Thinking Of Replacement Windows For Your Home? Choose The Right…

first_imgFacebook11Tweet0Pin8 Submitted by Energy Efficiency FirstWindows provide our homes with light, warmth, and fresh air.  But because windows are thermal holes, they can also reduce a home’s energy efficiency.  To reduce energy costs and to help keep the home’s temperature consistently comfortable, many people opt to replace old drafty windows with new energy-efficient windows.The cost effectiveness of replacing windows depends on the condition of your home and your existing windows.If you notice an issue that will decrease your home’s durability, like water damage, it is paramount that you track down and address the root cause and repair the damage.  When this scenario involves a window, the rotted window may be the symptom, not the source, of the leak.  Find and stop the source of the leak, then replace the window and rotten framing.  A complete window replacement is best because it allows you to integrate the new window fully into the wall with new water-shedding flashing, air-sealing foam, and high-quality water sealants.If your home’s existing windows are old, leaky or damaged, installing replacement windows will generally pay for itself, in the form of lower energy bills, within 2 to 10 years.  EnergyStar.gov estimates that you will save from 7 to 24 percent on energy costs if you install Energy Star qualified windows; the percentage will be on the high end if you are replacing old single-paned windows. In the same vein, the U.S. Department of Energy estimates that a typical homeowner in the Northwest will save $258 a year when replacing single-pane windows and $112 a year when replacing double-pane, clear glass windows with double pane, argon filled, low-e coated windows that are Energy Star qualified.Two years ago one of our clients wrote us a letter thanking us for professionally installing insulation and replacement windows in her home, citing her energy bills dropped by half and she felt more comfortable.When it comes to installing replacement high-efficiency windows, both the federal government and your local utility are on your side.  In homes heating with electric, Puget Sound Energy offers a rebate of up to $1,500 for replacement windows.  Congress offers a $200 tax credit that can go up to $500 if replacement doors are involved.SELECTING REPLACEMENT WINDOWS      It’s important to realize that when you remove a window from a wall, you’re left with a large hole in your house. You should plug that hole with something that will perform well, last long, and look good.Choose Based on Energy Performance Expectations  When it comes to energy efficiency, you can’t trust your eyes alone.  Two windows that look exactly alike can perform very differently.  The invisible parts of a window combine to boost performance, energy efficiency, and comfort.  Different glass coatings, gas fillings, and spacers between glass panels are impossible to differentiate visually.  They can be verified only through laboratory tests and the associated ratings that come from the U.S. Department of Energy’s Energy Star Program and from the National Fenestration Rating Council (NFRC).  Any window worth using boasts a sticker revealing its Energy Star and NRFC rating.The two most important factors considered by Energy Star and the NFRC are:U-factor:  This value expresses the window’s heat loss rate.  It is based on the energy performance of all the window’s component parts, operating as a whole (the number of panes of glass, the thickness of each glass pane, the coatings on the glass, the gas in between the glass, and the material from which the sash and frame are made).   Smaller numbers (0.35 or less) mean greater energy efficiency and comfort. The lower the U-factor, the better.  In the Northwest, windows must have a U-factor of 0.3 or lower to receive the Puget Sound Energy rebate and the federal tax credit.Solar heat-gain coefficient (SHGC): Percentage of the sun’s radiant heat getting into your house. In colder climates, like the Northwest, a higher SHGC is okay, even good.  In the Northwest, windows may have an SHGC rating as high as .4 and still receive the federal tax credit.  