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Tuesday's Daily Pulse

Another 'lost decade' for Florida's middle class?

Many middle-class families in high unemployment states like Florida will likely have to struggle longer to regain the income they had more than a decade ago, according to a report released Tuesday. The Washington-based Economic Policy Institute predicted it will take at least six more years for the median U.S. family income to climb back up and rebound from a 6 percent drop of $62,301 in 2010 from $66,259 in 2000. [Source: South Florida Sun-Sentinel]

Florida Trend Exclusive
Health Care Trends: Pharmaceuticals -- Bitter Pills?

Pinched by insurance companies and increased overhead, physicians have looked for ways to boost their bottom lines — adding money-making services ranging from physical therapy to MRIs to weight management programs and bone density scans. One tactic: Some doctors choose to dispense some of the medications they prescribe from their offices, in effect, turning their practices into mini-pharmacies. Full story...

A guaranteed price for sugar farmers leaves some sour

Behind every candy bar and can of soda is a complex government program of import tariffs and farmer loans establishing the price of sugar. The program, which has been in place in one form or another since shortly after the founding of the United States, is responsible for the success of Florida’s $616 million sugar industry, the nation’s largest producer of sugar cane. Read more from WMFE and the Florida Center for Investigative Reporting.

Florida's Hispanic business owners say they'll save more and spend less

Florida's Hispanic business owners say they're saving more and spending less, according to a new PNC Bank survey. Seventy-two percent said they would conserve cash over the next six months and 64 percent say they’ll reduce capital spending. The business owners say they’re erring on the side of caution even though they’re optimistic about the growth of their companies. [Source: South Florida Sun-Sentinel]

See also:
» PNC Hispanic Business Outlook Survey
» Small-Business Launches Highest Among Latinos

COLUMN: Denying unemployment benefits is now good news?

There's a nifty little fact on Florida's Department of Economic Opportunity website. If you go to the page where folks file claims for unemployment benefits, it cheerfully points out that the number of individuals seeking benefits declined from 556,941 to 325,448 in Rick Scott's first 17 months as governor. That's just wonderful. One might say it's terribly impressive. One might also say it is horribly misleading. Read John Romano's full column at the Tampa Bay Times.


› Bloomin' Brands names HSN's Mindy Grossman to its board
Outback Steakhouse parent Bloomin' Brands has appointed HSN's Mindy Grossman to its board of directors, the Tampa restaurant firm said Monday. Grossman, CEO of the St. Petersburg retail-TV giant, was named last month by Forbes magazine one of the world's 100 most powerful women, her third time on the list.
Related Florida Trend Archived Content
» Florida Business Newsmakers -- 2011

› Broward’s tourist taxes among the lowest
Florida and California generally have the lowest tourist taxes, according to the study by the Global Business Travel Association, and Broward edged out competitors by not adding the local taxes imposed by many counties in the Sunshine State.

› Titusville bridge a contestant in national competition
Titusville’s A. Max Brewer Bridge is in the running to be named the best road project in the country by the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials.

› Governor Scott kicks off "Education listening tour"
Governor Rick Scott is visiting several Florida schools this week on an “education listening tour”. The Governor started his trip Monday at Jacksonville’s Pinedale Elementary school where he held two sessions: One for teachers, and one for parents.

Go to page 2 for more stories ...

› In race for central Florida growth, Orlando will pass Tampa Bay
Won't be too long before Tampa Bay's longtime little brother, Orlando, becomes the bigger sibling of the central Florida economy. Long-term economic forecasts say the "gross metro product" – a metropolitan region's GNP – of Orlando should catch and surpass that of Tampa Bay in about 16 years or around 2029.

› Farm waste biofuels plant LS9 starts production
Officials at LS9, a new biofuel plant in Okeechobee, said Monday it completed its first production run of fatty alcohols, which are used in detergents. The San Francisco-based company unveiled the Okeechobee facility this spring, after converting a fermentation plant with $4.5 million from the Florida Opportunity Fund.

› Ladies can lunch at DCOTA
Following a multi-million dollar renovation, the Design Center of the Americas will open a restaurant in October offering a gathering spot for customers visiting the showroom and Broward’s power lunch crowd.

› Florida company source of Apple ID data breach
A Florida company said Monday that the database of Apple device information that hackers stole and posted on the Internet last week came from a file the firm had in its computer system.