• iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Wall Street closed mostly lower Wednesday as the Dow posted its ninth straight record close.The Dow jumped 32.60 (+0.16 percent) to finish at 20,775.60.The Nasdaq lost 5.32 (-0.09 percent) to close at 5,860.63, while the S&P 500 finished at 2,362.82, down 2.56 (-0.11 percent) from its open.Crude oil prices were 1 percent lower; about $53 a barrel.Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.
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  • Creatas/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Copa Di Vino founder James Martin isn’t bothered by the fact that the “sharks” of ABC's Shark Tank don’t have fond memories of his two infamous appearances on the hit entrepreneurial reality show.That’s because, despite walking away from the sharks’ offers twice and being known as one of the sharks' most disliked inventors, Martin’s product is one of Shark Tank’s most successful.“We all know the sharks blew it and missed out on the biggest opportunity they ever had -- which was me,” Martin told ABC News. Martin created Copa Di Vino, an on-the-go beverage with a portfolio of seven different types of wine that come in a patented, single-serving, plastic container with a pull-off and resealable lid.Martin's Oregon-based, family-owned winery struggled for years before making a profit. When the opportunity arose to appear on the second season of Shark Tank in 2011, Martin jumped at the possibility. He asked the sharks for $600,000 in exchange for 30 percent of his business to help create more inventory. At first all the sharks expressed interest and quickly began making offers, including Shark Kevin O’Leary, who went on to launch his own wine label, O’Leary Fine Wines, in October 2012.“[The container] that's never been done in wine before, and I grant him that was a good move,” O’Leary told ABC News. “The problem with him … is he tried to sell me … on a winery. Now, I'm in the winery business. That is a bad business.”O'Leary wanted Martin to separate the patent for the Copa Di Vino container from the wine itself so he could focus on licensing the container’s technology to other winemakers, but Martin wouldn't budge.Other sharks pitched deals, but as Martin continued to turn down offers, they became less interested with his arrogant attitude. The sharks also commented that Martin seemed to be sweating profusely throughout his pitch. Martin said he was sweating because he became too hot under the TV lights in his turtleneck sweater."I started melting and under the pressure of Kevin O'Leary trying to split my company into two, I really started to melt," Martin said. "For me, all I was trying to do was figure out how to get a taxi to get me out of here. ... You see about 10 minutes of the exchange but I was actually out there under those lights for 45 minutes in that pressure of the tank, in the pressure of five different entrepreneurs who are very, very intelligent all firing questions at you, sometimes two or three at the same time."In the end, Martin brushed off the sharks’ advice and left without accepting any offers.But soon after his episode aired, Martin said he received numerous offers from people wanting to invest in his company and Copa Di Vino took off.Shark Tank producers took notice of Copa Di Vino’s success and offered Martin a rare second chance to go “back in the tank.” He re-pitched the product to the sharks the following year. By that time, Martin said Copa Di Vino had gone from $600,000 to $5 million in sales in just one year.“I had a hate for Kevin O'Leary at a level that wasn't healthy at all and my opportunity to come back was also my chance to get the last word in and say, ‘Look, you blew it, but I'm also gracious enough to give you a second chance,’” Martin told ABC News.But again, Shark Barbara Corcoran said she didn’t appreciate what she said was Martin’s “coy” attitude. “We didn’t respect him either,” she said.The standoff between the sharks and Martin went into its second round when neither side budged on the same point they were stuck on the first time around. And seemingly instead of working with them to make a deal, Martin just kept taking sips of his wine.“The second time he came on he stood out there, and he knew we all were interested, and he was trying to
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  • iStock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) — Despite rising mortgage rates, sales of existing homes started off at a strong pace in 2017 — up 3.3 percent in January.“They set a new post-recovery record. They were at 5.69 million sales in January, which is the highest since February 2007,” said Danielle Hale, the Managing Director of Housing Research at the National Association of Realtors.According to Hale, the gains are a git of a surprise given that mortgage rates have been on the rise. “Home prices continue to rise — prices were up 7.1 percent in January — and the combination of rising mortgage rates and rising house prices does provide an added challenge for potential buyers,” she said. “But we saw in January sales figures is that buyers are very resilient.”But Hale added that job growth may be linked to buyer resilience.“We think that the phenomenal job growth that we’ve seen that has been sustained for quite some time is really helping give buyers the confidence that they need to make the long term purchase that is a home,” Hale said.As for nationwide trends, the positive numbers are evident across most of the country. Hale said the strongest region in this month’s data was the West, where sales were up 6.6 percent. The Northeast and the South also showed increases. But, she said, “The only region that showed a bit of weakness was the Midwest, where sales were down, but only slightly.”Analysts say it is difficult to determine whether January will set the tone for the rest of the year, but one thing that is apparent is low inventory, down 7.1 percent compared to a year ago. “Inventories continue to fall even as sales are increasing,” she said. “That means that supply and demand are even tighter and that has a tendency to push prices up, so we do expect to see continued strong prices in 2017.”Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.
