ON AIR NOW

LISTEN NOW

Weather

cloudy-day Created with Sketch.
76°
Scattered Clouds
H 82° L 60°
  • cloudy-day Created with Sketch.
    76°
    Current Conditions
    Partly Cloudy. H NaN° L 59°
  • cloudy-day Created with Sketch.
    NaN°
    Today
    Partly Cloudy. H NaN° L 59°
  • partly-cloudy-tstorms-day Created with Sketch.
    82°
    Tomorrow
    Chance of T-storms. H 82° L 60°
LISTEN
PAUSE
ERROR

Wsb news on-demand

00:00 | 00:00

LISTEN
PAUSE
ERROR

Wsb traffic on-demand

00:00 | 00:00

LISTEN
PAUSE
ERROR

Wsb weather on-demand

00:00 | 00:00

Business News

Business News

  • Alaska Airlines could be headed toward a showdown with Richard Branson over millions of dollars in licensing fees. Alaska took control of Virgin America last year. Branson, the British billionaire who helped create Virgin America, told reporters in Seattle this week that Alaska must pay royalties for the Virgin name under a licensing deal that runs until 2040. But Alaska Airlines has a different opinion because it plans to drop the Virgin brand, probably in 2019. Alaska's general counsel said Wednesday that Branson was correct only about the length of the contract. 'What he didn't mention is there are lots of ways out of the contract,' Kyle Levine said Wednesday. 'No, we do not need to keep paying for a brand that we are not using.' In a written statement, Branson's U.K.-based Virgin Group said the licensing agreement with Alaska has 'clear obligations,' including a royalty payment, and that Alaska has said Virgin America will honor its obligations. Virgin Airlines paid $7.7 million in licensing fees to a Branson-controlled company in its last full year before the Alaska takeover. But that was before a 40 percent rate hike that likely pushed the fee to more than $10 million. Branson has grumbled that he believed Alaska's leaders would value the Virgin brand but have instead ripped the heart out of it. The conflict with Branson resurfaced Wednesday as executives of Alaska, the nation's fifth-biggest carrier, detailed their post-merger strategy to investors in New York. Seattle-based Alaska, which paid $2.6 billion for Virgin America to grow in California, said they will decide by year end whether to eventually dump Virgin's Airbus planes. The company plans to add more seats, making planes more crowded, and will replace Virgin planes that hold fewer than 150 passengers with 178-seat Boeing 737 jets on lucrative transcontinental routes. Alaska will give first-class passengers more legroom by placing rows 41 inches apart, but they decided against lie-flat seats that have proved popular on the bigger airlines. That would require reducing the total number of seats, and Alaska officials said they don't operate enough overnight flights to justify the change. Shares of Alaska Air Group Inc. fell $2.03, or 2.1 percent, to close at $94.30. ___ David Koenig can be reached at http://twitter.com/airlinewriter
  • Shares of Lululemon Athletica Inc. fell more than 17 percent Wednesday after the athletic-inspired sportswear company said it'd had a slow start to the year and offered a weaker outlook than expected for the current quarter. The company known for its yoga gear did report solid growth in both earnings and revenue for its fiscal fourth quarter. CEO Laurent Potdevin, who took the helm in 2014, said that 2016 marked a milestone year where the company returned to positive operating income growth for the first time in three years. But he acknowledged that Lululemon had issues in the early part of this year with the assortment of merchandise it offered shoppers and with visual merchandising. Potdevin promised that people will see more color as early as next week. Lululemon has generally benefited from the shift in athletic wear becoming everyday fashion. But it's also faced stiffer competition from brands like Victoria's Secret, Gap and H&M. Potdevin has said he wants to double sales to $4 billion by 2020, push innovation in products like swimwear and menswear, add more stores in North America and catch up in e-commerce. Lululemon has nearly 400 stores globally in the U.S., Europe, Asia, Australia and elsewhere. The CEO also has been rebuilding after a major product hitch in 2013 that cost the company millions and sent the stock tumbling. Lululemon recalled thousands of its stretchy black yoga pants after customer complaints that they were too sheer. Since then, the company relaunched its website and improved its inventory search to let shoppers check in its app whether items are in stock at a particular store. Lululemon has also revamped its store wall of yoga pants with new fabrics. Lululemon said late Wednesday it earned $136.1 million, or 99 cents per share, for the three months that ended Jan. 29. That compares with $117.4 million, or 85 cents per share, a year earlier. Revenue came to $789.9 million, up from $704.3 million a year earlier. Analysts expected earnings of $1.01 per share on revenue of $783 million, according to FactSet analysts. But Lululemon disappointed investors by saying it expects net revenue of $510 million to $515 million for the current quarter. Analysts had projected $553 million, according to FactSet. The company also forecast earnings per share of 25 cents to 27 cents for the first quarter. Analysts had expected 39 cents per share, according to FactSet. Shares were down $11.56 to $54.73 in after-hours after rising 4 percent to close at $66.30.
