Sep 14, 2019

Trump approval in key Rust Belt areas rises despite slow economic growth

Workers wait for heavy equipment to arrive in East Goshen Township, Pennsylvania on June 5. Photo: Robert Nickelsberg/Getty Images

Employment growth in blue-collar suburbs that supported President Trump in 2016 is lagging behind the rest of the country, the Wall Street Journal reports.

The big picture: Trump’s job-approval rating in manufacturing-heavy counties in the Midwest and Northeast has risen since he entered office, despite low economic growth. The 77 counties analyzed by the WSJ backed Trump by a margin of 13 percentage points in 2016.

  • The number of businesses grew by 0.5% in 2017 and 0.6% in 2018 in the analyzed counties, the WSJ found — at "a faster pace than in the prior four years, but below the national rate of 1.8% growth."
    • Context: That was also less than the 1% job growth experienced in the area the 2 years before Trump was elected.
  • Employment growth in the the communities analyzed "lagged behind the national rate of 1.5% in 2017 and 1.3% in 2018."
  • Trump’s job-approval rating in these counties has risen from 44% in 2017 to 49% in 2019, WSJ/NBC News surveys found.

The bottom line: In 2016, "Trump visited many of these counties as a candidate, promising an economic rebound," the WSJ reports.

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Johnson & Johnson settles with Ohio counties ahead of opioid trial

The Johnson & Johnson campus on August 28, 2019. Photo: Mark Ralston/AFP/Getty Images

Johnson & Johnson said on Tuesday that it has reached a $20.4 million settlement with 2 Ohio counties ahead of a massive opioid trial, under what the Washington Post describes as a "tentative" deal.

The big picture: These Ohio counties — Cuyahoga and Summit County — were set to be one of the first cases to go to trial from lawsuits brought by over 2,500 counties, cities, Native American tribes and others against nearly 2 dozen pharmacies, drug manufacturers, and distributors for their role in the U.S. opioid epidemic, the Post reports.

Go deeperArrowOct 2, 2019

Business leaders spooked by Trump's manufacturing slump

Data: Bureau of Labor Statistics; Chart: Axios Visuals

American manufacturers rode a wave of optimism after President Trump took office, clinging to his promises to revive the industry and bring back jobs.

Yes, but: The politically important sector is being choked by his trade war with China, and business leaders tell Axios that the tariffs threaten to upend the economy if not addressed soon.

Go deeperArrowOct 6, 2019

Automation to hit African Americans disproportionately

Image: H. Armstrong Roberts/ClassicStock/Getty; Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

The employment outlook for African Americans will "worsen dramatically" as automation upends the workforce, according to a new report from McKinsey & Co.

Why it matters: By 2030, African American workers stand to lose hundreds of thousands of jobs as a result of increased automation, widening the racial wealth gap and weighing down overall U.S. growth.

Go deeperArrowOct 7, 2019