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Minnesota Unemployment Remains Steady at 4.3% in August
Minnesota unemployment remained at 4.5% in July. Minnesota employers added 6,100 jobs in August. Nine sectors posted job gains: Professional/Business Services (2,500), Construction (2,500), Manufacturing (800), Information (400), Government (400), Mining/Logging (300), Other Services (300), Trade/Transportation/Utilities (200), and Educational/Health Services (100). Financial Activities (-800), and Leisure/Hospitality (-600), posted job losses in August. Minnesota added 56,311 jobs over the past year, which puts Minnesota's growth at 2 percent during that time. This exceeds the U.S. growth of 1.8 percent over the past year. Minnesota's labor participation rate dropped again to 69.8 percent. Click here for more August jobs information.
U.S. Unemployment Rate at 6.1% for August
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics the U.S. seasonally adjusted unemployment rate dropped back down to 6.1 percent for August. Nonfarm payroll employment increased with 142,000 jobs added. Professional/Business Services (47,000), Education/Health Services (37,000), and Construction (20,000) led the way in August job gains. Retail Trade (-8,400) and Information (-3,000) experienced job losses in August. Manufacturing showed no change in August. The revised numbers show 28,000 fewer jobs were created in June (-31,000) and July (+3,000) than originally reported. For the entire BLS August report click here.
August 2014 Newsletter is Now Available
The EDA Center newsletter for August 2014 is now available. Click here for the pdf or here to go to the newsletter archive.
NEW REPORT AVAILABLE: Economic Emergency Program: St. Cloud Printing Plant Closure
On May 30 2014, Quad/Graphics announced the completion of its acquisition of Brown Printing Company. As part of integration plans following the acquisition, the company later announced the closure of the Quad/Graphics printing plant in St. Cloud, Minnesota. The plant currently has 280 employees who will be affected once the closure is completed as planned in late August of this year. St. Cloud area decision-makers will need timely information regarding the potential economic impact of the closure. In response, University of Minnesota Extension and the St. Cloud State University School of Public Affairs Research Institute have prepared this economic emergency report. This report is presented with support from the EDA Center at the University of Minnesota Crookston. Click here for the final report.
MMB Office Releases July Economic Update
The July Economic Update shows an overall increase in the general fund receipts. The general fund sits at $19.258 billion for FY 2014, which is $168 million above projections in the February Forecast (a 0.9% improvement). Income, sales, and corporate taxes account for $161 million of the surplus. The largest increase in revenues came from individual income taxes ($181 million). Final 2013 income tax return payments were $71 million more than forecast while income tax refunds were $93 million less than projected. General sales tax receipts were $34 million more than forecast. Conversely, corporate franchise tax receipts were $53 million short of February projections. Revenues for the final quarter of FY 2014 were $235 million more than forecast. While the general fund shows improvements, the Minnesota Management and Budget Office expects slower economic growth than previously estimated in February. IHS Economics (IHS) projected a 2.7 percent real GDP growth in 2014 and 3.3 percent in 2015 in the February Forecast. IHS now expects only a 1.7 percent growth in 2014. This would be the weakest growth in any year since the end of the recession. IHS expects growth in 2015 to average 3 percent, which is down from their original projection in February (3.3%). IHS also expects growth to be down slightly in 2016 to 3.3 percent (compared to 3.4 percent in February). The expectation is growth in 2017 will be at 3.1 percent (as it was projected in February). For the July Update at-a-glance, please click here.
Minnesota Exports Totaled $5 Billion in Q1 of 2014
The Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED) reported a 2 percent increase in exports between the 1st quarter of 2013 and the 1st quarter of 2014. This is less than the 2.6 percent growth in the U.S. during the same time period. Total exports for the 1st quarter of 2014 reached $5 billion. Five of the top ten countries receiving exports from Minnesota grew in the 1st quarter. The top ten countries include: Canada ($1.234 billion, -12%), China ($523 million, -2%), Mexico ($433 million, 49%), Japan ($319 million, 23%), Belgium ($250 million, 41%), Germany ($215 million, 24%), South Korea ($163 million, -4%), Australia ($139 million, 24%), United Kingdom ($136 million, -4%), and Philippines ($132 million, -5%). Exports to all other countries totaled $1.474 billion and decreased 2 percent. For the entire report, please click here.
We have two new reports available in the publications section of the website. One report highlights an economic futures workshop conducted by U of M Extension Educators supported by The EDA Center at the University of Minnesota Crookston. To learn more about the county’s current economic situation and to explore opportunities for economic development, these leaders from Mille Lacs County particpated in the University of Minnesota’s Economic Futures Workshop on Thursday, March 20, 2014, in Onamia, Minnesota. For a copy of this report, please click here. A second report is a result of a request from the Northern Aero Alliance for "a comprehensive analysis of the current status of the aerospace industry in the region, its economic impact, and its potential for the future". This analysis was conducted by the U of M Extension with the support of The EDA Center at the University of Minnesota Crookston. For a copy of this report, please click here.
2014 Economic Development Assistance Programs FFO Announced
On November 25th, the U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) has posted the FY 2014 Economic Development Assistance Programs Federal Funding Opportunity on The purpose of this FFO is to "support construction, non-construction, technical assistance, and revolving loan fund projects" as part of the EDA's Public Works and Economic Adjustment Assistance programs. "Grants made under these programs will leverage regional assets to support the implementation of regional economic development strategies designed to create jobs, leverage private capital, encourage economic development, and strengthen America's ability to compete in the global marketplace." Applicants from both rural and urban areas are welcome to apply. The deadlines for the next four funding cycles are:
  • December 13, 2013 for FY 2014 funding cycle 2
  • March 13, 2014 for FY 2014 funding cycle 3
  • June 13, 2014 for FY 2014 funding cycle 4
  • October 17, 2014 for FY 2015 funding cycle 1

This document was prepared by the University of Minnesota, Crookston under award number 06-66-05709 from the Economic Development Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce. The statements, findings, conclusions, and recommendations are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Economic Development Administration or the U.S. Department of Commerce.

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