Economy (page 186)

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    The shrinking number of U.S. restaurants

    Lots of interesting information from the Wall Street Journal on the current state of the restaurant business. Simply put, if you thought that a bunch of eateries catering to herds of always-eating-out millennials were going to transform your city’s downtown, you’re likely to be disappointed. The U.S. is…
    Michael Lowrey, October 18, 2016
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    DPI says “noticeable increase” in fraudulent unemployment claims

    Courtesy of the Finance Officers’ Newsletter for October 14, 2016: I blame the presidential election.
    Terry Stoops, October 17, 2016
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    Presidential candidates leave Barron’s ‘Economic Beat’ columnist unimpressed

    Gene Epstein of Barron’s says the first presidential debate demonstrated the candidates’ unfortunate ignorance of basic economics. Who won last Monday’s verbal smack-down between the two main presidential candidates? On issues relating to the economy, it was too close to call: They both lost,…
    Mitch Kokai, October 3, 2016
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    WRAL finds little actual impact from HB2 despite their assumptions

    Here’s a fun little exercise in which WRAL tried to add up the costs of HB2 but discovers “they have created only a tiny ripple on the state economy.” WRAL added cities’ economic impact figures for canceled businesses expansions, canceled conventions and conferences, and canceled sporting events, which together “top $505 million.” Nevertheless, it’s a tiny fraction…
    Jon Sanders, September 22, 2016
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    The sad state of retail, September 2016 edition

    Business Insider reports that Kmart is closing another 64 stores, on top of the 68 locations it announced it was closing earlier this tear. The latest round of closings includes two North Carolina locations: Burlington and Mount Airy.
    Michael Lowrey, September 20, 2016
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    Does the ‘skills gap’ really exist in manufacturing hiring?

    Maybe not, writes Ben Casselman for fivethirtyeight.com: Rather than degrees or licenses, what employers say they are struggling to find are workers with industry-specific skills, such as how to program the machines that do much of the physical work in modern factories. But according to a new paper by…
    Michael Lowrey, September 11, 2016
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    Uber still losing big bucks

    Ridesharing may well be a disruptive technology, changing how people get around, but so far its not a profitable development. From Bloomberg via the Charlotte Observer: The ride-hailing giant Uber Technologies Inc. is not a public company, but every three months, dozens of shareholders get on a conference call…
    Michael Lowrey, August 25, 2016
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    The Donald and Boeing

    McClatch has a story out examining Donald Trump’s claim that Boeing will move aircraft production to China. Sample quote: For over a year, Donald Trump has had a message for voters whose livelihood depends on the aircraft industry, specifically aviation giant Boeing – elect me, or your jobs are…
    Michael Lowrey, August 23, 2016