  • “Ask Brianna” is a Q&A column from NerdWallet for 20-somethings or anyone else starting out. I’m here to help you manage your money, find a job and pay off student loans — all the real-world stuff no one taught us how to do in college. Send your questions about postgrad life to askbrianna@nerdwallet.com. This week’s question: “You’ve mentioned ‘financial therapy’ in past columns. What is it, and how do I know if it’s right for me?” When you’re ready for professional money help, a smorgasbord of options will appear before you: financial planning; credit counseling; money coaching; burdening your nightstand with a teetering pile of self-help books. Financial therapy is one of the newest additions to the field, emerging from a small forum for mental health and financial planning professionals in 2008. While certified financial planners help you develop and implement concrete financial strategies, and mental health professionals help you recognize and change thought patterns that aren’t serving you, financial therapists straddle both worlds. They focus on your relationship with money and how it affects your behavior so you can realize your financial goals. “Money comes with a lot of emotional baggage, and there just aren’t many places to talk about it openly and constructively,” says Dr. Mary Gresham, a financial psychologist in Atlanta. If you struggle with saving, budgeting, paying off debt, severe frugality or other money issues, financial therapy could help. Here’s how to assess whether it makes sense for you, and how to evaluate any professionals you may work with. When to go to a financial therapist Financial therapy can help you understand why you’re stuck in the same patterns, such as overspending, even if you’ve tried to change. It also can help you explore the feelings that bubble up when you think about money. Gresham and Derek Lawson, a doctoral student in personal financial planning with a focus on financial therapy at Kansas State University, say financial therapy might be the right call if: Your finances make you feel depressed or anxious You’re consistently spending more than you earn or aren’t saving any money You’ve tried to change those behaviors, with no luck You want to understand the root of your money troubles In some cases, other experts could better suit you. Try traditional financial planning if you want straight money advice you’re fairly certain you can implement on your own. If you’re dealing with a mountain of debt and urgently need an action plan, try credit counseling. Gresham says she refers her clients to these financial pros when necessary. What financial therapy looks like At your first few sessions, a financial therapist might ask you, “What are your best hopes for your financial future?” and “How would you know if these hopes were realized?” “I might have a couple of meetings with clients before I analyze their financials,” says Lawson, who is also a financial planner at Priority Financial Partners in Durango, Colorado. Lawson says he’ll ask clients who have trouble saving to focus on a time in the past when they did save and how they felt. That positive emotional memory may encourage clients to integrate saving into their lives more frequently. How to find a financial therapist Because there are few formal places to study financial therapy, practitioners today typically have either a mental health background and an understanding of financial issues, or a financial planning background and further training in mental health counseling. (Kansas State University and the University of Georgia offer financial therapy studies, and the Financial Therapy Association plans to develop a certification in three to five years, says president-elect Sarah Asebedo, who is also assistant professor of personal financial planning at Texas Tech University.) You can use the Financial Therapy Association’s member directory or do a general online search to find financial therapists or financial psychologists near you. The XY Planning Network lists financial