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Friday August 1, 2014

Contributors: Business - Commercial Confidential

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    Wednesday Oct 02, 2013 | 3:45 pm

    Self-employment in Maine

    Maine has a disproportionate number of self-employed workers. An August 2011 brief from the Maine Department of Labor estimated that 10.3% of workers in Maine are their own bosses — 66,000 workers in all. That’s substantially higher than the national rate, which hovers around 7%. Many of Maine’s traditional industries are rooted in self-employed workers: lots of farmers, fishermen, carpenters and forestry workers are sole proprietors of their own enterprises. […]

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    Wednesday Sep 18, 2013 | 9:54 am

    The NSA’s ‘back doors’ might lead to your bank account

    In the past 20 years, internet-based financial transactions have become integral to the global economy, from online personal banking to multi-million dollar stock transactions executed within microseconds. We’ve come to trust the security of those transactions thanks to the Secure Socket Layer (SSL) protocol, which uses huge, unsolvable math problems to hide our personal data until it reaches a trusted recipient. Here’s a metaphorical video of how it works: We’re […]

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    Friday Sep 13, 2013 | 1:10 pm

    The Pine Tree of Babel: where you’ll hear foreign languages in Maine

    This week at pressherald.com we’re welcoming the new Franco-American blog from Juliana L’Heureux, who plans to write about Maine’s Franco-American history and culture. While we were getting the new blog set up, a couple people in my Twitter feed pointed out a new online mapping tool from the US Census Bureau that plots the neighborhoods where the speakers of various foreign languages live (the Census has been asking citizens about […]

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    Tuesday Sep 10, 2013 | 12:06 pm

    Wages are down (because more people are working)

       Yesterday’s "Maine By the Numbers" box ran a surprising and seemingly disheartening bit of data: Maine by the numbers A daily snapshot of the state’s economy AVERAGE HOURLY EARNINGS Hourly earnings for nonfarm workers in the Portland/South Portland/Biddeford metro area in July 2013 $22.21 Hourly earnings for nonfarm workers in the Portland/South Portland/Biddeford metro area in July 2012 $23.10 – Source: Maine Department of Labor Given the conventional wisdom that we’re […]

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  • Wednesday Aug 28, 2013 | 5:05 pm

    Updates to pressherald.com/business

    If you haven’t visited our online business section at pressherald.com/business lately, have a look — we’ve added a couple new features to help keep our readers up to date. We’re proud to welcome career counselors Barbara Babkirk and Scott Woodard as contributors for their new Heart at Work blog, located at pressherald.com/blogs/heartatwork. Since it’s almost Labor Day weekend, I recommend starting with Barbara’s post on the importance on vacation.    […]

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    Wednesday Aug 28, 2013 | 3:57 pm

    How will new high-rises affect Portland’s housing market?

    Staff writer Randy Billings, reporting from yesterday’s planning board hearing, shared an preliminary design for a 15-story apartment building being planned for Portland’s Bayside neighborhood (pictured below). The project would include retail space on the ground floor and about 190 new apartments in the tower above. And it’s only phase one in a larger project that would add four more towers with a total of 675 new apartments in the […]

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    Tuesday Aug 20, 2013 | 5:02 pm

    Business news roundup: Thompson’s Point plans still in flux, Market Basket arrives in Maine

    April 2011 proposal for Thompson’s Point June 2011 proposal for Thompson’s Point Back in the spring of 2011, the Press Herald ran its first story about the proposed Thompson’s Point office, hotel, and sports arena project. The original proposal (pictured at left) featured a large sports arena and concert hall, along with a hotel, parking garage, and multiple new office buildings.  Since then, the project has been redesigned, tax-subsidized, scaled back, […]

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    Tuesday Aug 13, 2013 | 12:16 pm

    The Maine economy — as seen by the Soviets in the 1970s

    This map of the United States from a 1970s-era Soviet atlas has been getting a lot of clicks on Reddit , and as a fan of maps, history, and economics, I had to share it here (scroll down for a closer look at how it portrays Maine):   Here’s a closeup of Maine, and the map’s legend: Portland (Портленд) is a relatively small point on the map. Our 1970s economy […]

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    Friday Aug 02, 2013 | 8:29 am

    New health insurance rates reveal the risk of being old

    Staff writer Joe Lawlor has a story out today about the proposed rates that Mainers would pay under the new federal insurance exchanges. Thanks to recent state legislation, insurers are allowed to vary their rates based on geography across four regions, based on insurance companies’ assessments of how health care risks and costs vary by geography in Maine. As you can see in this Press Herald graphic by Michael Fisher, […]

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