Economy & Innovation

Ikea
4:24 pm
Tue June 24, 2014

At Ikea Groundbreaking, Regional Leaders Hail Swedish Retailer's Economic Promise

Business and political luminaries broke ground Tuesday on an IKEA store in St. Louis' central corridor. The Swedish retail outlet is expected to open next year.
Credit Jason Rosenbaum, St. Louis Public Radio

In many ways, breaking ground on St. Louis's first Ikea store is a lot easier than putting together the Swedish furniture maker's latest bookshelf. For Mayor Francis Slay, he just needed a shovel and speech. 

“Fortunately for a groundbreaking, you don’t need an Allen wrench or instructions,” Slay quipped. 

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Economy & Innovation
3:27 pm
Tue June 24, 2014

St. Louis’ Job Growth Slow Compared To Other Cities

Credit (provided by the St. Louis Federal Reserve)

The St. Louis area's job growth has lagged far behind other Midwestern cities and the national average since 2010, but things could be turning around.

The metropolitan area saw 1.8 percent growth in the number of jobs from 2010 to 2013. By contrast, Kansas City had double the growth with 3.5 percent; Chicago saw 4.5 percent, and the national average was even higher at 4.7 percent.

Federal Reserve economist Charles Gascon said St. Louis’ number — about 22,000 jobs over the three years — is a reflection of a near freeze in job growth here in 2011 and 2012.

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Biosciences
9:27 am
Thu June 19, 2014

BioSTL Launches Effort To Bring More Minorities And Women Into Biosciences

Cheryl Watkins-Moore
Credit Courtesy of Cortex

BioSTL is launching a variety of programs to bring more women and minorities into the field of biosciences. 

The group received a $100,000 donation earlier this year from the Blackstone Charitable Foundation. Some of that money is being used to expand the St. Louis Bioscience Inclusion Initiative, which started in the late 2000s.

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Tax Cuts
9:56 pm
Tue June 17, 2014

Commentary: Policies Will Widen The Wealth Gap

Credit buzzybee | sxc.hu

It probably says something about our times that the book that’s sold out on Amazon is not the latest Twilight thriller but a dense, 700-pager by a French economics professor: Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty. He’s also making the rounds of TV talk shows like an A-list actor promoting a new movie.

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Gateway Arch
4:30 pm
Tue June 17, 2014

Missouri Development Finance Board Approves $15 Million In Tax Credits For Museum Under Gateway Arch

Credit (St. Louis Public Radio staff)

A state-run board has signed off on using tax credits to help cover the cost of renovating a museum on the grounds of the Gateway Arch.

The Missouri Development Finance Board voted via conference call Tuesday for up to $15 million in incentives, which would be used to cover half the cost of private donations that total around $30 million. Those donations and the incentives would go toward renovating the Museum of Westward Expansion beneath the Gateway Arch. 

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KWS Gateway Research Center
6:48 am
Tue June 17, 2014

Commentary: The Power Of WE

Sam Fiorello
Credit Donald Danforth Plant Science Center

Years ago when I lived and worked in Washington, D.C., the city was crippled by an intense January snowstorm. My office was a short walk from my apartment so I was able to salvage at least an abridged day of work. While walking home, with snow still falling heavily, I came upon a homeless man named Charlie whom I had seen almost daily in the same spot. When I stopped to ask Charlie if he was OK, he stood transfixed, looking at a few flakes of newly fallen snow on his gloved hand. Charlie smiled at me and said, "Isn't it amazing? Individually these flakes are so fragile.

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KWS St. Louis
10:00 am
Mon June 16, 2014

European Big Ag Company Chooses St. Louis

Credit Courtesy Donald Danforth Plant Science Center

KWS, a German agricultural company, is opening a research center at BRDG Park in the Donald Danforth Plant Science Center’s campus.

The company, which specializes in plant breeding, has 4,800 employees in 70 countries. The new facility will be its first molecular plant research space in North America, hiring 25 positions in the first year and another 75 in following years.

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EPA Carbon Rules
8:02 pm
Sun June 15, 2014

Cutting Carbon Emissions: Creating Or Killing Jobs?

Credit (Veronique LaCapra/St. Louis Public Radio)

The Environment Protection Agency’s proposed regulations on carbon emissions released earlier this month are sparking debate on whether the rule changes will create jobs or kill jobs.

The new rules seek to reduce American’s carbon dioxide emissions from the power sector by 30 percent by 2030 from 2005 levels. States have until June 30, 2016 to draft plans for how to reduce their average emissions.

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Department of Revenue Delay
4:57 pm
Fri June 13, 2014

Missouri Has Yet To Pay Out $113 Million In State Tax Refunds

Credit (via Flickr/401K)

Thousands of Missourians are still waiting for state income tax refunds, nearly two months after the April 15 filing deadline.

As of today, Michelle Gleb, director of communications for the Missouri Department of Revenue, said 260,826 tax refunds are pending; the refunds total almost $113 million. Gleba says the department is working to get the refunds out as quickly as possible and as cash flow allows. They expect all refunds to be made by the end of June.

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Billion Dollar Impact
9:16 am
Fri June 13, 2014

Companies Investing More in St. Louis Minority-Owned Businesses

Ed Bryant speaks during the St. Louis Minority Business Council Lunch Program on June 12.
Credit Parth Shah

Local companies are buying more and more goods and services from minority vendors. That's according to the St. Louis Minority Business Council, a coalition of local corporations and minority-owned businesses.

The group launched the “Billion Dollar Impact” project back in 2011 with an initial goal of increasing spending by a billion dollars by July 2014. Over the past three years, companies in the St. Louis region have spent more than $1.4 billion on contracts with minority-owned businesses, exceeding expectations by over $400 million.

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