Tennessee

NASHVILLE (AP) - Presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump has a 9 percentage point lead over Democrat Hillary Clinton in Tennessee, according to a Vanderbilt University poll released Thursday.

Pro-nuclear Alexander urges Tennessee to reject wind farm

NASHVILLE (AP) - Republican U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander is urging his fellow Tennesseans to oppose what he calls an "unsightly" wind farm near the Cumberland Mountain State Park.

COURTS

Justices back company seeking legal fees from government

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Supreme Court on Thursday ruled unanimously in favor of an Iowa trucking company that was trying to recover $4.7 million in legal fees from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission after a class action lawsuit against the company was thrown out.

AUTO INDUSTRY

Production unaffected by fire at GM plant in Spring Hill

SPRING HILL (AP) - A fire at the General Motors plant in Tennessee was quickly extinguished and will not affect production at the Spring Hill facility.

GM offers debit cards or longer warranties in mileage case

DETROIT (AP) — People who bought or leased 2016 General Motors SUVs with overstated gas mileage on the window sticker will be getting compensated, the automaker said Friday.

Scandal-hit VW agrees to 4.8 percent pay rise for workers

FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) — Automaker Volkswagen and Germany's industrial union have agreed to increase wages 4.8 percent by next year in an economy where the cost of living is flat — the kind of raises that could help the 19-country eurozone lift inflation from dangerously low levels.

Fiat Chrysler recalls 500,000 Jeeps; air bags may not work

DETROIT (AP) — Fiat Chrysler is recalling about a half-million Jeep Wrangler SUVs worldwide because the driver's air bag may not inflate in a crash.

NATIONAL/INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS

Gap closing 75 stores outside North America amid sales slump

NEW YORK (AP) — Gap Inc. said Thursday that it is shuttering 75 Old Navy and Banana Republic stores outside North America as the struggling company looks to focus on regions where it sees it has the greatest potential for success.

Airlines say Congress is contributing to long airport lines

DALLAS (AP) — As airport security lines get longer, the finger-pointing over blame is growing too.

Apple's stores getting new look as other retailers struggle

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Apple is getting ready to unveil a stylish new product that's not for sale — a new look for its stores.

The great road trip returns this summer thanks to cheap gas

NEW YORK (AP) — Grab your sunglasses, a giant cup of coffee and prepare to hit the highway: 2016 is shaping up to be the summer of the road trip.

Phil Mickelson to forfeit nearly $1 million in SEC case

NEW YORK (AP) — The professional golfer Phil Mickelson has agreed to forfeit nearly $1 million that the Securities and Exchange Commission said was unfairly earned on a tip from an insider trading scheme conducted by a former corporate director and a professional gambler.

In a dark quarter for retailers, Wal-Mart shines

BENTONVILLE, Ark. (AP) — Surprisingly strong sales at Wal-Mart and an optimistic outlook from the world's largest retailer lifted a pall that settled over much of the sector in the past two weeks.

NATIONAL POLITICS

Bipartisan deal in House to help Puerto Rico with $70B debt

WASHINGTON (AP) — In a breakthrough, House Republicans and Democrats have struck a deal with the White House to help rescue Puerto Rico from $70 billion in debt.

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