Some Starbucks workers in New York city were so rude to deaf customers they mocked them and called the police to try to get them kicked out, a lawsuit says. The lawsuit seeks unspecified damages and an order from the court to stop discriminatory behavior for what's described as multiple occasions of abuse over the past year. The suit, filed in federal court in Manhattan last week on behalf of 12 people, says one Starbucks Corp. employee laughed hysterically at a plaintiff's speech while others objected to a monthly meeting of a group of deaf people named Deaf Chat Coffee and called police. Starbucks spokeswoman Jamie Riley said the Seattle-based company is investigating. “Discrimination of any kind at Starbucks in unacceptable,” she said.
Outside of gas prices, inflation stays mild
Higher gasoline costs pushed a measure of U.S. consumer prices up in June. But the overall trend in inflation stayed tame. The Labor Department said Tuesday that the consumer price index increased 0.5 percent in June from May. Two-thirds of the increase came from a 6.3 percent jump in gas prices, the largest since February. Excluding volatile food and energy costs, so-called core prices rose just 0.2 percent. Overall prices have risen just 1.8 percent over the past 12 months. And core prices are up just 1.6 percent in that period — the smallest 12-month change in two years.
Homebuilders' optimism at 7-year high
U.S. homebuilders are feeling more optimistic about their home sales prospects than they have in more than seven years, a trend that suggests home construction will accelerate in coming months. The National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo builder sentiment index jumped to 57 this month from 51 in June. A reading above 50 indicates more builders view sales conditions as good. The index hasn't been that high since January 2006, well before the housing market crashed.
Industrial production rises for second month in a row
U.S. factories cranked out more business equipment, home electronics and autos in June, boosting manufacturing output for the second straight month. The gains suggest factories may be starting to recover from a slow start this year. The Federal Reserve said Tuesday that manufacturing production rose 0.3 percent in June from May. That followed a 0.2 percent gain the previous month. Still, the two consecutive gains barely offset production declines in March and April.