planners who work with clients in their 20s and 30s. It’s best to work with fee-only financial planners, who charge flat or hourly fees and won’t earn commissions on insurance or investment products, like mutual funds, that they might recommend you buy. This type of planner may be more affordable than one who charges based on a percentage of your assets he or she is managing. Check each professional’s background and training: Ideally, they’ll have both the certified financial planner designation and licensure as a mental health counselor, marriage and family therapist, social worker or psychologist. Brianna McGurran is a staff writer at NerdWallet, a personal finance website. Email: bmcgurran@nerdwallet.com. Twitter: @briannamcscribe. This article was written by NerdWallet and was originally published by The Associated Press. The article Ask Brianna: Is Financial Therapy Right for Me? originally appeared on NerdWallet.
  • Westinghouse said in a statement that it filed the Chapter 11 petition in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in New York. The move had been largely expected. The troubles at a company long associated with nuclear power add to the industry's problems. Nuclear power is cleaner than generating electricity with coal or natural gas, but building a nuclear reactor is much more complex and prohibitively costly. After the March 2011 nuclear disaster in Fukushima, public sentiment turned against nuclear power in countries such as Japan and Germany. In the U.S., nuclear power still generates about one-fifth of the nation's electricity. But some older nuclear plants are being shuttered and the four nuclear reactors Westinghouse is helping to build in South Carolina and Georgia are behind schedule and billions of dollars over budget. Westinghouse said in a statement Wednesday that it obtained financing to maintain its operations and made arrangements to continue work on the projects in South Carolina and Georgia while it assesses their viability. Westinghouse also said it will continue projects in China, and that its operations in its Asia and Europe, the Middle East and Africa aren't affected by the bankruptcy filing. Toshiba acquired Westinghouse in 2006 with much fanfare, making nuclear power an important part of its business strategy. Instead, Westinghouse has saddled the Japanese company with mounting losses. Toshiba said Westinghouse had racked up debt of $9.8 billion. Wednesday, Toshiba said it could post a loss as big as 1 trillion yen ($9 billion) for the fiscal year ending March 31. It previously said Westinghouse lost 712.5 billion yen ($6.2 billion) from April to December of last year. In South Carolina, Westinghouse is a partner with state-owned utility Santee Cooper and publicly-traded SCANA Corp. on the construction of two reactors at the V.C. Summer Nuclear Station near Jenkinsville. SCANA said in September that the cost of building the reactors had increased nearly $3 billion from the original $11 billion estimate in 2009. The first reactor was supposed to open in 2017, but has been delayed at least two years. SCANA officials told investors on a conference call Wednesday that all options remain on the table, from finishing both reactors, to finishing one reactor and delaying completion of the other or abandoning the project altogether. The company said it will spend at least the next 30 days reviewing its options. The Plant Vogtle project in eastern Georgia was more than three years behind schedule and more than $3 billion over its original budget as of the end of 2016. Oglethorpe Power, one of the partners in the project, said in a regulatory filing this week that 'the revised in-service dates of December 2019 and September 2020' for the two reactors it's building 'do not appear to be achievable.' Georgia Power, a subsidiary of Southern Co. and holder of a 46-percent stake in the Vogtle project, said in a statement that it 'will continue to take every action available to us to hold Westinghouse and Toshiba accountable for their financial responsibilities.' Southern Co. and the other partners have a $920 million letter of credit from Westinghouse obtained in 2015. Meanwhile, Toshiba reiterated its view that at the root of the problem was the acquisition of U.S. nuclear construction company CB&I Stone and Webster. It declined comment on possible future partners in the rehabilitation of Westinghouse. Auditors questioned Toshiba's latest reporting on the acquisition of CB&I Stone & Webster after a whistleblower, an employee at Westinghouse, wrote a letter to the Westinghouse president. The company's reputation has also been tarnished in recent years by a scandal over the doctoring of accounting books to meet unrealistic profit