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Consumer News

This Tuesday, Jan. 6, 2015 photo shows an Etsy mobile credit card reader, in New York. If craft seller Etsy goes public later this year it will be a test of how well the company can balance an explicit social mission with shareholder expectations for making money. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan)

Can Etsy stay folksy while making shareholders money?

Thursday, March 5, 2015

NEW YORK — If craft seller Etsy goes public later this year it will be a test of how well the company can balance an explicit social mission with shareholder expectations for making money. Founded in 2005, Brooklyn-based Etsy sells everything from a $110,000 antique desk from the 1800s to a $20 handmade antler pendant, and everything in between. In …

Harold Tramazzo, owner of Hangar Pub and Grill, takes over operations at Amherst Brewing Co.

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

AMHERST — The owner of the Hangar Pub and Grill is taking over all operations at the nearby Amherst Brewing Co., including food preparation, customer service and beer brewing. Hangar owner Harold Tramazzo said Wednesday that he intends to keep Amherst Brewing moving forward as changes are made to the menu and the seating areas in the restaurant at 10 University Drive. “Amherst …

Former employees André and Devon Boulay take ownership of downtown icon A2Z Science & Learning

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — Florence resident André Boulay remembers trips to Northampton when he was around 7 from his Blandford home — they invariably involved stops at a place he adored, A2Z Science & Learning Store in Thornes Marketplace. Extra special were the times he’d march into the store clutching a postcard he’d received in …

Holly Shed run by Englehardt family in Hatfield a popular seasonal destination

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

HATFIELD — The Englehardt family at 129 West St. gets a lot more visitors at this time of year. For some 40 years they have run the seasonal Holly Shed at their property, selling wreaths, evergreen roping, decorative …

VW workers at Tenn. plant vote for union

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

The United Auto Workers has been certified as the representative of more than 45 percent of Volkswagen’s workers in Chattanooga, Tenn., a major victory for the union, which has been trying to gain a foothold in the South and in foreign auto plants. The results of the independent …

‘Friendly takeover’ at Damon Road car dealership as one Connecticut group poised to buy from another

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

NORTHAMPTON — A change in ownership is underway at the Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep and Ram dealership on Damon Road, marking the second time the business has changed hands in two years. The Mitchell Auto Group, which owns and …

Air-bag maker nixes demand for coast-to-coast recall

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

WASHINGTON — Japan’s Takata Corp. rejected federal regulators’ demand Wednesday for an expanded, nationwide recall of millions of air bags, setting up a possible legal showdown and leaving some drivers to wonder about the safety of their cars. …

Smiles prompted by fund plentiful in these parts

Monday, December 1, 2014

HADLEY — For one single mother who uses scholarships to pay for her son’s participation in youth sports and other activities, the Sidney F. Smith Toy Fund ensures that he won’t be disappointed with his gifts come Christmas. “Sidney Smith has put a smile on his face on …

Slow wage growth, higher costs, search for deals drive cautious holiday spending

Monday, December 1, 2014

Falling gas prices. Soaring stock market. Unemployment at a six-year-low. All signs point to a successful holiday shopping season. Despite the economic tail winds, though, retailers are finding themselves having to work to get shoppers into stores. Why? …

Sales, store visits down on big shopping weekend

Sunday, November 30, 2014

NEW YORK — Black Friday fatigue is setting in. Early discounting, more online shopping and a mixed economy meant fewer people shopped over Thanksgiving weekend, the National Retail Federation said Sunday. Overall, 133.7 million people shopped in stores …

Black Friday relatively low key at Valley shopping destinations

Friday, November 28, 2014

HADLEY — Michele Wojtowicz found the deal she was looking for at the Hampshire Mall on Black Friday: a $150 jacket at J.C. Penney, which she bought for her niece for $29.99. But she didn’t have to trample …

Early-bird shoppers turn out on Thanksgiving in new holiday tradition

Thursday, November 27, 2014

NEW YORK — Early-bird shoppers headed to stores on Thanksgiving in what’s becoming a new holiday tradition. In the Chicago suburb of Naperville, Illinois, the parking lot of a Wal-Mart store was full roughly 30 minutes before Thanksgiving …

US agency threatens to act against air-bag maker

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

DETROIT — U.S. safety regulators threatened fines and legal action against Takata Corp. Wednesday unless the company admits that its driver’s air bag inflators are defective and agrees to a nationwide recall. In a letter to Takata’s Washington …