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VOL. 37 | NO. 51 | Friday, December 20, 2013

Randy Rayburn adapts to competition from the booming Middle Tennessee restaurant scene he helped create

Restaurateur Randy Rayburn made headlines recently when he announced that his 23-year-old Sunset Grill would close for lunch and that he was naming executive chef Chris Cunningham as a managing partner.

Songwriting guild connects Irish, US artists

Nick Nichols’ story – familiar to any Nashville songwriter, waiter, construction worker, masseuse or bellhop – may be taking a turn for success thanks to the quixotic Internet song-plugging mission of an Irishman who lives in Spain.

Online songwriting exchange helps bypass Row’s ‘politics’

Gerald Smith’s voice slips in after the fiddle, steel and snare intro of “Apart,” one of 21 of his songs that are being peddled internationally on the Irish (And International) Songwriters Guild’s web page.

Restaurants offer alternative to holiday cooking

Between out-of-town guests, last-minute shopping and “helping” Santa assemble toys through the wee hours of morning, preparing a Christmas feast is a task that seems to be losing its appeal.

Local Weather
Today
Nashville, TN
42°F
Partly Cloudy
Wind: 12 mph
Humidity: 43%

EVENTS

Wilson County Festival of Lights. Holiday driving tour every Thursday-Sunday through Dec. 31, 5-9 p.m. at the Wilson County Fairgrounds. Admission is $5 per car. Information: 444-5503.

more events »

REAL ESTATE

Adding lead generation group works for Sumner's HALO Realty

The holidays are hectic, but that’s not what has Mark Williams, principal broker and master auctioneer with HALO Realty in Hendersonville, busier than he’s ever been during the three years he has worked with the company.

Top Midstate commercial real estate transactions for Nov. 2013

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

REALTY CHECK

Like coaches, Realtors must have many skills

Mike Munchak is the embattled and endangered head coach of the Tennessee Titans, whose team cannot seem to win football games. The franchise spent $100 million on free agent talent during the off season, a move to hire great players to replace those that were not.

TERRY McCORMICK

Hard to convince Titans fans the team is in ‘winning business’

At long last, Tommy Smith made himself available to the media.

NEWSMAKERS

Stone is elected president of Realtors group

Hagan Stone has been elected president of the Greater Nashville Association of Realtors for 2014. Stone, who is affiliated with the Brentwood office of Pilkerton Realtors, begins his one-year term Jan. 1.

NASHVILLE AREA

Groundbreaking slavery exhibit set for Tennessee State Museum

A groundbreaking exhibit about the slaves and slaveholders who worked and resided at a distinctive plantation in Tennessee will open next year at the Tennessee State Museum in Nashville.

GUERRILLA MARKETING

2015 projections: Good year for Google+, bad for FourSquare

If you’ve found yourself on the sidelines, hesitant to commit to social media, it’s time to get in the game. Social media is here for the long haul, and every day that you delay you’re losing market share and handing your competitors a coveted competitive advantage.

THE WORLDLY INVESTOR

The Economy in 2013: Naughty and Nice

Thanks to the Federal Reserve’s dedication to increasing your net worth, 2013 will go down as one of the most prosperous years on file. Stock prices have increased more than 20 percent and U.S. home prices have increased nearly 15 percent.

I SWEAR

Hopelessly hooked on teen-adventure book series

Brian Robeson, 13, is the passenger in a Cessna. He’s headed to visit his dad in northern Canada for the summer. The pilot dies of a heart attack. Brian crash-lands the plane in a lake surrounded by a dense forest. Can he survive?

KAY'S COOKING CORNER

Who needs meat for great grilled meal?

I really got into grilling vegetables and fruits this summer. I replaced my gas grill with charcoal after, years earlier, replacing my charcoal burner with a gas grill, something I consider a mistake.

MIDSTATE

Cracker Barrel's top shareholder may make bid

Cracker Barrel's largest shareholder says he is considering a bid for the restaurant chain as part of his efforts to change the company.

AUTO INDUSTRY

Mary Barra, a child of GM, prepares to lead it

DETROIT (AP) — When Mary Barra was born in 1961, General Motors was selling half the cars on U.S. roads.

HEALTH CARE

Avoiding health insurance gaps takes persistence

CHICAGO (AP) — The deadline has passed, and so too the surprise grace period, for signing up for health insurance as part of the nation's health care law.

Health insurance guide: 3 next steps for enrollees

The Christmas Eve deadline to enroll via HeatlhCare.gov for health care insurance that starts Jan. 1 has passed.

