Tuesday's Afternoon Update
What you need to know about Florida today.
Florida consumer confidence jumps in May
Consumer confidence among Floridians rose three points to 77 in May, reversing a three-month decline. “The rise in confidence in May was particularly strong among those under age 60 and those with household incomes above $30,000," said Chris McCarty, director of UF’s Survey Research Center in the Bureau of Economic and Business Research. The increase in confidence is due in part to gas prices declining 33 cents a gallon in Florida over the past month. Other reasons are that unemployment continues to fall in Florida, and there's been an encouraging rise in jobs in the professional and business services sectors. “This is a welcomed change from last year, when job gains were concentrated in tourist-related industries,” McCarty said. More at UF.
Interline Brands to be purchased for $810.9M
Interline Brands Inc., a Florida-based distributor of products used by locksmiths, hardware companies and professional contractors, has agreed to be acquired by a pair of private equity groups for $810.9 million in cash.
CEO SOUNDING BOARD
Related: Interline Brands made Florida Trend's Largest Public Companies in 2012, ranked at #45. (For more information about how to download the full version of Top 150 Public Companies in Florida, click here.)
Small Biz Advice:
Spread the word about entrepreneurship
Though entrepreneurship is vitally important to our country, it gets very little recognition. In fact, many people do not even realize it is a viable occupation. Many times while at FSU, students would tell me they did not know that they could major in entrepreneurship or even that it was a valid and valued profession. I think every entrepreneur has an obligation to spread the word about entrepreneurship... Jerry Osteryoung's column continues here.
Universal Orlando raises most ticket prices
Harry Potter has elevated Universal Orlando to yet another new height: The most expensive theme park in the land. Universal has raised the price of an adult one-day, one-park ticket to $88 -- $3 more than the equivalent ticket to Walt Disney World theme parks. It's also $1 more than the basic price to a theme park at Disneyland in Anaheim, Calif. More at the Orlando Sentinel.
Florida's new surgeon general will balance time between Tallahassee and Ocala
Dr. John Armstrong has practiced medicine from one end of Florida to the other. Last week, Armstrong started another new job: as Florida's surgeon general. In this new role, he will be the lead spokesman for the state on public health matters and oversee the Florida Department of Health. And although his new title means another change of address for him, Armstrong goes to Tallahassee secure in the knowledge that his refuge is where his home is -- in Ocala. Read more at the Gainesville Sun.
Dr. John Armstrong, medical director of the Center for Advanced Medical Learning and Simulation in Tampa, which opened in the spring of 2012, says the center is expected to draw up to 60,000 medical professionals a year. [Photo: USf/Bobby Bishop]
Social Media Trend
Dennis Feltgen at the NHC in Miami said the Twitter account -- @NHC_Atlantic -- expanded to nearly 50,000 followers. "We've had great success with Facebook and Twitter reaching out to an audience that might not be tuned in to radio or television," Feltgen said. More at the Orlando Sentinel.