Weekly News from COBRT - February 5, 2019
February 5, 2019
In a year with a busy legislative agenda and a collection of "must pass" bills, the U.S. Export-Import Bank can't be overlooked. Its charter will lapse at the end of September. Congress must begin work soon to reauthorize the bank, and the Senate must confirm a quorum for its board so that it can function properly as an engine of exports and job creation. Ex-Im was a contentious issue in 2015, when it was last up for re-authorization. However, after a long debate, its charter was reauthorized with two-thirds majorities in both chambers of Congress voting in favor. 

The Bureau of Labor Statistics released its first monthly Employment Situation Report of 2019, showing that the United States economy is continuing its historic streak of positive job gains in the new year. Total nonfarm payroll employment rose by 304,000 jobs in January, far surpassing market expectations and above the prior 12 month average gain. January 2019 marks the 100th straight month of positive job growth and the 16th consecutive month of employment growth of at least 100,000 new jobs. Job gains in December were revised down by 90,000 and November jobs were revised up by 20,000 for a cumulative loss to total employment of 70,000 jobs in the previous months. Nevertheless, despite these downward revisions, the 223,000 average monthly jobs created in 2018 remains well above the pace of monthly job creation in 2016 and 2017. 

Packing giant Ball Corp. took a $321 million hit in 2018 from U.S. tax law changes and consolidation charges, but still the Broomfield company's annual profit jumped 21 percent and its aerospace division is growing by hundreds of jobs. Ball Corp. reported earnings of $454 million, or $1.29 per share, on worldwide sales of $11.6 billion in 2018, according to financial results issued Thursday. That's 5 percent revenue growth compared to the year before. 

Please join Colorado Business Roundtable for the State of Higher Education Forum on April 11th, 2019 from 11:30 AM to 1:30 PM at History Colorado.

Join us as we hear from leaders in the higher education industry discuss their successful business partnerships, changes that need to happen in order to be more nimble and agile, how higher education is meeting the needs of the industry, and what is the value proposition for students. 

Colorado has a booming economy, a talented workforce and evenly distributed economic growth. The caution: Elected officials from both sides of the aisle and business leaders will need to work together to address funding gaps and smarter fiscal policy if the good fortune is to continue. During joint presentations January 18 at CU South in Parker, Henry Sobanet and J.J. Ament relayed that message, articulating challenges in Colorado's economy and encouraging increased involvement with policymakers at the Capitol to an audience of more than 400 business leaders and elected officials from across the Denver metro area. 

Sales rose last year at Lockheed Martin Space, and the Colorado-based business contribution to Lockheed Martin Corp's overall profits grew, too. The space division of the Bethesda, Maryland-based aerospace and defense giant reported $9.8 billion in 2018 revenue, up 2 percent from the $9.6 billion Lockheed Martin Space reported for 2017. Lockheed Martin Space notched $1.05 billion operating profit for 2018, part of $7.3 billion operating profit that Lockheed Martin recorded across all of its businesses building military fighter jets, missiles, ships and helicopters, as well as space technologies. 

Business Roundtable on Wednesday praised introduction of the Bicameral Congressional Trade Authority Act for reasserting Congress' constitutional authority to decide when to raise tariffs for national security reasons. In a statement, Business Roundtable criticized unilateral Section 232 tariffs that invite retaliatory tariffs on U.S. exports, harming the economy and competitiveness.

After three years of fighting state efforts to bar employees from asking about criminal histories on job applications, leaders of major Colorado business groups gave up their opposition to the latest proposal on Tuesday, smoothing the way for a legislative committee to give bipartisan approval to the newest version of the "ban the box" bill. 

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Stream or Download These Recent Episodes

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