Business news from Charlotte and the Carolinas. For more business news, listen to Marketplace every weekday at 6:30 p.m. ET.

Duke CEO Reassures Florida Regulators

Aug 13, 2012

Duke CEO Jim Rogers again took questions from regulators today - this time in Florida, where the company now has a presence thanks to its merger with Progress Energy.

Some Charlotte hotel and restaurant managers aren't as thrilled as local officials about a possible merger between US Airways and American Airlines. They're worried it will mean fewer customers. A group of them has sent a letter to the mayor and city council addressing their concerns. 

Chiquita To Cut Jobs, CEO Stepping Down

Aug 7, 2012
Tanner Latham / WFAE

Chiquita Brands International, which recently relocated its headquarters to Charlotte, announced plans to cut 300 jobs and replace CEO Fernando Aguirre. The company is restructuring to address lagging profits and save at least $60 million a year. The impending job cuts will touch all levels of the company, but Aguirre told investors Chiquita is still committed to Charlotte.

Duke Energy has given thousands of internal documents and emails to North Carolina utility regulators in an ongoing investigation over the company's recent merger with Progress Energy. North Carolina Utilities Commissioners are trying to figure out if Duke Energy misled them in pushing for approval of the merger with Progress Energy and then abruptly ousting the company's would-be-CEO. 

Charlotte City Workers Push For Union Rights

Aug 7, 2012
Julie Rose / WFAE

Charlotte sanitation workers held the first of four rallies last night timed to pressure city leaders into giving their labor union more recognition. They want more pay raises, better working conditions and regular meetings between union leaders and city officials. 

Julie Rose / WFAE

It's become cool to eat from a truck in Charlotte. More than 30 mobile kitchens serving gourmet fare have sprung up here recently and they've been welcomed warmly by city and neighborhood leaders - unlike the chilly reception Charlotte's original food trucks faced. 

Canada’s largest home improvement retailer has rejected an offer from Lowe’s to buy the company. WFAE’s Marshall Terry has more on that story.

Hundreds of protesters have pledged to descend on Bank of America's annual meeting in Charlotte Wednesday. 2011 was a rocky one for Bank of America - falling from its perch as the nation's largest and weathering a series of public relations storms. 

Shareholders Say 'Bye, Bye' To Bank Of Granite

Oct 18, 2011

Shareholders of one of North Carolina's oldest and most well-respected community banks met for the last time Tuesday and approved a merger they hope will save the bank from collapse. Granite Falls-based Bank of Granite is 105 years old. It's on the verge of being acquired by the parent company of another long-time North Carolina bank: CommunityONE. 

BofA Makes $6B, Loses Title Of Biggest Bank

Oct 18, 2011

One of the ways a bank's size gets measured is by the assets it holds. And in the year's third quarter, Bank of America lost its title as the biggest U.S. bank by assets. The numbers the bank disclosed as part of today's earnings report show the Charlotte bank has fewer assets now than JP Morgan Chase. 

BofA's Bumpy Week

Oct 7, 2011

It's been another tumultuous week for Charlotte-based Bank of America. CEO Brian Moynihan went on CNBC to defend a new $5 monthly fee for debit card users that has created quite a bit of heat for the bank.

South Carolina officials celebrated another big jobs announcement Thursday - Continental Tire will open a new manufacturing plant in Sumter County and hire 1,700 people. North Carolina leaders, meanwhile, have been busy blaming each other for losing the deal. 

A petition to get Bank of America to cancel its proposal to charge debit card users $5 a month has collected more than 125,000 signatures. Bank of America customer Molly Katchpole was upset when she heard Bank of America planned to start charging most of its debit card users a monthly fee. "I'm 22 years-old. I'm working 2 part time jobs," says Katchpole. "Five dollars might not sound like much money to the people who made the decision. But that's $60 a year and that's money that I really don't want to handover to a bank that we just bailed out with tax money."

Alcoa, Stanly County Square Off Over Jobs

Sep 26, 2011

Tensions have heightened once again between Alcoa and government officials. The aluminum giant says it's found a company to move onto the site of its smelter in Badin, which closed 2002. The new company - Clean Tech Silicon and Bar LLC - says it will bring hundreds of jobs, but only if Stanly County drops its opposition to Alcoa's hydropower relicensing effort. Thus far, that's a demand the county has been unwilling to meet. 

And then there were seven. Mecklenburg County can no longer claim ownership to the headquarters of eight Fortune 500 companies. Aerospace manufacturer Goodrich is being swallowed by Connecticut-based United Technologies in a deal worth more than $18 billion. 

Shares of Bank of America ended up 31 cents yesterday after the bank held its annual shareholder meeting in Charlotte. Some 50 or so people chanted "Bail out the people, not the banks! Bail out the people not the banks!" on the sidewalk outside the Blumenthal Performing Arts Center. A year ago, anti-big-bank bailout sentiment dominated the Bank of America annual meeting, inside and out. Roundtree EDIT.mp3

The first round of Charlotte's Quail Hollow Championship starts this morning. Just two years ago it was called the Wachovia Championship. Wells Fargo gained sponsorship rights to the PGA tournament with its acquisition of Wachovia, but it's hard to tell. After all, Wells Fargo has yet to put its name on the tournament even though it pays a sponsorship tab of about $7 million a year.

Wells Fargo was one of many banks that backed away from sports marketing last year in the wake of backlash over government bailouts. But UNC Charlotte sports marketing professor Robert Roundtree says the bank still gets some benefits from its sponsorship.

Bank of America's Lewis loses chairman's role

Apr 29, 2009

Bank of America held it's highly-anticipated annual meeting today and has just released the results of its shareholder vote. CEO Ken Lewis and all of the board's directors have been re-elected. However, shareholders narrowly voted to split the roles of CEO and Chairman of the board. WFAE's Julie Rose was at the meeting and joins us to explain. 

BofA Shareholder Votes Still Pending

Apr 29, 2009

Thousands of shareholders packed the Belk Theater uptown this morning for Bank of America's annual meeting. It lasted nearly four hours, but left nothing resolved, including the future of the bank's CEO Ken Lewis. 

Ex-Merrill CEO boosts B of A Meeting Drama

Apr 28, 2009

The drama leading up to Wednesday's Bank of America meeting continues. Ousted Merrill Lynch CEO John Thain is firing a new round of claims in the scandal over executive bonuses. The latest revelations add fuel to what is already expected to be a contentious shareholder gathering in Charlotte.