targets. Satoshi Ogasawara, who has written a book about Toshiba's systematically falsifying financial results, says executives knew of the problems for years but kept procrastinating, hoping against hope that things would get better and they would be able to avoid blame. But things just got worse. Toshiba has said it will no longer take on new reactor construction projects and will focus on maintaining the reactors it already has. But it is also involved in the decommissioning of the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear plant, which suffered multiple meltdowns after the March 2011 tsunami. Toshiba has sold off so many parts of its once prized operations, such as computer chips and household appliances, it has little left but its infrastructure business. ___ Yuri Kageyama in Tokyo, Jeffrey Collins in Columbia, South Carolina, and Jeff Martin in Atlanta contributed to this article.
  • If Wells Fargo charged you fees for accounts you never authorized, you’re set to get your money back. Wells Fargo agreed Tuesday to a $110 million settlement in a class-action lawsuit brought after bank employees opened accounts without customers’ consent. The settlement would include repayment of fees as well as “millions of dollars of additional monetary relief,” according to a lawyer in the case. Keller Rohrback, the law firm representing Wells Fargo customers, filed the suit in federal court in San Francisco last May. The court still has to approve the agreement, which Wells Fargo expects would encompass 11 other class-action lawsuits brought against the national bank. The latest settlement is in addition to $185 million in penalties paid by the bank to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and other government agencies. Who gets money The $110 million, after legal and administrative costs, would go directly to customers to reimburse “out-of-pocket losses, such as fees incurred due to unauthorized account openings,” according to Wells Fargo’s news release. Jim Seitz, a spokesman at the bank, confirmed that the settlement would cover more than out-of-pocket losses but said he couldn’t elaborate. This includes anyone who’s had a Wells Fargo account opened without his or her consent from Jan. 1, 2009, to the date that the settlement gets signed by both the court and Wells Fargo. If that means you, you don’t have to take action yet. Attorneys for Wells Fargo customers will seek preliminary approval of the settlement next month from a federal judge, and then information will be sent to affected customers about benefits of the settlement. Wells Fargo would also release information, including how to submit a claim. “The $110 million settlement, if approved, will require Wells Fargo to repay the fees charged to class members by Wells Fargo for unauthorized accounts and provide millions of dollars of additional monetary relief to the class,” attorney Derek Loeser said in a statement. Loeser, a partner at the law firm Keller Rohrback, helped negotiate the deal. Tim Sloan, Wells Fargo’s president and CEO, said in a statement, “We want to ensure that each customer impacted by our sales practices issue has every opportunity for remediation, and this agreement presents an additional option.” Over $3 million to customers so far Since September, Wells Fargo has refunded $3.26 million to customers for fees charged from unauthorized bank accounts and lines of credit, according to Seitz. This is part of the $5 million set aside for customers in the $185 million settlement with government agencies. The refunds have gone to about 130,000 accounts. The average refund from the bank’s December review of bank accounts and credit cards as far back as May 2011 is $32.41 per customer. The exact number of people who could receive money under this new settlement couldn’t be confirmed. “We’ve entered into an agreement in principle,” Seitz says. “It would be premature to speculate on the size of the class.” Wells Fargo’s previous settlement The $185 million in penalties that Wells Fargo agreed to pay last September to government agencies, including the CFPB, was in response to bank employees opening around 1.5 million bank accounts and roughly half a million credit card accounts for customers without their consent. The CFPB’s investigation looked at accounts from 2011 to 2015. The bank did not admit any wrongdoing as part of the September settlement. Wells Fargo also plans to review accounts from 2009 to 2010 that might have been affected. Spencer Tierney is a staff writer at NerdWallet, a personal finance website. Email: spencer@nerdwallet.com. Twitter: @SpencerNerd. The article $110 Million Wells Fargo Payout Could Put Money in Your Pocket originally appeared on NerdWallet.

