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David Robinson

David Robinson is the deputy business editor for The News, where has worked since graduating from Syracuse University in 1985. A New Hampshire native, he started out in the News' Tonawanda bureau and moved into the business news department in October 1987, exactly a week after the stock market crash.


Business

The identities of companies that fall more than three months behind on their loan payments to an Erie County Industrial Development Agency affiliate would remain secret until the agency takes legal action against them, according to a new policy under consideration by the organization. The proposed policy, which has not yet been adopted, was developed after two months of…

Business

The owners of the wind turbines along the Lake Erie shoreline in Lackawanna are getting a 15-year package of tax breaks for their $21.5 million project to replace 10 of the wind turbines on the former Bethlehem Steel site. The tax breaks will give a boost to efforts to upgrade the highly visible wind turbines, which could not be fixed because replacement parts aren't av…

Business

Unemployment is starting to tick upward ever so slightly. The Buffalo Niagara region’s unemployment rate inched up to 4% last month from 3.7% during October 2018, according to data released Tuesday by the State Labor Department. While the unemployment rate still was the second-lowest for any October since 2001, it was the third straight month that joblessness was hig…

Business

The Buffalo Niagara region’s job market is looking better. While the region’s job growth slowed to just 0.4% during October, that slowdown was caused by the five-week strike at local General Motors plants that idled about 3,000 workers and meant that those positions weren’t counted in last month’s job numbers, released Thursday by the State Labor Department. If Octob…

Bills

The $25 million deal is done to sell a majority stake in Rand Capital Corp. to an entity controlled by Buffalo Bills and Sabres owners Kim and Terry Pegula. The deal, first announced in January and approved by Rand shareholders in May, a 57% ownership stake in Rand, which had been looking for ways to increase its returns for shareholders as its stock at times traded at …

Business

The Buffalo Niagara region’s steadily strengthening housing market isn’t showing any signs of losing steam as the traditional winter slowdown approaches. Prices keep rising moderately. Fewer homes are for sale. And sellers still are commanding close to their final asking price, according to new data from the Buffalo Niagara Association of Realtors. The median sale pr…

Business

New York State spent $958.6 million to build Tesla Inc.'s solar panel factory in South Buffalo and buy a big chunk of the equipment inside. Now, auditors are saying the building and all that equipment is worth just under $75 million – or just 8% of what the state put into the RiverBend factory. That stunning admission, included in financial statements from the nonpro…

Bills

The acquisition of Buffalo venture capital firm Rand Capital Corp. by Buffalo Bills and Sabres owners Kim and Terry Pegula is on track to close later this month. The deal, first announced in January and approved by Rand shareholders in May, cleared its final major hurdle when the acquisition by the Pegulas' East Asset Management was approved by the U.S. Small Business A…

Business

Low natural gas prices will be good for National Fuel Gas Co.'s customers this winter, but not the Amherst energy company's profits. National Fuel on Friday cut its profit forecast for this fiscal year by 7% because falling natural gas prices will cut into the earnings of its oil and natural gas drilling business. With the company facing what CEO David P. Bauer calle…

Business

Moog Inc.'s defense and space businesses are growing – and that's good news for the Elma motion control equipment maker's local operations. Moog's defense-related business, excluding replacement parts, grew at a double-digit pace during the third quarter. The company is in the later stages of a $44 million project to expand its Elma campus and is looking to add engineer…

Business

Elon Musk was positively buoyant introducing Tesla Inc.’s third iteration of its solar roof on Friday. “It's a really cool product,” he said. "If you're re-roofing or building new, I'm pretty confident this is a smart move." Musk predicted that, within a few months, the Buffalo factory could be churning out 1,000 of its Solarglass roofs each week. He thinks demand wi…

Business

Elon Musk says Tesla Inc. is getting serious about solar energy again. After three years of cutting costs and diverting resources from its solar energy products while it focused on the rollout of the Model 3 electric vehicle, Tesla once again is paying attention to its shriveled solar business. “One of the things that’s obviously delayed Tesla solar in general, for 1…

Business

Three years after first unveiling its solar roof, Tesla Inc.’s CEO Elon Musk said the long-awaited product is ready for consumers – a move that will spur more activity and hiring at the company’s Buffalo factory. “We’ll definitely make New York proud about that factory,” Musk said during a conference call Friday. “It’s going to be great.” Tesla expects to be producin…

Business

The United Auto Workers union has approved a new contract with General Motors. It ends a nearly six-week strike that idled tens of thousands of workers. Under the contract, workers will see wage increases and a path for temporary workers to become permanent employees. Employees will also receive a signing bonus of $11,000 per member as well as performance bonuses. The t…

Business

Another Elon Musk deadline. Another Elon Musk deadline missed. The Tesla Inc. CEO on Wednesday said the company would be holding "the official product launch" for the third version of its long-awaited solar roof on Thursday afternoon. But Thursday afternoon came and went without any announcement from Tesla. Musk tweeted at 6 p.m. Thursday that the announcement was be…