Windows in Florida, by comparison, can get the tax credit with an SHGC rating of .27 or below.The following “invisible” window characteristics affect U-factor and SHGC:Gas filling: Like air, argon is nontoxic, clear, and odorless, but it’s a better insulator. The optimal gap between panes of glass is 1⁄2 in.Low-emittance (low-e) coatings: These are nearly transparent metal films. All low-e coatings bounce radiant heat back into the home in the winter. Most reflect the sun’s radiant heat in summer, too.Double-glazing:  A “glazing” is one layer of glass.  The more glazes, the higher the U-factor.  Two layers of glass (double glazing) are standard. Triple-glazing is a good idea in very cold areas.  Sometimes the different layers of glass will have different tints or coatings on them to affect the rate of light verses solar heat (SHGC) that can get into the home through the window.Warm-edge spacers: Specialized rubbers, foams, and plastics that improve U-factor and reduce condensation or thermal bridging through the glass itself.Choosing Based on Framing Material  Choosing window framing material is an important part of window selection. The material from which a window frame is made greatly affects its energy performance.  Framing material and construction also affect durability, maintenance, aesthetics, and cost.From an energy-efficiency perspective, the frame material should be as thermally non-conductive as possible.   A rate of thermal conductivity is a measurement of how quickly heat travels through an object from an area of a higher temperature to an area of a lower temperature.  Materials that have very tightly bound molecules allow faster heat conduction.  Wood, vinyl, and fiberglass provide greater thermal resistance than metal, which is very dense and conducts heat quickly.A few interesting facts about wood, aluminum, walls, and relativity:Green construction companies like ours know, when it comes to wall construction, wood is considered to be very thermally conductive – its acts as a “thermal bridge.”  To stop wood wall studs from conducting heat to the outside, modern wall-construction methods place a layer of thermally non-conductive material on the outside, such as foam insulation board.  This acts as a thermal break, keeping more heat in the wall.  Yet, in the world of windows, wood window frames rank highly on the list of recommended framing material with the U.S. Department of Energy calling wood a “good insulator.”  This just goes to show that relativity is a key concept when it comes to window framing material and energy efficiency; how thermally conductive is the frame compared with other available frames.While wood, in the world of windows, is considered a good insulator, metal is such a great heat conductor that, in colder climates, metal frame windows have been phased out.  Not easy to give up, aluminum window manufactures now make aluminum windows with a thermal break sandwiched in the middle, and these are still sold in warmer climates.  We haven’t yet seen a wood window manufactured with a thermal break sandwiched in the middle, yet.  Perhaps this will come in the next generation.   Vinyl and fiberglass window manufacturers, however, have begun filling their window frames with foam insulation.Perhaps someday windows will approach the R-values of today’s walls.  Even the most energy efficient window we could find in today’s marketplace, however, which has a U-factor of .16, is only one-third as efficient as a standard wall.  A U-factor of .16 translates into an R-value of 6.25.  By comparison, the Washington building code requires that walls be constructed to R-19.  Eventually, the marketplace might support, or regulations might require, the commonplace manufacture of windows containing a thermal brake, insulation, and perhaps 4-5 layers of glazing filled with krypton gas.  Until then, we recommend that consumers strive to purchase the most energy efficient window frame available and within budget.Official guidance on window frame material:The U.S. Department of Energy, the National Fenestration Rating Council, and other experts, such as Fine Home Building Magazine, provide the following guidance about the energy efficiency, durability, and affordability of the window frame materials commonly available in the Northwest market.  This guidance, and the stated U-factors, is for the window frames only without relation to the insulated glass units that fit inside.Wood Frames:  Wood window frames insulate relatively well with a typical U-factor of 0.5.  