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Amherst

Amherst is in the midst of a hotel boom after nearly a decade of relative dormancy in the hospitality market – and not everybody is happy about it.Three hotels are currently under construction or working toward site-plan approval. And Supervisor Barry Weinstein is asking the Town Board today to seek proposals for another new hotel or two at the site of the Northtown Center…

After a year of mostly large declines in filings every month, the number of new bankruptcy cases in Western New York dropped by 12.7 percent in 2012, falling to the lowest annual level in at least a decade in a trend that shows no sign of abating.For the full year, debtors submitted 6,192 petitions for court protection from creditors in a 17-county area that spans the Buff…

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The Buffalo Auto Show puts new cars and trucks in the best possible light, displaying them in gleaming condition, without snow or slush in sight.While the Buffalo Niagara Convention Center will be the hub of activity, dealers have to be ready at their showrooms to capitalize on interest generated by the five-day event, which opens Wednesday.“Everybody’s getting poised for …

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DETROIT – American consumers ignored tax increases and trudged through winter weather to buy new cars and trucks at an unusually strong pace last month. It was the auto industry’s best January since 2008.“It was like a sprinter out of the starting blocks,” said Mike Jackson, CEO of AutoNation Inc., the country’s largest auto dealership chain.U.S. auto sales rose 14 percent…

NEW YORK — The Dow stock market index closed above 14,000 for the first time since before the financial crisis rocked the world economy.Propelled by strong auto sales and optimism about U.S. jobs, the Dow Jones industrial average crossed the line early Friday and continued flirting with the mark all day. The other major stock indexes also rose.The Dow was up 149 points to …

A surge in international sales fueled an 86 percent jump in Graham Corp.’s third-quarter profits, although the Batavia manufacturer warned that delays in nuclear power projects would cause its sales to grow slower than it initially forecast.Even so, Graham’s earnings easily topped analyst forecasts, and the company still expects its sales for the entire fiscal year, which …

NEW YORK – Gasoline prices are getting an early start on their annual spring march higher.The average U.S. retail price rose 13 cents over the past two weeks to $3.42 per gallon, and within a few days it will likely set a record for this time of year.Prices have not risen that much in Western New York, yet, but if history is a guide, they will. A gallon of regular averaged…

Financial Institutions reports that fourth-quarter profits increased by 10.6 percent, as total revenues grew faster than expenses and the bank integrated its purchase of eight former HSBC Bank USA and First Niagara Financial Group branches.The Warsaw-based parent of Five Star Bank reported late Wednesday net income for common shareholders of $6 million, or 43 cents per sha…

The two full-time employees promised for the region after the Canadian government closed its consulate in downtown Buffalo in August have started working in an office on the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus.The employees – Linda Soltis, a trade commissioner, and Rachael Homewood, a foreign policy and diplomacy service officer – started work earlier this month in the Thomas R…

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The New York City-based owners of the HSBC tower have developed a preliminary plan, modeled after the John Hancock Center in Chicago, to redevelop Buffalo’s tallest building with a mix of luxury residences, offices and a hotel.The plan, still in the early stages, would convert the 38-story tower into a mixed-use project, similar to what Uniland Development Co. did when it …

Buffalo

Lt. Gov. Robert J. Duffy was in Buffalo Wednesday to help launch Roswell Park Cancer Institute’s new Center for Personalized Medicine. Researchers in the center are trying to decipher patients’ genes, with the idea that better tests and treatments can be targeted to their genetic abnormalities.“I’m confident that it will result in a better, more effective and more appropri…

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Upstate business officials don’t think the economy is in great shape, but they’re feeling better about their prospects – and efforts to improve the business climate here – than they were as the Great Recession was ending, pollster John Zogby said Tuesday.An unscientific survey of upstate businesses, conducted for the Accelerate Upstate conference held Tuesday in Buffalo, f…

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Consumers who are battling lawsuits, court judgements or garnishments over credit card, student, medical or car debts now have a new ally in court to fight off abusive creditors.Attorneys at the Western New York Law Center are promoting a new free consumer law service, specifically designed to assist consumers who are not represented by a lawyer as they battle debt collect…

Buffalo

An outdoor public space that will feature fountains, seating and a tree grove just south of the former Donovan State Office Building is headed for construction this spring. Erie Canal Harbor Development Corp. representatives will appear before the Planning Board today to present plans for the $5 million East Canal park project at 125 Main St., part of the Canalside develop…

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After all the hoopla and rhetoric surrounding his release of the 2013-14 budget last week, Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo must now sell it to an often skeptical business community.That’s exactly why he dispatched Kenneth Adams, president of the Empire State Development Corp., to the Amherst Chamber of Commerce luncheon Monday at Salvatore’s Italian Gardens in Lancaster. As Adams mad…