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VOL. 37 | NO. 50 | Friday, December 13, 2013

Will ‘Private Lives of Nashville Wives’ be another network TV boost or make us cringe?

On the heels of ABC drama "Nashville," cable network TNT is launching another national Music City-based show. But it’s about to get real.

‘Real’ problems with show’s concept

“Private Lives of Nashville Wives” is bringing some national attention to Music City. But several residents contacted by Nashville Ledger aren’t sure it’s the kind of attention they want.

Despite losses, UT, Titans, Preds merchandise still selling

In the financial market, there is often a direct link between a stock’s past and future performance. The same correlation can’t necessarily be made in the sports business world about a team’s on-field performance and the success or failure of its merchandising efforts.


New neighborhoods, new highs in 2013 Middle Tennessee home sales

Regan and Jenni Anderson were preparing to move their family from Virginia to Salt Lake City when an unexpected job offer brought them to Nashville’s suburbs.

Local Weather
Nashville, TN
Partly Cloudy
Wind: South at 6.9 mph
Humidity: 59%


Lebanon Blue Devil Baseball Pancake Breakfast. 7:30 a.m.-9:30 a.m. Saturday. $5. Bring unwrapped toys for Toys for Tots and take pictures with Santa. Applebees 609 S. Cumberland St.

more events »

Top Midstate residential real estate transactions for Nov. 2013

Top November  2013 residential real estate transactions for Davidson, Williamson, Rutherford, Wilson and Sumner counties, as compiled by Chandler Reports.

Davidson County's Top Lenders for November

A look at Davidson County’s top lenders based on total number of all loans, commercial and residential. Only loans that have the actual lender name listed on the trust deed filing are included.


Great year might have been better if only ...

Data from the Greater Nashville Association of Realtors shows November and sales were up 4 percent over the same period last year.


No secret Munchak needs to win out

It’s amazing what can apparently pass for “breaking news” around the NFL these days.


Wiechart is new president, CEO of Capella Healthcare

Michael Wiechart has been named president and CEO of Capella Healthcare, effective January 1.


Social media fails of 2013

Social media is a terrific opportunity to engage with the marketplace and build brand loyalty. Unfortunately, along with the reward comes risk. When a social media campaign backfires, your failure can be quite public.


The healing continues

With another successful earnings season in the books, earnings news will move to the backburner for financial market observers. In the midst of this earnings vacuum, economic news moves to the forefront, as investors try to determine if the strong earnings will be sustainable via a healing economy. Or, if the economic support is beginning to deteriorate, perhaps earnings have peaked.


Winning by realizing what’s important – customers

Your next biggest competitor has established a real game-changer.


A new script for avoiding unwanted phone calls

Last week, I thanked all who had weighed in on the issue of stopping unwanted calls from marketers. One contributor (“Tanya”) sent me what was represented as something that had helped “cut down on phone calls to me.”


A warm, hearty solution for leftover turkey

I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving, wherever and with whomever you celebrated. In my opinion, the time of year when families and friends gather and share a meal together is the most wonderful time of the year.


Nashville residents rank 12th for volunteering

NASHVILLE (AP) — Metropolitan Nashville residents are 12th in the nation for volunteering, according to the annual Volunteering and Civic Life in America report.


Fire crews make progress in Hickman County industrial fire

NASHVILLE (AP) - Firefighters are making progress against a large industrial fire at a federal Superfund site in central Tennessee, an official said Thursday.


Tennessee Supreme Court says Wal-Mart lawsuit can proceed

NASHVILLE (AP) — The state Supreme Court has ruled that a woman injured in a Wal-Mart parking lot in Red Bank can proceed with her negligence lawsuit against the store.


US existing-home sales drop for 3rd straight month

WASHINGTON (AP) — The number of people who bought existing U.S. homes in November declined for the third straight month. Higher mortgage rates have made home-buying more expensive, while the lingering effect of the October government shutdown might have deterred some sales.