But they also expand and contract in response to weather. Wood frames also require regular maintenance, such as paint.  When well-maintained, wood windows should last a long time.  Aluminum or vinyl cladding of the wood window reduces maintenance requirements, but adds expense.  Even without the cladding, wood windows are more expensive than vinyl.  Wood windows are typically less expensive than fiberglass.Fiberglass Frames:  Fiberglass window frames are dimensionally stable and are stronger than vinyl.  There are no maintenance requirements, although fiberglass can be painted.  The hollow cavities of fiberglass frames can be filled with insulation.  Un-insulated fiberglass frames typically have a U-factor of 0.5.  When insulated, the U-factor of fiberglass frames decreases to 0.33, which makes them thermally superior to standard wood frames.  The relative cost of fiberglass is more expensive than a standard wood window and more expensive than vinyl.  Vinyl Frames:  Vinyl window frames are usually made of polyvinyl chloride (PVC) with ultraviolet light (UV) stabilizers to keep sunlight from breaking down the material. Vinyl window frames do not require painting and have good moisture resistance. The hollow cavities of vinyl frames can be filled with insulation.  Un-insulated vinyl frames typically have a U-factor of 0.5.  When insulated, the U-factor of vinyl frames decreases to 0.33, which makes them thermally superior to standard wood frames and provides the same performance as fiberglass frames.  Vinyl windows are almost always less expensive than wood and fiberglass.Some environmental groups argue that vinyl is too toxic to be considered green, even though an insulated vinyl window has a lower U-factor than a wood frame. Vinyl is very stable, so there’s really not any human health risk to the homeowner.  The concern is that the chemicals used to make vinyl windows can be harmful during the manufacturing process and at the end of its use upon disposal.  This is weighed by many against the benefit of more and more homeowners being able to afford a durable window that enhances the thermal performance and energy efficiency of their home.Most of our window clients opt for vinyl framed, double pane, argon gas, and low-e coated windows.  They look good, last a long time, are maintenance free, and they are affordable, even when selecting the upper level, higher quality and foam insulated windows.Choosing Based on Manufacturer and WarrantyThere are bad windows made from wood, vinyl, and fiberglass, just as there are good windows made from each of these materials.  You have to pay attention to the window construction and to the warranties offered by the manufacturer.Whatever the window framing material, look for windows with the following characteristics:  The connections where the frame joins together must be tightly sealed to keep out water and air. Weather stripping needs to seal tightly after hundreds of window closings, rain wettings, sun exposures, and winter freezes.  Inexpensive and flimsy materials will not endure the test of time and weather.  Compressible gaskets like those used to seal car doors are the best.  Closures must be substantial enough to tightly clinch windows shut. Look carefully at these components and inquire about the window’s track record of performance.It is also best to stick with windows that come with a good warranty.  Warranties reflect a manufacturer’s confidence in its product’s durability. Good window companies offer a 20 year warranty on the window seal and 5-10 years on everything else (frame, sash, and hardware).  Even if a window is rated well by the NRFC, if a window manufacturer offers a prorated warranty and it is full of exclusions, such as non-transferability, you have to question the window.  Similarly, be wary of warranties that sound too good to be true and are more generous than what the mainline well-known companies can offer.Buy Local and Find a Qualified Professional Window InstallerAs a local company, we like to support other local businesses.  As a company that professionally installs vinyl windows and vinyl sliding glass doors in Thurston County, we are fortunate to have a quality vinyl window manufacturer right here in Washington State.  Everything about these products is local in that it comes from the Northwest.  This includes the sand used to roll the glass, which is mined near Spokane.  The glass is manufactured at a plant in Winlock.  