NPA Weekly NewsBrief
Jan. 28, 2014

Pawn in the family
TriValley Central
Historically, pawnshops are family businesses passed from one generation to the next. Casa Grande Jewelry & Pawn in Casa Grande, Ariz., is no exception. Ted Lowenthal, the store's owner, inherited the business from his dad in 2007. Two of his five children still work behind the counter with him. Before moving to Casa Grande, Lowenthal owned a pawnshop in Marana, Ariz., with his wife but hadn't aspired to be a pawnbroker. More

North Texas authorities arrests suspect in 2009 pawnshop murder case
Waxahachie Daily Light
The Waxahachie Police Department arrested a suspect in connection with the Dallas Pawn & Jewelry murder case from 2009. Police have Kajlon Jameel Carroll, 22, in custody on a capital murder charge for the death of Dallas Pawn & Jewelry owner Phillip Tucker. More

Justice Department inquiry takes aim at banks' business with
payday lenders

The New York Times
Federal prosecutors are trying to thwart the easy access that predatory lenders and dubious online merchants have to Americans’ bank accounts by going after banks that fail to meet their obligations as gatekeepers to the United States financial system. The Justice Department is weighing civil and criminal actions against dozens of banks, sending out subpoenas to more than 50 payment processors and the banks that do business with them, according to government officials.More

Secondhand market for personal electronics is hot
Star Tribune via The Columbus Dispatch
As electronic devices proliferate, retailers are seeing record numbers of used laptops, smartphones and tablets being sold for quick cash or credit. Best Buy Co. launched a trade-in program in 2009 for items such as cellphones, video games and computers, and it's getting more popular every year. It now accepts more than 11,000 different items. "The trade-in volume has doubled every year since 2009," Jeff Shelman, a Best Buy spokesman, wrote in an email.More

Beverly Hills, Calif., pawnshop adds numismatist (coin expert) to its existing staff of GIA trained gemologists
Beverly Loan Company, Beverly Hills, Calif.'s premier confidential collateral lender, has announced that it has begun making large pawn loans on gold and silver coins. For over 75 years Beverly Loan Company has been the go-to collateral lender for diamonds, signed jewelry, fine watches, sports and entertainment memorabilia, and fine art. Coins are the most recent addition to the list of luxury assets that may be used as collateral for a short term pawn loan. More

Academy encourages entrepreneurship in Southern Maryland students
Maryland Independent
Starting one’s own business and being an entrepreneur isn’t always easy but can be very rewarding. This is what students in the Young Entrepreneurs Academy are learning among other skills in the newly formed academy, the only one like it in the state, according to its organizers. On a recent Wednesday, the group met with Top Dollar Pawn and Jewelry owner Michael Cohen. Cohen recently opened a second shop in Waldorf, Md.More

A visit from the future
Observer & Eccentric
The 2014 Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas earlier this month showcased some wild technology. By comparison, this year's top gadgets make the smart fridges and 3-D printers from 2013 seem like typewriters. One of the coolest pieces unveiled at this year’s conference was a bendable TV produced by Samsung. More

Rising above industry stigma, TC's Pawn Co. earns Webster Smith Award
Waterbury Republican American
Pawnbroker Jay Sargent initially gave two words to describe how he felt upon discovering his Waterbury, Conn., business will receive the Waterbury Regional Chamber's 2014 Harold Webster Smith Small Business of the Year Award.More

New pawnshop, Trading Post Buy and Sell, opens in Lebanon, Pa.
Lebanon Daily News
A new buy-and-sell store has opened in Lebanon, Pa. Trading Post Buy and Sell opened early this month, said store proprietor Jonathan Ritchie. "Since I was young, I've had a passion for video games and toys," Ritchie said. This is his first venture into the business, he said. More

'Pawn Shop Live!' hits the mark in parody of 'Pawn Stars
Las Vegas Review-Journal
Even four years ago, Rick Harrison was finding his way into the spotlight alongside Las Vegas headliners. "Pawn Stars" had only been on the air a few months in March 2010, when Mirage ventriloquist Terry Fator pulled Harrison up from the audience for a bit that usually transforms an ordinary, average ticketbuyer into Cher. More

'123456' replaces 'Password' on annual 'Worst Passwords' list
Small Business Trends
The number combination "123456" replaces the only slightly more obvious "Password" at the top of the "Worst Passwords" list compiled annually by password security company SplashData. The list of 25 is compiled from millions of stolen passwords posted online during the previous year.More

Quicker theft checks for some Idaho pawnshops
The Associated Press via KBOI-TV
Pawn shops in the north-central Idaho town of Lewiston are switching to an electronic system that allows employees to quickly check police databases for stolen goods.More

Proposal would limit pawnshops on Orlando, Fla., street
The City of Orlando, Fla., may soon limit the number of pawnshops, tattoo parlors and other businesses you see along one busy city corridor. The city is looking to change the ordinance. The stretch of roadway is the first area people see as they enter Orlando from Orlando International Airport, unless they travel on one of the toll roads. More

10 YouTube alternatives for small businesses
Small Business Trends
YouTube recently began rolling out unlimited video streaming for all users. The Google-owned video site has been demonstrating the worth of online video to individuals and brands alike for years, and has stood out as the go-to video sharing site above its competition.More

Cleveland Secret Service warns of $100 counterfeit bills circulating; problem compounded by new technology
The Plain Dealer
The Secret Service's Cleveland field office recently issued a warning that counterfeit $100 bills are circulating throughout Northeast Ohio. The agency saw some common features between a few fake bills that had been confiscated recently and wanted to warn area merchants, said Special Agent in Charge Smokey Everett, spokesperson for the Secret Service field office in Cleveland.More

Mastering the fine art of getting to the point
Fast Company
We only truly focus for six hours a week. Endless meetings and wordy emails are chipping away at our dwindling attention spans. Joe McCormack, author of "Brief", shares his short list of techniques to stay on track.More

Man fires shot, robs Salt Lake City pawnshop, flees on bicycle
The Deseret News
Police are searching for a man who alarmed witnesses with a gunshot inside a Salt Lake City pawnshop. The man announced a robbery as he entered EZ Pawn at about 3 p.m., before firing once at the ceiling, according to Salt Lake police. Several witnesses immediately took cover on the ground after the shot, and the man used a tool to break open a glass jewelry case. He left with a handful of jewelry and fled southbound on a bicycle.More

Britain's pawnbroker Albemarle & Bond abandons hunt for buyer
The Guardian
The U.K. pawnbroker Albemarle & Bond has scrapped an attempt to sell itself and declared that its shares could now hold little value. Britain's second-biggest pawnbroker put itself up for sale in early December after it admitted it had resorted to melting down and selling gold items in its shops to shore up its finances. More