Weekly US jobless claims hit 8-month high of 379K

WASHINGTON (AP) — The number of people seeking U.S. unemployment benefits rose 10,000 last week to a seasonally adjusted 379,000, the highest since March. The increase may reflect volatility around the Thanksgiving holidays.

Stocks fall back on Wall Street a day after surge

NEW YORK (AP) — Stocks pulled back from record levels Thursday after surging a day earlier. The market gained the most in more than two months Wednesday after the Federal Reserve said it was trimming its stimulus efforts, which investors saw as a vote of confidence in the economy.

Bernanke's new formula for pleasing investors

WASHINGTON (AP) — In his final performance, Ben Bernanke rewrote the script.

Oil holds near $98 after Fed stimulus decision

The price of oil remained near $98 Thursday on a fall in U.S. crude stockpiles and optimism about growing demand in the world's largest consumer.

Average US rate on 30-year loan rises to 4.47 pct.

WASHINGTON (AP) — Average U.S. rates for fixed mortgages rose slightly this week but remained near historically low levels.

Facebook to offer 70 million shares

MENLO PARK, Calif. (AP) — Facebook plans to offer 70 million shares of its Class A stock in a sale that includes more than 41 million shares from chairman and CEO Mark Zuckerberg, who also will buy Class B shares that carry more voting weight.

Target: 40M card accounts might be breached

Target says about 40 million credit and debit card accounts may be affected by a data breach that occurred just as the holiday shopping season shifted into high gear.

Answers to questions about the Target data breach

NEW YORK (AP) — With less than a week until Christmas, a real-life Grinch has stolen the credit and debit card information of about 40 million Target shoppers.

Darden looking to spin off or sell Red Lobster

ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — Darden Restaurants Inc. is looking to either spin off or sell Red Lobster, part of its plan to boost shareholder value.


White House greets budget deal with caution, hope

WASHINGTON (AP) — There were no champagne corks popping at the White House after Congress passed a two-year budget deal, no declarations of a new era of cooperation in President Barack Obama's second term.


Nashville gets $25K Cities of Service grant

NASHVILLE (AP) — Nashville is one of 23 U.S. cities to win a $25,000 grant that supports mayors who are implementing strategies to address local challenges.


Auto parts supplier Aisin expanding in East Tennessee

NASHVILLE (AP) — Parts supplier Aisin Automotive Casting Tennessee Inc. is planning a $54 million expansion in Anderson County and will add 81 jobs over the next two years.


Fed foresees slightly lower unemployment in 2014

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Federal Reserve expects unemployment to fall a bit further over the next two years than it thought in September and expects inflation to remain below the Fed's target level.

Holiday shopping season: a disappointment so far

NEW YORK (AP) — Sparse crowds at malls and "50 percent off" signs at The Gap, AnnTaylor and other stores give a clue as to how the holiday season is going.

Fed will reduce bond purchases by $10B in January

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Federal Reserve has decided to reduce its stimulus for the U.S. economy because the job market has shown steady improvement. The shift could lead to higher long-term borrowing rates for individuals and businesses.

US stocks soar after Fed says economy is improving

NEW YORK (AP) — Stocks are surging after the Federal Reserve decided the economy was strong enough for it to reduce its stimulus efforts.

Oil gains after Fed decision, drop in supplies

NEW YORK (AP) — The price of oil bounced around but closed with a gain Wednesday as the U.S. Federal Reserve decided to start to reduce its monetary stimulus and U.S. oil supplies fell for a third straight week.

Delta: No voice calls on our planes

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Delta Air Lines won't allow passengers to make voice calls from its planes.

US home construction hits highest pace in 5 years

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. builders broke ground on homes at the fastest pace in more than five years, strong evidence that the housing recovery is accelerating despite higher mortgage rates.

