Economy & Innovation

Business/Northwest Plaza auction
4:44 pm
Mon July 25, 2011

Northwest Plaza up for sale again

A vacant Northwest Plaza is on the auction block, for a starting bid of $1.25 million.
(Adam Allington/St. Louis Public Radio)

It was once the region's largest shopping mall. Some even billed it as the largest mall in the world.

Now, the vacant Northwest Plaza in St. Ann is up for sale by a group of lenders who need to get the 122-acre, 1.8 million square foot site off their books by 2012.

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Shipping / Mo. River Flooding
10:13 am
Mon July 25, 2011

Missouri River flooding hurts barge industry

A barge traveling on the Missouri River.
(via Flickr/roberthuffstutter)

After years of drought, barge operators along the Missouri River got more rain than they had hoped for this year.

The industry had grown optimistic when rising river levels appeared to promise an increase in barge traffic this year. The Missouri Department of Transportation even projected a 15 percent to 20 percent increase.

But then the rains started, causing flooding along the 675-mile stretch from Sioux City, Iowa, to St. Louis. That prompted the U.S. Coast Guard to close the river between Gavins Point Dam in South Dakota and Glasgow, Mo.

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Business/Express Scripts merger
2:36 pm
Thu July 21, 2011

Express Scripts will buy Medco

Prescription benefit manager Express Scripts will purchase rival Medco in a $29.1 billion deal.
(Rachel Lippmann/St. Louis Public Radio)

Two of the nation's largest pharmacy benefits management companies could become one in the first six months of next year.

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Illinois Unemployment Data
1:15 pm
Thu July 21, 2011

Ill. unemployment rises for second straight month

(via Flickr/KellyB.)

Unemployment in Illinois increased to 9.2 percent in June, the second straight month the state jobless rate increased.

The state Department of Employment Security on Thursday laid part of the blame on weak consumer confidence they said was hindering the national economy.

The national unemployment rate hit also 9.2 percent in June. That was up from 9.1 percent.

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Tax Credits / Aerotropolis
2:24 pm
Wed July 20, 2011

GOP lawmakers reach agreement on business incentives, Nixon to call special session

Lambert-St. Louis International Airport in St. Louis.
(via Flickr/dbking)

Updated 5:26 p.m. with further detail and comment from lawmakers

Updated 2:24 p.m. with statement from office of Gov. Nixon on special session

A statement issued today from Scott Holste, a spokesperson for Mo. Gov. Jay Nixon, announces that the governor will call the Missouri legislature into special session.

The date of the special session has not been determined.

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Business / Aerotropolis
5:32 pm
Tue July 19, 2011

Letter: Delegation headed by Mo. Gov. Nixon to visit China

Mo. Gov. Jay Nixon.
(UPI/Bill Greenblatt)

Updated 7:51 p.m.

A letter from Mo. Gov. Jay Nixon circulated around Twitter this afternoon, and hosted on the Missouri Chamber of Commerce's website, states that Nixon will be leading a Missouri delegation to China "later this year."

According to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Nixon's office has confirmed that the trip is in the works.

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Economy/MO jobless numbers
5:03 pm
Mon July 18, 2011

Mo. jobless rate drops in June

(via Flickr/KellyB.)

The unemployment rate in Missouri ticked down slightly last month, according to new data from the Missouri Department of Economic Development.

Missouri's rate last month was 8.8 percent, down from 8.9 percent in May 2011, and a sharp decrease from June 2010, when 9.2 percent of the state's citizen's were out of work.

The national rate for June stood at 9.2 percent.

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Illinois Foreclosures
2:19 pm
Thu July 14, 2011

Illinois home foreclosures up 4 percent in June, down 25 percent from last year

(via Flickr/taberandrew)

Illinois home foreclosure activity rose 4 percent in June compared to the previous month, but was down 25 percent from one year earlier.

A report released Thursday by Irvine, Calif.-based RealtyTrac shows Illinois with 6,541 homes receiving initial foreclosure filings last month.

Another 1,944 properties were scheduled for auction sale and 2,529 properties were repossessed by banks.

Looking at the first six months of the year, Illinois foreclosure activity fell 29 percent compared to the same period last year.

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Ameren / Lawsuit
5:29 pm
Wed July 13, 2011

Lawsuit filed against Ameren by St. Louis County plumbing company

(via Flickr/s_falkow)

A St. Louis County plumbing contractor has filed a lawsuit against the utility company Ameren. The suit alleges the plumbing company lost its contract because it repeatedly informed Ameren of environmental, health, and safety violations.

According to the lawsuit, those violations ranged from failing to fix broken plumbing systems to illegally discharging oil to soils and sewers.

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Midwest Economy
10:59 am
Fri July 1, 2011

Survey suggests Midwest economic growth slowing

(via Flickr/Seabamirum)

A survey of nine Midwestern and Plains suggests that higher energy prices and supply problems are slowing economic growth.

A report released Friday says the Business Conditions Index for the Mid-America region dropped in June, to 54.9 from 60.2 in May.

Creighton University economist Ernie Goss says higher energy prices and supply problems stemming from the Japanese tsunami and Midwest and Plains flooding have slowed economic growth.

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