Love’s Travel Stop is under construction in Hardin , on Highway 47. Plans are for the travel shop to be open by early 2017. The Hardin location is just the first of other Montana locations. .
During the past several months revenue flowing into the State’s bank accounts has slowed, causing concern among state officials. The decine of $67 million in the general fund is being reduced mostly because of a declines in oil and gas revenues.
Simms Fishing Products, in Bozeman, will open their new expansion in June. The 14,000 square-foot facility will contain sewing production, sourcing and development spaces. The company will hire up to 27 more employees.
The Bakken region of North Dakota and Montana expels up to 275,000 tons of methane each year, less than previously believed, according to scientists from the University of Colorado at Boulder.
The Labor Department announced there were 5.8 million job openings in March, up 2.7% from 5.4 million the previous month. The biggest gains were for professional and business services, while retail jobs had the greatest contraction. The March turnover rate remained 3.5% for a second straight month, accounting for 5 million “separations.” The best month for job openings since July 2015 was also marked by a slower pace of total hiring, to 5.3 million from February’s 5.5 million, “providing a mixed picture of the labor market.” The decline “suggests employers became more reluctant to fill open positions, possibly because of slower economic growth from October through March,” according to the AP.
Todd Klassy, farm and ranch photographer from Montana, was the guest Instagrammer for Modern Farmer, April 30 and May 1, sharing images, stories and a behind-the-scenes look at Montana ranching. A sample of his work appears above. Modern Farmer is a resource for food producers and consumers: the farmers.
After gains in the second half of 2015, the homeownership rate fell to just 63.6 percent, in the first quarter of this year, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. Homeownership hit a high of 69.4 percent in 2004, during one of the biggest housing booms in history. That was also when just one-tenth of 1 basis point higher than its all-time low in the second quarter of 2015. High levels of student loan debt, tight mortgage underwriting standards and overheating home prices are all contributing to very low homeownership rates among the nation’s youngest workers. Homeownership among those aged 25-34 today is nearly 10 percentage points lower than it was a decade ago.
The Commerce Department released data indicating that new orders for factory goods rose 1.1% in March after falling a revised 1.9% in February. The March increase in new orders was higher than the 0.6 percent rise economists had anticipated. However, orders for so-called core capital goods, which includes non-defense capital goods but excludes aircraft, increased 0.1%.
Andy Johnson, a Wyoming land owner, sued the Environmental Protection Agency after it began fining him nearly $200,000 a day for building a pond on his property. The EPA and Johnson settled the dispute without going to trial, freeing him from a $16 million fine. His lawyers said the EPA had no grounds to enforce the Clean Water Act for the pond he constructed to water his livestock.
The Labor Department announced that employers added 160,000 jobs in April, well below economists’ expectations, although wages rose slightly and the nation’s unemployment rate held steady at 5%. The New York Times said that “after racing ahead for many months, the American jobs machine cooled” last month, with employers reacting to “other signs that economic growth was slowing by easing up on new hiring.” The Times suggested that April’s “slower but still steady pace of payroll growth could be a sign of things to come.”
Whitefish Credit Union, opened a new South Kalispell branch located at 1825 U.S. Highway 93 South in Kalispell.
The U.S. Department Agriculture is funding agreements with 55 organizations to educate farmers about using Farm Service Agency programs that provide financial, disaster or technical support. Nearly $2.5 million will fund nonprofits, associations, universities, and foundations to provide information .
Hess Corp., which has 7een shipping North Dakota crude oil by rail to St. James, LA, on a regular basis, becoming the first energy company to export the oil from the Williston Basin overseas since the lifting of export ban. The 175,000 barrels of crude are being sent to an unnamed buyer in Europe and was unloaded in Rotterdam for the ExxonMobil Refinery, which also received a shipment of 18,000 barrels of Gulf of Mexico crude oil. (From the Oil Patch Hotline.)
With forecasts predicting that crude oil prices could reach as high as $70 a barrel later this year, in the face of severe production declines in North Dakota and Texas, one analyst is predicting that it could be as long as 2017 before hydraulic fracturing service companies could get enough employees back on board. With 945 wells waiting on completion, only 80 a month are being fraced now in North Dakota, compared to 220 a month when completion companies were running at full employment two years ago.
Efforts by the Bureau of Land Management to regulate flaring on federal land in North Dakota would have severe adverse effects on the state, resulting in an annual loss of $24 million in royalties and taxes, according to the ND Industrial Commission.
The People’s Republic of Health, based in Bozeman, brings a new style of affordable acupuncture to Missoula. The company offers acupuncture and herbal medicine on a sliding scale based on a patient’s ability to pay. It lowers the cost barrier so people who would hesitate to pay upwards of $120 per treatment can try acupuncture without hurting their wallet. Zoe Strauss, founder of PRH, earned a master’s degree from the American College of Traditional Chinese Medicine, in San Francisco, and completed a post-graduate residency at Shanghai University’s teaching Hospital. She opened her Bozeman office three years ago.
Residential real estate sales dollars increased in Gallatin County in the first three months of 2016 compared to the same period in 2015, according to the most recent statistics from the Gallatin Association of Realtors. Total home sales dollars for single family residences in Gallatin County went from $105 million in the first quarter of 2015 to $113.3 million in 2016. The number of units sold dropped slightly, from 253 to 247, while the median sales price jumped from $319,500 to $325,500. The average number of days on the market dropped from 115 to 102 between 2015 and 2016. GAR also reported 452 single-family residences on the market, worth a total of $586 million.
MorphoTrust USA announced that the Montana Department of Justice Motor Vehicle Division (MVD) has deployed its product to help secure driver license and identification cards, along with a new automated testing system.

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