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BILL CRAWFORD: Is Mississippi in its best financial shape ever?

State revenue collections are running ahead of target. The state rainy day fund and other reserves are full of cash. Agency budget cuts appear to be behind us. Pointing to all this, Lt. Gov. Tate Reeves said “Mississippi is in our best financial and fiscal shape in our history.” Speaker of the House Philip Gunn chimed in saying, “This is ...

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‘Grinch effect’ casts pall over shopping season

By JACK WEATHERLY Two credit-card reports cast a pall over the nation during the height of the Christmas-shopping season. The timing of the analyses might be called the Grinch effect. Mississippi has the sixth-highest credit-card debt burden in the nation, according to CreditCards.com. Another personal-finance website, WalletHub, took a look at credit-card debt in more than 2,500 cities for the ...

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BILL CRAWFORD — Usury proscriptions forgotten in Mississippi

Living in a very Christian state, most Mississippians should remember the biblical proscriptions on usury.   Here’s one: “Thou hast taken usury and increase, and thou hast greedily gained of thy neighbors by extortion, and has forgotten me, saith the Lord God.” (Ezekiel 22:12)   Many Mississippi leaders have forgotten.   Once Mississippi’s maximum annual finance charge was 8%. Anything ...

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BILL CRAWFORD — PERS sees taxpayers as their evergreen money tree

The PERS Board of Trustees seemed happy after hearing from their actuary. The funded ratio for PERS increased and investment returns were up.   So, are things turning up for PERS?   Only if you don’t mind your pocketbook getting raided.   Here’s the story. As the actuary report highlighted, PERS’ funded ratio moved from 61.1% to 61.8% (the minimum ...

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Higher tax withholdings point to more jobs filled; Mississippi sectors index shows gains

By TED CARTER The value of an index tracking Mississippi’s key business sectors rose a full 1 percent in August, maintaining an upward trend that began five months ago, state economists said in the October “Mississippi Business Report.” The growth in value tracked in the Mississippi Lead Index, or MLI, occurred in all sectors other than manufacturing, said Corey Miller, ...

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Shares plunge after Cal-Maine fails to meet expectations

By JACK WEATHERLY Cal-Maine Foods Inc. reported on Monday that its net income for the fiscal first quarter was $12.4 million, or 26 per share, compared with a loss of $16 million, or 33 cents per share, a year earlier. Net sales for the quarter that ended on Sept. 1 was $340.6 million, 29.6 percent increase ove $262.8 million. Despite ...

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Bomgar to make acquisition

MBJ staff Bomgar, a global leader in privileged access management solutions, has signed a definitive agreement to acquire BeyondTrust, a global leader in privilege-centric security, from an affiliate of Veritas Capital. The combined company, which will be called BeyondTrust, brings together innovators with a shared mission of helping customers defend themselves from cyber-attacks while increasing productivity. Bomgar was founded by ...

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Convenience stores expect boost from Mississippi lottery

By TED CARTER Mississippi’s convenience store operators have heard the cautions that some of the money customers previously spent on dish soap, soda and bread will be diverted to lottery tickets. But the prospect of making a nickel or more on each one-dollar ticket has the retailers saying, “Bring it on.” Philip Chamblee, head of the Mississippi Petroleum Marketers and ...

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Analysis: Mississippi in line for savings account boost

JEFF AMY Mississippi may be making its first big deposit into its savings account in several years, but state government is still lacks enough savings to ride out a substantial downtown in revenues. The Department of Finance and Administration is still in the process of closing the books on the year ended June 30, but spokesman Chuck McIntosh said the ...

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