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Harriet Jones / WNPR

Last fall, after United Technologies Corp. announced it would spin off its Otis Elevator and Carrier divisions, then Governor-elect Ned Lamont vowed he would watch the Farmington-based conglomerate "like a hawk" to retain its workforce in Connecticut.

But this weekend's news that UTC would merge with Raytheon Co., and move its headquarters to Waltham, MA., came with little advanced notice to the Lamont administration.

Bossi / Creative Commons

This hour, we learn about efforts to construct a new casino in Bridgeport, Connecticut. We talk to Hearst Connecticut Media reporter Emilie Munson about a possible deal between the city and the state’s tribes, and consider the implications for MGM, which also has its sights on the Southwest region. 

Plus, the Trump administration has threatened to impose new tariffs on Mexico, raising questions for manufacturers, many of which have already felt the impact of the U.S.’ ongoing trade war with China. We take an in-depth look at this story with The New York Times’ Ben Casselman and a Connecticut-based economist.

Bob Best enthusiastically supports President Trump's tough policies against China and other countries.

"I'm not a big tariff guy. I'm a free trade guy," says Best, who manages a heating and air conditioning company in Kennesaw, Ga.

"But sometimes when the bully just doesn't listen, you've got to punch him in the mouth. And that's what he's doing."

Frankie Graziano / Connecticut Public Radio

In a time when thousands of jobs for skilled workers remain unfilled, Gov. Ned Lamont is saying to college graduates “we need you”.

Nicolas Raymond / Creative Commons

Connecticut has parted ways with its "Still Revolutionary" slogan to the relief of some residents. Now many are left wondering: How will the state move forward marketing itself to tourists?

This hour, we take an in-depth look at this question and we also hear from you. What local attractions or attributes would you like to see highlighted as part of a campaign to draw visitors to our state? 

Jesse Costa / WBUR

As the Stop & Shop strike stretches out past one week, some are starting to calculate its wider effect on the economy. Meanwhile, many of the striking workers themselves are waiting to hear if they have a chance to collect unemployment benefits.

Frankie Graziano / Connecticut Public Radio

New Department of Economic and Community Development commissioner David Lehman has begun raising his public profile, just days after his controversial nomination was confirmed by the state senate.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

Connecticut's unemployment rate is at a 17-year low. The state has stockpiled $1.2 billion in its budget reserve fund. But it's still not in a position to go on anything resembling a spending spree.

Not with state Comptroller Kevin Lembo warning lawmakers against counting on a repeat of last year's spike in tax collections. Job gains in 2018 also were not nearly as robust as initially reported. And no one can rule out the possibility of an economic downturn lurking around the corner.

Updated at 10:35 a.m. ET

The U.S. economy added only 20,000 jobs — far fewer than expected — last month, the Labor Department said Friday. But the unemployment rate fell to 3.8 percent from January's 4 percent, and earnings growth picked up.

The increase in jobs was below the 180,000 projected by private analysts and the smallest gain since September 2017. February's increase was dramatically smaller than January's revised gain of 311,000 and December's revised 227,000.

Steven Millstein / Flickr

Saving money is not always an easy or fun thing to do on a consistent schedule. Bills can add up. Unforeseen expenses can take you by surprise. Luckily there are experts out there who can give you a hand when it comes to saving money and getting out of debt.

Katie Harp / Pexels

Do you have credit card debt hanging over your head? Or maybe you've been thinking you should start saving for retirement, but you aren’t sure how to pay for it?

This hour we sit down with NPR correspondent Chris Arnold, who covers personal finance and consumer protection. NPR’s new family of podcasts, Life Kit, gives listeners practical tips for navigating life challenges from parenting to healthy eating. Arnold hosts Life Kit’s podcasts about money. They are all about figuring out how to get your finances in order in a fun and approachable way.

Updated at 11:33 a.m. ET

The U.S. economy expanded at a solid 2.6 percent rate during the last three months of 2018, but growth was significantly lower than it had been earlier in the year, the government said Thursday.

For 2018 as a whole, the economy grew 2.9 percent, a touch below the Trump administration's projected target of 3 percent.

Frankie Graziano / Connecticut Public Radio

Legislators scrutinized the governor’s pick for commissioner of the Department of Economic and Community Development and senior economic advisor this week, highlighting his time as at the firm Goldman Sachs and the company’s role during the 2008 financial crisis.

Image of twenty dollar bills
Martin Vorel / Libreshot

Progressive lawmakers around the country have been rallying behind a call for a $15 minimum wage, and Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont has joined their ranks.

This hour, what would increasing the minimum wage by almost 150 percent over the next four years mean for businesses and workers here in Connecticut? We hear from an economist and get the takes of several local business owners on Democrats’ proposal to increase the minimum wage to $15 per hour by 2023.

alexandersr / Pixabay

This hour: the crisis in Venezuela. We take an in-depth look at the realities on the ground in the country and consider the future that lies ahead for its people.

Plus: We learn how a New London, Connecticut-based nonprofit is opening residents’ eyes to the diverse cultures of Latin America. 

Updated at 9:27 a.m. ET

Job growth picked up for the 100th consecutive month in January even as hundreds of thousands of federal workers were furloughed during the partial government shutdown, the Labor Department said Friday.

