WXXI AM News

Economy

“Cosby Show” actor Geoffrey Owens is speaking out about recent criticism regarding his job as a cashier at a grocery store. Owens was working at Trader Joe’s in New Jersey when a woman’s photos of him went viral. Owens said he felt like some people were job shaming him, but stressed that there’s “no job that’s better than another.”

This hour, we discuss the issue of job shaming with local people who feel they have been criticized for their work. We also discuss the state of the entry level workforce in our area and opportunities to grow within companies. Our guests:

What if the most common narrative about millennials turned out to be untrue? According to the latest data, that seems to be the case. We're talking about how often younger workers change jobs. The oft-heard assumption is that millennial workers have to be ready for many career changes, due to an unstable economy. Another is that millennials want to change jobs often to allow themselves to refresh and refocus. But Lyman Stone's piece for Vox deconstructs those ideas, and offers a warning for what it means.

Our guests:

NYS Labor Department officials say that newly revised data shows that New York State’s economic expansion continued last year, with the annual private sector job count exceeding eight million for the first time.

But the figures also show a small increase in jobs for the Rochester Metro.  In 2017, the number of private sector jobs totaled 455,400. That was up just 900 jobs from the previous year.

Still, State Labor Analyst Tammy Marino says that was coming off two very good years for the local job market.

A new report on economic growth around the U.S. shows a mixed picture for the Greater Rochester area.

The Metro Monitor report is done annually by the Washington-based think-tank, the Brookings Institution.  This latest report actually covers a one-year period from 2015 to 2016.  It shows growth in the U.S. economy overall, with most of the larger metro areas showing an increase in jobs and other expansion in their local economies.

The latest unemployment numbers show a rise in joblessness for the Rochester area in December. The unemployment rate stood at 5.0 percent, up from 4.7 percent in December of 2016.  The rate for November 2017 was 5.1 percent.

But NYS Labor analyst Tammy Marino says that 5.0 percent rate is still pretty close to the historical average for the month.

She does say that overall, it has appeared in recent months that the local job market is softening a bit.

pbs.org

The latest monthly unemployment numbers from New York State show that the Rochester area unemployment figures jumped a bit compared to a year ago.

The unemployment rate for the Rochester Metro was 5.1 percent in November, up from 4.5 percent a year ago.

State Labor Analyst Tammy Marino says that rate is about in line with what we usually see this time of year.

Office of NY Gov. Cuomo

(WXXI News & AP) Communities in New York state are splitting $755 million in state economic development funding.

State officials announced the awards Wednesday at an event in Albany. The money will support hundreds of local economic development efforts, including job training, subsidies for expanding businesses and funding for community organizations.

This year's big winners include central New York, the Mohawk Valley, the Albany region, the mid-Hudson Valley and Long Island, which each received more than $80 million.

Adam Serwer, correspondent forThe Atlantic Monthly, joins us to discuss his recent piece titled "The Nationalist's Delusion." The piece has been hotly debated since its publication, and many prominent writers of color call it a landmark in analyzing America's history with white nationalism.

EastmanKodak is looking at layoffs and taking other steps following the release of its 3rd quarter earnings report on Wednesday.

Kodak is reporting a $46 million loss and sales were down about 8 percent from a year ago.

Some of the results were impacted by the company exiting a certain product line.

Kodak CEO Jeff Clarke said in the quarterly release that an overall print market slowdown and rising aluminum costs have impacted the company’s commercial print business.

npr.org

A new report from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York has found that while the upstate economy fared pretty well during the last business cycle, the economy in Western New York is not as robust.

New York Federal Reserve senior economist Richard Deitz says while a lot of the jobs lost during the recession in Upstate New York have come back, there is still weakness, mainly in Rochester and Buffalo.

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