Homebuilders have pumped the brakes on new single-family home construction this year, a trend that’s likely to extend into 2023, according to several forecasts. Single-family housing starts will fall this year for the first time in over a decade, with another pullback projected in 2023. Housing experts predict homebuilding will begin to rebound in 2024, but that’s contingent on mortgage rates easing back from current levels.
New home sales in Grand Forks / East Grand Forks slowed in November. A total of 48 homes…townhomes… condos exchanged hands last month. It was the lowest number in 22 months. According to the Grand Forks Area Association of Realtors the average sale price was $254,286 dollars. The figures do not include private transactions.
Wholesale prices in the United States rose 7.4% in November from a year earlier, a fifth straight slowdown and a hopeful sign that inflation pressures across the economy are continuing to cool. The latest year-over-year figure was down from 8% in October and from a recent peak of 11.7% in March. On a monthly basis, the U.S. producer price index, which measures costs before they reach consumers, rose 0.3% from October to November for the third straight month.
Slightly more Americans filed for jobless claims last week but the labor market remains one of strongest parts of the U.S. economy. Applications for unemployment benefits rose to 230,000 for the week ending Dec. 3, up by 4,000 from the previous week’s 226,000,
The Labor Market Information Center has released the latest Online Job Openings Report (OJOR), a monthly summary of openings and active résumés from Job Service North Dakota’s labor exchange system. North Dakota had a total of 16,001 open and available online job openings in November -a change of -4.7 percent from the prior month and -9.0 percent (-1,579) from the same month one year ago.
The Alerus Center is scheduled to give the suite level a makeover in 2023. Three project bids range from $1.3 million to $1.43 million dollars. The Alerus features 14 suites…a club lounge…and an upper level that will house five suites. The Events Center Commission will review the bids at a special meeting on January 4th.
In additional to planned improvements to the Town and Country Mall at 1701 South Washington the new owners have received an O-K from the Planning and Zoning Commission for updated signage. The P & Z agreed to allow the mall to erect a monument sign utilizing the existing structure. The sign would be 15 feet wide by 25 feet tall and include digital messaging at the top. The city council will review the plan on December 19th.
The International Energy Agency says the expansion of renewable power generation has picked up sharply in 2022 and within three years it could pass coal as the top source of electricity. The IAE report says replacing fossil fuels with renewables might make it possible to limit global warming to the Paris climate accord’s goal of 1.5 degrees Celsius, or 2.7 degrees Fahrenheit.
Discussions are underway regarding a small pet crematorium in north Grand Forks. One site being looked at for the pet funeral business is along the 2600 block of Gateway Drive. The P & Z will likely to look at a conditional use permit for the operation in January.
Butler Machinery has named Ben Studer as Director of Ag. Studer has been with AGCO in Jackson, MN for over 17 years including as the Director of Product Management. Founded in 1955 in Fargo, North Dakota, Butler Machinery is a third-generation and family-owned company.
Hate mealy apples and soggy french fries? Science can help. Food companies are increasingly turning to chemistry and physics to tackle the problem of food waste. There are spray-on peels and chemically-enhanced sachets that can slow the ripening process in fruit and digital sensors that can tell when meat is safe to consume. Experts say growing awareness of food waste has led to an uptick in efforts to mitigate it. More than one-third of food produced in the U.S. currently goes uneaten; much of that winds up in landfills.
It’s now a lot easier and cheaper for Americans to get hearing aids. The government recently began allowing the sale of hearing aids without a prescription. These over-the-counter hearing aids began hitting the market in October at prices that can be thousands of dollars lower than prescription hearing aids. The FDA estimates that around 30 million people in the United States deal with hearing loss. Only about 20% of the people who could use a hearing aid seek help.
Apple Music wants to help you and your friends sing along to your favorite songs with a new feature it’s rolling out just as people gather for end-of-year parties. Apple Music Sing gives the user the ability to adjust a song’s vocals and an enhanced beat-by-beat lyric display. The result is what Apple hopes will be an effortless invitation to karaoke. Display lyrics have also been enhanced.
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