RI economy

Gov. Lincoln Chafee and Marcel Valois, executive director of Commerce Rhode Island, will embark on a European trade mission that will be focused on meeting with executives of companies that have expressed an interest in establishing operations in Rhode Island.

Chafee’s press office issued a statement saying that these company executive officials are interested in Rhode Island due to the state’s ``proximity to Europe, as well as the location in the busy northeast corridor and the convenience of TF Green Airport, industrial ports and rail and highway transportation systems.’’

Aaron Read / RIPR

Rhode Island’s unemployment rate has inched down to 8.7 percent in March, an improvement, but evidence that the state trails the region and most of the nation in economic activity.

The state Department of Labor and Training reports that new data shows the seasonally adjusted rate declined from 9 percent in February and is now at the lowest rate since September, 2008.

The number of Rhode Islanders who were working increased to 506,000 in March, a hike of 2,700 from February  statistics.

As promised by House Minority Leader Brian Newberry, the six-member House GOP caucus is moving ahead with a 16-point plan, dubbed "Getting to 25," intended to improve Rhode Island's economy.

It seems sometimes like every Rhode Island business and political leader points to the better economy in Massachusetts. RIPR political analyst Scott MacKay looked across the state border and finds more myth than reality.

Rhode Island businesses say they're optimistic about the state's economy and their own prospects, though they're not yet confident enough to make major capital investments.

That's according to a new survey, as RIPR host Dave Fallon learns from Providence Business News' Mark Murphy in this week's Bottom Line.

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