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10 posts from December 2013

12/31/2013

Dallas-Fort Worth home prices up 9.7 percent in October in latest Case Shiller report

Dallas-Fort Worth home prices rose 9.7 percent in October from a year ago, according to the latest S&P/Case Shiller Home Price Indices report released today.

Nationwide, home prices were up 13.6 percent, the highest year-over-year gain since February 2006, the report said.

“Home prices increased again in October,” said David Blitzer, chairman of the Index Committee at S&P Dow Jones Indices, in a statement. “However, monthly numbers show we are living on borrowed time wand the boom is fading.”

Dallas-Fort Worth home price increase in October was the highest since 2000, the report said.

However, home prices fell 0.1 percent in October from September in Dallas-Fort Worth, the report said. The area was among 10 cities that saw slight declines, while 10 other cities in the index posted positive monthly gains.

“The key economic question facing housing is the Fed’s future course to scale back quantitative easing and how this will affect mortgage rates,” Blitzer said. “Other housing data paint a mixed picture suggesting that we may be close to the peak gain in prices. However, other economic data point to somewhat faster growth in the new year. Many forecasts for home prices point to single digit growth in 2014.”

­_ Sandra Baker

12/23/2013

Fewer Fort Worth-Arlington mortgage holders late on loan payments

The number of mortgage holders in FortWorth-Arlington late on their loan payments remained flat in October from September, but dropped significantly from the same period a year ago, according to CoreLogic research firm's latest figures.

The delinquency rate for loans at least 90 days late was 4.1 percent in October, the same rate as September, but 0.53 percentage points below October of 2012, CoreLogic said.

Fort Worth-Arlington foreclosure rate among outstanding mortgage loans was 1.02 percent, a decrease of 0.27 percentage points from October of 2012.

The national foreclosure rate in October was 2.15 percent and 0.95 percent in Texas.

_ Sandra Baker

TTI Inc. in Fort Worth schedules open house and hiring event

TTI, a global electronic components distributor, TTI, Inc. will host an open house and hiring event for sales professionals from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 4 at the corporate headquarters, 2441 Northeast Parkway.

 The open house will provide an introduction and company overview. The hiring event, scheduled only by appointment, occurs 2 p.m. to 7 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 7, also at the company’s headquarters. 

TTI, recognized as the leading authorized distributor specialist in electronics distribution, has sales openings. 

Applicants will be pre-screened prior to the hiring event. Selected candidates will attend a seven week training program that begins Monday, Feb. 17.  Interested candidates are requested to submit a resume plus salary requirements to human.resources@ttiinc.com.

_ Sandra Baker

12/19/2013

BNSF Chairman Matt Rose appointed to Dallas Fed

Matt Rose, who has headed Fort Worth-based Burlington Northern Santa Fe since 2000, was appointed to a three-year term on the board of the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas. His term starts Jan. 1. Rose is set to become BNSF's executive chairman that day as well. In a prepared release, Dallas Fed President Richard Fisher called Rose "one of the most respected businessmen in the nation.  We are honored to have him serve on our board." The Dallas Fed said that as a board member, "Rose will provide input into regional and national economic conditions as part of the Federal Reserve’s monetary policy functions." Each of the nation's 12 regional Federal Reserve Banks has a  a nine-member board of directors.

-- Jim Fuquay

 

 



BNSF is one of North America’s leading freight transportation companies, operating on 32,500 route miles of track in 28 states and two Canadian provinces. The company is one of the top transporters of consumer goods, grain and agricultural products, low-sulfur coal, and industrial goods such as petroleum, chemicals, housing materials, food and beverages.

Prior to his time at BNSF, Rose held several other positions for companies in the transportation industry, including vice president of Triple Crown Services, a Norfolk Southern subsidiary. He began his career as a corporate management trainee with Missouri Pacific in 1981.

He is a member of the board of directors for AT&T Inc. and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. He is also a member of the Business Roundtable.

Rose holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Missouri. 

 

Texas deregulated electricity rates dip below U.S. average

Electricity rates paid by residential customers in deregulated Texas markets last year were below the national average for the first time in a decade, according to a new report. The Texas Coalition for Affordable Power, which has long criticized deregulation of the state’s retail power market in 2002, said it’s the fourth straight year that electricity prices have fallen. The group said that in 2012, Texas consumers in deregulated markets paid an average of 11.75 cents per kilowatt-hour, compared with 11.88 cents nationally.

“Residential electricity prices under deregulation continue trending in the right direction. But prices are still higher than power customers pay in areas of Texas not subject to deregulation,” said Randy Moravec, TCAP’s executive director. “This analysis shows there’s still plenty of room for improvement under our deregulation law.”

Texas electricity rates shot up along with the cost of natural gas until 2008. Then gas prices plunged, taking electricity prices with them. Natural gas drives the wholesale price of power in the state because gas-fired generators provide the bulk of peak demand. Texas markets that remain regulated and those served by municipal power companies and co-ops don’t follow the same pricing model, and their rates on average were lower than those in deregulated markets, TCAP said.

In 2012, residential customers with regulated, muni and co-op service paid an average of just under 10 cents per kw-h, according to the study. TCAP said the difference between Texas regulated and deregulated rates in 2012 amounted to more than $280 for an average residential customer and $1.5 billion for the entire state.

