Panel set to consider tax rate Nevada employers must pay

The state Employment Security Council will weigh Nevada’s dismal economy against rising debt to pay jobless claims when it considers how much employers should pay into Nevada’s unemployment trust fund.

The council last year recommended leaving the rate unchanged — about 1.33 percent on the first $27,000 in wages — as the recession gripped Nevada’s economy. It meets to day in Carson City to consider the rate for next year.

But the state’s trust fund is broke, and with the highest unemployment rate in the nation, Nevada has been relying on money borrowed from the federal government to pay benefits — money it will eventually have to repay, possibly with interest.

The federal stimulus bill provided states with interest-free loans for unemployment claims through 2010.

After that, the law provides for an interest rate of 4.6 percent on any outstanding balances.

So far the state has borrowed $450 million, a state official said Monday.


NV Energy says net income doubled in second quarter

NV Energy reported net income for the second quarter ending June 30 doubled from the same period last year.

Nevada’s main electricity provider on Monday said net income totaled $36.9 million, or 16 cents per share, compared with $18.4 million, or 8 cents per share, for the same quarter in 2009.

NV Energy is the holding firm for the utilities in Southern and Northern Nevada.

NV Energy had quarterly earnings for $29.7 million, up from $12.5 million last year. Earnings for Sierra Pacific dropped from $14.8 million in 2009 to $11.3 million.

Bank of America slashes
CD rates; others may follow

Bank of America slashed rates on CD rates last week, the Wall Street Journal reported on its website.

The Charlotte, N.C., bank cut the rate on its five-year CD by half of a percentage point, from 2.25 percent to 1.75 percent. Its four-year CD went from 1.75 percent to 1.45 percent and its three-year CD went from 1.5 percent to 1.1 percent, the Journal reported.

Other banks typically follow the nation’s largest bank by assets and cut long-term rates.

On its website, the Journal reported that two-year Treasury yields hit a record intraday low Friday of 0.539 percent. Nationally, money market rates have fallen to 0.75 percent.


Annual fees less common
in wake of new legislation

It’s been nearly six months since a sweeping law changed how credit card companies are able to hike interest rates, charge over-the-limit fees and apply payments.

Annual fees are now less common in the wake of The Credit Card Accountability Responsibility and Disclosure Act of 2009. According to marketing consultant Mintel Comperemedia, 28 percent of mailed offers in the second quarter had annual fees, down from 33 percent a year ago.

There’s also been little change in rewards programs, which still come with 80 percent of card offers, Mintel found.

Short-term introductory rates, commonly called teaser rates, have increased to 56 percent of offers, from 37 percent a year ago. Many of these offers are made at zero percent, and in some cases that rate lasts for as long as 16 months.

Pizza company opens
seventh Las Vegas location

Cici’s Pizza will open its seventh Las Vegas location today at 2415 E. Tropicana Ave.

The store, which is about 4,000 square feet, will open at 11 a.m.

Store operator Mike Haskins said about 60 workers will be hired. The family-oriented restaurant is known for its low-cost pizza buffet.

The company is based in Texas and opened its first store in Plano in 1985. The company has more than 650 restaurants in 35 states.

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