economy

Michigan spent the 20th century making itself the center of the auto industry.But it's crystal clear Silicon Valley wants that crown for the 21st century.

That warning is being sounded at the Mackinac Policy Conference this week.

Detroit News business columnist Daniel Howes says economic and business leaders on Mackinac Island this week realize that competition from Silicon Valley isn't going anywhere, and will force business leaders in Michigan to move quicker when it comes to participating in the evolving mobility industry and innovation.

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For centuries, people who need some fast cash have turned to pawn shops: "pawning" some personal treasure for a cash loan.

Today there is a modern way to pawn an item. Instead of driving from shop to shop, you can turn to a Michigan-based startup called PawnGuru and do your dealing online.

When we think of Michigan’s contribution to the war effort during the Second World War, most think of the Arsenal of Democracy, of Rosie the Riveters helping build thousands and thousands of B-24 Liberator bombers at Willow Run.

But the U.S. war effort also depended mightily on the Soo Locks, to the point where it feared a Nazi attack on the locks.

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So, you've got a small business. You've been selling your product at farmer's markets or art fairs, or maybe online.

But it's a great big step from that to having your own brick-and-mortar store. One way to help bridge that gap is happening in Midtown Detroit: the Cass Collective.

It's a new collaborative retail space where businesses rotate in and out so a budding entrepreneur can put a cautious toe in the water without a big commitment. The Cass Collective is a joint project of Midtown Detroit Inc. and TechTown Detroit.

Michigan is not the only place where car manufacturers have left to find cheaper labor and materials elsewhere. By the end of this year, not a single new car will be made in Australia.

He has headed up the world's biggest office furniture company and hired Jim Harbaugh as head football coach at the University of Michigan.

Now, Jim Hackett is replacing outgoing CEO Mark Fields as the new head of Ford Motor Company.

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You can't have a successful entrepreneurial community without money. And that's exactly why venture capitalists play such a critical role in helping Michigan start-ups get up and running.

It's a double dose of good news for Fiat Chrysler.

First-quarter profits are coming in, and Fiat Chrysler net profits are up 34% over year-ago levels, including a strong showing in Europe.

Daniel Howes' column today in the Detroit News looks at some decisions by Ford Motor Company, and what they say about the future of the auto industry and Michigan.

Howes wrote about Ford’s investments in three plants, including an engine plant, and one retooling to make the returning Ford Ranger and Bronco. But he says it's what’s happening with that third investment that says a lot about what Ford is doing. 

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As goes a school, so goes the neighborhood.

 

That’s the idea behind a new project by the group Life Remodeled, said founder and CEO Chris Lambert. Life Remodeled is a non-profit organization that invests about $5 million in a Detroit neighborhood project every year. This year’s project: turn the former Durfee Elementary and Middle School into a “community innovation center.”

They used to be a shopper’s first choice.

These days, Sears and Kmart seem to be on a fast track to extinction.

The U.S. Census Bureau has released its 2016 population estimates for U.S. counties and metro areas. Michigan was, again, notable for high decline in one place: Wayne County.

Hunting Works for Michigan

Hunting boosts the Michigan economy by $2.3 million annually, according to the Michigan Department of Natural Resources. And Hunting Works for Michigan estimates 34,400 hunting jobs are created in the state.

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Michiganders might be using electricity the wrong way. A new report indicates Michigan might be able to meet projected energy shortfalls if residents change how they use power. That would save having to build new, expensive power plants.

Restaurants depend on immigrants. Nationally, nearly one in five restaurant employees are foreign born. So what could President Trump's new immigration policies mean for the workers, and ultimately for the food service industry?

Plenty of attention has been paid to the human toll of the Flint water crisis and the city's efforts to recover. But what about the business side of things and the city's effort to rebuild the economy?

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We usually think of the economy as something centered around the flow of money for goods, services, and other enterprises. But what happens in places where that traditional model breaks down - where, for a variety of reasons, there simply isn’t much cash for anything? People learn to survive without it. They create “informal economies.” And in many parts of Detroit, these informal economies are at work, filling needs however they can.

Mike Ilitch certainly left his mark on downtown Detroit, beginning with the major renovation of the Fox Theatre in 1988 and continuing to this day with the ongoing construction of Little Caesars Arena for the Red Wings and the Pistons.

There are those who found a lot to criticize in the way the Ilitch family acquired downtown property, maintained that property, and financed its arenas.

Michigan Radio's senior news analyst Jack Lessenberry joined Stateside to talk about Ilitch's legacy when it comes to the business side of his life and what he did for the city of Detroit.

In his column for the Detroit News this week, Daniel Howes analyzed an interesting proposal offered by billionaire Dan Gilbert to Wayne County officials. Gilbert wants to secure a Downtown Detroit site where an unfinished jail currently stands.

The CEOs of the Detroit Three automakers had breakfast with President Trump this morning. On the agenda today: creating jobs and reducing regulations.

It’s a “golden opportunity” for the auto industry, said Daniel Howes, Detroit News business columnist.

That’s even though Detroit automakers took a lot of heat from Trump throughout his campaign.

The holiday decorations have barely been taken down when a harsh verdict was passed on the holiday shopping season.

Macy's announced it's closing 68 stores. Here in Michigan, that means Macy's stores in Lansing, Battle Creek, Harper Woods, and Westland.

Then we learned Sears is closing 150 of its Kmart and Sears stores, with 10 of them based in Michigan, including the very first Kmart located in Garden City.

And Walmart says it's cutting hundreds of jobs by month's end. The affected workers are at its headquarters and regional personnel that support its stores, mainly in HR.

It seems like tough times for brick and mortar retailers. 

Reporters from around the world have spent the week checking out the offerings at the North American International Auto Show.

Today, suppliers got their turn. The black-tie charity preview is tomorrow night and Saturday morning, the doors at the Cobo Center open to the public.

Paul Eisenstein is the publisher of TheDetroitBureau.com and he joined Stateside to talk about the buzz surrounding this year's auto show, a major shift in the industry and the latest news about Chrysler getting in trouble with the EPA. 

There's been something besides the shiny new cars, SUVs and trucks grabbing attention this week at the North American International Auto Show.

That something is the uncertain future for the auto industry under incoming President Donald Trump.

Detroit News business columnist Daniel Howes joined Stateside to talk about some of the anxiety that exists in the auto industry and what some experts are saying about a potential repeal of NAFTA (North American Free Trade Agreement)

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