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That's The Randle Report for September 29, 2016
Join us again tomorrow 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.
Submitted 13 hours ago

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Four ‘Upside Risks’ That Could Make the Economy Look Better Than Expected
Every month, The Wall Street Journal asks a group of about 70 business, financial and academic economists to provide their forecasts for the year ahead. Among the questions we ask is how their forecasts might go wrong. What might cause the economy to grow more slowly, or even knock it into recession? Earlier this summer, we recapped the four biggest risks that economists thought could push the U.S. economy into recession. Those same risks are still out there. But for the sake of completeness, here’s the other half of that story. The Wall Street Journal
Submitted 13 hours ago

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Fed's Lockhart wants to see more improvement before hiking U.S. rates
A top U.S. Federal Reserve official said on Thursday he supported the U.S. central bank's decision to leave interest rates unchanged at its policy meeting earlier this month until there was more evidence the economy is approaching the Fed's goal of full employment and 2 percent inflation. Atlanta Federal Reserve President Dennis Lockhart said he expected the Fed would raise interest rates "before long". Reuters
Submitted 13 hours ago

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Relief arrives for U.S. shale firms as OPEC folds in price battle
It was a moment U.S. shale oil producers have been waiting on for more than two years: OPEC nations finally agreed to cut production on Wednesday in a move that lifted low prices ravaging their budgets. Two sources in the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries said the group would reduce output to 32.5 million barrels per day (bpd) from current production of 33.24 million bpd, by around half the amount of global oversupply. The agreement effectively establishes a floor on prices near $50 a barrel - around where many U.S. shale oil companies can make money and drill new wells. Reuters
Submitted 13 hours ago

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What Makes Austin’s Economy Like Boston’s
The U.S. is a hotbed of “knowledge capitals,” according to a new analysis of the world’s largest cities. The new cluster analysis of more than 100 of the world’s biggest metro areas and their economies shows seven distinct types, from finance-driven giants like New York to gateways for emerging regions like Katowice or Monterrey and knowledge capitals like Washington, Dallas and Boston. Half of the world’s seven billion people now live in cities, and two-thirds are expected to do so by mid-century. Among them, the study’s 123 metro areas stand out for size and output. The Wall Street Journal
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Floods Sharpen Economic Pain in Southern Louisiana Cities
The severe floods that hit Louisiana last month added to the economic pain of southern cities already struggling with job losses amid a slowdown in the energy sector. The Lafayette and Houma-Thibodaux metro areas of the Pelican State saw some of the sharpest job losses nationwide in August, according to Labor Department data released Wednesday. Employment in Lafayette was down by 3,300, or 4.1%, from a year earlier and 3,300, or 3.4%, in Houma-Thibodaux. Those cities have been shedding jobs for months alongside a falloff in energy-sector activity in the Gulf of Mexico. The Wall Street Journal
Submitted 13 hours ago

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How North Carolina’s wage growth compares with national average
North Carolina’s wage growth is consistent with the national average, according to data from the Bureau of Economic Analysis. The report, released Wednesday, shows the Tar Heel State in a category of increasing wages by 1.0 to 1.1 percent from 1Q2016 to 2Q2016. The national average was 1.1 percent, according to the data. “For the nation, earnings grew in 22 of the 24 industries for which BEA prepares quarterly estimates,” says the BEA. “Health care, professional services, and transportation and warehousing were the leading contributors to overall growth in personal income.” Triangle Business Journal
Submitted 14 hours ago

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First Tennessee moving mid-Atlantic HQ from Winston-Salem to Raleigh
Memphis-based First Tennessee Bank, whose parent company, First Horizon National (NYSE: FHN), acquired Raleigh’s TrustAtlantic Bank last year, is moving its mid-Atlantic headquarters from Winston-Salem to Raleigh. First Tennessee banking veteran Billy Frank has been tapped to lead as mid-Atlantic president, covering a region that includes Raleigh, Greenville, Winston-Salem, Charlotte; Richmond, Virginia; Charleston, South Carolina; and Jacksonville, Florida. Triangle Business Journal
Submitted 14 hours ago

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Florida’s tax code is top in the nation for competitive income tax
It’s a well-touted stat that Florida is a good option for those looking at tax-friendly domiciles. And according to a report released Wednesday by the Tax Foundation, the Sunshine State is the fourth-most competitive state in the nation when it comes to tax code. The State Business Tax Climate Index from the Washington, D.C.-based Tax Foundation looked at how well-structured each state’s tax code is by looking at variables in three metrics: corporate, individual income, sales, property and unemployment insurance. South Florida Business Journal
Submitted 14 hours ago

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The late Arnold Palmer helped design these Florida golf courses, more
The late Arnold Palmer's impact on Central Florida and the world is huge, ranging from hospitals to charity and, of course, golf. He passed away Sept. 25 at the age of 87 in Pittsburgh. For the sport, his legacy includes more than 200 golf courses he, and the folks at Arnold Palmer Design Co., helped design that will continue to show how great he was both as an athlete and as a golf pioneer. In fact, those looking to honor Palmer's memory by playing on one of his Florida courses can find as many as 32 in the Sunshine State, including four in Central Florida. Orlando Business Journal
Submitted 14 hours 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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