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That's The Randle Report for January 20, 2017
Join us again Monday morning for all of the American South's business, economic development and political news in real time and in one place. Use the sort buttons or the search window to find any story you need to find from last week, last month, last year or several years ago. Click on the headline above to access Southern Business & Development's website, the economic development magazine of the American South; the fourth largest economy in the world.
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Trump vows 25 million jobs, most of any president
President Donald Trump laid out a clear vision for the United States in his inaugural address: "Buy American and hire American." He calls it the "America First" doctrine. It's not just a slogan. The new president promises his plans will create 25 million new jobs in the next decade. It would be the most jobs created under any U.S. president ever, topping even the nearly 23 million jobs added under President Bill Clinton during the boom years of the 1990s. Wfmz.com
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U.S. Small Businesses Party Like It's 2004
France reported last week that its summer hosting of Euro 2016, Europe’s soccer championships, added $1.26 billion to its economy. This is good news, for sure, and worth celebrating, but here’s the thing: Why doesn’t France put as much effort into supporting its businesses and markets as it does its soccer franchises? After all, the country has an entrepreneurship problem—as in, business growth and its labor market are struggling. Forbes
Submitted 2 days ago

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Trump Threats Could Inadvertently Encourage More Mexican Auto Investments
President-elect Donald Trump's repeated attacks on Mexican auto imports has collapsed the peso — which has ironically made Mexico a more inviting location for American manufacturers. Trump has repeatedly warned automakers they could be hit with a 35 percent tariff on imports, but some observers believe such threats could actually make it more attractive to invest south of the border. NBC News
Submitted 2 days ago

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How Trump's Protectionism Would Destroy Auto Industry Jobs, Not Create Them
President Donald J. Trump didn't wait long to act on one of his signature campaign promises, announcing just moments after being sworn in as the country's 45th president that the U.S. intends to withdraw from the Trans-Pacific Partnership and that he will renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement "to give American workers a fair deal." If Mexico and Canada don't agree to better terms for the U.S, according to a statement from the new White House, "then the President will give notice of the United States’ intent to withdraw from NAFTA." While Trump's stated goal is to bring manufacturing jobs back to the U.S., studies have concluded that withdrawing from NAFTA, or imposing a 35 percent tariff on imported vehicles as Trump has threatened, would have the opposite effect. Forbes
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Kentucky Fresh Harvest construction proceeds, second $10.7 million greenhouse project gets state incentives
Despite delays due to a recent stretch of wet weather, construction of the Kentucky Fresh Harvest (KFH) greenhouse is moving forward – and discussion of a similar second project is doing the same. Since KFH’s ground-breaking ceremony in October, construction of the $10.7 million-dollar greenhouse operation has begun and company representatives are eager to move forward and begin the hiring process, according to Marketing and Communications Manager for KHTGH and KFH, Trevor Terry. The Interior Journal
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Most small businesses aren’t adding many jobs, new research finds
America’s entrepreneurs might not be living up to their reputation as job creators. In fact, the median U.S. small business adds fewer than one full-time employee each year, according to new research. A JPMorgan Chase Institute study of payroll records from more than 45,000 of the bank’s small-business customers finds 16 percent lost a full-time employee in 2015, and just 20 percent added more than two. Neworleanscitybusiness.com
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How Donald Trump stands to impact the economy and small businesses
Joe Spencer has seen plenty of booms and busts in his hometown of Detroit over the years running his small business, Louisiana Creole Gumbo since 1983. He watched as the auto industry imploded and housing collapsed, and he grit his teeth through the subsequent recession. But these days, things are looking up for his resilient restaurant, famous for its gumbo served five ways. It hit $1.2 million in sales last year, leading him to open a second location. Now one thing is on his mind: How Donald Trump stands to impact the economy, and what might that mean for endeavors like his around the country. CNBC
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GreenTech Auto shutters its doors, closes Mississippi factory
The harsh reality of high costs and the inexorable heft of the auto industry have claimed another electric-car startup. GreenTech Automotive opened a plant in Mississippi in 2014, first saying it would manufacture a small, two-seat electric vehicle called the MyCar there. It later struck a deal with Chinese automaker JAC Motors to develop an electric car based on one of JAC's existing gasoline models. Greencarreports.com
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LyondellBasell completes Corpus Christi ethylene plant expansion
LyondellBasell has completed its ethylene expansion project near Corpus Christi, the global plastics, chemical and refining company announced. Ethylene capacity has increased by 50 percent to 2.5 billion pounds per year at the site, which is part of LyondellBasell’s initiative to boost its U.S. ethylene capacity by 2 billion pounds. The Corpus Christi expansion follows capacity increases at plants in Illinois, Iowa, Germany and at Texas sites in Channelview, La Porte and Matagorda since 2012. Fuel Fix
Submitted 2 days ago

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Features & Opinion

 Randle Report - Business News in the South

For those who still languish over "losing to China" or believe that the economy is still in recession, wake up and smell the data. Economic development in the South was about as good as it gets in calendar year 2015 according to the data. And as for China, borrowing a quote from the late football coach Bear Bryant that he made in the half-time locker room down 15-0 to Georgia Tech in 1960, "We got 'em right where we want 'em." For those of you who don't know the rich history of Alabama Crimson Tide football, Bama scored all of its 16 points in the fourth quarter, kicking a field goal on the last play of the game to beat Tech 16-15.
 

 Randle Report - Business News in the South

 FEATURE  
By Mike Randle
Today, factories in the U.S. make twice as much product as they did in 1984. And they are doing it with one-third of the manufacturing workforce. In fact, the output of durable goods in 2015 was the highest in the nation's history. So, we do have a strong manufacturing base, at least in the South, much of the Midwest and parts of the West, and it is getting stronger because on a cost-basis, we can compete with any major manufacturing nation in the world.  
 

 Randle Report - Business News in the South

FEATURE     
The argument for or against a minimum wage hike continues between the reds and the blues, as well as within the economic development community in the South. Should we stay the course with a minimum wage under $8 an hour to better compete with Mexico, the South's biggest competitor for jobs, or set a minimum wage just over $10 an hour, a wage floor most centrists support? That $10 per hour is, according to the MIT Living Wage Calculator, about right in most states in the South for one adult to be able to cover basic expenses plus all relevant taxes.
 
 Randle Report - Business News in the South
Recent data from the Computing Technology Industry Association (Comp TIA) showed that the technology industry is one of the fastest growing job generators in the South and the nation. The report also indicated that technology job compensation is growing faster than any other sector.
 


 

 

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