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Business: Beyond Tampa Bay

All but one of the nation's 30 largest banks are better able to withstand a severe U.S. recession and global downturn than at any time since the financial crisis, the Federal Reserve has determined. Results of the Fed's annual "stress tests" showed Thursday that only Zions Bancorp failed to meet the Fed's minimum level of capital to withstand a crisis. The 30 banks tested included Bank of America, Citigroup, JPMorgan Chase and Wells Fargo.

AT&T will take orders for Samsung's new Galaxy S5 smartphone starting today, while T-Mobile will start Monday. Verizon, Sprint and others are also expected to carry the phone, though details have yet to be revealed. Samsung has said the phone will start shipping worldwide on April 11. The S5 has a 5.1-inch screen, measured diagonally, a 16-megapixel camera and a fingerprint sensor to use in place of a passcode to unlock the phone or make payments through PayPal. AT&T says the phone will cost $200 with a two-year service agreement or $650 without a contract. T-Mobile is charging $660 under its installment plan.



The number of people seeking U.S. unemployment benefits rose 5,000 last week to a seasonally adjusted 320,000, which is close to pre-recession levels and suggests a stable job market. The four-week average of applications, a less-volatile figure, fell 3,500 to 327,000, the lowest since late November, the Labor Department said Thursday. About 3.35 million people received unemployment benefits as of March 1, the latest figures available. That's about 101,000 fewer than the previous week.

Starbucks plans to turn more of its cafes into destinations for beer and wine in the evenings, saying it is looking to expand alcohol sales to "thousands of select stores" over the next several years, although it didn't provide details on an exact time line. The chain first offered beer and wine after 4 p.m. at one of its Seattle cafes in 2010. The drinks are now in about 26 cafes, with plans to reach 40 by the end of this year.

tHE BOTTOM LINE: McDonald's says its chief operating officer, Tim Fenton, is retiring and the hamburger chain won't refill the position … Conference Board's index of leading indicators rose 0.5 percent in February, the largest increase in three months, suggesting growth should rebound

Business: Beyond Tampa Bay 03/21/14 [Last modified: Friday, March 21, 2014 10:37am]
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  1. Southwest Airlines to offer flights from Tampa to San Diego

    Airlines

    TAMPA — Southwest Airlines will offer new nonstop service from Tampa International Airport to San Diego International Airport beginning Jan. 8, 2018.

    Southwest Airlines is planning to launch service from Tampa to San Diego.
[Times file photo]
  2. Tampa Bay homes values continue to rise along with sales prices

    Real Estate

    For the second month in a row, Tampa Bay had one of the highest year -over-year increases in home values in May, Zillow reported today.

    For the second month in a row, Tampa Bay had one of the highest year -over-year increases in home values in May, Zillow reported Thursday.
[Times file photo]
  3. Busy start has Florida Hospital Center Ice dreaming big

    Tourism

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    Alex Senushkin and his grandson, Styopa Kulshyn, 3, of Lakeland, skate at the Florida Hospital Center Ice rink in Wesley Chapel.
[CHARLIE KAIJO   |   Times]

  4. Qatar Airways seeks to buy a stake in American Airlines

    Airlines

    NEW YORK — State-owned Qatar Airways is attempting to buy a 10 percent stake in American Airlines, triggering U.S. antitrust oversight of deals that size.

    In this file photo, a new Qatar Airways Airbus A350 approaches the gate at the airport in Frankfurt, Germany. Qatar Airways is attempting to buy a 10 percent stake in American Airlines, triggering U.S. antitrust oversight over deals of such size. 
[AP file photo]
  5. Who's best global airline? Qatar Airways takes No. 1 spot but Delta tops U.S. carriers

    Airlines

    The good news? Delta Airlines tops all U.S. airlines in a new Skytrax global airline passenger satisfaction survey of the world's best airlines. The bad news? At No. 32, Delta still ranks behind dozens of Middle East, Asian and some European airlines. For Tampa International Airport and the major airlines that operate …

    Southwest Airlines, the biggest carrier at Tampa International Airport, improved its customer satisfaction rating among global airlines in a recent survey.
[Times file photo]