Powell says Fed will aid economy, but Trump escalates attack

WASHINGTON — Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell signaled Friday that the Fed stands ready to cut interest rates further if the economy needs it but wasn’t clear about when or by how much. Powell had barely finished speaking to central bankers in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, before President Donald Trump escalated his attacks on the Fed, […]

US adds solid 224,000 jobs; Fed rate cut may be less certain

WASHINGTON — U.S. employers sharply stepped up their hiring in June, adding a robust 224,000 jobs, an indication of the economy’s durability after more than a decade of expansion. The strength of the jobs report the government issued Friday could complicate a decision for the Federal Reserve late this month on whether to cut interest […]

US and Mexico: More talks, no deal yet to avert tariffs

WASHINGTON — Ending a second day of tense negotiations, U.S. and Mexican officials failed Thursday to reach a deal to avert import tariffs that President Donald Trump is threatening to impose as he tries to strong-arm Mexico into stemming the flow of Central American migrants across America’s southern border. Vice President Mike Pence, monitoring the […]

Commentary: Mixed signals on Delaware’s employment projections

There seems to be a disconnect between the employment projections of the Delaware Department of Labor (DOL) and Delaware Economic and Financial Advisory Council (DEFAC). The latest DEFAC revenue projections (April, 2019) assume an annual growth rate in total Delaware employment of 1.2%. Simultaneously, the Delaware DOL’s estimated total employment growth rate for two years […]

US economy grew at strong 3.2% rate in first quarter

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WASHINGTON — The U.S. economy grew at a solid 3.2% annual rate in the first three months of the year, a far better outcome than expected, overcoming a host of headwinds including global weakness, rising trade tensions and a partial government shutdown The advance in the gross domestic product, the broadest measure of economic health, […]

State auditor laments staffing shortage, lack of audits in first 100 days report

DOVER — How does Delaware’s new state auditor define “eroded?” Let Kathleen “Kathy” McGuiness count the ways. “ … a 50-percent staff vacancy rate and a number of pending audits and reports,” she said Thursday morning during a 15-minute presentation detailing her first 100 days in office and the plans ahead to remedy the supposed […]

Prices rise as the minimum wage increases in several states

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. — At Granny Shaffer’s restaurant in Joplin, Missouri, owner Mike Wiggins is reprinting the menus to reflect the 5, 10 or 20 cents added to each item. A two-egg breakfast will cost an extra dime, at $7.39. The price of a three-piece fried chicken dinner will go up 20 cents, to $8.78. […]

GUEST COMMENTARY: The IMF has good reason to fear cryptocurrency

The International Monetary Fund refers to cryptocurrency only once in its 215-page World Economic Outlook for October 2018, but that reference is telling: “Continued rapid growth of crypto assets could create new vulnerabilities in the international financial system.” Ironically and counter-intuitively — but in my opinion not accidentally — that sentence is grouped in a […]

Delaware among least ‘free’ states, study says

WASHINGTON — Delaware is among the least “free” states in the country says a recent study published by the Cato Institute, a libertarian think-tank. The 2018 edition of Freedom in the 50 States — authored by William Ruger and Jason Sorens — ranked Delaware in 43rd place. Florida took the top spot, and New York […]

COMMENTARY: Who benefits from ‘booming economy’?

Although the U.S. mass media are awash with stories about America’s “booming economy,” the benefits are distributed very unequally, when they are distributed at all. Buoyed by soaring corporate profits and stock prices, the richest Americans have reached new and dazzling heights of prosperity. As of May 2018, the growing crop of billionaires included corporate […]