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CEOs at the biggest companies got a 4.5 percent pay raise last year. That's almost double the typical American worker's, and a lot more than investors earned from owning their stocks — a big fat zero.

The typical chief executive in the Standard & Poor's 500 index made $10.8 million, including bonuses, stock awards and other compensation, according to a study by executive data firm Equilar for The Associated Press. That's up from the median of $10.3 million the same group of CEOs made a year earlier.

Jeff Chiu / Associated Press

Pickups from ride-hailing companies like Uber are not yet legal at Atlanta's Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport. But some Atlanta officials have been looking out of state to help come up with an agreement.

Officials said that a group of city and airport leaders went to Newark, New Jersey to look at the city’s agreement with ride-hailing companies. The city of Newark recently reached an agreement with companies, which included requiring Uber to pay $10 million over a decade to the city to run at the Newark Liberty International Airport. 

Turkish Airlines began direct flights from Atlanta to Istanbul on Monday. Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport says it expects more foreign direct investment with Turkey as a result.
Courtesy of Turkish Airlines

On Monday, a new airline began operating from Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport. Turkish Airlines began a new route with nonstop flights from Atlanta to Istanbul. 

Aviation analysts say Turkish Airlines routinely has some of the best fares in the industry because of low labor costs and that this addition could help lower international fares out of Hartsfield-Jackson across the board.

Newell Brands Inc. is moving its global headquarters from Atlanta to New Jersey.

Newell officials on Friday announced the move to Hoboken, New Jersey.

The company adopted the name Newell Brands after Newell Rubbermaid completed its purchase of Jarden Corp. in April. The purchase combined brands including Paper Mate, Sharpie, Elmer's, Rubbermaid, Lenox, Yankee Candle and Graco.

The company's statement says New Jersey's Economic Development Authority offered $27 million in tax incentives to "help offset the costs associated with the new facility."

A bond rating agency is downgrading Southern Co.'s debt, citing money the electrical utility will borrow to finance its purchase of natural gas utility AGL Resources.

Fitch Ratings cut the debt rating Thursday to A- from A, after putting the utility on watch when it announced the $8 billion purchase last year.

Southern Co. owns Georgia Power Co., Alabama Power Co., Gulf Power Co. and Mississippi Power Co.

Ric Feld / Associated Press

Alaska Airlines and JetBlue Airways still rank highest in the annual J.D. Power survey of passengers on the nine largest North American airlines, and the firm says overall traveler satisfaction with the industry is at a 10-year high.

J.D. Power said Wednesday that Alaska Airlines ranked highest among traditional airlines for the ninth straight year and JetBlue was the top-rated low-cost carrier for the 11th year in a row.

Jeff Chiu / associated press file

Wal-Mart is suing Visa Inc., charging the payment network is not allowing the retail giant to let customers verify chip-enabled debit card transactions with what it believes is a more secure method: personal identification numbers.

In a suit filed in New York State courts Tuesday, the Bentonville, Arkansas-based discounter says Visa is forcing the retailer to allow customers to use a signature when they use the chip-based debit cards.

scottpartee / www.flickr.com/partee (cropped)

A new poll says more than 40 percent of America's baby boomers stayed with their employer for more than 20 years. But it's unlikely that their children or grandchildren will experience the same job tenure.

The survey of more than 1,000 Americans 50 and older by the Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research shows that 41 percent of those employed workers have spent two decades with the same company, including 18 percent who've stayed at least 30 years.

Jeff Chiu / associated press file

A Facebook official says the company has found no evidence to back up allegations that Facebook contractors suppressed stories of interest to conservatives in its "Trending" section.

Facebook vice president of search Tom Stocky writes in a post, "There are rigorous guidelines in place for the review team to ensure consistency and neutrality," adding that the guidelines don't permit political perspectives to be suppressed or one viewpoint or outlet to be prioritized over another.

Tennessee-based Dollar General Corp. plans a 1 million-square-foot distribution center southeast of Atlanta that will employ 500 people when the plant is fully operational, Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal announced Monday.

The new facility is expected to serve more than 1,000 stores across the southeastern U.S. The company, based in Goodlettsville, Tennessee, operates more than 650 stores, Deal said.

The distribution center is scheduled to operate at full capacity by the fall of 2017, the governor said.

Elly Yu / WABE

Gov. Nathan Deal signed a $23.7 billion budget this week, which includes money for covering the tuition costs for students working towards jobs in high-demand fields. This year, the state added the field of “industrial maintenance” to that list.