NATIONAL BUSINESS

Weekly US jobless claims drop 42K to 338K

WASHINGTON (AP) — The number of Americans applying for unemployment benefits dropped by 42,000 last week to a seasonally adjusted 338,000, the biggest drop since November 2012. But economists say the figures from late November and December are warped by seasonal volatility around the Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year's holidays.

Stocks edge higher in early trading; T-Mobile up

NEW YORK (AP) — Stocks are opening higher on Wall Street as traders return from the Christmas holiday.

Crude oil prices edge further above $99

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — Oil prices edged up above $99 Thursday, the first trading day after Christmas, as violence in South Sudan stoked concerns about the country's oil production.

Santa's sleigh delayed after snags at UPS, FedEx

NEW YORK (AP) — Santa's sleigh didn't make it in time for Christmas for some this year due to shipping problems at UPS and FedEx.


TUESDAY, DECEMBER 24
MIDSTATE

Montgomery County gets grant for tire shredder

NASHVILLE (AP) — The Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation has awarded about $2.3 million recycling grants.

NATIONAL BUSINESS

US stocks edge higher ahead of Christmas holiday

NEW YORK (AP) — An unexpectedly large increase in orders for manufactured goods helped push stock prices higher on Wall Street.

US sales of new homes slipped 2.1 percent in November

WASHINGTON (AP) — Sales of new homes slipped slightly in November after a big surge the previous month. The figures add to evidence that the housing market is struggling to sustain the pace of its recovery.

US mortgage applications tumble to a 13-year low

WASHINGTON (AP) — The number of Americans applying for mortgages has fallen 63 percent since a May peak, reflecting a cooling housing market and higher borrowing rates.

Holiday sales down for 3rd week

NEW YORK (AP) — Stores are hoping Americans who've been tight-fisted with their money will get the last-minute itch to buy in the final week of the holiday shopping season.

US durable goods orders jumped 3.5 pct. in Nov.

WASHINGTON (AP) — Businesses stepped up their orders for long-lasting manufactured goods in November. And a key category that signals business investment plans climbed at the fastest pace in 10 months.

Crude oil edges above $99, adding to recent gains

The price of oil inched up above $99 a barrel Tuesday as hopes over the U.S. economy continued to drive up expectations over the country's demand for energy.

AmEx will pay at least $75.7M in settlement

NEW YORK (AP) — American Express has agreed to pay at least $75.7 million to end an investigation by regulators into some discontinued card products.

Target: Justice Dept. investigates its data breach

NEW YORK (AP) — Target Corp. said Monday that the Department of Justice is investigating the credit and debit card security breach at the retailer.

Disney CEO's pay package shrunk 7 percent in 2013

Disney CEO Bob Iger's pay package shrank 7 percent for 2013, despite the entertainment company's strong financial performance during the year.


MONDAY, DECEMBER 23
STATEWIDE

Tennessee among 3 states to get $1M higher-ed grant

NASHVILLE (AP) — Tennessee is one of three states receiving a million dollar grant to increase on-time college completion rates.

TDOT to halt highway construction for holidays

NASHVILLE (AP) — The Tennessee Transportation Department is halting highway construction for the busy holiday travel period.

NASHVILLE AREA

Nashville Predators hosting Red Cross blood drive

NASHVILLE (AP) — The Nashville Predators are hosting an American Red Cross blood drive before their Monday match against the Boston Bruins.

HEALTH CARE

A second wind for health law? Or just hot air?

WASHINGTON (AP) — Whether you love it or hate it or are just plain confused by it, you've got to give the health care law this much: There's plenty of drama.

NATIONAL BUSINESS

Apple, other tech stocks lift the broader market

NEW YORK (AP) — Stocks rose in quiet trading Monday as investors start to close the books on 2013.

Oil slips below $99 a barrel; pump price rises

NEW YORK (AP) — The price of oil slipped a bit Monday after gaining more than $2 last week.

US consumer spending rose 0.5 percent in November

WASHINGTON (AP) — Americans increased their spending in November by the most in five months, and their income edged up modestly.

Jos. A. Bank turns down Men's Wearhouse offer

NEW YORK (AP) — Jos. A. Bank rejected a takeover offer from competitor Men's Wearhouse, saying the $1.54 billion bid is too low.

Weak US card security made Target a juicy target

NEW YORK (AP) — The U.S. is the juiciest target for hackers hunting credit card information. And experts say incidents like the recent data theft at Target's stores will get worse before they get better.

Apple reaches deal to bring iPhone to China Mobile

BEIJING (AP) — Apple and China Mobile announced a long-anticipated agreement Monday to bring the iPhone to the world's biggest phone company.

NATIONAL POLITICS

Congress does little of consequence, except argue

WASHINGTON (AP) — Call it a steady diet of gridlock, with "Green Eggs and Ham" on the side.


