Weeks Later, Man Strikes It Rich With Lottery Ticket

The Free Press WV

Britain’s Andrew Clark likes buying lottery tickets but not, apparently, actually checking to see whether he’s won. Now, however, the 51-year-old is $86 million richer because he finally listened to his partner and niece about checking the stack of old tickets in his van, reports Sky News. “It was about 8pm and we were watching telly when (his niece) reminded me again about the tickets,“ says Clark. “I finally gave in, got the bundle out of the van and started to work my way through them.“ Which is when he discovered that he’d won the 12th-largest jackpot ever in the UK. The winning EuroMillions numbers had been selected six weeks earlier. “It almost feels like some magical Christmas story,“ he says.

Unemployment rate unchanged in WV

The Free Press WV

The state’s unemployment rate held steady for November at 5.2 percent, according to figures released by WorkForce West Virginia.

The number of unemployed residents in the Mountain State declined by 200 to 40,300, which represents the lowest seasonally adjusted total unemployment during the past year.

West Virginia’s unemployment has been steadily declining during the past 12 months. There are now 2,000 fewer residents receiving unemployment benefits.

WorkForce West Virginia said job gains in November came in the areas of construction and manufacturing while mining and logging showed a drop in employment.

The national unemployment rate for November was unchanged at 3.7 percent.

Juul Employees Getting a $1.3M Bonus. Each

The Free Press WV

The world’s most popular e-cigarette maker is giving each worker a little gift—oh, about $1.3 million on average—amid a wave of criticism over its latest investment deal, reports. Word is that Juul just got a one-time $2 billion dividend payment and is divvying up the windfall to all 1,500 employees based on factors like their length of employment and amount of stock owned. But the payment comes as part of Juul’s agreement to let tobacco giant Altria buy 35% of the company for $12.8 billion. And with critics already saying Juul’s fruit-flavored products appeal too much to teens, Fast Company says Juul “appears to be using hard cash to quiet angst among its employees” who are upset by the deal with Big Tobacco.

After all, Jull is sold as an alternative to cigarettes; its users inhale flavored nicotine juice through a vaporizer without any of the usual ash, tar, or smoke, per But as the New Yorker explains, Juul’s attempt to wean people off smoking is appealing too much to a younger demographic. And teen vaping is on the rise, exposing millions of young people to nicotine. As for the deal, Juul is supposed to get top-shelf space in stores, improved logistics and distribution, and better legal/lobbying expertise as the e-cig maker faces greater financial and regulatory pressure, per CNBC. But is that a good thing? It is if you’re Juul, or an employee hoping for a windfall.


The Free Press WV

Unemployment rates were lower in November in 6 states, higher in 2 states, and stable in 42 states and the District of Columbia, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported. Eighteen states had jobless rate decreases from a year earlier and 32 states and the District had little or no change. The national unemployment rate remained unchanged from October at 3.7 percent but was 0.4 percentage point lower than in November 2017.

Nonfarm payroll employment increased in 4 states in November 2018 and was essentially unchanged in 46 states and the District of Columbia. Over the year, 37 states added nonfarm payroll jobs and 13 states and the District were essentially unchanged.


Hawaii and Iowa had the lowest unemployment rates in November, 2.4 percent each. The rates in Idaho (2.6 percent), Missouri (3.0 percent), and New York (3.9 percent) set new series lows. (All state series begin in 1976.) Alaska had the highest jobless rate, 6.3 percent. In total, 13 states had unemployment rates lower than the U.S. figure of 3.7 percent, 12 states and the District of Columbia had higher rates, and 25 states had rates that were not appreciably different from that of the nation.

In November, six states had unemployment rate decreases: Connecticut, Florida, Maryland, New York, Oklahoma, and Vermont (-0.1 percentage point each). Two states had over-the-month rate increases: Colorado and Hawaii (+0.1 percentage point each). The remaining 42 states and the District of Columbia had jobless rates that were not notably different from those of a month earlier, though some had changes that were at least as large numerically as the significant changes.

Eighteen states had unemployment rate changes from November 2017, all of which were decreases. The largest decline occurred in New Mexico (-1.4 percentage points).

Nonfarm Payroll Employment

Nonfarm payroll employment increased in four states in November 2018. The job gains occurred in California (+30,700), Florida (+23,600), Wisconsin (+10,600), and South Dakota (+2,900).  In percentage terms, the largest increase occurred in South Dakota (+0.7 percent), followed by Wisconsin (+0.4 percent), Florida (+0.3 percent), and California (+0.2 percent).

Thirty-seven states had over-the-year increases in nonfarm payroll employment in November. The largest job gains occurred in Texas (+365,400), California (+299,800), and Florida (+241,600). The largest percentage gain occurred in Nevada (+3.8 percent), followed by Arizona (+3.6 percent) and Wyoming (+3.2 percent).

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