Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Morning Briefs

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Morning Briefs

Article excerpt

JACKSONVILLE BANCORP SEES EARNINGS, ASSETS INCREASE

Jacksonville Bancorp Inc. Thursday reported second-quarter earnings rose 56 percent to $689,000, or 38 cents per diluted share.

The holding company for The Jacksonville Bank said total assets were $310 million as of June 30, up from $249.5 million a year earlier.

Mark Basch/The Times-Union

NEW HOME SALES SLIDE SEEN AS MARKET SLOWDOWN SIGN

Sales of new homes fell in June for the first time in four months, and the government also lowered figures for May, providing further evidence the high-flying housing market is losing altitude.

The Commerce Department reported Thursday that new home sales dropped by 3 percent last month to a seasonally adjusted annual sales pace of 1.131 million units. It was the first decline since an 11.5 percent drop in February.

The government also marked down sales activity in May to a pace of 1.166 million units, substantially below its initial estimate of 1.234 million units.

Analysts pointed to the drop in sales last month and the downward revision for May as fresh evidence that housing was slowing considerably from the impact of higher mortgage rates. Mortgage rates are a full percentage point higher than this time last year.

Associated Press

JOBLESS CLAIMS DECLINE, LABOR MARKET STILL STRONG

The number of U.S. workers filing first-time applications for state jobless benefits fell unexpectedly to 298,000 last week, a sign the labor market remains strong.

Initial jobless claims declined by 7,000 in the week that ended July 22, from the prior week's 305,000, the Labor Department said today in Washington. The four-week moving average, a less volatile measure, fell to 312,750 from 317,000 a week earlier.

Weekly jobless claims have averaged 309,000 so far this year, compared with 332,000 during the same time last year. …

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