Friday's Afternoon Update
What you need to know about Florida today
The unbalanced global economy
The American economy is motoring again, to the relief of exporters from Hamburg to Hangzhou. But growing dependence on the American economy—and on consumers in particular—has unwelcome echoes. More at the Economist.
» At last, a proper recovery
» A strong dollar could actually be good for the U.S. economy
» West Coast port slowdown could cost U.S. economy billions
» U.S. consumer sentiment falls in February
Airline passengers behaved better than ever in 2014
New FAA data shows that the preliminary number of "unruly passenger incidents" in 2014 was the lowest since the agency began tracking those figures in 1995. More at the South Florida Sun-Sentinel.
High hopes for spring training
Now, as Flipse prepares to deliver about 5,000 floral arrangements for Valentine's Day, his staff is working around the clock preparing orders placed online that include fresh flowers imported from Ecuador, Colombia and other Latin American countries.
Coming off record-breaking attendance during the last two years — and what has so far been a vicious winter up north — the Baltimore Orioles, the Pittsburgh Pirates and local tourism officials are hoping 2015 will attract more baseball fans than ever to Southwest Florida. More at the Sarasota Herald-Tribune.
Film industry fighting for tax money
Entertainment industry representatives are defending a now-dormant state program that issued $296 million in tax credits to film, TV and other productions over the last four years. A recently published report from state economists showed the program did not break even in terms of state revenue. More at the Orlando Sentinel.
Gas price increase expected to continue but remain modest
After a pleasant plunge to below $2 a gallon, local gas prices are on the rise. But fuel experts say it's typical to see gas prices climb this time of year. Florida is the 16th-most-expensive state for gas this week at about $2.30 a gallon. More at the Tampa Bay Times.
Florida Wildlife Corridor Expedition
You're invited to take a hike through the Ochlockonee River State Park with team members from the Florida Wildlife Corridor Expedition. During this hike, the Expedition's "Trail Mixer #5," the group will walk 1.5 miles through a beautiful longleaf pine habitat. Ochlockonee River State Park is 4 miles south of Sopchoppy on U.S. 319. Click here for more details, including a map to the park and a link to register.
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