Business Digest: Austin adds flights to Indianapolis, Ft. Walton Beach


AIR TRAVEL

Austin getting nonstops to Indianapolis, Fort Walton Beach

Allegiant Air continues to grow its presence at Austin-Bergstrom International Airport, with plans to add nonstop flights to two more destinations.

The discount carrier said Tuesday it will start service to Indianapolis, Ind., and Destin/Fort Walton Beach, Fla., this year.

The Destin/Fort Walton Beach flights will be seasonal, beginning May 4, while Indianapolis service will be year-round, debuting May 19.

Allegiant currently offers nonstops from Austin to Albuquerque, N.M.; Cincinnati, Ohio; Cleveland; Daytona Beach, Fla.; Las Vegas; Orlando; Memphis, Tenn.; Pittsburgh; and Tampa, Fla.

ECONOMY

Report: Job openings rise, point to wage hikes

WASHINGTON — U.S. employers posted more jobs in November and quitting also increased — signs that job gains and wages may increase in the months ahead.

The number of available jobs rose 1.3 percent in November from the previous month to 5.5 million, the Labor Department said Tuesday. That’s below a post-recession peak of 5.8 million in April. Hiring rose 1.1 percent to 5.2 million.

The number of Americans who quit their jobs increased 1.4 percent to nearly 3.1 million, the second-highest total since the recession. Quits are generally a sign that workers are confident enough to leave their positions for new jobs. Rising quits can also point to higher pay, since most people take new jobs with bigger paychecks.

The figures echo last week’s jobs report, which showed a moderate gain of 156,000 new jobs in December and the biggest annual wage gains in more than seven years.

Last week’s jobs figure is a net gain after layoffs, quits and retirements are subtracted from overall hiring.

FAST FOOD

Chipotle sees late-year sales bounce

Sales at established Chipotle restaurants turned positive last month, potentially sign that the burrito chain may be starting to recover from a food safety scare.

The Denver company said Tuesday that sales at established stores jumped 14.7 percent in December. They fell 1.4 percent in November and fell 20.2 percent in October.

The rebound in the final month of the year eclipsed a disappointing outlook for the entire fourth quarter.

Chipotle expects sales at established restaurants to fall 4.8 percent in the final quarter of the year, which is a more significant deterioration than the 3.8 percent drop analysts expected, according to a survey by FactSet. It expects fourth-quarter earnings between 50 cents and 58 cents per share, far below the 96 cents per share analysts expected. Revenue is expected to be $1.04 billion for the quarter, which is just shy of Wall Street’s projection for $1.05 billion.

The company has given out millions of free burritos, launched a loyalty program and created food safety ads to try and win back customers after a 2015 E. coli outbreak sickened some customers.

SOCIAL MEDIA

Snapchat picks UK for European base

LONDON — The company behind messaging app Snapchat will place its European base in Britain in a vote of confidence in the economy following the vote to leave the European Union.

Los Angeles-based Snap Inc.’s decision runs counter to that of tech giants like Apple and Google, who have chosen lower tax bases like Ireland. It also comes amid public frustration over alleged tax avoidance schemes of multinational corporations.

Snap, which has 75 staff members in Britain, will pay U.K. corporation tax on its international profits.

Claire Valoti, general manager of Snap Group in the U.K., says that the company believes in the U.K.’s creative industries.

Snap has 150 million users a day worldwide and is planning a U.S. stock flotation with a reported valuation of up to $25 billion.



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