Business

Indiana’s unemployment rate remained at a nearly two decade low in October.

RV Industry Reports First Growth In More Than A Year

Oct 29, 2019

The RV Industry Association is reporting a slight uptick in September shipments compared to last September. It’s the first time in more than a year the industry has seen positive growth.

Kevin Comerford, host of "Building Norhtwest Indiana," talks with Ty Warner, Executive Director of the Northwest Indiana Planning Commission.

More than 200 companies across Indiana opened their doors Friday to educate students about careers in manufacturing as part of a national Manufacturing Day held annually in October. 

Indiana UAW Workers Go On Strike Against GM

Sep 15, 2019

Thousands of Hoosiers will be affected by the United Automobile Workers strike against General Motors that began at midnight. 

www.nwi-pride.org

On this edition of the podcast you'll hear the latest on Portage Assessor Jon Snyder, a former Gary technology chief  has been sentenced for computer thefts, Samantha Horton has details on General Motors investing millions of dollars in Fort Wayne, Hammond City Councilman Robert Markovich has been granted permission to contest his four-vote loss in the May 7 Democratic primary and Chris Nolte has a conversation Chris Nolte with Amari Victoria and Elisabeth Menning, organizers of the first annual NWI Pride event at the Lincoln Center in Highland.

Indiana’s unemployment rate rebounded in November after four consecutive months of increases.

The Hoosier unemployment rate fell two-tenths of a percent last month, down to 3.7 percent. That’s the first time since June it’s dropped.

At Indianapolis-based pharmaceutical giant Eli Lilly, 2,300 employees will take buyouts as part of the company’s effort to save money by cutting at least 2,000 jobs in the U.S. by the end of the year.

It’s unclear whether layoffs are still in the works in the Hoosier state.

Lilly said in September it would aim to save $500 million by cutting 3,500 jobs out of its more than 41,000 worldwide, with at least 2,000 cut in the U.S.

Half a dozen homeowners in rural Bartholomew County will get to pay less in property taxes because they live near concentrated animal feeding operations, or CAFOs.

The decision comes about a year after the families in the town of Hope appealed to the county about the impact of large hog farms on their home values.

After the county denied their requests in March, the neighbors appealed the case to the State Board of Tax Review.

A national fair housing group says Deutsche Bank and two other businesses are less likely to maintain foreclosed, bank-owned homes in majority-black areas of 30 cities, including Indianapolis and Gary.

A new version of a federal complaint, out this week, expands the investigation.

The National Fair Housing Alliance and 19 local organizations first filed a complaint with the Department of Housing and Urban Development against Deutsche Bank in 2014.

Indiana’s top agriculture official has been tapped to oversee global farm trade for the Trump administration.

Indiana Department of Agriculture director Ted McKinney now faces a Senate confirmation to become the USDA’s first-ever trade undersecretary.

He says he’s grateful for the support he’s received since getting the news.

“I am so honored to be nominated by the president, and I look forward to serving if confirmed,” McKinney says.

The Indianapolis suburbs are growing, while rural areas of the state lose residents.

That trend isn’t new, but it deepened in 2016 census data analyzed this summer by the Indiana Business Research Center.

The data shows Indiana’s fastest-growing city is Whitestown, in Boone County. It’s topped that list for six years running, as its population has more than doubled.

Indiana’s ports system hopes a new contractor will help bring more bulk cargo than ever into Burns Harbor on Lake Michigan.

Metro Ports is a stevedoring company. It helps manage how cargo gets off- and on-loaded and distributed at 27 ports in 10 states, including huge facilities at Long Beach, California and Seattle-Tacoma, Washington.

Burns Harbor will be the company’s first Great Lakes operation when it takes over the bulk cargo terminal next month.

Rolls-Royce and the state are chipping in to expand Purdue University’s work on making small gas-powered turbine engines more efficient.

The company already opened one big facility at Purdue this year. Now, it’s investing another $10 million into two new wind tunnels at Purdue’s turbine research lab.

Mechanical engineering professor Guillermo Paniagua leads the research there. He explains what gas turbine engines do.

The $130 billion merger between Dow and DuPont received conditional federal approval Thursday.

The companies still have to address areas where the Department of Justice says they’ll have too big a market share, but those aren’t the areas that have Indiana farmers worried.

In approving the merger, the DOJ says Dow and DuPont have to relinquish control of a few assets – a chemical plant in Texas for Dow, and two of DuPont’s insecticide and herbicide brands.

Thursday marked the beginning of the end for 18 Marsh stores that weren’t bought out at a bankruptcy auction earlier this week.

Forty-four Marsh locations in Indiana and Ohio stayed open as the company started going through bankruptcy last month, but only 26 found a buyer at auction Monday.

The remaining 18 – in the Indianapolis area, Lafayette, Muncie, Kokomo, Carmel, Logansport, Connersville and Noblesville – have now started selling off their inventories.

The 18 Marsh grocery stores that don’t have a buyer will start selling off their inventories Thursday, according to a company spokesperson.

And a CVS spokesperson says his company has “settled” a dispute with the two Ohio grocery chains that want to buy Marsh’s 26 other remaining stores.

