From Business Today:
Verizon customers with 4G LTE-capable smartphones, tablets or other devices will notice faster network speeds. Verizon Wireless rolled out its 4G LTE wireless data network in the Buffalo Niagara region Thursday. Much of Erie County and a small part of Niagara County will benefit, but the company said it will expand its coverage area in the coming months.
West Seneca got a public compressed natural gas fueling station Thursday. Waste Management opened the Clean 'N Green station as part of its $15 million plan to reduce its and the region's carbon footprint. It is also planning to unveil fleet of trucks powered by natural gas. The recycling company is transitioning 80 percent of its 18,000 trucks to CNG, which will save 8,000 gallons of diesel fuel per vehicle per year. It has opened 20 public CNG stations around the country.
During an earnings conference call Thursday, First Niagara Financial Group CEO John Koelmel said the next two years will be a "rough ride" for banks, and that bank stocks would not rise dramatically. The Fed's pledge to keep interest rates down through 2013 will have a "dramatic impact" on the industry and has caused stocks to plunge, he said. He said the industry is in an even more precarious place than it was before the 2008 crash, and that this crisis would be "trickier."
The Buffalo Niagara region added 4,900 jobs during the 12-month period ending in September, giving the region a 0.9 percent growth rate for the period. It was a slower pace than the region has been seeing, but the 13th consecutive month of job growth and the 18th consecutive month for private sector job growth, according to the state labor department.
The Buffalo Niagara Partnership released a 12-page report, hoping to influence the state's economic development efforts. The reports findings resulted from the two-day Accelerate Upstate conference the Partnership hosted for 250 businesses in August.
The report urges a new approach to economic development, closer ties to elected officials in Canada and the more effective matching of worker skills with the needs of New York employers. It also urges the state to commit mmore funds to programs dedicated to providing money to start-up technology companies and to invest in transportation projects that would speed border crossings.
Who is getting hired, promoted and honored?
Jim Gaffigan will be at UB Saturday: