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Business & Money

Experts warn against long-term auto loan trend

Friday, February 12, 2016

By Rick Popely Chicago Tribune (TNS) After a year of record new-vehicle sales, automakers, dealers, and the banks and finance companies that issue car loans are jubilantly exchanging high-fives. Analysts list several reasons for record sales of 17.5 million vehicles in 2015, including an improving economy and job market, low interest rates, cheap gas and growth in leasing. New-car sales also are being driven by easy credit: Consumers, many with …

A&B Lawn Care in Sunderland goes above and beyond

Friday, February 12, 2016

SUNDERLAND — A&B Lawn Care started off in jest. Friends Cody Pease and Ryan Jopson met working at Four Seasons Property Maintenance and used to joke about starting their own company. It became a reality last year, when the two started their business in November after hammering out the particulars and finishing the …

US stocks slide again, following global slump

Thursday, February 11, 2016

Jitters over the global economy and steep declines in bank stocks knocked U.S. stocks lower for the fourth day in a row Thursday. The slide in the U.S. followed large losses all around the world and left all three major U.S. indexes down at least 10 percent since the beginning of the year. …

  • KEVIN GUTTING
Parallel Universe: Two strangers pass on Main Street in Northampton as snow intensifies Monday afternoon.

    KEVIN GUTTING Parallel Universe: Two strangers pass on Main Street in Northampton as snow intensifies Monday afternoon. Purchase photo reprints »

  • JERREY ROBERTS
Michelle Perez, of Florence, colors with a pencil during a meeting of an adult coloring group called "Coloring and Kumquats" Thursday at Lilly Library in Florence. The group was organized by her sister, Kim Perez, who is the children's librarian, and Theo Hull, the young adults librarian. Adult coloring has become increasingly popular in the past few years and some coloring books have become best sellers. Michelle took up the hobby about two years ago after breaking her foot. "It's so relaxing. I can do my own thing with it," she said. Kim claims it's like meditation. The group meets Thursdays from 6:30-8 p.m.

    JERREY ROBERTS Michelle Perez, of Florence, colors with a pencil during a meeting of an adult coloring group called "Coloring and Kumquats" Thursday at Lilly Library in Florence. The group was organized by her sister, Kim Perez, who is the children's librarian, and Theo Hull, the young adults librarian. Adult coloring has become increasingly popular in the past few years and some coloring books have become best sellers. Michelle took up the hobby about two years ago after breaking her foot. "It's so relaxing. I can do my own thing with it," she said. Kim claims it's like meditation. The group meets Thursdays from 6:30-8 p.m. Purchase photo reprints »

  • CAROL LOLLIS
Mussels Stuffed with Quinoa and Walnuts

    CAROL LOLLIS Mussels Stuffed with Quinoa and Walnuts Purchase photo reprints »

  • JERREY ROBERTS
Pioneer Valley Performing Arts Charter High School students perform during "Subject to Change", a dance thesis show for seniors, Tuesday in the PVPA Mainstage Theater. This piece, "I Want to Dance", was choreographed by senior Melinda Hurteau.

    JERREY ROBERTS Pioneer Valley Performing Arts Charter High School students perform during "Subject to Change", a dance thesis show for seniors, Tuesday in the PVPA Mainstage Theater. This piece, "I Want to Dance", was choreographed by senior Melinda Hurteau. Purchase photo reprints »

  • CHRIS LINDAHL
Northampton Mayor David Narkewicz and Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito shake hands after signing the Community Compact at Northampton City Hall Thursday.

    CHRIS LINDAHL Northampton Mayor David Narkewicz and Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito shake hands after signing the Community Compact at Northampton City Hall Thursday. Purchase photo reprints »

  • DAN LITTLE
Good Time Stove Company founder Richard Richardson, left, and his daughter Sara LaBonte, who runs the shop with her father, Thursday in Goshen.

    DAN LITTLE Good Time Stove Company founder Richard Richardson, left, and his daughter Sara LaBonte, who runs the shop with her father, Thursday in Goshen. Purchase photo reprints »

Voices of Valley economy: Tight budgets, depleted savings

Monday, February 8, 2016

Route 9 is perhaps the region’s key commercial artery. So it was there the Gazette went last week to see how well the economy is treating everyday people. Dreadfully, said Cheryl Platts, 60, of Baldwinville. Marginally, said Nancy …

ONE BLOCK A look inside the life and business times of 141 Damon Road, Northampton

Monday, February 8, 2016

THE BLOCK: An unlikely set of neighbors share a commercial plaza at 141 Damon Road in Northampton: A hair salon, a mixed martial arts school, and two pentecostal churches. These local businesses operate alongside an electronics store and …

Q&A: In what ways can a small business or an individual declaring bankruptcy disrupt the local economy?

Monday, February 8, 2016

Alexandra Hogan, an attorney in Springfield with Shatz, Schwartz and Fentin, P.C., specializes in bankruptcy. She was recently selected to serve on the Emerging Insolvency Professionals Subcommittee of the American Bankruptcy Institute. In this Q&A, she explores the …

Area business briefs

Monday, February 8, 2016

Easthampton Chamber holds networking event EASTHAMPTON — The Greater Easthampton Chamber of Commerce will sponsor a Networking by Night event from 5 to 7 p.m. Thursday, at the Glendale Grill, 65 Glendale St. There will be a cash bar and door prizes. The event is sponsored by Canon …

Mass. hydropower plan could change region’s energy landscape

Sunday, February 7, 2016

BOSTON — Tapping into Canadian hydropower is hardly a new concept in energy-starved New England. But Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker’s proposal to authorize long-term contracts between utilities and hydropower producers is being viewed in some quarters as a …

Costco delays credit card switch

Friday, February 5, 2016

SEATTLE — Costco’s switch from American Express to Visa is being pushed back to this summer. Costco Wholesale had previously announced that the switch in the only credit card it will accept in its U.S. stores would happen in April. It’s now saying that transition will happen in …

Congress unites in scorn for Shkreli, but gridlock remains

Friday, February 5, 2016

WASHINGTON — A smirking Martin Shkreli briefly united Democrats and Republicans on Capitol Hill this week, as lawmakers took turns blasting the price-hiking former CEO who has become the new poster child for corporate greed. But the gridlocked …

Lawsuit challenges tribal reservation decision

Friday, February 5, 2016

TAUNTON, Mass. — A group of Massachusetts residents is challenging the federal government’s decision to grant the Mashpee Wampanoag tribe reservation lands to build a casino. The lawsuit filed Thursday in Boston federal court argues the U.S. Department of the Interior is not authorized to take lands into …

Stocks lose more ground as jobs report disappoints

Friday, February 5, 2016

NEW YORK — Stocks posted steep losses Friday, ending the week with broad declines, as investors fretted over a report showing that U.S. job creation slowed last month. Technology stocks fell especially hard, and shares of LinkedIn had …

Thaw triggers sap run in maple country

Thursday, February 4, 2016

WEST TOPSHAM, Vt. (AP) — A winter thaw in the Northeast has triggered sap to flow in maple trees, launching an early start to the syrup season for some producers in parts of New England who have already …