FedEx 2Q net income misses estimates

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Rate increases helped FedEx Corp. post net income that was 14 percent higher than a year earlier, when superstorm Sandy hurt business.


Bipartisan budget agreement clears Congress

WASHINGTON (AP) — Congress sent President Barack Obama legislation Wednesday scaling back across-the-board cuts on programs ranging from the Pentagon to the national park system, adding a late dusting of bipartisanship to a year more likely to be remembered for a partial government shutdown and near-perpetual gridlock.

How budget deal should help support US economy

WASHINGTON (AP) — Congress is on the verge of doing something it hasn't done during three years of partisan warfare: Passing a budget deal that won't likely hurt the economy.


Influential country singer Ray Price dead at 87

DALLAS (AP) — Good friends like Willie Nelson and Merle Haggard got more credit for their contrary ways and trend-setting ideas, but it was Ray Price who set the precedent for change in country music more than a decade earlier.

Merle Haggard calls Ray Price 'the first outlaw'

NASHVILLE (AP) - Merle Haggard can still remember the first time he heard Ray Price's voice come out of the radio, fronting Lefty Frizzell's band on "If You're Ever Lonely Darling" in 1951. And the memory of hearing "I'll Be There" for the first time in 1954 still makes him break out into song.


Haslam names Holly Kirby to Tennessee Supreme Court

NASHVILLE (AP) - Gov. Bill Haslam has named Appeals Judge Holly M. Kirby to join the state Supreme Court after Justice Janice Holder retires next year.

State Funding Board projects 2.2-2.9 pct. growth

NASHVILLE (AP) - The State Funding Board has made its revenue projections for the upcoming budget year.

Corker spokeswoman leaving to work for Haslam

NASHVILLE (AP) — Laura Herzog is leaving her position as spokeswoman for U.S. Sen. Bob Corker in Washington to become deputy director of communications for Gov. Bill Haslam in Nashville.


Turner to remain caucus chairman

NASHVILLE (AP) — State Rep. Mike Turner has decided to remain House Democratic Caucus chairman.


Nashville airport getting new nonstop to LaGuardia

NASHVILLE (AP) — Nashville International Airport is adding a daily nonstop flight to New York City's LaGuardia Airport.

Sensabaugh, teammates helping feed 250 families

NASHVILLE (AP) — Titans cornerback Coty Sensabaugh and some of his teammates have worked with Second Harvest Food Bank of Middle Tennessee to help feed more than 250 families.


Judge's word on NSA program won't be the last

WASHINGTON (AP) — A federal judge made headlines Monday by declaring that the National Security Agency's bulk collection of millions of Americans' telephone records is likely unconstitutional. But even he realized his won't be the last word on the issue.


GM to invest $1.3B in 5 factories

DETROIT (AP) — Five General Motors factories in three states will soon share in a $1.3 billion investment so they can make higher-quality pickup trucks and new fuel-efficient engines and transmissions.


Stocks slip as Fed starts stimulus discussion

NEW YORK (AP) — Nobody wanted to stick their neck out on Tuesday.

Crude oil edges lower as Fed decision looms

The price of oil edged lower Tuesday as investors wait to see whether or not the U.S. Federal Reserve will decide to start reducing its monetary stimulus this week.

AP survey: US income gap is holding back economy

WASHINGTON (AP) — The growing gap between the richest Americans and everyone else isn't bad just for individuals.

US homebuilder confidence surges in December

U.S. homebuilders' confidence bounced back strongly this month, a sign that construction and industry hiring may pick up in coming months.

Facebook testing video advertisements

NEW YORK (AP) — Facebook said Tuesday that it's testing video advertisements that show up in its users' news feeds, creating another potential source of advertising revenue for the social network.

Google's top searches peer into society's mindset

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Death, devices and celebrity drove the quest for more information on Google's search engine this year.

