Economy & Business news

In theory, closing off China’s soybean market due to the trade dispute with the U.S. on top of generally low prices for the commodity should affect all industry players, big to small. Agriculture economist Pat Westhoff begged to differ.

submitted / Quad Cities Chamber of Commerce

Local businesses are not happy with Illinois lawmakers who may increase the minimum wage. The Quad Cities Chamber of Commerce has joined other groups in the state that oppose raising the minimum wage to $15/hour, over four to six years.

Unemployment rose in the Quad Cities last month, but that's mostly a good sign. The rate rose from 4.1 per cent in December of last year, to 4.5 per cent last month.

submitted / Arconic

Arconic is not for sale anymore. The company made the announcement in a press release this morning.

Arconic says it was considering a sale over the past year but didn't receive any offers that were in the best interest of shareholders. 

The board of directors and managers were in the process of reviewing the company's strategy and finances.

It also says the sale of one part of Arconic will proceed. That's the Building and Construction Systems business. 

Quad City Airport

2018 could be called a "comeback year" for the Quad City Airport. Thanks in part to a strong December, passenger traffic rose 6 per cent after several years of declines.

John Deere

Despite a lot of uncertainty and a weak farm economy, 2018 was a good year for sales of farm equipment. Figures from the Association of Equipment Manufacturers show tractor sales in the US rose 7 per cent, and combine sales jumped 18 per cent, compared to the previous year. 

Financial help is now available for some federal workers not being paid during the partial government shutdown. For its members, the I-H Mississippi Valley Credit Union is offering to loan them up to 5,000 dollars for one year, with a 2 per cent interest rate, to make up for lost wages, and borrowers can miss one monthly payment at no charge, excluding mortgages.

Enhance Iowa Board

The owners of TBK Bank Sports Complex are the first to benefit from a new tax incentive. Three years ago, the Iowa legislature enacted a Baseball and Softball Complex Sales Tax Rebate. Developers of the sports complex near I-80 in Bettendorf applied for the benefits. And in October, 2017, the Enhance Iowa Board approved it.

submitted / TBK Bank Sports Complex

After less than a year, a big economic development project in Bettendorf is thriving and will create even more jobs.

Last April, the owners of TBK Bank Sports Complex opened near Middle Road and I-80. This winter, it employs about 140 people, but in the summer that'll increase by 30 to 40. /

People who raise money for nonprofits and foundations are facing new challenges.

Michelle O'Neill reports one expert says a new, federal tax law is a big cause for concern.

Stacy Palmer, Editor of the Chronicle of Philanthropy, says overall, charitable contributions have been increasing, from low income earners and those on the high end. But middle income earners are the group that's giving less.