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Summer lull: Area job growth slips back below 3%

June's job growth numbers from the Bureau of Labor Statistics didn't deliver great news. The 2.8 percent increase from mid-2013 is absolutely nothing to sneeze at, but it is the lowest number since December. Notable drivers of the slowdown were the information and finance sectors, which are both clearly shrinking, as well as manufacturing, which grew at less than half its Q1 average.

On the flip side, construction, professional services and hospitality employers continue to chug along. But getting back above 3 percent and staying there until we get to 2015 will require other sectors to play a healthier role.


Jul 31, 2014 2:10 PM

NES board taps Mendes, Paz-Bernstein

The Nashville Electric Service Electric Power Board announced today the appointment of local attorney Robert J. Mendes as chair and restaurateur Irma Paz-Bernstein as vice chair.

An attorney at Frost Brown Todd, LLC, Mendes concentrates his practice in the areas of commercial litigation, business bankruptcy and business transactions. He has served on the NES board since 2011 and served on NES’s audit and ethics committee for two years.

Mendes attended the University of Chicago Law School after receiving his Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Illinois in 1988.

A native of Guadalajara, Mexico, Paz-Bernstein is co-owner of Nashville-based Las Paletas Gourmet Popsicles. She graduated with a communications science degree from Univa in Guadalajara before attending the University of California at Los Angeles to finish her education. She was a television producer for nine years before relocating to Nashville.

Paz-Bernstein has served on the NES Electric Power Board since 2013.

NES’s five-member board is appointed by the mayor and confirmed by the Metro Council to serve five-year staggered terms without pay.

Jul 31, 2014 1:00 PM

Marathon Village-based distillery lands permit

The owners of Nelson's Green Brier Distillery have landed a permit for continued construction at their bourbon production facility at 1414 Clinton St. in Marathon Village.

Tandem Construction will handle the work for what the permit, valued at $602,000, notes is office and retail space.

"It was our sincere conviction, that we bring the family whiskey business back to life and we have been fortunate that many who appreciate bourbon have welcomed our product into their homes, restaurants and bars in the past several years, said Andy Nelson, co proprietor of the company with brother Charlie Nelson. “Now we have the opportunity for the public to see the fruits of our labor in Nashville."


(Photo credit courtesy of Nelson's Green Brier Distillery)

(Andy Nelson, left; Charlie Nelson, right)

Jul 31, 2014 12:15 PM

Compass EMP to launch fourth ETF

Compass EMP officials announced today the company will launch on Friday an exchange-traded fund that targets small-cap stocks with low-volatility profiles. 

To be called the Compass EMP U.S. Discovery 500 Enhanced Volatility Weighted Fund and created by Compass EMP, the fund is the Brentwood-based investment management firm's fourth. It will focus on small-cap companies with consistent positive earnings (at least for their four most recent quarters) and weighted based on the volatility of each stock, according to a regulatory filing. Stocks with lower volatility receive a higher weighting, and stocks with higher volatility receive a lower weighting.

The fund offers an annual expense ratio of 0.68 percent, or $68 for every $10,000 invested. Its launch was made public via Nasdaq electronic notification.

Compass earlier this month launched its first three funds — all volatility-targeting securities in the “smart beta” category. (Read more here.)

Jul 31, 2014 11:43 AM

Brookdale wraps up Emeritus buy

Brookdale Senior Living has put a bow on its acquisition of rival Emeritus, a nearly $3 billion deal that creates a company with more than 1,100 properties in 46 states. As part of the purchase, Emeritus President and CEO Granger Cobb, pictured here, has joined the board of Brentwood-based Brookdale.

SEE ALSO: Brookdale inks Emeritus purchase deal from back in February

Jul 31, 2014 9:48 AM

5th & Main's Antica closes

Antica, the tapas restaurant located in East Nashville's 5th & Main mixed-use building, has closed. Read more here.

Jul 31, 2014 8:30 AM

Could Ace Hotel be Nashville bound?

Within the past 12 months or so, Nashville has become a target location for companies that own and operate boutique hotels.

During this time, three boutiques have been announced for the city and two others are seemingly being considered — all five in the central business, no less.

With this in mind, a friend recommended I contact the folks with Portland, Oregon-based Ace Hotel (read more here) to see if they are honing in on Music City. My friend (who will go unnamed) is very attuned to out-of-town entities eyeing our city and, for example, had heard 21c Museum Hotels officials were looking at Nashville long before any local media reported so.

So I reached out to Ryan Bukstein, the director of public relations and marketing for Ace Hotel’s in-house PR firm Atelier Ace. He emailed me the following:

“We are not confirming any plans for future hotels other than Ace Hotel Pittsburgh, which is planned to open in Mid 2015.”


Of note, I recently contacted a spokesperson for the aforementioned 21c Museum Hotels, who flat-out denied in an email the company was planning to open a hotel here. Shortly thereafter, 21c Museum Hotels, which is Louisville based, announced it would be Nashville bound.

As to Ace Hotel following suit, …

Jul 31, 2014 7:15 AM

September opening slated for Fairfield hotel in Gulch

Chattanooga-based Vision Hospitality Group Inc., is targeting a September opening for its Fairfield Inn & Suites by Marriott nearing the end of construction on Division Street in The Gulch.

Originally, the company had eyed a mid- to late-spring opening.

Andrew Hibbard, Vision Hospitality director of investments, said the hotel will have a rooftop space called Up, which will offer small plates of food and a bar.

“The views are incredible,” he said.

Vision Hospitality will pursue Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design certification for the eight-story hotel.

Jul 31, 2014 7:00 AM

HealthTech doesn't make Florida hospital's cut

The leaders of Bert Fish Medical Center in Northeast Florida have narrowed to four the number of suitors with which they will talk about a partnership or acquisition. Not among them is HealthTech Management Services, the Brentwood-based company formerly known as Brim Healthcare that helps run 60-some hospitals around the country. Bert Fish execs had been in talks with Health Management Associates last year but those ended after Franklin-based Community Health Systems bought HMA.

Jul 31, 2014 6:58 AM

Permit issued for One Hundred Oaks-area project

Gallatin-based real estate investment firm Green & Little LP has secured a permit related to its project planned for a light industrial site located at 2926 Kraft Drive east of Vanderbilt Health One Hundred Oaks. The permit is valued at $1.3 million, with Crain Construction to serve as general contractor.


Jul 31, 2014 6:45 AM