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Thursday's Afternoon Update

Florida’s foreclosure rate drops to No. 2 behind Nevada

The state posted a 14 percent decline in the number of foreclosures last month dropping to No. 2 after Nevada. Foreclosure starts in the Sunshine State dropped dramatically last month — 65 percent — compared with the same time last year. Several other states posted similar significant drops. More at the South Florida Sun-Sentinel and the Miami Herald.

Fewer Florida banks rated seriously weak

Only 17 Florida-based commercial banks are rated "zero star" or the weakest on a 0-5 scale of financial health, a sign that the state's banking industry continues to strengthen from the darker days of the recession. Bauer Financial, which ranks a bank's health by star ratings every quarter, reported the lowest number of zero-star banks in years based on just released June 30 data. More at the Tampa Bay Times.

Chasing Twinkies proves costly for Hurst brothers

Business Profile


Jason Robotham, an FSU post-doctorate research scientist, launched BioFront Technologies in 2010, aided by co-founder, FSU biological sciences professor Hengli Tang. Robotham, as sole employee, soon readied 20 commercial products for market, including BioFront’s likely-to-be trademark development called the MonoTrace ELISA kit.

» Full story

Bidding on Hostess Brands Inc.'s snack cakes business was a valuable -- albeit expensive -- experience, Sarasota investment firm Hurst Capital LLLP contends. Austin Hurst and his brother, Zach, spent around $300,000 over five months beginning late last year to line up investors capable of making the $400 million to $500 million purchase of bankrupt Hostess brands, including Twinkies. More at the Sarasota Herald-Tribune.

‘Burn Notice’ finale brings curtain down on South Florida production companies

Starting Friday, Miami will see a sharp drop in sabotage, sniper fire and explosions. And that has quite a few people worried about the future. Burn Notice’s dramatic exit comes amid a grim stretch for production companies, which have lost three major series this summer and say they need Florida to extend its film subsidies to revive the industry. More at the Miami Herald.

Each type of social media can help brand your business

When a consumer or potential client is conducting research, chances are they will look for your company presence on the social media platform that they are most comfortable with. Many people today are multi-platform users and spend time in Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Pinterest, etc., so it is essential for you to ensure your branding is carried throughout each platform. More at Florida Today.

Food Business
USDA clears way for Hawaii to ship avocados to U.S. mainland

condoGuacamole connoisseurs around the U.S. will soon have a new domestic avocado to try – not from California or Florida, but Hawaii. The U.S. Department of Agriculture is changing its rules for Hawaii growers to allow them to ship Sharwil avocados to 32 mainland U.S. states and the District of Columbia between November and March.

» Full story from the AP