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|Wednesday, February 01, 2006|
Strong housing markets deserve much of the credit for the recent strength of the Paciﬁc Northwest economy. But don’t overlook the importance of growing international trade. New state-level data on 2005 merchandise exports show the Paciﬁc Northwest on pace to break by a wide margin 1999’s record of $52.4 billion in exports.
Washington exports are turning around due to resurgent production at Boeing. Aircraft, because of their high value, tend to overshadow other Washington exports. Aircraft accounted for two-thirds of Washington’s 2002 exports, 58% of 2003’s total and 51% of 2004’s.
After aircraft, Washington’s big export categories include (among others) cereals, electrical and industrial machinery, wood exports grew at a strong 22% in 2003 and 17% in 2004. Japan, Canada, China, Taiwan and Korea were Washington’s leading 2004 export destinations.
After a red-hot 2004 (exports were up 39%), Idaho’s export growth slowed in 2005. The top three categories of Idaho exports in 2004 all were related to high tech: digital integrated circuits — think Micron Technology memory chips — plus computer parts and other integrated circuits. The United Kingdom was Idaho's top 2004 customer, followed by Canada, Singapore, Taiwan and Japan.
Oregon had the slowest export growth in the ﬁrst three quarters of 2005. Computer logic chips made by Intel factories in Oregon are among the state’s leading exports. Oregon high-tech exports have yet to recover fully to the peak reached in 2000, the year of the dotcom bubble burst. Top destinations for Oregon exports in 2004 were, in order, Canada, Japan, Korea, China and the Philippines.
In another aspect of international trade, traﬃc continues to rise at the West Coast’s principal container ports. Through October, the Port of Seattle handed 1.12 million 20-foot equivalent containter units (or TEUs), up 29% from the corresponding 2004 stretch. At the Port of Tacoma, TEU traﬃc was up 17%.
— Excerpted from Marple’s Paciﬁc Northwest Letter, editor Michael Parks. For information on this biweekly report on Northwest economic trends, visit www.marples.com.
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Yesterday, a divided National Labor Relations Board dropped another hammer on the employer community. In a long-awaited and much debated move, the Board jettisoned the decades old standard for determining when two independent businesses should be considered joint employers of an individual worker for collective bargaining purposes.
Transforming the culture of Oregon’s educational leadership.
The Board dismissed a petition related to efforts to unionize the Northwestern University football team.
Oregon Sick Leave is here, and changes to the federal white-collar worker regulations are on the way. This workshop will prepare you for both. We invite you to participate in an interactive discussion on how to start planning now for the future impact on your operations and finances.
Presented by OEN + CENTRL + YESpdx.
This Roundtable will cover numerous issues under the employer "shared responsibility" rules of the Affordable Care Act, including how to track the "full-time" status of variable-hour employees, temporary or seasonal employees, and employees who experience a change in status or a break in service. Additionally, we will provide a brief overview of Code sections 6055 and 6056, which require most mid-sized and large employers to submit their first information reports to the IRS in early 2016 regarding the health insurance coverage being offered to employees. We invite you to participate in an interactive discussion on how to prepare for the future impact of the shared responsibility rules on your operations and finances.