Lancaster County Jobless Rate Drops in February

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Lancaster County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Lancaster County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Lancaster County’s unemployment rate slipped to 6.8 percent in February, the state Department of Labor & Industry said Tuesday.

By declining slightly from January’s 6.9 percent, the county’s rate remained among the best in Pennsylvania.

Of the state’s 14 metropolitan areas, only State College (6.0 percent) and Lebanon (6.7 percent) had better unemployment rates.

Scranton/Wilkes-Barre had the worst, at 9.8 percent.

Read more: http://lancasteronline.com/article/local/833506_County-jobless-rate-drops-in-Feb-.html#ixzz2PLlDgtjp

Motor City Lessons For Reading

City officials were shocked, saddened, thankful and relieved by their three-day bus trip to Detroit that began Nov. 13.

The fast-paced tour, paid for entirely by two local foundations, was to see what progress the Motor City has made in its own painful recovery, and what efforts there might work in Reading.

As Detroit’s Big Three automakers declined, tax revenues dropped and more than half its 1.8 million residents moved out. The city had to cut services such as fire suppression and police from large sections of the city.

But now, with help from foundations and businesses, it’s making numerous coordinated moves to rebuild.

Reasd more:  http://readingeagle.com/article.aspx?id=432745

Lehigh Valley Unemployment Rate Spikes

he Lehigh Valley‘s unemployment rate spiked again in July as the number of people looking for work continues to grow faster than businesses add jobs.

The unemployment rate hit 8.8 percent in July, up from 8.5 percent in June, according to data released Tuesday by the state Department of Labor and Industry.  It is the second straight month the unemployment rate increased even though the number of Valley residents working grew.

A total of 395,300 Valley area residents had jobs in July, the highest that number has been since November 2008, just as the Great Recession was taking hold.  But the workforce is growing at a faster pace.

From May to July, 6,700 new workers entered the labor pool, but fewer than half of them — 3,200 — found jobs.  When the workforce grows faster than businesses add jobs, the unemployment rate goes up.

Read more: http://www.mcall.com/business/mc-lehigh-valley-jobs-july-20120828,0,386387.story

General Dynamics To Lay Off One-Quarter Of Workers At Scranton Munitions Plant

General Dynamics will lay off about one-quarter of the workers at its Scranton munitions plant by the end of the year.

The defense conglomerate, which is based near Washington, D.C., reported it will reduce its workforce from 245 to 185 in three increments between October and December. The 60 layoffs will take place as work is completed on two contracts for production of 120mm mortar shell bodies, said Laurie Van Brocklin, a General Dynamics spokeswoman.

“We regret the impact that the action has on employees,” Ms. Van Brocklin said. “We are hopeful, with successful bids on mortar bodies contracts, that we will be able to rectify that.”

The layoffs will leave the 500,000-square-foot plant with fewer than half the employees it had when General Dynamics acquired it six years ago.

Read more: http://thetimes-tribune.com/news/general-dynamics-to-lay-off-one-quarter-of-workers-at-scranton-munitions-plant-1.1359821

Lancaster County Jobless Rate Drops To 6.3 Percent

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Lancaster County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Lancaster County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The Lancaster County unemployment rate fell to 6.3 percent in January, a three-year low, the state said Thursday.

The drop from December’s 6.7 percent marked the fourth time in the past five months that the jobless rate here has dipped.

January’s figure is the best here since January 2009′s rate of 6 percent, according to the state Department of Labor & Industry.

Bill Sholly, an industry and business analyst with the department, said he was encouraged to see more county residents with jobs.

Read more: http://lancasteronline.com/article/local/605844_Jobless-rate-in-Lancaster-County-drops-to-6-3-.html#ixzz1pmp8SUos

Allentown Jobs: Lehigh Valley Ranks Fourth In Business Development

The PPL Building (seen here in the distance) i...

Image via Wikipedia

Editor’s note:  This is great news for Pennsylvania!

The Lehigh Valley ranked fourth in new business development among mid-size metro areas for 2011 in an annual survey published by Site Selection magazine.

The magazine’s readers include economic development officials and key corporate decision-makers who choose new locations for businesses looking to relocate or expand.

Site Selection ranks metro areas by the number of “corporate facility expansion projects” they attract. In the category of metro areas with populations between 200,000 and 1 million, the Lehigh Valley reported 28 such projects in 2011, one more than the Harrisburg-Carlisle region.

Read more: http://www.mcall.com/business/mc-allentown-area-jobs-ranking-20120309,0,7746005.story

Glum Econmic News For June

The economic recovery slowed down in June.  Consumer spending fell by .02 percent, which can be blamed in part on rising gas and food prices.  Workers saw incomes rise by only .01 percent, the smallest increase in nine months.  On a positive note, personal savings rose 5.4 percent.

Hiring in June was at the lowest level in nine months.  Only 18,000 net jobs were added and the unemployment rate rose to 9.2%.

Some economic forecasters are lowering their outlook for economic growth in the second half of the year from 2.5 percent to 2.0 percent.

Michael Douglas May Have Beaten The Odds!!

Michael Douglas '63, Oscar-winning actor, play...

Image via Wikipedia

Finally, some good news to report!  66-year-old actor Michael Douglas has announced that his tumor is gone.  Douglas has been battling throat cancer and had lost 32 pounds in the process.  His gaunt pictures have been seen on tabloid magazines and television.  Many have speculated the worst.

Douglas has started an exercise regimen and has gained 12 pounds back!  He is set to start filming in May or June.  The new film will be a biopic about flamboyant pianist Liberace and Douglas will play the title role.

We wish Michael Douglas a full recovery and many years of good health!