This clears the way for the combined $24 million deal with a Kroger subsidiary and another Ohio chain, Fresh Encounter, to go forward.

UPS announced plans this week to open a $260 million shipping hub in Plainfield by 2019 – one of the first big logistics investments to come after the state passed its road funding plan.

The repairs and upgrades that $1 billion-a-year funding package will fund with tax and fee increases are a big deal for companies that rely on roads.

Two Ohio-based firms offered to buy more than half of the remaining Marsh grocery stores at Monday’s bankruptcy auction.

The deal hinges on the outcome of a dispute between Indiana-based Marsh and CVS Pharmacies.

At the auction in Delaware, Kroger subsidiary Topvalco offered $16 million for 11 Marsh stores in Indianapolis, Zionsville, Muncie, Bloomington, Brownsburg, Fishers and Greenwood.

That’s according to bankruptcy court documents filed Tuesday.

EDITOR’S NOTE, JUNE 14: This developing story has been updated. Read more here.

What’s left of the Marsh grocery chain went to auction Monday morning – but there’s no word yet on how the bidding went.

Attorneys in the Delaware law office where the auction was set to take place did not immediately return requests for comment. They represent Indiana-based Marsh in its bankruptcy proceedings.

An Indiana logistics council wants to better connect military veterans with advanced manufacturing jobs.

Conexus Indiana will partner with five big Indiana firms to run a new vet-focused jobs site that could eventually expand to other industries.

Subaru of Indiana Automotive, in Lafayette, is among those working with Conexus on the program, called INVets. Human resources manager Brad Rohrer says Subaru recruited veterans at Kentucky’s Fort Campbell during its last big hiring push.

The Indiana Chamber of Commerce’s latest report card on the state economy’s race to the top shows some progress. But a lot of obstacles remain.

The Vision 2025 Plan is basically the Chamber’s policy platform. Chamber president Kevin Brinegar says it lays out the ways Indiana’s economy should succeed.

“We believe, if we can be best of class in each of these areas, that Indiana will have the best chance for competitiveness and prosperity in the 21st-century global economy,” he says.

President Donald Trump called the Paris climate accord “draconian” and “onerous” when he announced the U.S. would withdraw from the agreement, but the decision’s benefits to Indiana’s energy landscape are unclear.

Countries plan for themselves how to make the effects of climate change less severe under the Paris climate agreement. Generally, countries can adopt renewable energy sources, limit carbon emissions, or do both.

A novel way to create sheet metal could generate big energy savings in motorized machines.

Purdue University engineers are getting a $1.5 million federal grant to begin studying the new process and its applications this summer.

The three-year project will focus on adding larger amounts of silicon to the small steel parts that help power electric motors.

Silicon helps the steel waste less electricity, says Purdue materials engineer Kevin Trumble, but adding enough to make a difference isn’t easy.

Six months after President Donald Trump intervened in Carrier’s planned Indianapolis layoffs, the company is releasing the final number of jobs it still plans to cut.

The Department of Workforce Development got the appliance-maker’s official notification of the layoffs Monday, in a letter dated May 19.

It says 632 workers will lose their jobs at Carrier’s Indianapolis fan coil factory between late July and the end of the year.

Indiana’s corn and soybean growers are getting seeds in the ground this week – but more rain on the way could put farmers in a difficult position.

As of Monday, 56 percent of the state’s projected corn crop and 23 percent of the projected soybean crop have been planted.

Hoosier Farmers Begin Planting 2017's Cash Crops

Apr 20, 2017

Hoosiers will see more farm equipment in the fields in the next few weeks, as spring corn and soybean planting ramps up.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture expects farmers in Indiana and nationwide to plant more soybeans than ever this year, while corn acreage looks to hold steady.

Purdue University agronomist and self-named “corn guy” Bob Nielsen says corn prices are still lackluster, with plenty in storage, and that’s driven soybean prices up.

Egg producers are scrambling to keep up with rising corporate demand for cage-free eggs.

For Indiana-based Rose Acre Farms, the nation’s second-biggest egg producer, that means building three huge, new, high-efficiency cage-free houses in Pulaski County – capable of churning out a million eggs a day.

Going cage-free is not as simple as setting chickens loose, or taking cages out of a conventional chicken house. It can cost up to $50 a bird, and construction can take months.

Purdue University researchers are releasing new findings about how Indiana counties regulate big livestock farms, in hopes of determining what rules work best to help farmers get along with their neighbors.

Paul Ebner’s team at Purdue has spent years mapping out the wide range of zoning rules counties use to regulate confined animal feeding operations – known as CFOs – and their bigger, more concentrated counterparts, called CAFOs.

U.S. Sen. Joe Donnelly (D-Ind.) will introduce a bill in Congress later this month to punish companies for outsourcing American jobs, using federal contracts and tax breaks as leverage.

At a press conference in Indianapolis Friday, Donnelly spoke alongside workers from companies moving production from Indiana to Mexico, including Rexnord and Carrier.

Lita Freeman is one of 700 employees who will be laid off at Carrier’s factory in Huntington.

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