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Organized retail crime hits record

November 30, 2018 --

By National Retail Federation

Organized retail crime is continuing to grow, with nearly three-quarters of retailers surveyed reporting an increase in the past year, according to the 14th annual ORC study released today by the National Retail Federation.

“These criminals find new ways to expand their networks and manipulate the retail supply chain every day.”
NRF Vice President of Loss Prevention Bob Moraca.

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Workers last 4 years on average

November 29, 2018 --

By Oregon Employment Department,

How long do workers stay in a given job? Nationally, the average employee tenure in January 2018 was 4.2 years. Data to address this question isn’t available for Oregon, but every two years the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics publishes this information for the nation, which results from supplemental questions in the Current Population Survey.

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Strike Two: Portland baseball plan

November 28, 2018 --

By Oregon Small Business Association,

A group trying to bring Major League Baseball to Portland rescinded its offer to buy the Portland Public Schools headquarters site near the Moda Center but promised an announcement soon about other potential sites for a ballpark.

Portland Diamond Project, a baseball group of investors seeking to build a ballpark and bring baseball to the city, lost a very important  bidding war for 22.5 acres in industrial Northwest Portland in June, when the ESCO property sold for $33 million to a group of Portland developer, according to KGW. Other property publicly reported as potential sites include the Port of Portland’s Terminal 2 along the Willamette River and the Zidell family’s south waterfront site known as Zidell Yards.

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OSU helped in Mars landing

November 27, 2018 --

By Oregon State University Press Release,

After two years of delays because of problems with a seismometer instrument, NASA’s InSight Mission apparently has successfully landed on Mars today to explore the deep interior of the planet, about which scientists know little.

Oregon State University atmospheric scientists assisted with the planning for the two-year Insight mission, which will dovetail into a larger and more complex mission in 2020, when NASA launches another craft that will explore the Red Planet looking for signs of life.

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State economic index in slow downward edge

November 26, 2018 --

Timothy A. Duy
Director, Oregon Economic Forum
Department of Economics, University of Oregon

The Oregon Measure of Economic Activity fell to 0.63 in September from an upwardly revised July reading of 0.70. Highlights of this month’s report include:

Building permits continued to decline on the back of softer construction of multifamily units; stagnant to falling rents, particularly in the Portland region, combined with higher interest rates and construction costs to slow activity.
The household sector continues to make a positive contribution, supported by a strong labor market and high levels of consumer confidence.

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Oregon beer bottle design wins national award

November 23, 2018 --

By Oregon Brewers Guild

On October 9, an innovative refillable bottle being used by Oregon craft beverage makers took top honors in the sustainability category at the Glass Packaging Institute’s (GPI) annual Clear Choice Awards. The new BottleDrop Refill bottle is by far the most environmentally sustainable option available for beverage packaging.

“Many consumers today are interested in environmentally sustainable products,” said Joel Schoening, a spokesperson for the Oregon Beverage Recycling Cooperative, which manages the refillable bottle program.

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Economy is slowing, not shrinking


by Peter Jones, CFA
Vice President of Research
Ferguson Wellman Capitol Management, Oregon

As the U.S. expansion draws closer to becoming the longest on record, a number of economic and political risks have emerged or intensified in recent months, leading to global equity market weakness. This has investors, economists and pundits considering when we will endure the next U.S. recession. While we are not dismissing these risks and believe economic growth will be slower domestically in 2019, we continue to see a solid U.S. growth outlook with minimal recession risk in the near term.

Lately international economies have slowed more than expected, especially in China. At the same time, the U.S. Federal Reserve continues to raise interest rates at a slow, but steady pace. Prior business cycles have always ended with the Fed on a tightening path.

On the political front, trade friction and tariffs between the U.S. and China continue to dominate the headlines, creating a significant amount of uncertainty for multinational corporations. Further, Brexit is top-of-mind for global investors and, with little progress being made, the chances of a “no-deal” Brexit is rising. Lastly, the Italian budget plan looks to put the nation into a dangerous fiscal position.

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Wyden: Private prisons problems

November 22, 2018 --

U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden, Release,

U.S. Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley asked the country’s two largest private immigration detention contractors for information about their compliance with federal immigration detention standards.

The letters from Wyden, Merkley and nine other senators to contractors GEO Group and CoreCivic follows a troubling report by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Office of the Inspector General (OIG) about unsafe conditions and mistreatment of immigrants at a number of privately-run immigration detention centers.

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Treasurer using state pensions to advance gun principles

November 20, 2018 --

By Jim Miller,
Oregon writer

This week Oregon State Treasurer Tobias Read announced that his office is joining a coalition of investors and money managers to help advance a 5-point plan for gun manufacturers and firearm related companies. The coalition controls over $4.8 trillion in managed funds.  With billions in Oregon pension investments, the Oregon State Treasurer wields great clout in how and which companies the State will invest in.

Here are the 5-point principles that the coalition advocating as listed by Firearms Principles.

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Economic growth set to slow


By Josh Lerner
Oregon Office of Economic Analysis

Current economic growth remains strong. Nearly all leading indicators are flashing green, signaling solid gains in the near-term. However, the economy is set to slow moving forward for a number of reasons. First, growth must slow to a more sustainable rate. As the U.S. and Oregon reach full employment, supply side constraints will work to slow growth. These include a tight labor market, infrastructure, higher energy costs, capacity utilization and the like. Such hurdles to growth do not prevent firms from expanding and propelling the economy, but they do require time, plans, and money to overcome. The low-hanging fruit of growth is gone in a mature expansion.

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