Business News: Pillars of GF… work and Lucky Charms

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The number of people seeking unemployment benefits rose last week but remained at a historically low level, reflecting a strong U.S. job market with almost high job openings and few layoffs. Unemployment claims rose from 18,000 to 185,000, the Department of Labor said, as it almost hit its lowest level since 1968 last week.

The seasonally unregulated unemployment rate in March in North Dakota was 3.3 percent. The unemployment rate rose by 0.2 percentage points between February and March. Between February and March unemployment rose by 645, an increase of 5.1 percent. North Dakota usually sees a slight drop in its unemployment rate between February and March.

Minnesota gained 11,500 jobs, up 0.4% in the last month on a seasonally adjusted basis after adding 13,000 jobs in February 2022. The Minnesota labor force participation rate rose from 67.9% to 68, 1% and the unemployment rate fell by two tenths of a point to 2.5% in March from 2.7% in February 2022.

Retail sales increased modestly in March, but higher prices for food, gasoline and other basic products took up a large portion of the consumer portfolio. Retail sales rose 0.5% after recording a revised 0.8% increase from January to February. Expenditures are driven by salary gains, strong employment and more money in bank accounts. The January increase of 4.9% was the biggest spending jump since March 2021, when American households received a final federal stimulus check of $ 1,400.

Amazon says it will add a 5% “fuel and inflation surcharge” to the fees charged to third-party retailers using retailer compliance services. The move comes as the e-commerce giant faces rising costs. Seattle-based Amazon says the increased tariffs will take effect April 28 and may change.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is investigating Lucky Charms cereals after dozens of consumers complained of illness after eating it. The FDA said Saturday it has received more than 100 complaints about Lucky Charms so far this year. Several hundred people have also posted on a food safety website, iwaspoisoned.com, complaining of nausea, diarrhea and vomiting after eating Lucky Charms. General Mills Inc., the Minneapolis-based company that makes Lucky Charms and other cereals, said it was taking those reports seriously. But the company said its investigation has found no evidence of consumer disease in relation to Lucky Charms. (AP photo)

Delta Air Lines lost $ 940 million in the first quarter, but bookings rose in recent weeks, creating a new summer as Americans try to leave the pandemic behind. And while revenue for the quarter was surprisingly strong, the Atlanta airline is facing strong winds, including a sharp rise in fuel and labor costs.

Toyota is recalling about 460,000 vehicles in the US to fix a problem with software that could inadvertently disable the electronic stability control system. The vehicle manufacturer says that when vehicles are restarted, the software in rare cases may not automatically switch the system to “on” mode. This may disable the system. The tow covers the 2020 to 2022 models including the Venza, Mirai, RAV4 Hybrid, RAV4 Prime, Sienna Hybrid and Toyota Highlander Hybrid.

The City of Grand Forks is poised to place four additional light poles on large forks downtown at a cost of $ 44,000 each. The pillars will be part of the North Road 4 reconstruction project planned for this summer. A total of 18 lanes already lie on DeMers and 3rd North Road. Badman Design was chosen to design, fabricate and install decorative lights.

Grand Forks will pay $ 210,000 to move a 16-inch water pipe that runs counter to the Beacon project site plan. Beacon is a mixed-use residential building with three buildings, 7 floors, near the city center with a public square function. City officials say the line is 55 years old and the foundation of the building would complicate future repairs. The developer has offered a contribution of $ 15,000. Final approval of the agreement is expected this week.

Altru has been recertified as a Phase 7 HIMSS (Society of Management Systems and Information Systems Society) facility for both its inpatient and outpatient facilities. He recognizes the integration of technology in healthcare; namely, how the use of electronic medical records (EMR) leads to the development of a higher quality of care.

Minnesota State Veterinarian and Executive Director of the Animal Health Board Dr. Beth Thompson is resigning from her position in power on May 8th. She accepted the position of state veterinarian in her home state of South Dakota. The current Assistant Director, Dr. Linda Glaser will begin serving as Interim State Veterinarian on May 9, 2022.

MnDOT and the City of Crookston are conducting a corridor study to assess existing conditions and possible improvements that can be made in the downtown area. The study will examine the future transportation and mobility needs of Highway 2 to create a corridor for people walking, cycling, and driving that is safe, accessible, and convenient. An open house will be held on April 28th.

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