The insulated glass units (IGUs) are assembled in Hood River, Oregon.  Finally, the IGUs are placed into custom made vinyl window frames in Spokane, Washington.  The basic window is a well-built double glazed window with low-e coatings and a pillow of argon gas between the glazings.  Options such as foam-filled insulated frames, triple glazing, enhanced-view screens, and special locking systems are available.It is also important to have your windows installed by a reputable, experienced professional window installer.  A poor installation practically will guarantee failure of even the most expensive, high-performance window.  At Energy Efficiency First, in partnership with Quality Renovation and Carpentry, our owner is an energy auditor with over 25 years of residential remodeling experience, and our installer has installed windows professionally for over 30 years, as his sole profession.  Now, his son installs windows with him.If you’re in the market for replacement windows, call us for a free consultation and estimate.CONSIDER IMPROVING THE ENERGY EFFICIENCY OF THE REST OF THE HOME FIRST There may be several reasons that you would consider replacement windows.  Perhaps you want to give your home a facelift and stop those annoying drafts that make you feel cold.  Perhaps the home is experiencing durability issues and it makes sense to address replacement windows in the process of repairing the damage.  If these are your reasons, go ahead and get your replacement windows now.  If, however, energy and cost savings are the motivator, make windows the second stop on your road to success.  Or said another way, pick the less expensive, low hanging fruit first:Air seal the building envelope to stop wasteful air infiltration through HVAC, electrical, and plumbing penetrations, and more.In the attic, install as close to R-49 (loose fill) insulation as possible.Completely fill the joist bays in the floor with fiberglass batts that fit snugly to the under-floor.Insulate the walls, preferably with dense-packed blown cellulose that will provide air sealing benefits.Insulate and air seal the forced-air duct work the leaks air you paid to heat into the crawl space.Now you’re ready for energy-efficient replacement windows:  There is no denying that a new double-pane or triple-pane window with argon gas and low-e coating will seriously outperform a single-pane window, especially one with an older aluminum frame.CONSIDER IMPROVING THE ENERGY EFFICIENCY OF EXISTING WINDOWS If your budget is tight of if you already have double pane windows, energy efficiency improvements to existing windows can also help:  replacing only the window sash, adding storm windows, caulking and weather stripping, and using window treatments or coverings.If the existing frame and sill are in good condition, you can swap the sash for an energy-efficient upgrade.  The sash is the part that holds the glass and sits inside the stationary window frame.  To replace the sash, remove it and the parting stops, then install jamb liners against the sides of the window frame. The liners form a tight seal with the new sash. Many manufacturers have replacement-sash kits designed for their older frames.  A sash swap out is not recommended for homes in the Northwest with older aluminum frame windows.Adding storm windows can reduce air leakage and improve comfort. Unfortunately, when we price storm windows for clients, we find that a storm window is often just as expensive as a replacement window.  With modern window technologies and designs, replacement windows often are a better way to go.Caulking and weather stripping can reduce air leakage or infiltration around windows. Use caulk for stationary cracks, gaps, or joints less than one-quarter-inch wide, and weather stripping for building components that move, such as doors and operable windows. Window treatments or coverings can reduce heat loss in the winter and heat gain in the summer. Most window treatments, however, aren’t effective at reducing air leakage.If you’re in the market to make your home more energy efficient, durable, and healthy, call us today.  We offer energy audits and building performance services to make your home or small business more energy efficient, comfortable, healthy, and durable.  We provide you with a free consultation and estimate. To learn more, click here.last_img read more

