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Moves by Jeb Bush add to talk of 2016 candidacy

WASHINGTON — Jeb Bush's decision to release a policy-laden e-book and all his emails from his time as governor of Florida has further stoked expectations among his allies that he will launch a presidential bid.

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Ebby Halliday acquires Fort Worth’s Williams Trew

Williams Trew Real Estate of Fort Worth has been acquired by Dallas-based residential real estate brokerage Ebby Halliday Real Estate Inc.

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Taking the Cake: Sundance had pursued Cheesecake Factory for many years

The Cheesecake Factory had been on the white board over at Sundance Square management for some time

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Fort Worth businessman to lead Abbott, Patrick inauguration efforts

Fort Worth businessman Ardon Moore will chair the committee running inauguration festivities for Gov.-elect Greg Abbott and Lt. Gov.-elect Dan Patrick in January, it was announced on Friday.   Moore, president of Lee M. Bass Inc. in Fort Worth, is a vice chairman of the University of Texas Investment

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Meridian Bank Texas parent acquired by UMB Financial for $182.5M

Kansas City, Mo.-based UMB Financial Corp., the parent company of UMB Bank, said Dec. 15 it has signed a definitive agreement to acquire Marquette Financial Companies in an all-stock transaction.

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U.S. auto makers report strong March sales

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NEW YORK (CNNMoney) -- Major automakers recorded another strong month of car and truck sales in March, kicking off the important spring selling season on a good note.
General Motors, Ford Motor and Chrysler Group all posted U.S. sales gains of 5 percent or better, while Toyota Motor sales edged up 1 percent from a year ago. Chrysler Group posted its best sales since December 2007.
Industrywide sales are poised to come in above the 15 million annual sales rate for the fifth straight month, after going nearly five years without reaching that benchmark. Other automakers such as Honda Motor are due to report results later Tuesday.
"American consumers appear to be quite confident in the economy, with snow storms and sequesters not deterring them a bit," said Michelle Krebs, senior analyst with Edmunds.com. "The story is the same as it has been: pent-up demand from old vehicles on the road is unleashing, credit is readily available at cheap rates, and new products are resonating with consumers."
All four automakers were roughly in line with sales forecasts for the month. GM and Ford both reported much stronger sales for pickups, SUVs and crossover models than they did for cars, while Chrysler's Ram truck unit also posted a large jump. That could be a sign that lower March gas prices helped bring truck buyers into showrooms.
GM said the rebound in the housing market also helped its truck sales. Sales to small businesses, including building contractors, jumped by nearly 15,000 vehicles at GM, a 32 percent jump compared to a year ago. The jump in home prices and home sales is leading contractors to start building more new homes than at any time in the last five years.
"We've seen pent-up demand driving car sales for a while now, but we hadn't really seen it in the truck sales," said Jesse Toprak, analyst with sales tracker TrueCar. "Now with the signs of life in construction, we're starting to see that pent-up demand for pickups showing up."
Toprak said another factor lifting car and truck sales is the strong performance of stocks. Record highs for major stock indexes are good news for auto sales, he said. It's not that people are selling stocks to buy vehicles, but when they see better performance in their investments, they are more willing to spend on big ticket items.
"It's a psychological green light that tells them it's OK to pull a trigger on a car purchase," he said.

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Did the College Football Playoff Committee get it right?