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The Journal Gazette

Tuesday, July 10, 2018 1:00 am


Borrowing grows at rapid pace

Staff, news services

WASHINGTON – Americans increased their borrowing in May at the fastest pace in a year and a half, boosted by a big increase in credit card borrowing.

Consumer debt rose $24.5 billion in May after an increase of $10 billion in April, the Federal Reserve reported Monday. It was the biggest monthly increase since a rise of $24.8 billion in November 2016.

The category that includes credit cards climbed $16.3 billion in May after increasing by $5 billion in April.

The overall economy, as measured by the gross domestic product, grew at a lackluster annual rate of 2.2 percent in the January-March quarter.

US tariffs hit BMW auto sales in China

Automaker BMW says it will have to raise prices on the U.S.-built SUVs it sells in China due to higher tariffs. China raised the import tax on cars from the United States to 40 percent in retaliation for higher tariffs on Chinese goods imposed by President Donald Trump.

The dpa news agency reported that the Munich company said Monday it is “not in a position to completely absorb the tariff increases.”

BMW builds key SUV models in Spartanburg, South Carolina, where it employs 10,000 people. Those vehicles are exported to 140 countries, making BMW the largest U.S. auto exporter.

Clean-tech startup to invest in Wabash

10X Engineered Materials LLC, a clean-tech science and engineering startup company, announced plans Monday to establish operations in Wabash County, creating 26 new, high-wage jobs by 2021.

The company will invest more than $4 million to establish a 50,000-square-foot operations center at 1162 Manchester Ave. in Wabash, according to a news release, and has plans to add another 22,000 square feet to accommodate growth.

10X will develop material process technologies and products using industrial byproducts and other stranded or under-utilized resources. The company will work with insulation manufacturers in a complementary separation process to produce new material products from insulation byproducts.

Construction on the facility is scheduled to begin this year.

Kroger launching apparel brand Dip

The Kroger Co. on Monday announced a new apparel brand Dip, developed by fashion designer Joe Mimran.

Notable for launching Club Monaco, Joe Fresh and Pink Tartan, Kroger said in a news release that Mimran “brings talent and expertise from his 30-year fashion career to create an exclusive clothing line for Kroger that makes effortless style easy and affordable to achieve.”

Robert Clark, Kroger's senior vice president of merchandising, said the retailer worked closely with him to “develop a line of clothing that works for today's times – easy to buy, easy to wear, and easy to love. Effortless style, every day of the week.”

Uber investing in scooter-rental firm

Uber is set to reach into more forms of transportation by investing in scooter-renter Lime. Uber is making an investment in Lime and putting its logo on the scooters.

Earlier this year, Uber bought Jump Bikes, which rents electric bicycles in about a half-dozen US cities.