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  • U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission(NEW YORK) -- Calphalon is recalling approximately two million knives over faulty blades that can break during use, potentially causing a laceration.The products affected include Calphalon Contemporary Cutlery carving, chef, paring, santoku and utility knives that were sold in stores nationwide and online between September 2008 and December 2016. The recalled knives were sold both individually and in sets.
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  • iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- If you love Pop-Tarts, New York restaurant Kellogg's NYC is where you need to be.Forbes reports the Times Square restaurant known for featuring the company’s cereals as well as sundaes, shakes and parfaits, has become the Pop-Tarts Café for one week through Sunday, Feb. 26.Almost 20 flavors of the toaster treats are selling at $1 per tart, but that's just the start. Among the featured menu items are a Personal Pop-Tarts Pizza for $8, made with a Brown Sugar Cinnamon Pop-Tarts crust, strawberry “marinara sauce,” frosting “cheese,” fruit leather pepperoni and fresh mint.Birthday Fiesta Nachos, $9, are made with confetti cupcake Pop-Tarts, strawberry "salsa" and frosting "cheese", while Chili Pop-Tarts Fries, $8, are made from chocolate Pop-Tarts, cookies and creme Pop-Tarts "ground beef."The café is also partnering with UberEats on Friday, Feb. 24 from 8-10 p.m. to give away 600 free Pop-Tarts “burritos” to six New York City college campuses.
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  • Courtesy UPS(LITHIA, Fla.) — UPS took one step closer Monday to using drones to deliver packages to its customers.The world's largest package delivery company used a drone to drop off a package at a home in Lithia, Florida, a suburb of Tampa.UPS has tested drone deliveries in the past, but this week's test was notable because it launched the drone from the top of a UPS electric van outfitted with a recharging station for the battery-powered drone.Using such a van is key, because drones require a significant amount of battery power, so they can only stay in the air for a limited amount of time. Most drones can operate between 20 and 30 minutes.According to UPS, the drone docks on the roof of the delivery truck. A cage suspended beneath the drone extends through a hatch into the truck. A UPS driver inside loads a package into the cage and presses a button on a touch screen, sending the drone on a preset autonomous route to an address. The battery-powered drone recharges while it's docked. It has a 30-minute flight time and can carry a package weighing up to 10 pounds."This test is different than anything we've done with drones so far," said Mark Wallace, UPS senior vice president of global engineering and sustainability, said in a statement. "It has implications for future deliveries, especially in rural locations where our package cars often have to travel miles to make a single delivery."He added, "Imagine a triangular delivery route where the stops are miles apart by road. Sending a drone from a package car to make just one of those deliveries can reduce costly miles driven. This is a big step toward bolstering efficiency in our network and reducing our emissions at the same time."Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.
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