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Living Wage Calculator
In many American communities, families working in low-wage jobs make insufficient income to live locally given the local cost of living. Recently, in a number of high-cost communities, community organizers and citizens have successfully argued that the prevailing wage offered by the public sector and key businesses should reflect a wage rate required to meet minimum standards of living. Mit.edu
Submitted 2 days ago

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OUT to LUNCH
The Randle Report is breaking for lunch and making way for a new editor shift. Click on the headline above to access Southern Business & Development's Web site for more detailed information on economic development in the South. Posts will resume at 1:30 pm CDT.
Submitted 2 days ago

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Playback: From Obama to Trump


Politico
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Obama puts offshore North Carolina on wind energy map
Thousands of acres offshore North Carolina are set aside for potential wind energy in one of the final moves under the Obama presidency, the government said. "This is a significant milestone for North Carolina and our country as we continue to make progress on diversifying our nation's energy portfolio," Walter Cruickshank, the acting director of the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, said in a statement. UPI.com
Submitted 2 days ago

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Renewables, efficiency dominate robust job growth in energy sector
The DOE's findings in its second annual jobs report underscores the evolution in the power sector as utilities shift from traditional power generation sources such as coal and nuclear toward natural gas, efficiency and renewable energy. It should come as no surprise, then, that the renewable energy sector reported the biggest job growth as more utilities — backed by state policymakers and regulators — invested more in wind and solar to meet emissions rules, renewable energy laws, and growing consumer demand for clean energy. Utilitydove.com
Submitted 2 days ago

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Report: Energy sector accounts for 31% of US construction jobs
The energy-efficiency construction sector includes companies and individuals that build and design energy-efficient houses and offices, as well as the workers who actually install the features, according to the department. The overall energy sector grew 5% in 2016 by adding 300,000 net jobs. The construction industry has been experiencing a measurable change in mindset regarding green building and sustainability, with a significant portion of that change driven by increased demand from owners. According to Dodge Data & Analytics' World Green Building Trends 2016 report, green building is doubling every three years. Constructiondive.com
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US Jobless Claims Down To 1970s Levels At 234,000 - About As Good As It Gets
We have the latest U.S. initial unemployment filing claims (the "jobless" number) for the latest week and it's down to 234,000. This is, as many are reporting, a number to compare with things last seen 40 and more years ago, in the early 1970s. However, it's actually more than that as the labour force has expanded considerably since then. The rate, rather than the number, is now around half what it was back in the 70s. As to the why, there are two effects, one reinforcing the other. People just need to lay off less labour at present, the economy is doing pretty well. But that also means that employers know that, if they should need more labour, it's going to be hard to find. Thus they're less willing to lay off in the first place: Forbes
Submitted 2 days ago

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How Trump's Trade Advisers Are Planning To Shake Up China
Speculation on the topic of Donald Trump's trade policies has been widespread. On one extreme, observers claim that Trump’s threats are more bark than bite: the real goal is to force America's trading partners to the negotiation table, where, when confronted by a superior bargaining position, they would quickly fall into line with the “America First” agenda. On the other extreme, alarmists are predicting trade wars, an unraveling of the American-led international trading framework and, ultimately, geopolitical upheaval. It seems nothing can be ruled out. Remember, all of this began with the very unlikely possibility of a Trump candidacy, followed by an even more outlandish election which has now produced deadly serious consequences for the entire world. So how should stakeholders prepare for the uncertainty of the Trump Trade Doctrine? Forbes
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Could Trump's tough talk on trade backfire on U.S. jobs?
In some of the states where economic frustration propelled Donald Trump to the White House, the jobs he promised to bring back were already returning before he started making deals. For the first time in decades, areas of the Carolinas that had been crippled by the loss of the textile industry are seeing some of those jobs return – thanks to the Chinese. Former mining towns in Pennsylvania have been revitalized thanks to jobs at Bimbo Bakeries USA, Wise and Mission foods, which are Mexican-owned companies. News Observer
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New Report Disproves Trump Administration Claims of 'Job Killing' Environmental Regulations
As incoming President Donald Trump prepares to appoint an anti-regulatory U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator based on claims that environmental regulations "kill jobs," a new report that synthesizes decades of economics research documents that this claim is false. Ecowatch.com
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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