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Get ready for Serena Williams vs. Maria Sharapova in Paris

first_imgJury of 7 men, 5 women selected for Weinstein rape trial Lights inside SMX hall flicker as Duterte rants vs Ayala, Pangilinan anew They have verbally clashed in the past, such as a 2013 public spat about their private lives.Williams, 36, owns 23 major singles titles. Sharapova, 31, has won five. Williams has won the French Open three times, Sharapova twice. They are the only active women with a career Grand Slam; they are two of six in history to accomplish that. Both have been ranked No. 1.But the head-to-head history is overwhelmingly in Williams’ favor: She has won 19 of 21 meetings, including 18 in a row.“Quite frankly, she’s probably a favorite in this match, for sure,” Williams said with a chuckle. “She’s been playing … for over a year now. I just started. So I’m just really trying to get my bearings and trying to feel out where I am and see where I can go.”The last time Sharapova beat Williams was in 2004.ADVERTISEMENT The last time they played was in the 2016 Australian Open quarterfinals, Sharapova’s final appearance before her 15-month drug suspension.“Well, it’s been a while,” Sharapova said, “and I think a lot has happened in our lives for the both of us, in very different ways.”Williams was asked about Sharapova’s book, which was published last year. It contains quite a bit of material about the American, including a reference to Williams crying in the locker room after losing to Sharapova in the Wimbledon final 14 years ago.“As a fan, I wanted to read the book and I was really excited for it to come out and I was really happy for her. And then the book was a lot about me. I was surprised about that, to be honest,” Williams said. “I was, like, ‘Oh, OK, I didn’t expect to be reading a book about me — that wasn’t necessarily true.’”Insisting she doesn’t “have any negative feelings” toward Sharapova, Williams said “the success of one female should be the inspiration to another.”Seconds later, Williams made reference to Sharapova’s “incident of drugs.”There were plenty of other results involving top names at the French Open on Saturday. Other women moving into the fourth round included 2016 champion Garbine Muguruza, two-time runner-up Simona Halep, two-time major title winner Angelique Kerber and reigning U.S. Open champion Sloane Stephens. Men’s winners included 10-time champion Rafael Nadal, No. 3 Marin Cilic, No. 5 Juan Martin del Potro, No. 6 Kevin Anderson and No. 9 John Isner.The story of Day 7, though, was what everyone can look forward to on Day 9: Williams vs. Sharapova.This is Williams’ first Grand Slam tournament since January 2017, when she won the Australian Open while pregnant. The American made a brief foray on the tour earlier this season, but she played only four matches.She had some problems in her initial two outings in Paris, including in the second round, when she dropped the first set against 17th-seeded Ashleigh Barty before — as Williams herself put it — “Serena came out.” MOST READ Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard PLAY LIST 02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite03:23Negosyo sa Tagaytay City, bagsak sa pag-aalboroto ng Bulkang Taal01:13Christian Standhardinger wins PBA Best Player award Producing by far the best performance in her return to Grand Slam tennis — 16 months after her last major tournament and nine months after having a baby — Williams played cleanly and powerfully in a 6-3, 6-4 tour de force against 11th-seeded Julia Goerges that lasted a mere 75 minutes and lacked much in the way of theatrics.“There is still a ways to go, but it’s moving in the right direction,” said Williams, who made only three unforced errors in the first set, 12 in all. “And I think that as long as it’s moving in the right direction, I know I will get there.”FEATURED STORIESSPORTSGinebra beats Meralco again to capture PBA Governors’ Cup titleSPORTSAfter winning title, time for LA Tenorio to give back to Batangas folkSPORTSTim Cone, Ginebra set their sights on elusive All-Filipino crownSharapova advanced with a similarly lopsided win, 6-2, 6-1 against 2016 U.S. Open runner-up Karolina Pliskova.Now comes the drama: Williams vs. Sharapova on Monday with a quarterfinal spot at stake. Serena Williams of the U.S. celebrates as she defeats Germany’s Julia Georges during their third round match of the French Open tennis tournament at the Roland Garros stadium, Saturday, June 2, 2018 in Paris. (AP Photo/Christophe Ena)PARIS — If the upcoming French Open showdown between Serena Williams and Maria Sharapova provides any of the sort of animus and back-and-forth they manage to stir up away from the court, look out.During a news conference after both won Saturday to set up the longtime rivals’ fourth-round matchup at Roland Garros, Williams criticized Sharapova’s autobiography as “hearsay” and twice brought up the Russian’s 15-month doping ban.ADVERTISEMENT Steam emission over Taal’s main crater ‘steady’ for past 24 hours Winfrey details her decision to withdraw from Simmons film Against Goerges, the careless errors were largely absent. The missing energy was back. In front of a crowd that included former heavyweight boxing champion Mike Tyson, it took 15 minutes for Williams to gain the upper hand, sprinting to reach a drop shot and whip a cross-court forehand passing winner for a 3-1 lead.Williams yelled loudly and raised her fist. It was almost as if she’d never left the scene.“Any time you play against Serena, you know what you’re up against. You know the challenge that is upon you,” Sharapova said. “Despite the record that I have against her, I always look forward to coming out on the court and competing against the best players.”Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Nextcenter_img China population now over 1.4 billion as birthrate falls More contact coming from Cavs Thompson, Warriors Green Lacson: Calamity fund cut; where did P4 billion go? LATEST STORIES Jiro Manio arrested for stabbing man in Marikina Volcano watch: Island fissures steaming, lake water receding Dave Chappelle donates P1 million to Taal relief operations Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. View commentslast_img read more