Employers added 304,000 jobs last month — topping analysts' expectations and the 223,000 average monthly gain in 2018. The string of job growth underscores the long economic expansion since the Great Recession.

Updated at 5 p.m. ET

The partial shutdown of the government reduced federal spending by about $3 billion and cut into overall U.S. economic growth, according to a report released Monday by the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office.

The report says that because of the shutdown, which lasted from Dec. 22 through last Friday, about $18 billion in discretionary government spending was delayed. Most of the money will be spent later, now that the shutdown has ended.

Forever Stamps have gotten a lot more expensive, relatively speaking.

The price of a first-class Forever Stamp went up by a nickel Sunday, from 50 cents to 55 cents. That 10 percent increase "is the biggest price increase by total cents in the history of the Postal Service," according to The Associated Press.

The Postal Service has been running a multibillion-dollar deficit for years, and the price increase is an attempt to contend with a United States that just doesn't send as many letters as it used to.

Super Bowl tickets are super expensive, as always, but the average resale price is about $1,000 less than at this time last year.

And the price of admission to the big game has been dropping steadily since Sunday, when the Patriots won the AFC Championship. Again.

Clarice Silber / CT Mirror

Shuttered national parks, TSA workers calling in sick, hundreds of thousands of paychecks missed. Americans around the country are feeling the impact of the longest government shutdown in U.S. history. But it’s not just federal employees who are struggling.

This hour, we find out how the shutdown is affecting some of the country’s most vulnerable residents.

Helen Taylor / Flickr

On a January night in 2018, there were more than 3,000 people experiencing homelessness across the state of Connecticut.

This hour we sit down with Dr. Richard Cho, the new CEO of the Connecticut Coalition to End Homelessness. Connecticut has made major strides in reducing homelessness, but how do we address areas where residents are still falling through the cracks?

Updated at 4:07 p.m. ET

The markets have been a mess, but companies are still hiring — a lot.

The economy ended the year by adding a much-stronger-than-expected 312,000 jobs in December — the biggest gain in 10 months, the Labor Department said Friday.

Meanwhile, the unemployment rate jumped to 3.9 percent — the highest rate since August — as more people felt confident enough to quit their jobs and look for new ones.

Think about the last time you went to the supermarket. You probably spent no more than a few seconds choosing from all the different brands of toothpaste, frozen peas or oatmeal.

Those few seconds used to be the holy grail for brands, the moment you would get hooked forever on that Tide detergent or Heinz ketchup — an event referred to as "the first moment of truth." But lately, the moment of truth has moved to the Internet. What's more, ripples from the 2008 recession have changed us as shoppers.

More and more people have started saying: "I'm not a brand person."

It's crunch time for getting packages delivered in time for Christmas, and companies like FedEx, UPS, the Postal Service and even Amazon are feeling the stress.

Online spending is expected to rise at least 15 percent over last year's record holiday season, according to Adobe Analytics.

Long before you click "buy" and type in that shipping address, most e-retailers have already anticipated your order.

In some cases, that item you just bought is already sitting in a nearby warehouse or fulfillment center and could be delivered in a couple of hours.

Chion Wolf

To absolutely no one's surprise, outgoing Governor Dannel Malloy is not letting anyone define his legacy without adding his two cents.

While speaking to the media Tuesday after the final Bond Commission meeting of his administration, Malloy struck back at those criticizing job growth in Connecticut and the level of state borrowing during his eight years in office.

Updated at 12:35 p.m. ET

British Prime Minister Theresa May has postponed a critical vote on the draft Brexit deal she negotiated with the European Union, conceding that it would not have enough support to pass Parliament if the vote were held Tuesday as scheduled.

"I've listened very carefully to what has been said in this chamber and out of it, by members from all sides," May told the House of Commons on Monday, only to be interrupted by a peal of derisive laughter from lawmakers.

Updated at 4:14 p.m. ET Friday

The jobless rate remained at a nearly 50-year low of 3.7 percent in November as employers added 155,000 jobs, fewer than in October and less than expected by private analysts.

Meanwhile, wages grew 3.1 percent over the past 12 months, the same rate as in October, the Bureau of Labor Statistics said. Average earnings climbed to $27.35 an hour.

Illusration: Carmen Baskauf

Today, it’s more common to go online for news than subscribe to a physical newspaper, but with so much content freely available on the web, how are news outlets staying afloat? This hour we talk about how the digital landscape is impacting journalism.

Artist Bri Dill from South Windsor creates a painting at the grand opening of Infosys' Hartford innovation hub.
Harriet Jones / Connecticut Public Radio

Technology consulting company Infosys has formally cut the ribbon on its new innovation hub in Hartford. The center, housed in Hartford’s Goodwin Square building, will be one of four that the Indian company is creating around the U.S. 

CTMirror.org

Governor-elect Ned Lamont on Tuesday announced two team captains who will be tasked with helping him confront huge state budget deficits and Connecticut's tarnished business climate.

For his chief of staff, Lamont picked Ryan Drajewicz, an executive from Westport-based hedge fund behemoth Bridgewater Associates. His budget chief will be Melissa McCaw, currently the head of the city of Hartford's Office of Management, Budget and Grants.

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