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Fact of the Week

Global Trade: Encouraging Survey Results

By at 9 March, 2015, 8:58 pm

There is some very encouraging results in the latest Gallup poll of U.S. adults on trade. Given all the bizarre and false arguments being launched against trade agreements these days, it’s good to see that 58% of adults see foreign trade “more as an opportunity for economic growth through increased exports,” while only 33% see […]

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Declining Productivity and Why it Matters

By at 6 March, 2015, 11:47 am

Productivity Worries Persist Productivity has been abysmal for the past four years – in fact, for a decade, now. That’s trouble on various fronts, including incomes. The latest data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics saw fourth quarter 2014 nonfarm business sector labor productivity revised down from a poor -1.8% to an even worse […]

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FACT OF THE WEEK: Fourth Quarter GDP Revised Down, Sustainability Still the Challenge

By at 27 February, 2015, 6:49 pm

On February 27, the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis announced a downward revision in an already-underwhelming rate of fourth quarter real GDP growth. The initial estimate of real annualized growth in the fourth quarter was 2.6 percent, with the revision taking it down to 2.2 percent. That, of course, compares to average growth since 1950 […]

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FACT OF THE WEEK: Industrial Production

By at 18 February, 2015, 8:59 pm

The Federal Reserve reported the latest industrial production numbers on February 18, and like so much of the economic data published during this poor recovery, it’s not a clear-cut tale. Industrial production is an index measuring the physical output of all manufacturing, mining, and electric and gas utility establishments in the United States.  For January, […]

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FACT OF THE WEEK: The Retail Sales Story

By at 12 February, 2015, 11:01 pm

Make no mistake, lower energy prices are positives for the economy. But that doesn’t mean that other issues holding back growth simply disappear. Consider the latest retails sales numbers released by the U.S. Census Bureau on February 12. The retail numbers for January were disappointing, which followed on weak numbers for December as well. Overall, […]

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FACT OF THE WEEK: Jobs Story Brightens, But Entrepreneurship Numbers are Troubling

By at 6 February, 2015, 5:06 pm

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics released its employment report for January on the morning of February 6. Here are some key numbers and trends: Payroll Job Growth. Overall, the jobs story was positive. The establishment (or payroll) survey pointed to a jobs gain of 257,000 in January (267,000 in the private sector). For good […]

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Reminder: U.S. Economy Is All About Small Business

By at 3 February, 2015, 9:03 pm

FACT OF THE WEEK The U.S. Census Bureau updated its data on businesses based on firm size by number of employees. The numbers (the new data is for 2012) provide a powerful reminder that the economy is all about small and mid-size businesses. Consider the shares that firms with less than 20 workers and less […]

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Fact of the Week: Small Business Transactions Up in 2014

By at 22 January, 2015, 12:21 am

BizBuySell.com, a business-for-sale marketplace, reported on January 9 that “that small business transactions reached record levels in 2014 as brokers reported the highest number of businesses changing hands since BizBuySell started tracking data in 2007.” Additionally: “According to BizBuysell, the buying and selling of small businesses increased over 6% in 2014, compared with 2013. This […]

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Regulation: Q&A on the EPA’s Proposed Ozone Rules

By at 19 January, 2015, 9:29 pm

What is the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA’s) proposed regulation on Ozone and what does it mean for entrepreneurs, small businesses and the economy? The EPA announced in late November 2014 that it is proposing to increase regulation regarding the ozone threshold under the National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS).  The proposed rule appeared in the Federal […]

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Analysis: The Story on Jobs Remains Mixed

By at 9 January, 2015, 1:47 pm

The latest job data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics for December presented data that were more mixed than what we would expect if economic growth were truly robust. The nonfarm payroll growth for December was solid at 252,000, with private payrolls up by 240,000. However, the numbers are less than impressive when looking at […]

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