Economy & Innovation

Economy
5:05 pm
Tue November 13, 2012

Mo. Minimum Wage Increasing - But Is It A Good Thing?

(via Flickr/JD Hancock)

Missouri's minimum wage will rise by a dime to $7.35 an hour in 2013.

For the past several years, Missouri has followed the federal minimum wage of $7.25 an hour. That's because the federal rate was equal to or greater than the state's minimum, which is adjusted annually based on the cost of living.

But inflation has now pushed Missouri's minimum wage above the federal standard. The new wage is posted on the website of the state labor department.

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Business
2:49 pm
Tue November 13, 2012

Northwest Plaza Mall Redevelopment Under Way

Northwest Plaza Mall in 2010
Credit Adam Allington / St. Louis Public Radio

Demolition crews are set to make way for a $106 million overhaul of the old Northwest Plaza Mall in St. Ann.

The nearly two-million square foot property has sat vacant for years and will be rebranded as “The Crossings at Northwest”.

On Tuesday elected officials took turns taking a sledgehammer to the old Sears Automotive Center, located at the corner of Lindbergh and St. Charles Rock Road.

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Hostess
4:43 pm
Mon November 12, 2012

Hostess Closing St. Louis Facility, Two Others, Following Strike

(via Flickr/sekimura)

Hostess Brands Inc. is permanently closing three bakeries following a nationwide strike by its bakers union.

The Texas-based maker of Twinkies and Ding Dongs says the strike has prevented it from producing and delivering products.

Hostess warned earlier this month that the strike, by about 30 percent of its workforce, could lead to bakery closures. It said Monday that it will close bakeries in Seattle, St. Louis and Cincinnati that collectively employ 627 workers. The company has about 18,300 employees.

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Barge Shipping
12:17 pm
Mon November 12, 2012

Nixon: Keep Water On Rivers Flowing, Economy With It

A barge on the Mississippi River.
(via Flickr/The Confluence)

Updated 12:29 p.m.

Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon and the barge industry are imploring the federal government to keep water flowing on the Missouri and Mississippi rivers or face potential "economic disaster."

The drought has left many waterways at historic lows. Nixon sent a letter Friday urging the Army Corps of Engineers to rethink plans to reduce the amount of water released from the Missouri's upstream reservoir. That would also reduce flow on the Mississippi below St. Louis.

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Boeing
2:10 pm
Wed November 7, 2012

Boeing Shakes Up Shrinking Defense Business

The Boeing Phantom Ray unmanned airborne system (UAS), just one of the models of aircraft Boeing produces, during an unveiling ceremony in St. Louis on May 10, 2010. Reports state China will announce deals today including one to buy 200 Boeing airplanes.
(UPI/Boeing Aircraft Handout)

Updated at 5:20 p.m. with comments from Boeing.

Boeing’s defense arm will find another $1.6 billion in cuts by 2013.

The company announced the additional reductions today, though no details were provided. Defense , Space and Security, which is based in St. Louis, has already cut more than $2 billion since 2010, including a 30 percent reduction in management-level positions. 

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9:01 am
Fri November 2, 2012

Even After Solid Gains, 22 Million Americans Are Unemployed Or Underemployed

Lead in text: 
NPR's Planet Money team comes through again with a visual breakdown of the jobs numbers. Explore it all via the link.
As of September, 11.7 million people were unemployed. But that doesn't include people who were working part time because they can't find a full-time job. It also doesn't include people who wanted a job but haven't looked for work in the past four weeks.
Bottle District
4:09 pm
Fri October 26, 2012

Northside-Bottle District Combination Hits Snag

Legislation that would make the 17-acre Bottle District part of a larger effort to redevelop north St. Louis has hit a procedural snag at the Board of Aldermen.
Credit (via Flickr/pasa47)

A measure that would combine the Bottle District north of the Edward Jones Dome with Paul McKee's larger plan to redevelop north St. Louis ran aground on a procedural motion at City Hall today.

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Economy
12:53 pm
Thu October 18, 2012

Illinois Unemployment Dips To 8.8 Percent

(via Flickr/KellyB.)

Illinois' unemployment rate dipped to 8.8 percent in September.

That's down from a rate of 9.1 percent in August. And the Illinois Department of Employment Security says the seasonally adjusted figures reported Thursday show Illinois' unemployment rate has fallen 10 times in the past 13 months.

IDES says Illinois added 13,800 jobs in September, and Director Jay Rowell calls the news "encouraging because it reinforces the trend of continued job growth."

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Business
6:50 pm
Fri October 12, 2012

Arlington Grove Development Providing Much-Needed Housing In North City

William Ittner's Arlington School today (built in 1898)
Courtesy McCormack Baron Salazar

A historic St. Louis School building has a new lease on life as a new development in north city’s 22nd Ward.

The Arlington School, designed by pioneering St. Louis Architect William Ittner was built in 1898.  The school was closed in 1994 and fell into extreme disrepair.  I filed a story for NPR in 2009 about ten of Ittner's schools, including Arlington, which were facing uncertain futures.

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Former Daniele Hotel to Re-open as Hampton Inn
4:26 pm
Fri October 12, 2012

Former Daniele Hotel In Clayton To Get New Life

An artist's rendering of the new Hampton Inn & Suites to be built at site of the former Daniele Hotel in Clayton.
(Equis Hospitality Management)

The former Daniele Hotel in Clayton will reopen soon as a Hampton Inn and Suites.


The Daniele has been shuttered since 2007. But Equis Hospitality Management in St. Louis says it will spend about $16 million to renovate the hotel on North Meramec Ave. The new hotel will have 106 rooms, including 25 suites, and underground parking.


Equis co-owner Greg Mullenix says they will add a fifth floor to the hotel and they’ll feature a restaurant and bar at street level.

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