Industrial maintenance jobs have been in high demand as advanced manufacturing has grown in the state in the last several years, said Ben Hames, deputy commissioner of the workforce division at the Georgia Department of Economic Development. Currently, he said there are around 300 open jobs in this field alone.

Courtesy of Colour co-founder, Debra Shigley

Over the last few years more women of color have started wearing their hair in its natural state.

And it's had an impact on the hair care industry – including on the sale of relaxers, which consumer researching group Mintel says have dropped nearly 20 percent since 2013.

The hair care industry for women of color is big business but, in recent years, more women have gone "natural" – a phrase that describes women wearing their hair in it's natural state without using a chemical process to change the texture.

Mark Lennihan / associated press file

A federal lawsuit claims Starbucks regularly overfills its cold drinks with ice instead of using the advertised amount of coffee or other liquid in its plastic cups.

The lawsuit was filed last week in Chicago on behalf of Stacy Pincus, a local woman who accuses Starbucks of misleading consumers. The lawsuit alleges that an iced beverage advertised at 24 ounces contains about 14 ounces of fluid, and that ice isn't a fluid or beverage.

Mayor Kasim Reed and outgoing Delta CEO Richard Anderson signed a contract Wednesday, April 27, keeping Delta Air Lines in Atlanta for at least 20 years and keeping the city from operating or funding any airport other than Hartsfied-Jackson.
Alison Guillory / WABE

While the city of Atlanta just struck a new 20-year deal with Delta Air Lines over Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, Paulding County is moving ahead with its plans to establish commercial air service north of the city.

Michael Pugh / The Coca-Cola Co.

The Coca-Cola Co. will turn 130 years old on May 8, and there’s no company that brands Atlanta more than the beverage giant. As goes Coke, so goes Atlanta – and vice versa.

So holding this year’s annual meeting at the World of Coca-Cola for the first time was symbolic. The company was bringing its shareowners into the home they built. Not only was the meeting held there, the company opened the doors of the attraction for a special Shareowners Day at the World of Coca-Cola.

Comcast said it will bump up data limits from 300 GB to 1 TB for customers in the nine states it serves in the Southeast.
Gene J. Puskar / Associated Press

Starting in June, Comcast internet customers in metro Atlanta will no longer have to deal with 300 GB data caps.

This move affects heavy users in its Southeastern market, which includes nine states from Virginia to Florida.

The Philadelphia-based company said it plans to increase its data caps from 300 gigabytes to 1 terabyte. The company said most customers only use about 60 gigabytes of data per month, but that’s changing.

Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed said outgoing Delta CEO Richard Anderson served as a personal mentor he called on during his early years as a fresh mayor.
Alison Guillory / WABE

Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed and Delta Air Lines CEO Richard Anderson were wiping away tears as they signed a 20-year lease extension. 

Delta, which has called Atlanta home since 1941, committed to sticking around for at least another 20 years on Wednesday. 

Anderson was hired as Delta's CEO in 2007 and plans to retire on May 2. 

Reed said Anderson has served as his personal mentor from his early days as mayor and said he feels like the training wheels are now off. 

The founder of Atlanta-based PulteGroup Inc., Bill Pulte, continues to call for the immediate resignation of CEO Richard Dugas.
Courtesy of PulteGroup Inc.

The public internal feud within the PulteGroup Inc. doesn't appear to be hurting the bottom line so far.

The Atlanta-based homebuilding company reported strong first-quarter earnings Thursday morning with more than $83 million in net income and stronger revenues from home sales compared to 2015.  

Bob Edme / Associated Press

Georgia Power is in the middle of three days of testimony before the state’s Public Service Commission to defend how it plans to get electricity in the future and how much electricity it thinks the state will need over the next 20 years. 

Georgia Power is required to file an Integrated Resource Plan every three years, which must be approved by the commission in a months-long review process.

Steve Helber / Associated Press

Hotels are getting more aggressive in their fight to get travelers to book reservations directly with them instead of through online travel agencies such as Expedia and Priceline.

Hyatt Hotels Corp. on Monday became the latest chain to offer guests a discount for booking a room directly on its own website. Members of its Gold Passport loyalty program can save up to 10 percent at hotels in the U.S., Canada and Australia.

The move follows similar campaigns by Hilton Worldwide, Marriott International and Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide.

Dan Raby / WABE

Delta Air Lines Inc. (DAL) on Thursday reported first-quarter profit of $946 million.

On a per-share basis, the Atlanta-based company said it had net income of $1.21. Earnings, adjusted for non-recurring costs, were $1.32 per share.