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No pushovers: NU Lady Bulldogs prove they’re more than just a bunch of rookies

first_imgEugenie Bouchard’s bid for Australian Open spot ends in qualifying NU showed tremendous fortitude and composure when it stunned heavily favored University of the Philippines, 25-17, 14-25, 17-25, 25-23, 17-15, in the UAAP Season 81 women’s volleyball tournament on Wednesday.The Lady Bulldogs have six rookies in their roster but those youngsters are as proven as anyone in the league with five of them having steered Nazareth School of NU to four straight UAAP high school titles.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSGolden State Warriors sign Lee to multiyear contract, bring back ChrissSPORTSCoronation night?SPORTSThirdy Ravena gets‍‍‍ offers from Asia, Australian ball clubsREAD:UAAP volleyball: Young NU squad pulls off five-set stunner over UP“You just can’t discount them as rookies,” said head coach Norman Miguel in Filipino. “These girls won four straight titles in high school so even though they’re rookies they already have the character to help the team.” And of the five rookies in NU’s lineup, including injured setter Joyme Cagande, one young lady stood out in libero Jennifer Nierva.NU’s defensive ace was an immovable force on the ground tallying 26 excellent digs and 29 successful receptions—three more than what UP as a whole had.Nierva was also unflappable when she described how the NU engine works, showing a confidence ahead of her years.“I think we want to show that we want to prove something that each and every one of us really wants to win,” said Nierva in Filipino. “We’re not complete right now but we want to achieve something.”“We won’t ever say that our team is a pushover, no. We use the negativity as our motivation,” Nierva added.ADVERTISEMENT Ginebra beats Meralco again to capture PBA Governors’ Cup title MOST READ MANILA, Philippines—The National University Lady Bulldogs had a simple message to the rest of the league—they’re more than just rookies.ADVERTISEMENT Will you be the first P16 Billion Powerball jackpot winner from the Philippines? Tom Brady most dominant player in AFC championship history And while Nierva took care of the team’s defense, Princess Robles and Ivy Lacsina handled the offense.Robles and Lacsina, both rookies, had 17 and 16 points, respectively for the Lady Bulldogs who improved to 2-4 for the no.6 spot in the standings.“We played without any doubts,” said Roble. “We really wanted to win earlier.”“We showed our fight and that we can win our fights,” said Lacsina. “No one in our team doubted herself because everyone pushes each other to be better. Your teammate and the coaches will always push you.”Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Japeth Aguilar wins 1st PBA Finals MVP award for Ginebra Rogue cops marked as Gamboa’s targets in his appointment as PNP chief LATEST STORIES Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard PLAY LIST 02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite03:23Negosyo sa Tagaytay City, bagsak sa pag-aalboroto ng Bulkang Taal01:13Christian Standhardinger wins PBA Best Player award Ginebra beats Meralco again to capture PBA Governors’ Cup title Paul Lee says Hotshots should be ready for Gin Kings Gretchen Barretto’s daughter Dominique graduates magna cum laude from California college Nadine Lustre’s phone stolen in Brazil Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. View commentslast_img read more

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Wind storm causes power outages near Fort St. John

first_imgB.C. Hydro is currently working to restore two power outages in the Fort St. John area.  One outage is affecting 650 customers north of Fort St. John.  Hydro hopes to have power restored to those customers by 4 p.m.The second outage is in the Charlie Lake area and 52 customers are affected.  Once crews have restored power to the larger outage, they will begin working on this outage.  That could mean another 4 hours before power is restored.The estimates for both outages could change if crews find major damage.- Advertisement -For information about the outage in your area, you could call 1-888-POWERON.  Expect delays if you need to call.  Hydro is currently dealing with a major storm in the lower mainland, which caused more than 500,000 customers to be without power at the peak of the storm.  B.C. Hydro’s website is still down.last_img read more

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‘So, Cech won’t win a title again in his life!’ Blues fans let rip after Arsenal poach hero

first_img1 Chelsea transfer latest: Blues fans bid farewell to Arsenal bound goalkeeper Petr Cech It’s official. (At last).After what seemed like an eternity, Chelsea announced that they have sold goalkeeper Petr Cech to Arsenal earlier this afternoon.The 33-year-old, who signed for the Blues from Rennes in 2004, will spend his time between the sticks at the Emirates Stadium next season, rather than on the Stamford Bridge bench.Gunners fans are delighted with their purchase and even believe that the shot stopper’s arrival could help Arsene Wenger’s men become title challengers in the near future.But how have members of Chelsea’s fan base reacted to Cech’s transfer? Have they wished the Czech Republic international well, or has his legacy been tainted?You can the best reaction below…last_img read more

