Economy

Unemployment rates moved higher in 44 out of 50 states last month. The Associated Press reports that is the highest number of states to show an increase in unemployment in more than three years. Analysts say the numbers reflect weak hiring activity across the United States. 

FedEx

Tennessee-based FedEx will offer buyouts to U.S. employees in an effort to cut costs in a troubled economy. Company officials indicate that the majority of those offered buyout packages will be staff employees at FedEx Express and FedEx Services. The Memphis-based company says it hasn't decided how many employees it needs to cut.

A report released by State Budget Director Mary Lassiter reveals that receipts from both the state's sales and income taxes declined in July. Lassiter says she still expects the state to meet projections of modest revenue growth over the remainder of the new fiscal year, despite declines in general fund revenue for three of the past four months.

Tennessee is launching a toll-free hotline for homeowners who are either in—or on the brink of—foreclosure. The Tennessean reports the hotline is open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. central time, Mondays through Fridays.

WKU Public Radio

The United States Postal Service will soon default on billions of dollars in payments due to the U.S. Treasury. The situation is adding to the uncertainty about the mail agency's solvency.

Delta Airlines is shutting down its 35 year old carrier known as Comair, effective at the end of September. Delta says it is switching to larger jets and has sent termination notices to employees, including some 700 who live in Kentucky.

Kentucky’s Justice Cabinet secretary says a 2011 law meant to reduce state prison costs is producing mixed results. Secretary J. Michael Brown says arrests are down and in its first year in action, and less convicts passed through state prisons.

Despite accounting mistakes and unforeseen disaster relief expenses, state government is closing the 2012 budget with another surplus. Originally, the budgetary surplus was $83 million. Now it's almost halved to $45 million.

An overseas economic trip will prevent Governor Steve Beshear from participating in this year’s Fancy Farm political speaking. The governor’s office announced that Beshear will be in Germany and France for the next few weeks to encourage companies there to bring business to Kentucky.

A new report shows one in four Kentucky children lives in poverty, with their numbers growing since 2005. The latest Kids Count report by the Annie E. Casey Foundation ranks Kentucky, Tennessee, and Indiana in the bottom half of states for overall child well-being.

Kentucky’s Second-largest newspaper is cutting back on staff again.  The publishers of the Lexington Herald Leader are citing the troubled economy in announcing the latest changes.

A relatively new economic think tank in Kentucky has released a report that pushes back on calls to cut the state's pension benefits. The report from the Kentucky Center for Economic Policy says the idea that public pensioners are well-compensated compared to their private sector counterparts is inaccurate.

Kentucky’s jobless rate was unchanged in June, and still stands at eight-point-two percent. The state figures released by the Kentucky Education and Workforce Development Cabinet are consistent with the national unemployment rate.

Tennessee general fund revenues have beaten projections by more than a half-billion dollars with one month left in the budget year. State Finance Commissioner Mark Emkes says collections came in at $130 million above estimates in June, which reflects economic activity from the previous month.

A slowly recovering Kentucky economy has pushed tax revenues beyond what had been projected by a panel of economic experts over the past year. Budget Director Mary Lassiter said Tuesday the state's General Fund tax revenue for the fiscal year that ended June 30 was $83 million more than expected.

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