Arizona gas prices and more

2013-03-08T00:00:00Z Arizona gas prices and moreFrom Wire Reports From Wire Reports Arizona Daily Star
March 08, 2013 12:00 am  • 

ARIZONA

Gas prices up for week, but by less than a cent

After increasing by 70 cents since the start of this year, gasoline prices around Arizona slowed this week.

The average statewide price for regular is $3.75 a gallon, AAA Arizona's survey shows. That's less than a penny higher than last week.

AAA analysts say prices climbed for 45 consecutive days. The cost at the pump is expected to keep slowly dropping in coming days.

Tucson has the lowest average gasoline price in Arizona at $3.55 a gallon while Scottsdale has the highest at $3.88.

This week's national average is $3.72 per gallon, down by more than six cents from last week.

Groups challenge mine near Grand Canyon

TUSAYAN - The U.S. Forest Service is being sued over the approval of a uranium mine south of the Grand Canyon. The Havasupai Tribe and conservationists filed the lawsuit Thursday in federal court.

The lawsuit challenges the decision to allow Energy Fuels Inc., to open the Canyon Mine about six miles southeast of Tusayan. The suit says the Forest Service failed to consult with tribes on the impact of the mine and did not update a 1986 environmental review.

Forest Service officials have said the mine's operation plan needs no further revisions.

NATION

Stocks, home prices send household wealth higher

Surging stock prices and steady home-price increases have finally allowed Americans to regain the $16 trillion in wealth they lost to the Great Recession. The gains are helping to support the economy and could lead to further spending and growth.

The recovered wealth - most of it from higher stock prices - has been flowing mainly to richer Americans. By contrast, middle-class wealth is mostly in the form of home equity, which has risen much less.

Boeing battery fire difficult to control

Firefighters and mechanics tried repeatedly to put out a battery fire aboard a Boeing 787 Dreamliner through smoke so thick they couldn't see the battery, according to documents released Thursday that portray the incident as more serious than previously described.

The Jan. 7 fire at Boston's Logan International Airport is under investigation by the National Transportation Safety Board, which released laboratory analyses, interviews and other data it has gathered so far. It still hasn't been able to pinpoint the cause.

Federal Aviation Administration officials are expected to make a decision in the next few days on whether to approve a plan by Boeing to revamp the 787's lithium ion batteries to prevent or contain future fires.

Retailers report sales slowed in February

The nation's retailers reported Thursday that sales slowed in February, a time when most stores get rid of winter merchandise and bring in spring fashions.

Americans spent more carefully during the month, as they dealt with a payroll tax increase of 2 percentage points, income tax refunds that came later than usual and rising gas prices. Winter storms likely hurt sales, as well.

Fed says biggest banks are in stronger position

The nation's largest banks are better prepared to withstand a severe U.S. recession and a global downturn than at any time since the 2008 financial crisis, the Federal Reserve said Thursday.

The Fed's annual "stress tests" showed that as a group, the 18 banks hold fewer bad loans compared with last year.

Jobless-aid claims lower, Jan. trade deficit wider

In other U.S. economic reports Thursday:

• The number of Americans seeking unemployment aid fell to a seasonally adjusted 340,000 last week, driving down the four-week average to its lowest level in five years, the Labor Department said.

• The U.S. trade deficit widened in January, reflecting a big jump in oil imports and a drop in exports, the Commerce Department said.

The Associated Press

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