News

  • Pickens County deputies are searching for an armed fugitive.  Authorities are looking for Nicholas Bishop in the area of Priest Circle in Talking Rock.  Bishop is believed to be armed with a handgun and on foot after he abandoned a stolen vehicle around 2 p.m.  If you see him, call 911 immediately. Officials say do not attempt to approach him. - Please return for updates.
  • One more time, Doris Payne, the 86-year-old infamous international jewel thief, has pleaded guilty to the usual crime. She admitted Wednesday to stealing a necklace from Von Maur at Perimeter Mall last year, the DeKalb County District Attorney’s Office said. Payne, who recently said she’s been dealing with a possibly cancerous tumor, was sentenced to 120 days of house arrest and three years of probation.  She was also banned from all Von Maur locations and every mall in DeKalb County. Payne, who’d been free on bond, was arrested last month for missing a court date. Shortly after the would-be appearance, she told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution she wasn’t medically able to attend. “I ain’t runnin’,” she said in a phone interview. “I’ve never in my life been late for court. Last month, Payne was deemed too ill to stand trial by the judge presiding over a Fulton County case stemming from a missing set of earrings at Phipps Plaza. Payne has been open about her habits of theft, which she detailed in a documentary called, “The Life and Crimes of Doris Payne.” RELATED: Huge DeKalb center with (at least) 8 popular chains is opening soon RELATED: Cop helps elderly woman who got kicked out of dentist office in DeKalb RELATED: A DeKalb family’s tale of two dead bodies and a crying baby girl Like DeKalb County News Now on Facebook | Follow on Twitter and Instagram
  • A drunken driver destroyed a row of headstones at a historic Carrollton cemetery, causing tens of thousands of dollars' worth of damage, police said. According to police, the driver was coming down Martin Luther King Street on March 19, ran a stop sign, jumped a curb and crashed into the city-owned cemetery. The broken headstones range in date from the late 1800s to 1950. 'And what we discussed is, if one is damaged beyond repair, we'll put something back that's respectful. It's hard to replace it with the exact same item. The families aren't around anymore, so the city will take on the responsibility,' city manager Tim Grizzard said. TRENDING STORIES: Thousands of Georgians could lose food stamps next week 16-year-old in custody after hoax call about school gunman Food prices at SunTrust Park vs. Mercedes-Benz Stadium: What's the difference? The 35-year-old driver, Ray Antonio Baker, was arrested and charged with DUI. City officials said they will ask his insurance carrier to pay for the damage. 'Our plan is to go after the individual's insurance to pay for repairs. If that doesn't pay for everything, the city will certainly pick up the tab,' Grizzard said. Officials said this isn't the first time a driver has damaged headstones, but it's not a big enough problem to put up a wall. 'It's not something that has happened often enough that we need to put up a barrier. If it was a recurrent spot, we would do something,' Grizzard said. City officials said it could take weeks to repair the damage.
  • George Clooney made the rounds at CinemaCon in Las Vegas on Tuesday to promote his upcoming movie, “Suburbicon.” A lot of red carpet chatter led him to use that time to share some details about his wife, lawyer Amal Clooney’s, pregnancy. She is reportedly expecting twins. >> Read more trending news Clooney joked with Entertainment Tonight about the two names he has picked out for his kids. “My wife says I can’t name them Casa and Amigos. That’s the one thing I’m not allowed to do,” he said, joking that he considered naming the twins after his tequila company, Casamigos. “It was just a thought. I mean, you know, it’s a family business,” he joked. Clooney told E News the parents-to-be have not picked out names yet. “I've had friends pick out names around their parents and then it becomes...whatever name you pick they're like, ‘Oh, I don't like that. That guy's a prime minister… Can't name her Susan. You remember your Aunt Susan?’” “I didn't know that we'd have kids,” he told E News. “I was very happy that we were going to get married, and then (a pregnancy) seemed like the next step.' Clooney said Amal Clooney is “doing really great.” “She is amazing,” he told Extra. “I don’t have anything to do. There is nothing I can do to help but make tea and stuff.” The Clooneys are expecting their twins, a boy and a girl, in June. Shortly after the pregnancy news broke, Clooney’s mom, Nina Clooney, shared details about the twins to Vogue. “It will be one of each! Yes, a boy and a girl. That’s what I’ve been told,” Nina Clooney said. “How marvelous! My husband and I are extremely excited.” The Cox Media Group National Content Desk contributed to this report.