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Drop in consumer spending expected

first_imgNEW YORK – Consumers seem to be growing more uneasy about the economy by the day – they’re fretting about gas prices, inflation, the housing market, rising interest rates and their jobs. The question is, how anxious do they have to be before they curtail their spending at stores and malls? The latest snapshot on consumers and how they feel is worrisome. The Conference Board said Tuesday that consumer confidence fell in May, suffering its steepest drop since the aftermath of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita last year. While the decline wasn’t as big as analysts expected, shoppers are clearly more nervous about the economy. That soured optimism is expected to show up in retailers’ May sales figures, to be released today. Retailers aren’t worried only about a precipitous drop in consumer spending – even if shoppers each buy only one or two fewer items each this summer, that collective frugality could be a serious blow to business. Until now, consumers have proven surprisingly resilient despite gasoline prices that hover at around $3 a gallon. But analysts say that if gas stays high through the summer season and rising interest rates further cut into the housing market, consumers will be forced to retrench. Same-store sales, or sales at stores opened at least a year, are considered the best indicator of a retailer’s health. Overall, the nation’s retailers are expected to report a modest 3.4 percent increase in same-store sales for the month, below the 4.1 percent gain averaged from January through April, according to RetailMetrics LLC, a research firm in Swampscott, Mass. “Our sense is that if we see no break (in gasoline prices) we will see more softness,” said Ken Perkins, president of RetailMetrics. Perkins predicted retailers’ May performance will be a “mixed bag.” Discounter Target Corp., teen retailers such as Abercrombie & Fitch Co. and luxury stores should do well, but mid-price department stores such as J.C. Penney Co. Inc. could see sales slow, he said. Karl Bjornson, retail strategist at Kurt Salmon Associates Inc., said consumers are becoming more selective about how they spend their money, cutting back at restaurants and visiting stores that offer better deals. Shoppers interviewed near a Wal-Mart store in Columbus, Ohio, said they’re still buying clothing and other discretionary items, but they have curbed other expenditures. “I did away with most of my cable. I did away with my telephone at home. And I cut back on food,” said Richard Ruse of Grove City, Ohio. Two years ago, gas took up 20 percent of Ruse’s salary. Now, it eats up 35 percent of his paycheck. Ashleigh Wade of Gahanna, a suburb of Columbus, said she’s eating out less and shopping at Wal-Mart more. “I go to Wal-Mart because you can do everything in one place,” she said. “So I guess it is gas because this way I’m not running all over the city eating up gas.” The direction of retail sales may lie in the hands of the Federal Reserve, which is trying to stave off inflation while not hurting economic growth. The concern is that inflationary pressures will force the Fed to keep boosting interest rates although it has nudged rates higher 16 times over the past two years. It was clear in minutes of the Fed’s May 10 policymaking meeting that Chairman Ben Bernanke and other officials on the Fed’s Open Market Committee remain concerned about rising prices. “Inflation pressures appeared to be somewhat greater than the committee had anticipated” when it met in March, the minutes said.160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORE11 theater productions to see in Southern California this week, Dec. 27-Jan. 2Another concern is that solid gains in the job market – which have propped up consumer spending – could evaporate as companies look for ways to cut labor costs as they battle higher expenses. “It doesn’t help that oil prices and interest rates are up, and the stock market is down. All of that weighs on consumers,” said Stuart Schweitzer, managing director and global investment strategist for JPMorgan Asset and Wealth Management and JPMorgan Private Bank. “The last shoe to drop is the slowing in job growth, which if it hasn’t happened, will soon get started.” Schweitzer added consumer spending slowdown has only just begun, but it has “a lot further to run.” Wal-Mart Stores Inc., the world’s largest retailer, offered a lackluster May sales report, tempering the sales outlook for other merchants. The Bentonville, Ark.-based discounter, blaming higher gasoline costs for hurting its core low-income shoppers, estimates same-store sales will rise a modest 2.3 percent. That’s below the 4 percent gain the discounter averaged from January through April. last_img read more

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GET DOWN TO NEWTOWN TONIGHT IF YOU THINK YOU’RE THAT SMART!

first_imgAre you really as smart as you think?That’s the question the Central Perk Relay for Life team will be asking tonight in Coyle’s Bar in Newtowncunningham.The quiz starts at 9pm and all proceeds will go to the great Relay for Life charity. See you all there. GET DOWN TO NEWTOWN TONIGHT IF YOU THINK YOU’RE THAT SMART! was last modified: May 16th, 2014 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)last_img read more

