FloridaTrend.com, the Website for Florida Business

Friday's Afternoon Update

Consumer confidence falls for second month

U.S. consumer confidence declined this month as Americans turned more pessimistic about the economy, their own finances, and government budget policies. Higher mortgage rates that threaten to slow momentum in the housing market may be making Americans less sanguine about the economic outlook. More from the AP and Bloomberg.

CEO Sounding Board


We ask Florida CEOs: What is your favorite app?

Kostya Kimlat, CEO of SeeMagicLive.com, tells us why he uses Vine:

"It’s perfect for capturing the excitement of live events. Utilizing Vine allows our followers to experience a ‘snapshot’ of what we do, the venue, the entertainer and the audience reactions. ”

» Read more

Read the business plan for Florida's new online university

Lawmakers created the university this spring after studying online options for two years. The online-only university will be part of the University of Florida and is scheduled to start classes in January. Supporters say the school will offer more access to a flagship Florida university, where 29,000 people apply for 6,400 slots each year. [Source: WLRN]

New Cuban regulations open, close opportunities for private jobs

Cubans can now work as real estate agents, handymen, soap makers and 15 other types of “self-employed” jobs. But they cannot sell machine-made clothes, or profit from the resale of items purchased at state stores. [Source: Miami Herald]

» FRIDAY PREVIEW: Coming next week to FloridaTrend.com:

  • Florida Banks have Room to Breathe: International money and a comeback in the housing market are lifting Florida banks.
  • Playing in the Distressed Field: The bloated number of sinking Florida loans on bank books since 2007 has attracted a boatload of bottom-fishers to the state in recent years.
  • A-Lotto Money: The financial adviser for a mother and son who won the $590.5-million Powerball in May has seen his life change nearly as much as theirs.
  • Venture Capital Bounce: Second-quarter venture capital investments point to a turnaround, with the best quarterly showing in six years.

» You'll find all these stories first on the Daily and Afternoon Pulse e-mails.

Out of the Box
Hunt is on for tegu lizards in South Florida

tegu The Argentine tegu lizard doesn’t grow nearly as big as a Burmese python but it may be a greater threat to South Florida’s native animals. At a maximum size of four feet, a tegu can’t gobble down a full-grown deer or alligator with its rapier-sharp teeth. But the invasive, black and white reptiles have the potential to cause even more ecological damage than the 18-foot snakes that have drawn international media attention in recent years. And now, scientists say, it’s too late to eradicate them.

» Full story at the Miami Herald