FloridaTrend.com, the Website for Florida Business

Wednesday's Afternoon Update

Growth in South Florida trade up but cooling down

South Florida is the only area nationwide that consistently exports more than it imports. South Florida trade with the world remains on pace for a record this year, but a slowing world economy means gains likely will be smaller than last year's 11 percent jump, new trade data shows. More at the South Florida Sun-Sentinel.

Related Florida Trend Content
» Florida Trade Stats
» From Russia to Turkey
» Exports on the Hoof
» Bay County's International Trade Growth

National railroad services company bringing regional HQ to Florida

R.J. Corman Railroad Signaling will locate its regional headquarters in Clay County, investing $100,000 in capital improvements and creating 58 engineering jobs with an average wage of $75,000. Gov. Rick Scott, Florida Secretary of Commerce Gray Swoope and Clay County officials welcomed the company today at an economic development luncheon in Orange Park. More at the Jacksonville Business Journal and the Florida Times-Union.

Soccer team touts attendance, but turnstile counts far lower

Business Profile

Rising Tide Car Wash

rising tide car wash
A car wash in Parkland in northwest Broward County earned attention for its workforce when it opened in April: 35 employees have autism. John D’Eri and his son, Tom, founded Rising Tide Car Wash to create a place where John’s son and Tom’s brother, Andrew D’Eri, who has autism, could work and achieve independence.

» Full story

Orlando City Soccer Club recently celebrated a milestone: Average attendance at its games surpassed 8,000. But city turnstile records show average attendance was less than half that — at 3,987. That's not unusual in the world of professional sports, where announced attendance has little to do with how many fans actually attend a game. More at the Orlando Sentinel.

Best-selling novelist creates scholarships for education students

James Patterson believes one way to champion books and reading for children is by supporting our future teachers, which explains why his Patterson Family Foundation has donated $48,000 for scholarships benefiting eight elementary education students at the University of Florida. More at UF News.

Welcome to the age of cellulosic ethanol

America’s ethanol makers are in the doldrums. Facing high prices for corn, low prices for ethanol and growing imports of sugarcane ethanol from Brazil, producers have mothballed scores of plants over the past two years. More at Forbes.

Special Report: Health Care Insurance
Employers taking 'wait and see' attitude toward health insurance

condoWhile many expect the link between job and health insurance to disappear over time, most employers say they don’t plan to stop offering health care in the short term. “We have yet to see a client that wants to stop offering health insurance,” says John Lacy, vice president of group benefits for Bouchard Insurance, a Clearwater brokerage — noteworthy since it is cheaper for most large employers not to offer health insurance and instead pay a per-employee penalty of $2,000.

» Full story