Business

Louisiana and Metro Baton Rouge business news.

Part of a series about small businesses in America

When it comes to job creation, politicians talk about small businesses as the engines of the U.S. economy. It's been a familiar refrain among politicians from both major parties for years.

But it obscures the economic reality. It makes a nice slogan, but it's not really accurate to say that small businesses produce most of the nation's new jobs, says John Haltiwanger, an economics professor at the University of Maryland.

The number of people who leave their countries to work abroad is soaring, according to the United Nations. More than 200 million people now live outside their country of origin, up from 150 million a decade ago.

And migration isn't just from poor countries to rich countries anymore. There also is significant migration from rich country to rich country — and even from poor country to poor.

Beginning Thursday, the U.N. will hold a high-level meeting on the subject in New York.

Moving For Work

Rick Perry wants your business.

The Republican governor has been turning up in other states, touting the wonders of Texas and promising business owners they'll find lower taxes and more manageable regulation there.

"It does help get the word out to business leaders that may be frustrated," says David Carney, a longtime consultant to Perry. "Going in person can get literally hundreds of thousands of dollars of free media coverage."

First in a series about small businesses in America.

Small businesses are celebrated and exalted as the hard-working, most deserving members of the political economy. They get tax breaks, and they're touted as the engines of job creation.

But a basic question: What is a small business? It turns out there is no one definition.

Classifications Of Small

Brookings Institution

In his 2010 State of the Union Address, President Obama launched the National Export Initiative. As the country was emerging from the Great Recession, the President said he wanted the U.S. to double exports by 2014.

Only four of the top 100 metro areas in the country are on track to meet that goal. Baton Rouge is one. New Orleans is another. That's according to the Brookings Institution's latest "Export Nation" report, which was released earlier this week.

If you are trying to buy a home, you just got good news: The Federal Reserve said Wednesday it is not going to try to drive up long-term interest rates just yet.

Stock investors are happy for you. They like cheap mortgages too because a robust housing market creates jobs. To celebrate, they bought more shares, sending the Dow Jones industrial average up 147.21 to an all-time high of 15,676.94.

Louisiana Budget Project

A recent study by the Louisiana Budget Project gives a snapshot of the state’s economy from the perspective of the workers themselves.

A report released Thursday by the Louisiana Budget Project says although worker productivity in the state is at an all-time high, wages remain stagnant and unemployment is on the rise.

It’s been eight years this month since Hurricane Katrina. The Greater New Orleans Community Data Center has been measuring data to see how far the recovery has come, and where the city is heading.

LA Swift got its start after Hurricane Katrina, shuttling evacuees and recovery workers between the Crescent and Capitol cities.

Ridership spiked after the storm, dropped off, and is now steadily growing. But the riders are commuters, using the bus to get to work.

The bus ran out of funding in June, but the service provider agreed to keep rolling another month. Long-time rider MiLisa York, who’s started a petition to keep the bus going long-term.

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