Economy & Innovation

Unemployment Rate
11:22 am
Tue April 17, 2012

Mo. adds jobs as unemployment rate remains steady

(via Flickr/KellyB.)

Missouri added about 4,800 jobs in March as its unemployment rate remained steady.

Figures released Tuesday by the state Department of Economic Development show that Missouri's seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was 7.4 percent in March - the same level as in February. That remained below the national unemployment rate of 8.2 percent in March.

Metro fares
5:00 am
Mon April 16, 2012

Hearings this week on Metro fare hike

Hearings will be held his week on proposed fare increases for Metro
(St. Louis Public Radio photo)

Residents can weigh in starting today on proposed fare increases for mass transit in St. Louis. The Metro transit agency is considering three options for raising fares this year – one would increase only the costs of weekly, monthly and university semester passes; the second would raise the cost of all passes except day passes; and the third would spread the increase to all fares, including buses and Metrolink. 

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Economy: Unemployment benefits
5:29 pm
Mon April 9, 2012

Mo.'s long-term unemployed to lose some benefits

(via Flickr/KellyB)

Missouri's 7.4 percent jobless rate is the lowest it's been in more than three years - but that's bad news for about 9,000 of the state's 112,000 people receiving unemployment benefits.

State lawmakers last year outlasted a determined filibuster by Republican Senator Jim Lembke to approve an additional 20 weeks in benefits - funded entirely by the federal government - for Missouri residents who had been out of work for 79 weeks, or more than a year and a half.

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Business/US Fidelis
2:44 pm
Mon April 9, 2012

US Fidelis co-owner pleads guilty to federal charges

Former U.S. Fidelis owner Darain Atkinson pleaded guilty Monday to two federal counts.
(St. Charles County Dept. of Corrections)

One of two brothers who owned the auto services contract giant US Fidelis has pleaded guilty to federal charges - just four days after admitting to a series of state charges.

Darain Atkinson, 47, pleaded guilty today to one felony count of conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud, and one felony count of filing false tax returns. 

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Business/US Fidelis plea
4:30 pm
Thu April 5, 2012

Former owner of US Fidelis pleads guilty to state charges

Darain Atkinson.
(St. Charles County Department of Corrections)

Updated at 4:08 with comments from Attorney General Koster and Darain Atkinson's attorney.

Updated 3:58 with statement from the Better Business Bureau:

“US Fidelis left a trail of dissatisfied consumers from across the United States.  Today’s guilty plea by Darain Atkinson in St. Charles County illustrates the risks of unethical business behavior and the importance of the work of groups like the Better Business Bureau in exposing the underhanded practices in our marketplace,” Michelle Corey, BBB president and CEO said.

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Trade with Brazil
5:12 pm
Tue April 3, 2012

Trade with Brazil in focus for both Nixon, Quinn this month

A map showing the location of Brazil within South America, along with some of the country's major population centers.
(CIA World Factbook)

Reporting from KSMU's Jennifer Moore used in this report.

As we mentioned this morning, Missouri Governor Jay Nixon will travel to Brazil this month on a trade mission. The trip comes on the heels of the news that Missouri saw its strongest year ever for exports in 2011.

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Business/Express Scripts merger
11:56 am
Mon April 2, 2012

Express Scripts-Medco merger approved

The Federal Trade Commission has approved a $29.1 billion merger between Express Scripts and Medco, which is based in New Jersey. The new company will be headquartered in St. Louis.
(Rachel Lippmann/St. Louis Public Radio)

Updated at 4:26 p.m. to correct name of Jennifer Mallon's association. It is the National Community Pharmacists Association, not the National Association of Community Pharmacies.

Federal regulators have approved the $29.1 billion merger between pharmacy benefit managers Express Scripts and Medco.

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Doe Run
10:05 am
Thu March 29, 2012

Production to halt for weeks at fire-damaged Doe Run smelter

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The Doe Run Co. says production of primary lead at its smelter in the eastern Missouri town of Herculaneum will be suspended for four to six weeks following a fire.

The fire on March 20 occurred at the smelter's electric substation. Doe Run Primary Smelting Division general manager Gary Hughes says damage to the substation is significant.

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Illinois Unemployment Rate
12:39 pm
Thu March 22, 2012

Illinois unemployment rate drops to 9.1 percent

(via Flickr/KellyB.)

The Illinois Department of Employment Security says the state's unemployment rate dropped in February for the sixth-straight month. 

The department says the February jobless rate fell to 9.1 percent from 9.4 percent in January. That's still much higher than the national 8.3 percent rate.

Department Director Jay Rowell calls the drop a sign that the state continues its steady recovery from recession.

Illinois added 6,500 jobs in February. That's almost double the 3,800 jobs added in January.

Missouri Unemployment rate
1:45 pm
Tue March 20, 2012

Missouri unemployment rate falls in Feb. to lowest mark since late 2008

(via Flickr/KellyB)

Missouri's unemployment rate fell slightly last month while the state's overall payroll increased by a couple thousand jobs.

The state Department of Economic Development reported Tuesday that Missouri's jobless rate in February dropped a tenth of a percentage point to 7.4 percent, which is its lowest mark since late 2008.

Economic development officials also say Missouri's net nonfarm payroll increased by 2,300 jobs in February.

This is the second straight month that Missouri's payrolls have expanded. More than 21,000 jobs were added last month.

 

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