Service providers note slight growth
A trade group said Tuesday that service-providing companies in September grew at a slightly faster pace than in August. Still, economists say the pickup is still too modest to bring down the unemployment rate.
• Demand increase: The bump was because of increased new orders, a gauge of future business, and slower deliveries of goods to companies. That’s a good sign, because it suggests suppliers are busier.
• What’s counted? Health care, retail, financial services and other major employers are included in the survey.
Lincoln dealers to be cut by a third
Ford Motor Co. plans to eliminate more than a third of its Lincoln dealers as part of its effort to revive the luxury brand, according to a dealer who attended a closed-door meeting Tuesday.
Ford revealed the plan to its 1,100 Lincoln dealers at the meeting in Dearborn, Mich. Ramon Alvarez, who owns a Lincoln, Mercury and Jaguar dealership said Ford has identified 130 market areas where the brand has the best chance. It plans to consolidate its dealerships into those areas.
• GM plan: An Associated Press source says GM plans to announce on Thursday that Buick will get a luxury version of the Chevrolet Cruze that will be called the Verano. The Cruze is a new compact that is just reaching dealerships. The Verano will go on sale at the start of 2012.
Whitman County drops contract
MOSCOW – After months of work and racking up thousands in bills, Whitman County commissioners are looking to cut loose Spokane accounting firm Anderson-Peretti & Co. – for the time being.
• Work being done: Anderson-Peretti has been helping the county figure out a discrepancy in their cash balance and compile information for a state audit. Now commissioners would like to hold off on renewing the firm’s contract until next year.
• The cost: Including the latest bill for $9,724, the county will have spent $41,282 on the firm since January. The money comes out of the budget of the finance department, which was dismantled in June. Commissioner Greg Partch said the county will likely again work with the agency to create new policies for the county’s finances.
Moscow-Pullman Daily News
Too much noise over green bags for Frito
Frito-Lay hopes to quiet complaints about its noisy SunChips bags by switching out the biodegradable bags for the old packaging on most flavors.
The company is switching back to original packaging, which is made of a type of plastic, for five of the six varieties of the chips. It will keep biodegradable bags for its sixth variety, its original plain flavor.
The bags were launched in April 2009 with a big marketing effort to play up their compostability because they’re made from plants and not plastic.