Economy | New Hampshire Public Radio

Economy

Losses Mount For N.H. Hospitals As COVID-19 Disrupts Healthcare Industry

Aug 10, 2020

New Hampshire hospitals have lost hundreds of millions of dollars in revenue due to COVID-19. Now, they may have to make cuts.

It may seem obvious, with double-digit unemployment and plunging economic output. But if there was any remaining doubt that the U.S. is in a recession, it's now been removed by the official scorekeepers at the National Bureau of Economic Research.

The bureau's Business Cycle Dating Committee — the fat lady of economic opera — said the expansion peaked in February after a record 128 months, and we've been sliding into a pandemic-driven recession since.

The $2 trillion stimulus package passed unanimously by the Senate on Wednesday seeks to help soften the economic damage of the coronavirus. Here’s a summary of how the bill, which the House could take up as early as Friday, would likely impact New Hampshire residents and businesses. 

Direct Payments

A tax provision designed to boost local economies across the country has been getting a lot of attention in New Hampshire recently - not for its economic impact, but over allegations of political meddling. 

Sarah Gibson for NHPR

Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren drew a stark ideological contrast between herself and political rivals on Thursday in a speech on her economic plans at the New Hampshire Institute of Politics.

Ken Teegarden via Flickr CC

Despite fears that a 2018 Supreme Court decision would open the floodgates on sales tax collection requests from New Hampshire businesses, a report from the N.H. Department of Justice shows that through October 31, not a single tax authority has filed the necessary notification to collect a tax.

The Federal Reserve cuts interest rates again, amid concern about U.S. manufacturing health.  A new state housing task force releases its recommendations, to expand the supply of lower-priced options.  And as winter approaches, seasonal businesses are on the hunt for temporary workers.

Original air date: Wednesday, November 6, 2019. 

Hundreds of business are in D.C. opposing tariffs this week, so how will trade discussions with China and Mexico, among other places, impact New Hampshire?  Also, we have a preview of the state's lucrative summer tourism season, and discuss what the Federal Reserve might do with interest rates. 

Sarah Gibson for NHPR

Massachusetts senator and presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren visited voters in Windham and Manchester, New Hampshire on Friday to pitch a plan she says will fight the influence of big corporations and rebuild the middle class.

Ali Oshinskie

On the first day of our series of In Depth: Workforce Challenges in New Hampshire, we explain the numbers and how we got here: why is unemployment so low, how much of this is part of a larger national trend, what are the economic forces leading to low unemployment and high demand for workers, and where in our state is this most felt?

The Exchange, New Hampshire Public Radio’s daily news talk show, will explore how New Hampshire’s workforce shortage impacts the economic and social fabric of life in the state, with a special broadcast series beginning Monday, May 20.

Britta Greene / New Hampshire Public Radio

Five New Hampshire non-profits have been named as recipients of nearly $1 million in state funding aimed at expanding addiction resources in workplaces across the state.

The non-profits will use the funds, distributed by the Community Development Finance Authority, to run trainings for local business leaders and employees.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

The House considered a measure Wednesday to provide a financial incentive for recent college grads to stay in New Hampshire.

 

This bill would create a voluntary program: Employees would get a minimum of $1,000 a year for the first four years they stay in the state. That would be paid for by their employer, not the taxpayer. But companies that participate would be able to work with a network of colleges in the state to attract recent grads.

 

Sarah Plourde

 

For the 13th year in a row, Manchester-Boston Regional Airport is reporting a decline in passengers.

 

2018 saw around 123,000 fewer passengers - a 6.2 percent decrease - flying in or out of the airport, compared to 2017.

Much of that loss is attributed to a 10.4 percent decrease in passengers on the airport's largest carrier, Southwest Airlines.

 

Scott McPherson

Thousands of  federal employees in the Granite State are furloughed, some working without pay. At the same time, certain government programs and private contracts aren't being fulfilled, with effects on the private sector and the general public. 

In 2019, we make a tentative forecast of the economic trends to watch in the new year. From continued affordable housing challenges in New Hampshire, to tariffs and stock market fluctuations internationally, we look at what indicators you should keep an eye on. 


https://www.facebook.com/BreakingNewGrounds/photos/rpp.155145914550349/1946230498775206/?type=3&theater

The Portsmouth coffeehouse Breaking New Grounds is closing its doors after January 3.