FRIDAY, DECEMBER 20
STATEWIDE

Tennessee November unemployment rate is 8.1 percent

NASHVILLE (AP) — Tennessee's unemployment rate for November was 8.1 percent, four-tenths of one percentage point lower than the previous month.

NASHVILLE AREA

State Supreme Court Justice Koch to retire in July, lead Nashville School of Law

NASHVILLE (AP) - State Supreme Court Justice Bill Koch plans to retire from the bench next year to become dean of the Nashville School of Law.

MIDSTATE

Industrial fire at Hickman County Superfund site put out

NASHVILLE (AP) - A large industrial fire at a federal Superfund site in central Tennessee has been put out and an evacuation order that affected about 300 people has been lifted.

Peabody ducks retire to Jack Daniel's distillery

LYNCHBURG (AP) — A group of ducks retiring from service at Memphis' Peabody Hotel has moved to Lynchburg.

HEALTH CARE

Options set for those lacking new health coverage

WASHINGTON (AP) — People whose existing health care insurance has been canceled because of the Affordable Care Act will not be hit with tax penalties for failing to line up new coverage as required under the law.

Overhaul website problems may trigger price hikes

Problems with the government's main health care overhaul website carry a bigger risk than frequent crashes: Higher prices could follow for many Americans if technical troubles scare off young people.

AUTO INDUSTRY

Cuba lifting restriction on purchase of cars

HAVANA (AP) — Cuba is opening its automobile market and its roads to thousands of late-model cars by eliminating a special permit that sharply restricted the number of people allowed to buy vehicles from the state, the government announced Thursday.

NATIONAL BUSINESS

Stocks rise after strong US economic growth

NEW YORK (AP) — Stocks are closing higher on Wall Street after the U.S. raised its estimate for economic growth in the third quarter.

Oil rises on improved US economic growth

NEW YORK (AP) — The price of oil edged closer to $100 a barrel Friday after the U.S. government said the economy grew at a faster rate in the third quarter than originally estimated.

Stores open for 100 consecutive hours to attract shoppers

NEW YORK (AP) — Some stores are ending the holiday shopping season the same way they began it — with round-the-clock, marathon shopping hours.

US economy expands at 4.1 percent rate

WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. economy grew at a solid 4.1 percent annual rate from July through September, the fastest pace since late 2011 and significantly higher than previously believed. Much of the upward revision came from stronger consumer spending.

BlackBerry posts 3Q loss of $4.4B

TORONTO (AP) — BlackBerry reported a massive $4.4 billion loss in the third quarter and 56 percent drop in revenue in its first results under new chairman and interim chief executive John Chen who hopes to make the company profitable again by 2016.

In God we trust, maybe, but not each other

WASHINGTON (AP) — You can take our word for it. Americans don't trust each other anymore.

Fury and frustration over Target data breach

NEW YORK (AP) — Potential victims of credit card fraud tied to Target's security breach said they had trouble contacting the discounter through its website and call centers.

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.

Mortgage manager agrees to $2B deal over loan abuses

WASHINGTON (AP) — Ocwen Financial Corp. will reduce struggling borrowers' loan balances by $2 billion in an agreement with federal regulators and 49 states over foreclosure abuses.

NATIONAL POLITICS

Senate votes preliminary OK for Yellen to lead Fed

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Senate has cleared the way for Janet Yellen to succeed Ben Bernanke as head of the Federal Reserve.

Senate confirms turnaround specialist to head IRS

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Senate voted Friday to confirm a retired corporate and government turnaround specialist to head the Internal Revenue Service, an agency recovering from scandal as it gears up to play a big role in implementing the president's health care law.

Congress sends sweeping defense bill to Obama

WASHINGTON (AP) — The women of the Senate who led the fight to change how the military deals with sexual assault in its ranks are hailing passage of a comprehensive defense bill that now heads to President Barack Obama for his signature.

Senate leader vows Jan. vote on jobless benefits

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Senate's top Democrat promised Thursday that the chamber would vote in early January on extending jobless benefits for the long-term unemployed.

FDA says it will delay proposed food safety rules

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Food and Drug Administration will delay sweeping food safety rules proposed earlier this year and revise them to better accommodate farmers and businesses who would be affected.

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RECORD TOTALS DAY WEEK YEAR
PROPERTY SALES 0 0 0
MORTGAGES 0 0 0
FORECLOSURE NOTICES 0 0 0
BUILDING PERMITS 0 0 0
BANKRUPTCIES 0 0 0
BUSINESS LICENSES 0 0 0
UTILITY CONNECTIONS 0 0 0
MARRIAGE LICENSES 0 0 0