Beware of rip-offs
Scam artists keep coming up with new ways to separate consumers from their money, according to an annual report from the Consumer Federation of America. Consumers across the nation are logging more complaints for swindles ranging from salesmen selling meat door-to-door from their pickup trucks to senior citizens being tricked into providing personal information to callers pretending to check their eligibility for the Affordable Care Act. For the federation's report, visit www.consumerfed.org.
Bond prices fall
Bond values have taken a hit in recent weeks as interest rates have started to move higher. Investors pulled a record $60 billion out of taxable bond and municipal bond funds in June in a race to avoid losses. So far this year, bond funds have lost about 2.3 percent of their value. Stocks on the other hand are hitting record highs. The Dow Jones industrial average is up more than 20 percent and the S&P 500 is up more than 19 percent so far this year.
The secretary speaks
The Department of Energy's new secretary, Ernest Moniz, told a group of Pittsburgh business and government leaders that coal and natural gas will not be left out of President Barack Obama's energy plan. He noted $6 billion has been spent on clean coal technology research since the president took office and that the administration has made more than $8 billion more available for energy innovation.
Quote of the week
"Widows face particularly difficult challenges. They have suddenly lost their spouse and if they are not familiar with their finances they need to get educated very quickly." -- Lisa Turbeville, certified divorce financial specialist
In other news ...
Michael Baker Corp. will be acquired by a private equity firm for $369.9 million cash, which amounts to $40.50 for each share of stock. The transaction is expected to be completed late in the third quarter or early in the fourth quarter. ... PPG Industries will sell its majority 51 percent stake in Transitions Optical to its partner in the venture, France's Essilor International, for about $1.73 billion in cash.
Tim Grant: email@example.com or 412-263-1591.