Howzit Howard: visitors

Howard Dicus
Howard Dicus

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Visitors rose, visitor days rose more, and visitor spending rose more still. August outperformed everyone's greatest hopes. Like July it was a billion-dollar month. Current shoulder season hotel room sales looking good... Big Island's lowest, but you know what? Big Island's fuller than Orlando.

Hawaii jobless claims are down, too. First-time claims came in less than 2,000. Claims are down four percent on Kauai, down 10 percent on the Big Island, down 15 percent on Oahu, and down 32 percent on Maui.

New UHERO forecast - the UH economic research organization thinks unemployment will fall to six percent next year and 5.6 the year after. UHERO sees only 3 percent inflation next year, but income growing even less.

Watts Constructors wins more big Navy contracts - $52 million for a Waterfront Security Center at Kitsap, Washington state - $86 million for wharf work in Apia.

The corporate merger of United and Continental has been executed. They signed the papers early so the new company could trade today, and since opening it's up five percent, or about a dollar, to 24.75 a share. But Jamie Baker of JP Morgan warns, don't expect suddenly soaring profits from synergistic savings. Delta said its acquisition of Northwest would save a billion dollars and Baker says he's pored over Delta's results and can't identify those savings.

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