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Memphis Looks to Medical Manufacturing to Cut Poverty
Poverty rates have dropped in Memphis, Tennessee, since the start of the decade, but it’s still one of the poorest large urban areas in the U.S. With 18.4 percent of its 1.3 million residents taking home annual incomes below the federal poverty threshold, it’s second only to Tucson, Arizona, when it comes to lacking opportunity for a living wage. Nextcity.org
Submitted 2 hours ago

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North Carolina Republicans Want to Rig the System
Mike Morgan, an African-American judge, defeated a conservative incumbent last month for a seat on the North Carolina Supreme Court. Now conservative Republicans are trying to sabotage his election by packing the court, a move that would have racial and perhaps national political implications. Although the court is officially nonpartisan, Morgan's surprise win means that four of the seven justices will be Democrats. The overwhelmingly Republican legislature and a lame-duck Republican governor who conceded defeat this week will go into a special session next week ostensibly to provide relief for hurricane victims. What they really want to do is quickly appoint and confirm two more justices to a court that has had seven members for 80 years. Bloomberg
Submitted 2 hours ago

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Injunction Be Damned! Businesses Forge Ahead With Overtime Changes
The vast majority of small businesses will go ahead with changes they’ve made to worker pay even as the Obama administration’s new overtime rules have been sidelined, according to a new poll. The new overtime rules, announced by the Department of Labor in May, would have increased the salary threshold for overtime pay to $47,476 — nearly double the level that’s been in place since 2004. That means any employee earning under that amount would have been owed overtime, or time-and-a-half, for working more than 40 hours a week. The move was expected to increase wages and earnings for some 4.2 million workers, according to the DOL. Fortune
Submitted 3 hours ago

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‘Cancel Order!’ Trump Attacks Plans for Upgraded Air Force One
WASHINGTON — President-elect Donald J. Trump, who has for years flown in a jet bearing his name, appeared to cancel a pending order for a new Air Force One, saying Tuesday morning on Twitter that the upgrade would cost too much. New York Times
Submitted 4 hours ago

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Want to Bring Back Jobs, Mr. President-Elect? Call Elon Musk
Donald Trump: Please think about calling Elon Musk. President-elect Trump has spent a lot of time talking about how he plans to reinvigorate the manufacturing sector, repeatedly telling the public on the campaign trail, “We are going to bring back jobs that have been stolen from you.” And yet the group of business luminaries he named on Friday to advise him on “job creation” — which included Jamie Dimon of JPMorgan Chase, Robert Iger of Disney and Mary Barra of General Motors — was missing a key name: Mr. Musk, the real-life Tony Stark behind Tesla, the electric car company; SolarCity, the solar power provider; and SpaceX, the rocket company. New York Times
Submitted 4 hours ago

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Trump’s claims about jobs saved at Carrier come into question
Donald Trump visited a Carrier plant in Indiana last week, touting his role in a controversial deal in which the company will receive $7 million in taxpayer money to save some domestic jobs, even as Carrier announced plans to move even more jobs to Mexico. As part of his appearance, the president-elect referenced some relatively specific numbers. “I will tell you that United Technologies and Carrier stepped it up,” he said, “and now they’re keeping – actually the number’s over 1,100 people, which is so great, which is so great.” Is that true? Not exactly. WTHR, the NBC affiliate in Indianapolis, took a closer look and found that the agreement “may not have saved as many factory jobs” as Trump claimed. MSNBC
Submitted 4 hours ago

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Supreme Court on NC gerrymandering: ‘Is it politics or is it race?’
A divided and short-handed Supreme Court on Monday questioned whether race or politics was the main factor used in drawing the controversial boundaries around two majority-black congressional districts in North Carolina. The case, on appeal to the Supreme Court after a panel of three federal judges earlier this year found evidence of racial gerrymandering, could serve to clarify what federal law says about how state legislatures can use racial demographics when drawing voting district lines. News Observer
Submitted 4 hours ago

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The North Carolina Governor's Race Is Finally Over
DURHAM, N.C.—Governor Pat McCrory has conceded the North Carolina gubernatorial race to Democrat Roy Cooper, ending the nation’s longest-running governor’s race. McCrory announced his decision in a video posted at about noon on Monday. “Being the 74th governor of North Carolina has been a privilege and an honor, but during this wonderful season it’s also time to celebrate our democratic process and respect what I see to be the ultimate outcome of the closest North Carolina governor’s race in modern history,” he said. “Despite continued questions that should be answered regarding the voting process, I personally believe that the majority of our citizens have spoken and we now should do everything we can to support the 75th governor of North Carolina, Roy Cooper.” The Atlantic
Submitted 4 hours ago

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Trump Saved Jobs at Carrier by Making the Same Deal American Politicians Always Make
President-elect Donald Trump has scored a major PR coup with the news that, after a bit of his cajoling, air conditioner company Carrier now plans to keep nearly 1,000 jobs in Indianapolis instead of moving them to Mexico. Slate
Submitted 4 hours ago

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Kentucky AG Transfers Volkswagen Penalties To General Fund
Attorney General Andy Beshear says he'll transfer nearly $2.8 million to Kentucky's General Fund from his office's settlement with Volkswagen. Kentucky's attorney general sued the automaker, claiming its diesel emissions cheating scheme violated the state's consumer protection law. Manufacturing.net
Submitted 5 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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