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It’s Not the Economy, Stupid
Those of us who do economics for a living turn to it to answer all the big social questions. To explain the rise of Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders, we reflexively blame stagnant incomes that have left voters angry and frustrated. Lately, though, I’ve come to question this approach. A recent Pew survey found 46% of Americans think life is worse today than in the 1960s; only 34% think it’s better. Of course, standards of living are higher today and life spans are longer. But optimism is about where things are going, not where they are, and in the 1960s, things got better faster: real wages grew 2.4% per year compared to 0.6% for the past decade. The Wall Street Journal
Submitted yesterday

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Research Park master plan will transform economic engine in Huntsville
Cummings Research Park will look very different under guidelines listed in a new master plan presented today by the Chamber of Commerce in Huntsville. Nearly nine months after hiring architecture and design firm Perkins+Will (P+W) to lead the master planning process, the Chamber unveiled a new blueprint for CRP, the second-largest research park in the U.S. and fourth-largest in the world. Erin Koshut, who was hired last summer as the director of CRP, said companies are looking for more than a suburban office park. To continue thriving in the future, she said CRP must become a vibrant urban center of gravity for high-tech research and development in the north Alabama region. AL.com
Submitted yesterday

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Missile Production Consolidated At Lockheed Martin's Arkansas Plant
Lockheed Martin will be moving the production of two of its missile systems back to East Camden, Ark., according to the Northwest Arkansas Democrat Gazette. The High Mobility Artillery Rocket System launcher had been built at the East Camden plant until 2013, when production of the rocket launchers for the U.S. military was stopped after 480 units were produced. The Tactical Missile System (TACMS) was previously built at a plant in El Paso, which stopped production in 2014 after 20 years working on the system. The change is part of an effort by Lockheed Martin to consolidate all of the Precision Fires missile and rocket production in Camden. Manufacturing.net
Submitted yesterday

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Citi moves jobs to Tampa from Connecticut
Citigroup Inc.’s Tampa operations are in line for dozens of new jobs. The banking giant is transferring jobs from Hartford, Connecticut, said Kamran Mumtaz, a Citi spokesman, confirming a report in the Hartford Courant. “Approximately 150 employees are impacted, and the vast majority of the roles will be relocated to the Citi Service Center in Florida where we already have an established HR team,” Mumtaz said in an email to Tampa Bay Business Journal. “While this was a difficult decision, the new model will enable our HR Shared Services Regional Operations organization to leverage the benefits of being co-located with key clients and partners.” Tampa Business Journal
Submitted yesterday

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Regions economists still expect interest rates to rise this year
After the Federal Reserve released the minutes of its April meeting, Regions economists expect two rate increases will likely still occur in 2016. "We are still expecting two 25 basis point moves this year," Regions economists said in the bank's recent market report. "Our feeling is that the equity markets have the ability to manage such moves reasonably well, though some volatility should be expected." Birmingham Business Journal
Submitted yesterday

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Fast-growing tech firm puts stamp on Birmingham skyline
A few months and a year after opening its downtown headquarters at the John Hand building, online grocery delivery service Shipt has added its name to the Birmingham skyline. Shipt has grown to occupy several floors of the building since it launched in February 2015, and as its office has expanded, so has the company's national footprint. Shipt now has shoppers operating in more than 25 cities across the country, and plans to be in 100 markets within the next two years. "We owe much of our success to our early supporters in Birmingham who have been with us since the beginning, embracing grocery delivery as part of their everyday lives,” said Bill Smith, founder and CEO of Shipt. Birmingham Business Journal
Submitted yesterday

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Atlanta to revive idea of privatizing airport security screening, says mayor
Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed, on the heels of dismissing the manager of the world’s busiest airport, said he wants to take a closer look at privatizing security screening at the Atlanta airport to address the issue of long lines. Reed said at a press conference discussing the removal of Miguel Southwell as general manager of Hartsfield-Jackson International that he was upset about the long lines at the airport, but added that it was a “layering” of factors contributing to his decision on the airport manager. Reed appointed the airport’s chief financial officer Roosevelt Council as the interim general manager at Hartsfield-Jackson. AJC.com
Submitted yesterday

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Mayor Reed: Long lines an 'element' in dismissal of Atlanta airport chief
Long security lines at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport were a factor – but not the sole reason – behind the firing of airport General Manager Miguel Southwell, Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed said Monday. During an hour-long news conference to talk about the weekend dismissals of both Southwell and Jo Ann Macrina, commissioner of the Department of Watershed Management, Reed said airport lines at other major U.S. airports including LaGuardia Airport in New York City and Los Angeles International Airport aren’t nearly as long as what travelers are facing at Hartsfield-Jackson. Atlanta Business Chronicle
Submitted yesterday

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Louisiana's Calcasieu Ship Channel cost is skyrocketing
The Calcasieu Ship Channel drives Southwest Louisiana’s oil, gas and chemical industries. That means it drives Southwest Louisiana’s economy, said Port of Lake Charles Director Bill Rase. “Our area has over $40 billion in projects under construction to date — I don’t think a lot of people recognize that — and there’s a lot more to come,” he said. “Every bit of this new growth depends upon the ship channel being here and at its authorized dimensions of 40 feet deep by 400 feet wide.” Without the ship channel, Rase said, “none of this exists.” Rase said 46 percent of the Lake Area metro economy depends on the health of the ship channel. By 2023, the projected economic expansion tied to the channel is forecast to increase channel-dependent local revenue by nearly 80 percent. American Press
Submitted yesterday

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Texas Rangers, City of Arlington swinging for a $1B ballpark
The Texas Rangers and the City of Arlington are considering the development of a new $1 billion enclosed ballpark through a public-private partnership where the baseball club and the city would each pay for half of the sports complex. The deal is subject to city council approval and is slated for consideration at Tuesday's city council meeting. The public-private partnership would also need public buy in with a November election asking voters to extend an existing funding mechanism to publicly finance the project. Dallas Business Journal
Submitted yesterday

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Features & Opinion

 Top Ten Places in the South for Relocating California Companies

Urban areas have all kinds of assets that are easy to spot. They have the population, so the labor shed is not usually an issue. Urban areas are also connected by better roads, rail and air service and many have river and deep water ports. Usually Internet access and other forms of communication are more efficient in urban areas. And you have a larger array of quality of life options to choose from, such as the cultural assets found in metropolitan areas.
 

 Randle Report - Business News in the South

 FEATURE  
By Mike Randle
The belief that "80 percent of all new jobs come from existing business and industry" is an out-of-date, old-fashioned fabrication. I have no idea how it started, where it started, or who said it first, but there are professionals in economic development as well as leaders of government in the South who actually believe that each year, 80 percent (why 80 percent I don't know, either) of all new jobs are created by existing business and industry. I hear it all the time and I just roll my eyes. There is nothing static in economic development but this: 100 percent of all lost jobs come from existing business and industry. That, and of course 100 percent of the time site consultants never pay for a meal.
 

 Business News in the South - Randle Report

FEATURE     
According to Chinese theory, yin is a passive, negative force and yang is an active, positive force. Chinese philosophers believe that the opposing forces aren't really contradictory. Instead, they are interconnected and complimentary, interacting to create a balance in one's life. 
 
 Nashville Mayour Karl Dean
The Annie E. Casey Foundation's KIDS COUNT report was released in the summer quarter. I try to read it every time it comes out since I find it to be the best indicator of child poverty, a statistic everyone involved in economic development needs to be aware of. The Annie E. Casey Foundation is a charity that supports disadvantaged children. 
 


 

 

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