US consumer prices flat as gas costs keep falling

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. consumer prices stayed flat in November, held down by falling gas prices. Inflation remains low across the broader economy, giving the Federal Reserve latitude to continue its extraordinary stimulus program.

US current account drops to $94.8 billion in 3Q

WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. current account deficit narrowed in the July-September quarter to the lowest level in four years as a rise in Americans' foreign investment earnings helped offset a bigger deficit in goods.

Obama to meet with tech CEOs amid NSA concerns

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama is meeting Tuesday with executives from leading technology companies, including Google, Twitter and Apple.


Budget bill moves toward final passage in Senate

WASHINGTON (AP) — A bipartisan budget bill that would ease some but not all of painful budget cuts that would otherwise slam the Pentagon and domestic agencies passed a pivotal test in the Senate on Tuesday.

Budget deal splits GOP leaders in House, Senate

WASHINGTON (AP) — Senate Republican leaders are criticizing a bipartisan budget deal, parting ways with their House counterparts who shepherded the measure through that chamber last week.


NSA phone record collection ruled unconstitutional

WASHINGTON (AP) — A federal judge ruled Monday that the National Security Agency's bulk collection of phone records violates the Constitution's ban on unreasonable searches, but put his decision on hold pending a near-certain government appeal.


Panel recommends extending annexation moratorium

NASHVILLE (AP) - A state panel has recommended extending a moratorium on municipal annexations while a study on the practice continues.

Alexander's fired chief of staff ordered freed

WASHINGTON (AP) — The fired chief of staff for Tennessee Sen. Lamar Alexander will live with his parents in Maryland and be electronically monitored while he awaits trial on charges of possession and attempted distribution of child pornography.


MTSU, Alabama A&M sign scientific research pact

MURFREESBORO (AP) — The presidents of Middle Tennessee State University and Alabama A&M have signed a pact for scientific research.


Outgoing GM CEO: Taxpayers gained on bailout

WASHINGTON (AP) — Retiring General Motors CEO Dan Akerson says the government bailout of his company was a net gain for taxpayers — even though they lost $10.5 billion in the deal.


US stocks up sharply at close

NEW YORK (AP) — Corporate deals and fresh evidence of a stronger economy are giving the stock market a jolt.

Oil above $97 on Europe hopes, Libyan disruption

The price of oil rose above $97 a barrel Monday after new signals that Europe's economy is on the mend and the ongoing closure of export terminals in Libya.

US factory output rises solid 0.6 pct. in November

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. factories increased output in November for the fourth straight month, led by a surge in auto production. The gains show manufacturing is strengthening and could help boost economic growth at the end of the year.

US worker output rises at best pace in 4 years

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. workers boosted their productivity from July through September at the fastest pace since the end of 2009, adding to signs of stronger economic growth.

FDA raises safety concerns on antibacterial soaps

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Food and Drug Administration says there is no evidence that antibacterial chemicals used in liquid soaps and washes help prevent the spread of germs, and there is some evidence they may pose health risks.

Amazon workers in Germany on strike over wages

BERLIN (AP) — Hundreds of workers at Amazon.com in Germany have walked off the job in an effort to put pressure on the American online retailer in the busy days before Christmas to settle on a new wage agreement.

Possible China deal could pep up iPhone sales

BEIJING (AP) — Apple Inc. might have a chance to pep up cooling iPhone sales in China if it finally can reach a deal with the world's biggest phone carrier.


Federal workers' pensions targeted in budget deal

WASHINGTON (AP) — Distinctly unpopular among voters and a scant presence in most congressional districts, federal workers have become an easy target in the hunt for budget savings.


Haslam unsure of reason for few Supreme Court applicants

NASHVILLE (AP) - They sit at the pinnacle of Tennessee's justice system, enjoying power, privileges, prestige - and even a job nearly for life, once in office.


Titans asking fans to donate new toys vs. Arizona

NASHVILLE (AP) — The Tennessee Titans are asking fans to help with Christmas by bringing donations for the Toys for Tots drive before Sunday's game against Arizona.


