Archive for July, 2009
I’ll be taking my week-long furlough starting July 25 (back in the office on Monday, August 3). If there is business news that needs immediate attention while I’m gone, please give my boss, Debbie Townsend, a call at 715-2280.
The FDIC has closed two banks as of Friday afternoon (July 24). I’ll update if more are closed, but here are the details of the ones I have:
Bank closure No. 58 in 2009: Waterford Village Bank in Clarence, N.Y. was closed, then taken over by Evans Bank in Angola, N.Y. Cost to the FDIC: $5.6 million.
Bank closure No. 59: Security Bank Corp., in Macon Ga., which has six banks and 20 branches, was closed and then taken over by State Bank and Trust in Pinehurst, Ga. Cost to the FDIC $807 million.
A Bellingham toy store has recently expanded.
Little Tiger Toys recently added nearly 500 feet of shelf space and thousands of new items, including Playmobile! products. At the same time, the store is having a sale, with some products 40 percent off. The sale runs through the end of July.
The store is at 1417 Railroad Ave., near Casa Que Pasa. For details, call 734-0607.
Today (Wednsday, July 22) Tully’s officially opened inside the Sehome Haggen store at Sehome Village. The hours will be Monday-Friday: 5:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Saturday-Sunday: 6:30 a.m. to 7 p.m.
The FDIC hit the West Coast late Friday afternoon, closing two California banks. Here are some details:
– Vineyard Bank of Rancho Cucamonga, Calif. was shut down by the FDIC and taken over by California Bank & Trust. Cost to the FDIC: $579 million.
– No. 57 of the year: Temecula Valley Bank of Temecula, Calif. was shut down, taken over by First Citizens Bank of Raleigh, N.C. Cost to the FDIC: $391 million.
I was looking at the July 17 Puget Sound Business Journal, which had a short article about the number of millionaires in Washington state. It said a study showed that number has declined the past two years.
What surprised me was the number. How many households in Washington state are worth $1 million or more? The answer is… 122,520, or 4.8 percent. Wow, that seems high to me. What do you think?
It’s time for the FDIC’s Friday afternoon bank closures, and so far we have two. I’ll update if we get more:
Bank closure No. 54 of 2009: First Piedmont Bank of Winder, Ga. was closed by the FDIC and taken over by First American Bank in Athens, Ga. Estimated cost to the FDIC: $29 million.
Bank closure No. 55: BankFirst of Sioux Falls, S.D. was closed by the FDIC and taken over by Alerus Financial of Grand Forks, N.D. Cost to the FDIC: $91 million.
The retail store of Johnson Outdoors near Ferndale will be closing on Friday, Aug. 14.
The company will have a sale on remaining inventory, which includes canoes kayaks and paddling accessories. According to a company press release, discounts will be deeper as the closing date nears, but supplies are limited. The Johnson Outdoors manufacturing facility is expected to shut down at the end of September, laying off 90 employees.
The store and manufacturing facility is at 2460 Salashan Loop, off of Grandview Road. The store is open 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Tuesday through Saturday. For details, call the store at 366-4013.
There was a flood of local economic reports this week. It might be a challenge keeping track of them all, so here is a summary of the major reports:
Bankruptcies, Foreclosures for first half of year: Bankruptices up 53 percent locally compared to first half of 2008. Foreclosure notices were up 77 percent for the same period.
Unemployment: Locally it inched upward to 8.4 percent in June; statewide it’s 9.3 percent.
Retail sales: Whatcom County sales down 12.7 percent, the biggest quarterly drop since 1993. Bellingham was down 14.8 percent.
Overall, it’s ugly news but probably expected by most people. Retail sales were steeper than I expected, and Whatcom County unemployment was lower than I would have guessed.
Here are a couple of interesting things I noticed in this week’s Bellingham building permits:
– It appears Fred Meyer is getting a gas station at its Lakeway Drive center. The company applied for building permits for a new fueling facility at the former gas station spot next to Discount Tire.
– Pacific Power Batteries, which sells a variety of truck and heavy equipment batteries, is going through its final occupancy review before opening at 1511 Iowa St. The company has several stores in Western Washington, including in Marysville.