Banks and savings institutions headquartered in Florida posted a combined profit of about $296 million in the second quarter of 2013. That’s an increase from first quarter profit of $249 million, and from the second quarter of 2012, when Florida-based institutions had a combined profit of $137 million. Read more from the Tampa Bay Business Journal.
» Banks’ earnings are on the rise nationally
Jacksonville pulled off an unlikely coup last year when 45,000 soccer enthusiasts showed up to watch the U.S. men’s team defeat Scotland at Jacksonville’s EverBank Field. City officials touted the showing — no easy feat in the football-fanatical South —to secure a three-year deal to bring Major League Soccer exhibition games to EverBank Field in February. Full story on sports business in Jax, here.
Despite some well-publicized cruise mishaps, the industry continues to grow in Florida — with one exception. The casino cruise and day-cruise segment fell 21% last year, holding down overall growth. Overall, the number of cruise passengers increased 3.5% thanks to the number of multiday cruise passengers rising 4.5% to a record 13.6 million. Read the full story here and see charts on Florida's ports and free trade zones.
Florida has the nation’s second-highest rate of uninsured residents younger than 65 — a total of about 3.8 million people, or about 25 percent of the state’s population, including more than 500,000 younger than 19, according to U.S. Census data released Thursday. [Source: Miami Herald]
Enforcement of the state's environmental laws has plummeted under Gov. Rick Scott and the private company attorney he picked to lead the Department of Environmental Protection, according to a report to be released Thursday by a group that represents government workers who work in environmental regulation. Read more from the AP and read the report.
ALSO AROUND FLORIDA:
› AutoNation to insure all legally married couples [Miami Herald]
Fort Lauderdale-based AutoNation announced Thursday that beginning in January, it will insure the spouses — both same-sex and opposite sex — of all legally married employees, regardless of whether their state of residence recognizes gay marriage.
› Why downtown Miami needs Burger King headquarters [South Florida Business Journal]
Downtown Miami is the business heart of South Florida, but is sorely lacking when it comes to major corporations. That's why landing Burger King Worldwide in the Omni area would be a pretty big deal – if it actually happens.
› EDC launches 'G.O. Contracts' database [Florida Today]
A A Filed Under Business The Economic Development Commission of Florida’s Space Coast this morning announced in a press release the launch of “G.O. Contracts, Government Opportunities Online. “ According to the release, "The EDC program is aimed at helping local businesses win federal, state and local government contracts.
› Goodwill opens new $14 million healthcare laundry [Miami Herald]
Goodwill Industries of South Florida on Thursday unveiled its new $14 million hospital laundry, one of the most modern facilities of its kind in Florida and the latest venture for the non-profit that employs workers with disabilities.
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› MDC seek public-private partnership to develop medical campus site [Miami Herald]
Miami Dade College is seeking to develop a mixed-use project on its medical campus through a public-private partnership. The college is seeking letters of interest from the private sector by a Dec. 6 deadline. Forms are available at www.mdc.edu/purchasing/bids.asp.
› Royal Caribbean will send second cruise ship to Port of Tampa in 2014 [Tampa Bay Times]
Royal Caribbean International announced Thursday that it will expand its cruise offerings out of the Port of Tampa next year when a second ship, the Vision of the Seas, begins trips to the Caribbean.
› Palm Beach billionaire Ross co-founds shipping company [South Florida Business Journal]
Looking to capitalize on a sector that’s growing in Florida ports, Palm Beach billionaire Wilbur Ross is part of a group that founded a dry bulk shipping company in Bermuda.
› NASA enlists UF faculty to develop small satellite technology [UF News]
Mechanical and aerospace engineering and astronomy faculty members at the University of Florida have been selected to work with NASA’s Langley Research Center on navigation and guiding systems for small satellites.