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Top News Links: Wednesday, July 8

Technology may soon make lying impractical

Lies are a fact of life. But technology may soon make them obsolete. "Almost everybody lies now and then," said Tim Levine, chair of the Communications Studies Department at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. "Most people are pretty good at it, in that you can't tell when they are lying just by watching and listening to them." But our digital, data-hoarding culture means more and more evidence piles up to undermine our lies. – Washington Post

Intuitive Research & Technology picked for millennials

Intuitive Research and Technology was founded by former Army managers—hence it operates on classic values like integrity and reliability. The company has been reluctant to have layoffs during dry spells, which has spawned loyalty among employees. The workplace culture is friendly but professional, and Fortune Magazine puts it at No. 13 in its listing 100 Best Workplaces for Millennials. – Fortune

Opinion: Poultry farmers under siege by Big Food

As Americans, we cherish our rights to speak freely, to assemble peacefully and to address our government representatives without fear of retaliation. But for tens of thousands of America’s poultry farmers, those rights are under siege by the poultry companies that control much of their lives. Growers reported retaliation in the form of canceled contracts, substandard chicks and feed, unannounced audits, rigged prices and expensive upgrade requirements if they chose to speak publicly or to their congressional representatives, or to organize with fellow growers to defend their interests. – Washington Post

Former Zoe’s Kitchen execs begin new restaurant project

Two former Zoe's Kitchen executives have partnered to develop a new restaurant concept, and they plan to open their first two locations in Mountain Brook and Tuscaloosa this fall. John Cassimus, the former CEO of Zoe's, and Tyre Stuckey, a former Zoe's vice president of operations, are the partners in the new, as-yet-unnamed restaurant venture. – AL.com

Regions rises after adopting kinder banking strategy

Regions' profits are once again at pre-crisis levels, its capital is strong and its reputation among customers has greatly improved, based on data compiled for American Banker by the Reputation Institute. Regions vaulted to the top of our annual reputation rankings in 2015, with a score of 83.26 on a 100-point scale. A score above 80 is considered "excellent." – American Banker

Southern Research wins $22M contract

Southern Research has been awarded a contract worth up to $22 million to improve tests to find hidden HIV reservoirs in blood cells.  The seven-year contract will enable the team to develop tests to quantify undiscovered reservoirs of the virus that leads to AIDS. – AL.com

State’s place in American hearts: At least it’s not N.J.

Americans don't think highly of Alabama but dislike New Jersey even more, according to a new study by market research company YouGov. Alabama ranked second worst with 39 percent favorable opinions and 31 percent unfavorable opinions, for an overall rating of +8. – Montgomery Advertiser

Obamacare victory leads to round of consolidations

Obamacare is here to stay. That, at least, is the conclusion of US health insurers, who have embarked on a round of big-ticket dealmaking to prepare for a future under the Affordable Healthcare Act. Following a Supreme Court ruling which was interpreted as a broad vindication of President Obama’s signature policy, a flurry of takeover talks in the industry is leading to concrete transactions. In Alabama, the local BCBS group has a market share of 84 per cent, according to the American Medical Association. – Financial Times

Cast Products wins grant, will add 10 production jobs

A 36-year-old engineering and manufacturing company that makes cast-aluminum products for firefighting, police, medical, trucking and marine vehicles is the recipient of a new $400,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. Cast Products of Athens will add 10 production jobs to its 115-person workforce as a result of the grant. – AL.com

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