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Business/Economy

  • VIDEO: Why Gas Prices Spike in the Spring
  • WR businesses weather construction on N.M. 4

    With improvements on N.M. 4 well underway, orange barrels, heavy equipment and torn up pavement form an intimidating barrier between prospective customers and a number of White Rock businesses. Despite the inhospitable environment, however, White Rock businesses are holding their own.

    A few have even reaped unexpected rewards from the construction activity.

    “It’s going as well as can be expected. All the businesses throughout a community suffer from any construction,” said Los Alamos Commerce & Development Corporation (LACDC) Member Services Coordinator Katy Korkos. “But specific problems are being addressed on a weekly basis.”

  • US hiring slows amid uncertainty about economy

    WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. job market slowed in March as companies hit the brakes on hiring amid uncertainty about the economy's growth prospects. The unemployment rate dipped, but mostly because more Americans stopped looking for work.

    The Labor Department said Friday that the economy added 120,000 jobs in March, down from more than 200,000 in each of the previous three months.

    The unemployment rate fell to 8.2 percent. The rate has dropped nearly a full percentage point since August and is now at its lowest level since January 2009.

  • Chinese firm surpasses Exxon in oil production

    NEW YORK (AP) — A big shift is happening in Big Oil: An American giant now ranks behind a Chinese upstart.

    Exxon Mobil is no longer the world's biggest publicly traded producer of oil. For the first time, that distinction belongs to a 13-year-old Chinese company called PetroChina. The Beijing company was created by the Chinese government to secure more oil for that nation's booming economy.

  • US jobless claims fall to lowest level in 4 years

    WASHINGTON (AP) — The number of people seeking U.S. unemployment benefits dropped last week to the lowest level in four years, adding to evidence that the job market is strengthening.

    Applications for weekly unemployment benefits fell by 5,000 to a seasonally adjusted 359,000, the Labor Department said Thursday. That's the fewest applicants since April 2008. The four-week average, a less volatile measure, declined to 365,000 — the fewest for that measure since May 2008.

  • Chamber promotion fair

    The Los Alamos Chamber of Commerce held its annual marketing and promotions fair at the Coffee House Café, home of the Coffee Booth, Wednesday.

  • RE/MAX honors Los Alamos office

    RE/MAX, LLC, headquartered in Denver, presented REMAX of Los Alamos Broker/Owner Kendra Henning with the 2011  award for Southwest Region Outstanding Small Market Brokerage of the Year.
    This award recognizes offices that demonstrate extraordinary commitment and loyalty to their RE/MAX Associates, employees and clients.
    Selection criteria included market share, agent and staff retention, agent production and an overall outstanding approach to running the business.
    “We’re proud to have Kendra and the RE/MAX of Los Alamos agents and staff as members of our region,” said Tory Leaverton, franchise development consultant for the Southwest region.

  • Stocks record biggest gains of year; Dow up 218

    NEW YORK (AP) — Bank stocks turbocharged a rally across the financial markets Tuesday, and all three major stock indexes posted their biggest gains of the year. The Dow Jones industrial average rose 218 points and closed at its highest level since the end of 2007.

    The Nasdaq composite closed above 3,000 for the first time since December 2000, during the collapse in dot-com stocks.

    The market rallied from the opening bell Tuesday after the government said February retail sales gains were the strongest since September. Americans spent more on cars, clothes and appliances.

  • Feds release 640-page health overhaul blueprint for states

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Fifty million people in America lack health insurance and the law says most of them must soon be provided coverage. But how to deliver?

    The Obama administration Monday finalized an ambitious blueprint for new state-based markets that will offer consumers one-stop shopping along the lines of amazon.com.

    It may sound simple enough, but getting there will be like running an obstacle course. The rule comes just two weeks before the Supreme Court takes up a challenge to the constitutionality of the law in a case brought by states. Many governors and legislators are on the sidelines awaiting the outcome, even as time is running out to act.

  • US adds 227,000 jobs in Feb.

    WASHINGTON (AP) — The United States added 227,000 jobs in February in the latest display of the economic recovery’s surprising breadth and brawn. The country has put together the strongest three months of pure job growth since the Great Recession.
    The unemployment rate stayed at 8.3 percent. It was the first time in six months it didn’t fall, and that was because a half-million Americans, perhaps finally seeing hope in the economy, started looking for work.
    The Labor Department also said Friday that December and January, already two of the best months for jobs since the recession, were even stronger than first estimated. It added 41,000 jobs to its total for January and 20,000 for December.