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Phil Warren / Creative Commons

On the need for new affordable housing, some Connecticut municipalities say "not in my backyard." But why this NIMBY approach?

This hour, we take an in-depth look with the author of a ProPublica-Connecticut Mirror investigation into local housing policies. We also check in with a town in southwest Connecticut, and with the policy director for the nonprofit Partnership for Strong Communities. 

The State of Connecticut

The 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act introduced a new initiative, the Opportunity Zones Program, to spur investment in the nation’s most distressed communities. The state of Connecticut is home to 72 Opportunity Zones. What efforts are being made to attract investors to these regions? This hour, we find out, and we also hear from you. Do you live in or near an Opportunity Zone? 

Updated at 10 a.m. ET

U.S. employers added 136,000 jobs in September — a sign of continued resilience in the labor market amid growing signals that the economy is losing steam.

The unemployment rate fell to 3.5% — the lowest since December 1969 — but the pace of hiring has slowed from last year. The jobless rate was 3.7% in August.

Job gains for the two previous months were revised up by a total of 45,000.

Bob Orozco barks out instructions like a drill sergeant. The 40 or so older adults in this class follow his lead, stretching and bending and marching in place.

It goes like this for nearly an hour, with 89-year-old Orozco doing every move he asks of his class. He does that in each of the 11 classes he teaches every week at this YMCA in Laguna Niguel, Calif.

"I probably will work until something stops me," Orozco says.

David Lofink / Creative Commons

Venture into any of Connecticut's municipal centers and you will likely notice an empty storefront … or two or three or, well, you get the point.

This hour, we ask: What impact do these vacancies have on the vitality of local communities? And what resources are available to help these communities attract and retain more retail businesses?

Neil Palmer/CIAT / CIFOR

As fires burn in the Amazon rainforest, we ask: To what extent is deforestation responsible for the flames? Coming up, we check in with climate scientist Dr. Carlos Nobre.

But first, we talk to Scott Wallace about his reporting on illegal logging in the Amazon. What impact does it have on the rainforest? And what is being done to stop it? 

Russ / Creative Commons

Standardized tests, application forms, campus visits. The path to college can be a daunting one, especially when you add tuition to the mix. Then, of course, there is the cost of room and board, meal plans, textbooks...feeling stressed yet?

This hour, we tackle the realities of affording a college education, and we also hear from you. Are you the parent of a college-age student? Are you, yourself, working toward a college degree? How has this impacted you financially...emotionally? 

DeLauro Key Player In NAFTA 2.0 Talks With White House

Sep 3, 2019
Chion Wolf / WNPR

When Rep. Rosa DeLauro and some of her congressional colleagues tried to visit a Goodyear plant in Mexico this summer, she was surprised to be denied entry into the facility. 

Louis Weisberg / Creative Commons

You responded so enthusiastically to our all-call show last Monday, we decided to try it again this week.

What's on your mind? The world is you oyster, at least from 1-2 pm this afternoon.

Updated at 5:18 p.m. ET

President Trump on Friday announced higher tariffs on goods from China, hours after Beijing said it will slap tariffs on $75 billion of autos and other U.S. goods. Earlier in the day, he "ordered" U.S. companies to stop doing business with China though it was unclear whether he had the power to do that.

Frédéric BISSON / flickr creative commons

We've got no guests today. So much of the burden of making today's show any good at all rests with, well: you.

We can talk about pretty much whatever you want. The economy. Plastic bags. Greenland. The Little League Classic. 2020. Or 2020. Or 2020. Or 2020.

Connecticut's Jobless Rate Shrinks To 3.6 Percent In July

Aug 15, 2019
neetalparekh via flickr.com / Creative Commons

Connecticut’s unemployment rate dropped by slightly to 3.6 percent in July despite the loss of 100 jobs, the Department of Labor reported Thursday. That’s because the labor department also revised June job losses from 1,400 positions lost to just 800. 

Updated at 4:10 p.m. ET

The Trump administration is postponing some of its new tariffs on Chinese imports — a significant retreat in the trade war that has rattled financial markets on both sides of the Pacific.

Updated at 9:31 a.m. ET

The economy is slowing down, but it keeps creating jobs at a healthy pace. Employers added 164,000 jobs last month, as the unemployment rate held steady at 3.7%, the Labor Department said Friday. The jobless rate remains at a nearly 50-year low.

Analysts had expected about 165,000 jobs to be added in July and the unemployment rate to be 3.6%.

Frankie Graziano / WNPR/Connecticut Public Radio

Yale University has a $29 billion endowment, one of the largest in the world. The endowment invests in many things including fossil fuel companies.

This doesn’t sit well with some Yale students and faculty who are concerned about climate change. They’ve called on the school to divest that money from oil, coal, and gas companies. 

Yale University
Pixabay

Yale University is offering a voluntary wellness program to some employees. The catch? You have to share your health data and there’s a financial penalty if you don’t participate. Now, Yale is now being sued by some of it workers over this program. This hour, we take a look at the legal questions surrounding employer-sponsored wellness programs. Does your job offer one?

Later, we take a look at the cost of childcare in Connecticut. Paying for daycare can be as much or more than in-state tuition in this state. We hear from an economist and the Commissioner of the Office of Early Childhood.

Favarh

In the Farmington Valley, a nonprofit organization aims to break down silos and build bridges in the community through apartment housing. This hour, we learn about Favarh and its unique initiative to build a more integrated living experience for those with intellectual and developmental disabilities.

Plus, at Quinnipiac University, students can apply to live not in a dorm but with residents at a Masonicare assisted living facility. We learn about the Students in Residence program, and we also hear from you. 

Hartford's Artists Collective is among the many arts organizations contributing to the Greater Hartford's "Arts Ecosystem"
Shana Sureck / WNPR

The Greater Hartford art scene is thriving in many ways, but challenges persist. That's the conclusion of a new comprehensive report.

Updated at 7:34 p.m. ET

Stocks rallied Wednesday as Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell testified about challenges facing the U.S. economy, adding to expectations that the central bank will cut interest rates later this month.

The Fed had hinted at such a cut in June.

Updated at 9:25 a.m. ET

Hiring rebounded strongly in June as U.S. employers added 224,000 jobs. That's well above the pace many forecasters were expecting, and a sharp pickup after a disappointing May.

A monthly snapshot from the Labor Department showed unemployment rose slightly, to 3.7%, as more workers entered the job market.

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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.

State Economic Indicators Remain A Mixed Bag

Mar 13, 2019
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.

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