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KFC Is Spending $185M to Win You Back
"There are few problems a bucket of fried chicken can't solve." That's one of the messages KFC management is banking on to rescue it from fast-food irrelevance, especially after losing major market share to rival Chick-fil-A, the Washington Post reports. The Yum Brands subsidiary is spitting out $185 million to reboot its business, which includes sprucing up some of its 4,300 stores, pushing new Deep South fare, and bringing back in TV ads what a press release calls the "brand's greatest asset": the ever-popular Colonel Sanders, who died in 1980 and hasn't been seen in a KFC ad in two decades. "The Colonel was the consummate American showman," KFC's marketing head tells the Post. "He was the person with bling before bling was even a word." Newser.com
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Summer jobs to be more plentiful, many paying more than $15 hourly
Good news for summer job seekers: Jobs should be more plentiful this year and a majority of employers have jobs paying more than $15 per hour, according to a new report. The $15-per-hour wage has been highlighted last week by thousands of demonstrators at McDonald’s headquarters, where workers demanded higher wages for front-line employees at all McDonald’s restaurants, not just company-owned ones. A recent report by CareerBuilder showed 53 percent of employers offered summer jobs that have roles paying $15 or more per hour, on average. Nearly three-quarters, 72 percent, will pay summer hires $10 or more per hour. That’s up from 64 percent last year. Dallas Morning News
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Billions over budget. Two years after deadline. What’s gone wrong for the ‘clean coal’ project that’s supposed to save an industry?
DE KALB, Miss. – If coal has a future, it lies here, off a state road lined with churches, crawfish billboards and boarded-up houses. One of the poorest places in America, this is also home to one of the most expensive power plants ever built. Politico
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Which states have the most job growth since the recession?
Although the nation’s unemployment rate has been around a seven-year low of about 5.4 percent, job growth among the states has been uneven, with several showing only meager gains more than five years removed from the depths of the Great Recession. Gosanangelo.com
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Cities with the Longest Commutes in America
It takes workers in New York City nearly twice as long to get to work as it takes employees in Oklahoma City. With an average commute of 39.7 minutes, New Yorkers have the longest slog to work in the country, according to a new analysis by the University of Michigan’s Transportation Institute. That’s nearly 18 percent longer than the average commute in Chicago (33.7 minutes), the city with the second longest-commute on the list. By comparison, the average commute time for the nation is 25.8 minutes, and commuters in Oklahoma City, where commutes are shortest, take an average of 20.7 minutes to get to work. The Fiscal Times
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UW study: Manufacturing jobs earn $8,100 less in right-to-work states
A UW-Extension paper estimates that workers in the manufacturing sector earn an average of $8,100 less in states that have right-to-work laws, and that right-to-work states have more poverty and fewer college graduates. "Bottom line, right-to-work states tend to have lower manufacturing wages and overall income levels, higher poverty rates and lower education levels," reads the UW-Extension right-to-work fact sheet (the PDF is attached) by Steven Deller, a professor of agricultural and applied economics. Madison.com
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Alcohol laws in the South Brewing trouble
CRAFT beer lovers wishing to sample the wares of the Sweetwater Brewery in Atlanta must go to strange lengths to do so when visiting. After purchasing a memento glass for $10, the thirsty are awarded ten tickets to swap for samples of Sweetwater ales. More alcoholic choices require more tickets, and visitors can sip their blueberry wheat beer in the sun while listening to live music. Tours of the facilities reveal the impressive size of the fermentation tanks. Apparently if someone drank a gallon of beer a day from the largest of them, they’d still be guzzling 85 years from now. Economist.com
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NC unemployment rate rises to 5.5 percent
North Carolina’s unemployment rate rose to 5.5 percent in April from 5.4 percent in March, the N.C. Commerce Department reported Wednesday, as improved economic conditions statewide continue to encourage people to rejoin the labor force to look for and find jobs. The statewide jobless rate has fallen by 1.1 percentage point since April 2014. It’s now slightly higher than the national jobless rate, which was 5.4 percent in April, the Labor Department reported earlier this month. Charlotte Observer
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Jobless? Blame corporate America’s borrowing binge
While it’s true that consumers who borrowed too much contributed to the financial crisis, companies that took on too much debt also played a role. What led to the Great Recession? Was it all the fault of consumers? Did they borrow recklessly because money was cheap and mortgages were too easy to get? And then, when house prices collapsed, were they so overly burdened with household debt that they couldn’t afford to maintain their level of consumption? Fortune.com
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Here's how Louisville's business-friendliness ranks among other cities
When it comes to business-friendliness, Louisville nearly cracks the top 50. MarketWatch.com has released a list of the 100 most business-friendly cities in the U.S., and Louisville comes in at No. 51. Cities were assigned scores based on their business climate, company performance and economic outcome, and then were given a cumulative score from those three components. Louisville ranks No. 25 in business climate, No. 58 in company performance, and No. 51 in economic outcome, leading to the city's overall No. 51 ranking. Business First
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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 Stacy Randle
Demographer Wendell Cox recently analyzed the largest gains in holders of bachelor's and post-graduate degrees between 2007 and 2012 in the 51 metro regions in the U.S. of 1 million residents or more. The results were published in Forbes magazine and the South dominated the ranking.
 

 Business News in the South - Randle Report

FEATURE     
After I finished the cover story for this issue, I read an interesting article by economist Paul Krugman, the op-ed columnist for the New York Times, titled, "Partying like it’s 1995." Generally I side with Krugman, even though I am a journalist, not an economist. Occasionally, though, I read some of his stuff and ask myself, "What planet did Krugman come from?" Like when he predicted a shift of automotive assembly to Canada after Toyota announced a new plant in Woodstock, Ontario in 2005 because of "free healthcare," among other benefits. That Toyota deal was the last major automotive assembly plant announced in Canada and I predict it will be the very last one for the Canadians.
 
 Nashville Mayour Karl Dean
If you have ever seen one of my presentations, then you know about the word "reshoring" and how that phenomenon has lifted the spirits of even the most skeptical Southerners regarding the future of the region's economy. After all, in the last four decades, manufacturing has suffered a bloodletting never before seen in U.S. history. The biggest factor behind the slow and long meltdown that began in the 1990s was the herd mentality to offshore manufacturing capacity to cheaper locales, primarily by U.S.-owned companies.
 


 

 

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