Business Digest: Austin getting nonstop flights to Cleveland


Austin getting nonstop flights to Cleveland

Allegiant Air will debut nonstop flights from Austin to Cleveland next year, the discount carrier said Wednesday.

The new service debuts Feb. 17 and will operate twice each week.

Austin hasn’t had direct flights to Cleveland since 2014, when United Airlines pulled the plug on that route after less than a year.

Initial airfares will start at $44, Allegiant said.

The addition of nonstop flights to Cleveland comes just a few weeks after Allegiant announced plans to start service between Pittsburgh, Pa.; and St. Petersburg/Clearwater, Fla.

Allegiant arrived in Austin in 2013, starting with nonstops to Las Vegas, the airline’s home base. Since then, it has added service to Albuquerque, N.M.; Cincinnati, Ohio; Orlando, Fla.; and Memphis, Tenn.


Tesla updates software to improve radar

DETROIT — Tesla Motors customers will get enhanced radar and other features in an over-the-air software update that starts Wednesday night.

The update makes the Model S sedan and Model X SUV rely more reliant on radar than cameras when driving in Tesla’s semi-autonomous Autopilot mode. Teslas made after October 2014 have radar.

Tesla CEO Elon Musk says the change should help avoid crashes like the one that killed a Tesla driver in Florida in May. That driver — who was using Autopilot — crashed into a tractor-trailer that Tesla’s camera failed to detect.

Musk says the update also will allow customers to set a maximum temperature control system to help keep kids and pets safe if they’re left in the car. The system automatically turns on the air conditioning.


UK report: hiring at some firms on hold post-Brexit

LONDON — A new Bank of England survey suggests some businesses are freezing both investment and hiring in the aftermath of Britain’s vote to leave the European Union, with broadly flat levels of spending in the next six months to a year.

The so-called agents’ summary of business conditions revealed that in some sectors, such as commercial real estate, “all non-essential recruitment had been frozen.” But the bank says businesses were more optimistic following the initial shock of the vote.

Allan Monks, economist at JP Morgan, says the report suggests an impact that over time “will still have significant adverse economic implications.”

The Bank of England cut its key interest rate to a record low 0.25 percent after the vote, but another cut is possible this year.


VW shareholders seek $9.2 billion over scandal

A German court has been flooded with new lawsuits against Volkswagen from investors who say they lost billions as the value of the carmaker’s shares plunged after its diesel emissions scandal.

The surge could add to the company’s financial woes as it deals with the fallout from the revelation a year ago that it had cheated on emission tests.

In Germany, a regional court in Braunschweig, near Volkswagen’s headquarters in Wolfsburg, said it had registered more than 1,400 complaints from institutional and individual shareholders seeking 8.2 billion euros (about $9.2 billion) in damages. Of those suits, 750 were submitted on Monday alone, coinciding with the one-year anniversary of the disclosure by U.S. authorities of the company’s use of illegal software on its diesel vehicles to cheat on U.S. emission tests.

The company had already reached a $15 billion settlement in the United States and set aside 17.8 billion euros for costs related to the deception. It also faces a raft of complaints from customers in Europe, though regional law means it is harder for disaffected vehicle owners to unite to sue the carmaker.

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