Local & State, Coast
CHARLESTON -- East Cooper Medical Center has begun working with a possible buyer for its old hospital site -- an aging, two-story building with the footprint of the six-pointed Star of Life medical symbol. Hospital officials, who declined to identify the buyer, recently received a letter of intent from a business group that could purchase the 24-year-old facility by year’s end. Earlier this year, East Cooper officials moved into a newly built 130-bed, $153 million five-story building nearby.
Nation & World
A sign of a weakening recovery
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A gauge of future economic activity dropped in June, the second decline in the past three months, suggesting the economic recovery will weaken. The Conference Board, a private research group, said Thursday its index of leading economic indicators fell 0.2 percent last month. The leading indicators gauge had risen almost every month since April 2009 as the economy rebounded from recession. It was pulled higher by the increasing amount of money in the economy, rebound in manufacturing and slow improvements in the job market. But weakness in housing, consumer spending and unemployment have raised fears about a slowdown.
Snack-makers plan a merger
Charlotte-based sandwich cracker maker Lance Inc. is merging with pretzel and potato chip producer Snyder’s of Hanover, Pa. The companies said Thursday the new firm’s headquarters will be in Charlotte. The combined company to be called Snyder’s-Lance Inc. will also have executives in Hanover, where Snyder’s is based.
GM buying AmeriCredit
General Motors Co. will buy AmeriCredit Corp. for $3.5 billion, a deal that allows the automaker to expand loans to customers with poor credit and offer more leases. But the acquisition of the independent auto financing company also means that GM, which is 61 percent owned by the U.S. government, is getting back into the business of making risky loans. GM said it advised the U.S. Treasury Department of the acquisition, although government OK was not required.
Previously occupied home sales fall
Sales of previously occupied homes fell in June and are expected to keep sinking. Sales fell 5.1 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.37 million, the National Association of Realtors said Thursday. Last month’s report captured some buyers receiving federal tax credits of up to $8,000.
The (Charleston) Post and Courier and The Associated Press contributed.