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The Journal Gazette

Tuesday, March 13, 2018 1:00 am


Jobless rate still sliding in Indiana

News services

INDIANAPOLIS – Indiana's unemployment rate slipped to 3.3 percent in January, continuing a decline in the state that was seen starting in November.

The Indiana Department of Workforce Development said Monday the state's unemployment rate decreased one-tenth of a percentage point from the December rate. The state's unemployment rate remained below the national rate of 4.1 percent.

Outside of October 2014, when it was equal to the national rate, the state's unemployment rate has been below the U.S. rate more than four years.

Indiana's labor force had a net decrease of nearly 7,300 over the previous month, which was a result of about 4,100 unemployed residents no longer seeking employment and a nearly 3,200 decrease in residents employed. Indiana's total labor force is 3.3 million.

Ohio closing in on petrochemical plant

Gov. John Kasich said Monday a major South Korean industrial plant builder has joined an effort to build a multibillion-dollar petrochemical plant in eastern Ohio to take advantage of the region's oil and gas boom.

Kasich, a Republican, called the partnership between Seoul-based Daelim Industrial and Thailand's PTT Global Chemical a “game changer” for the proposed plant, which has idled in the planning stages for years.

The U.S. subsidiary of PTT has worked for several years with officials from JobsOhio, Ohio's privatized economic development office, on a proposal to build the plant on the site of a former FirstEnergy coal-fired power plant along the Ohio River in Belmont County.

Report surfaces of Sprint merger

Sprint may be weighing merger moves again, according to an unconfirmed report of interest in cable company Charter Communications.

A report in the British paper the Times said Sprint's parent company, Tokyo-based SoftBank Group Corp., had bought nearly 5 percent of Charter. Charter owns Time Warner Cable, now rebranded as Spectrum.

Buying 5 percent of Charter would trigger a disclosure through the Securities and Exchange Commission, but no report is required for an accumulated stake of less than that.

“The covert stake-building by the Japanese conglomerate raises the possibility of a media mega-deal,” the Times report said, noting SoftBank had talked with Charter last year about merging.

Charter had publicly rebuffed that overture. Sprint CEO Marcelo Claure then said Sprint was never offered for sale. Sprint then engaged in semi-public merger talks with rival T-Mobile but ended those efforts last fall.

Bank CEO pay dwarfs median employee's

Bank of America CEO Brian Moynihan's 2017 compensation was 250 times more than the pay of the bank's median employee, according to the company's annual proxy filing Monday.

Public companies such as Charlotte-based Bank of America for the first time are disclosing the ratio of their CEO's pay to the median employee. The requirement, stemming from the 2010 Dodd-Frank Act, aims to give investors more information about executive pay practices at these companies.

Moynihan, CEO since 2010, received total compensation of $21.8 million in 2017, which includes stock awards and health insurance benefits. That compared with $87,115 for the median employee, according to the filing.