On Friday, owner Matt Govoni announced on Facebook that he and his wife were selling the coffeehouse 25 years after they moved to Portsmouth to start it.

The prime Market Square spot will soon be under the ownership of Salem-based Tuscan Brands, which plans to turn it into an Italian cafe and market.

More than 600 customers - and counting - have responded to Govoni's post, remembering everything from the German Butter Cake to falling in love over coffee.

Sarah Gibson for NHPR

 

Police departments throughout the U.S. are struggling with recruitment and retention, and New Hampshire is no different.

 

national survey this year by the Center for State and Local Government Excellence found that police vacancies were the top most difficult positions to fill for jurisdictions.

 

Currently, New Hampshire police departments are trying to fill an estimated 40 vacancies. 

Sarah Gibson for NHPR

A job fair catering to "experienced workers" over the age of 50 brought nearly 700 job seekers to Manchester on Friday.

The fair, organized by the AARP, the New Hampshire Department of Business and Economic Affairs, and the New Hampshire Department of Employment Security, is the first of its kind to target baby boomers in the state.

This is the fastest growing demographic of potential workers in New Hampshire.

Lonn Sattler, a Navy vet from Barrington, lost his job last year after working for 36 years in veteran benefits.

AlexiusHoratius/wikimedia commons

Parts of the state with lower property values may have a harder time building their economies. That’s one of several ideas outlined in the New Hampshire Fiscal Policy Institute’s recent brief “Measuring New Hampshire’s Municipalities: Economic Disparities and Fiscal Capacities.”

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

Job growth in the Granite State is still healthy - while wage growth remains slow.  Consumers seem in the mood to spend, but some local retailers say they lack shoppers.  And New Hampshire's housing crunch just gets tighter -- especially for renters.

Bernard Spragg via Wikimedia Commons

It can be hard to get excited about something as abstract as a soybean or steel tariff, but that doesn't mean you can just ignore it.

Robert Garrova for NHPR

Just off busy Main street in Conway Village, George Wiese gives a tour of the inside what’s known as the Bolduc Block in the center of town.

Constructed in 1931 by local businessman Leon Bolduc, this batch of brick buildings has housed a department and grocery store, the post office and many other businesses over the years. And at the heart of the block, a theater: The Majestic.

DCist Photos

How are tariffs and international trade disputes impacting our state? We also take a look at summer employment, including the shortage of workers. And, how do large companies mergers impact the little guys?

Robert Garrova for NHPR

In New Hampshire’s increasingly tight rental market, one area where there’s new development is conversion of industrial buildings. It’s a niche market, but one that’s attracting multiple generations of residents.

 

In a parking lot in Manchester, surrounded by a maze of early 20th-Century brick factory buildings just south of the ballpark, Mike Bernier explains how he ended up here.

 

NHPR File Photo

 

This year's New Hampshire Governor's Conference on Tourism is focusing on Main Street.

The conference by the New Hampshire Travel Council is scheduled for May 14-15 in Concord.

A presentation on May 14 will focus on "New Hampshire Creative Economy: Prosperity Through Arts and Culture," followed by breakout sessions.

The latest tourism industry trends will be discussed May 15 at the Grappone Conference Center with the keynote presentation, "Adapting Geotourism Strategies."

We'll look at the President's new budget proposal and how it may impact Granite Staters, and discuss what the recent closure of several labor and delivery units at local hospitals means for our healthcare sector in New Hampshire. 

GouldHillFarm.com

A proposal to make it easier for New Hampshire farms to host things like weddings and larger-scale events will be up for consideration by state lawmakers in January.

The issue has come up repeatedly in recent years, both in the state legislature and in court cases.

Local regulations on what's known as 'agritourism' — events that bring visitors onto farm property — vary significantly from town-to-town.

Henniker Christmas tree farmer Stephen Forster, for example, has been fighting with officials in his town for years to host weddings on his property.

AP

New Hampshire's congressional delegation is urging the state attorney general to join other states suing the Federal Communications Commission for repealing "net neutrality" rules.

Sens. Jeanne Shaheen and Maggie Hassan, and Reps. Annie Kuster and Carol Shea-Porter wrote to Republican Gov. Chris Sununu and Attorney General Gordon MacDonald on Friday. It came a day after the Republican-controlled FCC voted to scrap an Obama-era rule that guaranteed equal access to the internet.

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