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Donegal’s little drummer boy ready to rock the Toy Show!

first_imgby Katrina TaskerRathmullan’s little drummer boy Finlay Sheridan is only seven, but he’s already been tipped as Ireland’s youngest rock star – counting Minister Joe McHugh as one of his biggest fans.And the whole of the village, and indeed Donegal, will be glued to their screens this Friday night when Finlay rocks The Late Late Toy Show in front of 1.5 million viewers. Totally unfazed by all the attention he’s been getting, the first-class pupil from Drumhalla NS, which only has 32 pupils,  has been wowing audiences locally with his amazing talent, and has already played live on BBC Radio Foyle.Finlay Sheridan with The Late Late Toy Show presenter Ryan TurbridyFinlay Sheridan at RTE StudiosAnd recently he gained a new fan when Education Minister Joe McHugh visited his school to raise their Active Flag.Finlay who plays in the family band My Generation along with his dad, Daniel and brother Evan jumped on the drums in his school uniform to play Seven Nation Army by The White Stripes, and the Minister for Education and Skills was blown away by the performance.Now, as Finlay and his family head off to Dublin for Friday’s Late Late Toy Show, Minister McHugh sent a good luck message to them all. Recalling the first time he’d watched Finlay at Drumhalla NS, McHugh said: “I had the pleasure of meeting Finlay on a recent visit to Drumhalla National School, and got to hear Finlay play the drums in the band with his dad Daniel and brother Evan.“What a fantastically talented child Finlay is, and I had to remind myself quite a few times, that he is only seven years of age!“Being chosen to be part of the Late Late Toy Show is an outstanding achievement for Finlay, considering over 5000 acts applied to be part of this national event.“I would like to pass on my best wishes to Finlay for an amazing magical few days in Dublin and hope his parents Rachel and Daniel and all the family enjoy this lovely once-in-a-lifetime experience.”Finlay Sheridan with The Late Late Toy Show presenter Ryan TurbridyDonegal’s little drummer boy ready to rock the Toy Show! was last modified: November 29th, 2019 by Staff WriterShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:Finlay Sheridanthe late late toy showlast_img read more

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Half-time: QPR 0 Tottenham 1

first_imgHarry Kane’s 34th-minute goal left relegation-threatened QPR in danger of a second home defeat in the space of three days.Rangers, beaten by Arsenal in midweek, went close to going ahead when top scorer Charlie Austin fired against the underside of the bar after Matt Phillips had dribbled his way towards the left-hand edge of the penalty area.Earlier, Austin was unable to find a way past Tottenham keeper Hugo Lloris after being gifted a sight of goal by Kyle Walker’s woeful back-header.However, for all the home side’s good work they were undone by an all-too familiar defensive lapse.Kane drifted between Nedum Onuoha and the recalled Rio Ferdinand to head home Andros Townsend’s free-kick – the striker’s 25th goal of the season. QPR (4-4-2): Green; Onuoha, Ferdinand, Caulker, Yun; Isla, Sandro, Henry, Phillips; Zamora, Austin. Subs: McCarthy, Hill, Wright-Phillips, Kranjcar, Hoilett, Grego-Cox, Comley. Follow West London Sport on TwitterFind us on Facebooklast_img read more

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West Holmes FFA’s Lorentz receives gold rating

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest The West Holmes FFA chapter is pleased to announce that Justin Lorentz has received a gold rating at the national level for his proficiency project. The gold rating is the second highest rating an applicant can receive nationally.Justin specializes in turf grass management where he is the proud enterprise owner of Lorentz Lawn Care and Landscaping. This business involves the planting and maintaining of turf for outdoor beautification, providing a lawn mowing service; and improving recreational areas. In the future he plans to work with sport fields or golf course management.He first started out working five lawns but now has expanded to 32 lawns. He has hopes to get up to 100 lawns in the future. Justin first had to deal with evaluations, which is a process every proficiency applicant must go through, he was first checked through districts, and then state where he was awarded 1st place.He plans to attend ATI when he graduates to pursue a career in Turf Grass Management and Landscaping.last_img read more

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