The results beat Wall Street expectations. The average estimate of seven analysts surveyed by Zacks Investment Research was for earnings of $1.29 per share.

The airline posted revenue of $9.25 billion in the period.

A car drives past an Allstate Insurance Co. office Wednesday, April 27, 2011, in Lyndhurst, Ohio.
Tony Dejak / Associated Press

Georgia Insurance Commissioner Ralph Hudgens has issued a rare consumer alert over a rate hike proposed by auto insurance company Allstate.

Allstate has filed to raise automobile rates statewide by 25 percent, with the rate hike going into effect May 22.  

Hudgens said that 25 percent bump is only the average rate change, and that some policyholders could see increases as high as 58.3 percent.

 In this file photograph taken July 30, 2009, Rubbermaid containers are stacked at a store in Detroit.
Paul Sancya, file / Associated Press

From Sharpie pens to Yankee Candles, chances are you’ve used products owned by Newell-Rubbermaid or Jarden, which is based in Boca Raton, Florida.

Now Newell-Rubbermaid, which employs about 900 people here in Atlanta, is planning to buy Jarden, another Fortune 500 Company, for $16 billion. 

Newell-Rubbermaid is one of the region's biggest employers. 

But Emory economist Tom Smith says that its acquisition of Jarden probably won't mean an immediate boost to Atlanta's economy ─ at least not right away.

In this April 8, 2009 file photo, the Pulte Homes community of Liberty Park is seen in Novi, Mich.
Carlos Osorio, file / Associated Press

The founder of PulteGroup Inc. is again calling for the removal of its current CEO Richard Dugas.

“I supported the appointment of Richard Dugas as CEO in 2003, which in hindsight was a mistake and perhaps the biggest mistake of my career,” founder William J. (Bill) Pulte wrote in a letter released Monday morning.

Dboybaker / www.flickr.com/demietrich

An unusual strain of virus-like hacker software that exploits computer server vulnerabilities — without requiring human interaction — is a leading example of a new generation of "ransomware," according to a new report by Cisco Systems Inc.

Hackers use such software to target large-scale networks and hold data hostage in exchange for bigger payments. Such a strain, known as Samas or samsam, hit the MedStar Health Inc. hospital chain last month.

The HealthCare.gov website, where people can buy health insurance, is displayed on a laptop screen in Washington, Tuesday, Oct. 6, 2015.
Andrew Harnik / Associated Press

This story was updated at 5:23 p.m.

United Healthcare, the nation's biggest health insurer, will stop offering plans through Georgia's insurance exchange in 2017, according to the state Office of Insurance and Safety Fire Commissioner.

The department confirmed that United is currently the only insurer that has notified the state that it will not participate on the state's health insurance marketplace in 2017.

A travel advocate accuses Atlanta-based Delta Air Lines of shaming certain customers into buying a higher fare ticket. Delta says it's providing transparency as a way to better inform customers.
Manuel Balce Ceneta / Associated Press

Atlanta-based Delta Air Lines reportedly could be in talks for a big order of new airplanes.

The news agency Reuters said Delta is in talks with plane manufacturers to buy dozens of small, narrow-body jets that seat around 100 people, possibly from the Canadian company Bombardier.

Reuters reports:

Mariordo via wikipedia

Self-driving cars are more likely to be a threat than a boon to public safety because of unresolved technical issues, engineers and safety advocates told the government Friday, countering a push by innovators for expedited government approval.

Even a trade association for automakers cautioned the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration at a public meeting that a slower, more deliberative approach may be needed than the agency's plan to provide in six months federal guidance for deploying the vehicles on roadways.

Tesla Motors says worldwide orders for its new lower-priced Model 3 electric car have hit 325,000.

CEO Elon Musk says on Twitter Thursday that the number is still rising.

Customers must put down $1,000 to order the cars, which start at $35,000 and have a range of 215 miles per charge. The deposits are refundable.

The Palo Alto, California, company started taking orders March 31, shortly before Musk unveiled the car in Los Angeles. It's not scheduled to go on sale until late next year.

John D. Helms / Fort Benning

Fort Benning is the largest employer in Columbus, Georgia, and the federal government is in the process of cutting 2,400 positions. 

The Greater Columbus Georgia Chamber of Commerce and Valley Partnership Joint Development Authority is now working on a plan through a study and series of public meetings to prepare for the loss.

The chamber’s Executive Vice President of Military Affairs Gary Jones estimated the loss of 2,400 soldiers by the end of July will take a $286 million economic toll on the region based on salaries and purchasing power. 

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