4 sites selected for company investment

NASHVILLE (AP) — The Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development has announced four new locations ready for company investment.

Ex-Alexander Senate staffer appears in court on porn charges

WASHINGTON (AP) - The fired chief of staff for Sen. Lamar Alexander made his first court appearance Thursday on charges of possession and distribution of child pornography.


Toyota to enter accelerator settlement negotiations

SANTA ANA, Calif. (AP) — After a four-year legal battle, Toyota is entering settlement talks on hundreds of lawsuits that allege sudden unintended acceleration problems with its vehicles led to deaths and injuries.

GM gets about $343 million for PSA stake

DETROIT (AP) — General Motors Co. got about $343 million for its 7 percent stake in French automaker PSA Peugeot Citroen.

Ford plans 23 new cars, 5,000 new US jobs in 2014

DEARBORN, Mich. (AP) — Ford Motor Co. says 2014 will be its busiest year ever, with 23 new vehicles being introduced around the world.

US cars and trucks hit record gas mileage in 2012

DETROIT (AP) — New cars and trucks sold in the U.S. last year got an average of 23.6 miles per gallon in combined city and highway driving, a record that came mainly through improvements to engines and transmissions, according to the Environmental Protection Agency.

VW replaces head of struggling US division

FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) - Automaker Volkswagen said Thursday it was replacing the head of its U.S. division, which has struggled to reach sales goals.


Health website woes force extension for sickest

WASHINGTON (AP) — Technology problems with President Barack Obama's health care website are forcing the administration to extend a federal insurance plan for some of the sickest patients by a month.

Federal data show health disparities among states

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — Residents in some parts of the U.S. are signing up for health care coverage at a significantly greater rate than others through the new online insurance marketplaces now operating in every state.


US wholesale costs fall for 3rd month on cheap gas

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. wholesale prices dropped in November for the third consecutive month, pushed down again by cheaper gasoline and lower home heating oil costs. But excluding volatile energy costs, inflation was mostly stable.

Stocks close slightly higher after 3-day downturn

A record-breaking rally in stocks paused this week as investors contemplate what's next for the market.

Oil prices down as Libya plans to resume output

The price of oil slid to around $97 a barrel Friday on the possibility of new supplies from Libya and expectations the Federal Reserve will cut its stimulus program.

Consumers' big purchases lift hopes for US economy

WASHINGTON (AP) — Americans ramped up spending at retail businesses in November, providing a boost to the economy just in time for the holidays.

FCC: Lift ban on in-flight calls. DOT: Not so fast

WASHINGTON (AP) — Just because it's safe to use cellphones on a plane, it doesn't mean that passengers should call just to say hello.

Holiday shopping spree not for everyone

NEW YORK (AP) — Many Americans appear to be watching the annual holiday spending ritual from the sidelines this year.

Merrill paying $131.8M to settle SEC charges

WASHINGTON (AP) — Merrill Lynch has agreed to pay $131.8 million to settle U.S. civil charges that it misled investors about risky mortgage bonds it sold ahead of the 2008 financial crisis.


Reid hopes to speed Senate consideration on budget

WASHINGTON (AP) — Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid says he'll meet with his Republican counterpart Mitch McConnell to discuss whether they can speed things up in the Senate and move on a budget agreement and a defense policy bill more quickly.

GOP struggle widens as Boehner rebukes hard right

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Republican establishment's much-anticipated pushback against the tea party wing is underway. House Speaker John Boehner made that clear Thursday, when he renewed his denunciation of groups that try to defeat GOP incumbents they consider too willing to compromise with Democrats.

House weighs comprehensive defense bill

WASHINGTON (AP) — The House pushed toward passage of a comprehensive defense policy bill on Thursday that would address sexual assault in the ranks, cover the cost of combat pay for the nation's war-fighters and fund new aircraft and ships.

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