Chamber gets award
The Youngstown/Warren Regional Chamber has received the 2013 Excellence in Economic Development Innovation Award from the Ohio Economic Development Association.
The chamber earned the award for its work with Siemens Corp., which led to $440 million of engineering software going to Youngstown State University’s College of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics.
The award was announced Thursday at the OEDA’s 2013 Excellence Awards Summit in Columbus, where representatives from the chamber and YSU were on hand to accept it.
Siemens said the software will be a core component in the continuing efforts of the new National Additive Manufacturing Innovation Institute in downtown Youngstown to prepare a modern workforce throughout the region.
Funds seek study on climate change
Some of the largest pension funds in the U.S. and the world are worried that major fossil-fuel companies may not be as profitable in the future because of efforts to limit climate change, and they want details on how the firms will manage a long-term shift to cleaner energy sources.
In a statement released Thursday, leaders of 70 funds said they’re asking 45 of the world’s top oil, gas, coal and electric power companies to do detailed assessments of how efforts to control climate change could impact their businesses.
FDA seeks limits on hydrocodone
The Food and Drug Administration is recommending new restrictions on prescription medicines containing hydrocodone, the highly addictive painkiller that has grown into the most widely prescribed drug in the U.S.
In a major policy shift, the agency said in an online notice Thursday that hydrocodone-containing drugs should be subject to the same restrictions as other narcotic drugs like oxycodone and morphine.
The move comes more than a decade after the Drug Enforcement Agency first asked the FDA to reclassify hydrocodone so that it would be subject to the same restrictions as other opioids drugs.
Mortgage rates fall
Average U.S. rates on fixed mortgages dropped this week to their lowest levels in four months, a positive sign for the housing recovery.
Mortgage buyer Freddie Mac says the average rate on the 30-year loan fell to 4.13 percent. That’s down from 4.28 percent. The average on the 15-year fixed loan declined to 3.24 percent from 3.33 percent.
Both averages are the lowest since June 20.
Mortgage rates have been falling since September, when the Federal Reserve held off slowing its $85-billion-a-month in bond purchases. The bond buys are intended to keep longer-term interest rates low, including mortgage rates.
Vindicator staff/wire reports