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Hanover’s 3 Guys Basement Barbecue Closes

Friday, August 22, 2014

Hanover — 3 Guys Basement Barbecue had its last day this past Sunday, as its owner, Nigel Leeming, has shuttered the restaurant, which despite good reviews hadn’t been making enough money over the summer. “It wasn’t performing the way I wanted it to, financially, and I didn’t want to put more money in to get it to where it needed to be,” Leeming, who also owns the neighboring Murphy’s on …

Inflation Rears Head At Fed

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Washington — Federal Reserve officials at their last policy meeting debated an earlier-than-expected move in raising interest rates, suggesting the central bank may be shifting to a more aggressive stance in light of the recent pick-up in job growth and inflation. Although Fed officials remain divided in their assessment of the labor market, the minutes from the last policy meeting, released Wednesday, reflected …

Greener Pastures Signal Rebound for Beef Industry

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Chicago — Pasture conditions in the U.S., the world’s largest beef producer, are mostly recovered from a 2012 drought that forced ranchers to shrink the domestic herd to a 63-year low. While it takes years to reverse a decline in animal supply, record-high beef prices and the increasing availability of cheap feed are providing incentives for some producers to begin expanding. A production …

USDA Overhauls Decades-Old Poultry Plant Inspection Rules

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Washington — The Obama administration is overhauling poultry plant inspections for the first time in more than 50 years, a move it says could result in 5,000 fewer foodborne illnesses each year. Final rules, announced July 31, would reduce the number of government poultry inspectors. But those who …

Almonds: America’s Favorite Nut Now

Sunday, August 10, 2014

America has a new favorite nut. The country’s appetite for almonds has grown by more than 220 percent since 2005 — far faster than demand for pecans, walnuts, macadamias, pistachios, cashews or peanuts. The rise is even more startling when compared to the early 1970s, when the average …

Money Talk: Student Loan Debt Doesn’t Disappear

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Question: My daughter graduated from college seven years ago and moved to London. She has not paid her student loans. Do they drop off her credit reports like other unpaid debt? What about the government’s ability to collect? Does that expire as well? Answer: The government can pursue …

Consumer Confidential: Patients Throw Cold Water on Cost for Post-Op Cooling Device

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Why treat someone with a $200 medical device when you can get similar results with a $17,500 gadget? The answer to that question helps explain why Americans pay far more for health care on average than anyone else in the world, and why patients’ medical woes are viewed …

Sprint, T-Mobile Failure Not a Boon for Consumers

Sunday, August 10, 2014

San Francisco — “Consumers Win,” shouted the subject line of the e-mail that rushed into reporters’ inboxes soon after the news emerged that Sprint was abandoning its bid for T-Mobile US. Combining the third- and fourth-biggest U.S. mobile-phone companies would have meant higher prices and less competition in …

Experts Split on Robot Impact

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Washington — In 2025, self-driving cars could be the norm, people could have more leisure time and goods could become cheaper. Or, there could be chronic unemployment and an even wider income gap, human interaction could become a …

Canada Luxury Shoppers Gain U.S. Chains’ Favor

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Toronto — Luxury shoppers in Canada, for years ignored by upscale American chains, are finally getting some respect. Nordstrom, the largest U.S. luxury department-store chain, plans to open six Canadian stores this year through 2017. Saks Fifth Avenue, still run from New York even after its takeover by …

Wheels: Big Luxury in a Pleasantly Small Package

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Newport, R.I. — This stunningly beautiful town, bounded by three bodies of water, has been our family’s summer vacation spot for five years. We always drive — choosing a car small enough to easily navigate Newport’s narrow streets, powerful enough to safely get us through the mayhem of …

Nuts and Bolts: 2015 Audi A3

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Bottom line: The 2015 Audi A3 sedan is one of the best small luxury cars available. Hint: Audi could make this one even more attractive by installing a rearview backup camera and blind-side warning system as standard equipment on all A3 models. That would raise production costs. But …

OKCupid Used Its Daters as Lab Rats, And That’s OK

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Online daters continue to express outrage about the revelation that OKCupid has been experimenting on users by telling them they matched well with people they had nothing in common with to see if they still got along anyway. Many feel they have been treated like lab rats. OKCupid …