While consumers in deregulated areas who comparison-shop at PowerToChoose.com can buy power for less, TCAP noted that many consumers have remained with legacy power companies, such as TXU Energy in North Texas. Those providers generally charge more, the study says. TCAP’s study used data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration, which surveys rates paid by customers of utilities and other electricity retailers. TCAP’s members are 168 cities and other governmental buyers of electricity.

-- Jim Fuquay

12/11/2013

Rose named chairman of BNSF, Ice will become CEO

Matt Rose, who has been mentioned as a possible successor to legendary investor Warren Buffett to head Berkshire Hathaway, has been named chairman of Fort Worth-based Burlington Northern Santa Fe effective Jan. 1. Rose, who has been the railroad’s CEO since 2000, will be succeeded by Carl Ice, a 34-year BNSF veteran who has served as president since 2010 and will hold both titles. The company announced the changes Wednesday, saying Rose will work on strategic matters and long-term planning and Ice will handle day-to-day operations.

Buffett acquired BNSF in 2010. In a prepared statement Wednesday, he said the railroad’s performance “has far exceeded the high expectations I had at the time of Berkshire’s purchase. The combination of Matt’s and Carl’s talents is the perfect arrangement for the future. I consider Berkshire very fortunate to have these men at BNSF’s helm.”

-- Jim Fuquay

Galderma cutting jobs in U.S. reorganization

Galderma Laboratories is trimming an unspecified number of positions in Fort Worth as part of “a reorganization that will improve the efficiency of its operations,” according to a company statement.

The Swiss maker of dermatology products, which has its U.S. headquarters in the Alliance area, has more than 250 employees in Fort Worth and more than 500 in the U.S.The layoffs were first reported on the D Healthcare Daily blog.

Galderma said the operational changes are not related to the October departure of Francois Fournier, who had been president of the U.S. unit since June 2009.

Steve Kaskovich

12/10/2013

Cook Children's to expand again with new tower

130909 REV2_Rendering Slide_Aerial (3)
It seems the dust has barely settled on the latest expansion at Cook Children's Medical Center, but the Fort Worth pediatric hospital is set to grow some more. Cook Children's Health Care System says it will expand its emergency department and add heart care and laboratory facilities, culminating in a new 314,000-square-foot tower on the south side of its campus. (The new tower is in the upper right part of the artist's rendering, above.) Construction is expected to take more than three years. The new project's site is currently used for a prayer garden and labyrinth, which will be relocated. Plans also call for a new urgent care center at Rosedale Street and Sixth Avenue.

Cook Children's recently finished a $250 million expansion. The biggest part of that opened in mid-2012 with new patient care space, doctor's offices and a parking garage on the north side of its campus (pictured in the foreground of the rendering). It concluded with the opening this fall of a new office tower and parking garage for employees at the corner of Rosedale Street and Eighth Avenue. That building isn't pictured in the rendering.

-- Jim Fuquay

12/09/2013

Triumph Vought warns of 400 Dallas layoffs in February 2014

Triumph Aerostructures could idle about 400 workers at its Vought Aircraft Division facility in west Dallas as it moves work to a new factory in Red Oak, south of DeSoto. In a required notice to the state, Triumph said salaried workers have been notified and hourly employees can expect layoffs to begin on or about Feb. 7. In a separate prepared statement dated Dec. 4, Triumph Aerostructures said it will permanently shut the company's leased factory at 9314 W. Jefferson Blvd. The exact number of layoffs "may be reduced by employee transfers" to either Triumph's existing Grand Prairie facility or the Red Oak site, Triumph said. Triumph already has a 240,000-square-foot factory in Red Oak that will build wings for Bombardier business jets. It's also building a 600,000-square-foot factory "that will provide space for the transfer of certain programs currently executed at the Jefferson Street facility," Triumph said.

In mid-2012, Triumph said the new owner of the west Dallas facility wanted too much rent for the 1940 building and announced plans for Red Oak. In its recent statement, it said the Dallas site "has 5 million square feet of space spread out over 315 acres and is not cost-effective for current operations." It said about 2,000 people currently work at that facility. It said the new Red Oak facility "will result in a reduced footprint, more modern facilities and other associated improvements that bring inherent gains in efficiency." Officials with UAW Local 848 were not immediately available for comment.

-- Jim Fuquay

 

 

 

12/05/2013

Think Big (Data), counsels Sabre CEO Klein

Don’t think just travel when it comes to Sabre Holdings, the Southlake-based company that has long provided reservations and technical services to airlines and hotels. Think Big Data, says new CEO Tom Klein. Klein told a Dallas audience Thursday that the company handles about 85,000 data transactions every second for its customers, which include users of the Travelocity online reservations website. Collecting, analyzing and interpreting that data to help the 70 airlines Sabre does business with and the 100,000 individual hotels in its reservations system, he says, is what will help them in their businesses and keep Sabre’s services in demand.

Klein made his comments at the Dallas Regional chamber’s annual State of Technology luncheon. He was named Sabre’s CEO in August and has been with the company about 20 years. The company employs about 3,500 people in North Texas.

-- Jim Fuquay

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