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In brief: Sunshine plans ore production in 2014

KELLOGG – Executives with the Sunshine Silver Mines Corp. say the company intends to begin producing ore in 2014.

Company officials filed documents laying out their timeline with the Securities and Exchange Commission last month.

The company is preparing to sell shares and become a public corporation, the Shoshone News Press reported. The goal of the initial public offering is to raise $250 million – with some of that cash to be used for upgrades at the mine near Kellogg.

The company has 48 employees on-site, but there is no ore being produced.

Historically, the mine has produced more than 360 million ounces of silver in the last 125 years.

Officials say recent and future improvements should enhance potential for extracting more silver ore from the site.

County jobless rate at 8.6 percent last month

Spokane County’s unemployment rate was 8.6 percent in December, nearly a full percentage point higher than the statewide 7.7 percent.

The 8.6 percent compares to a 9.1 percent county jobless rate in December 2011.

Unemployment varies across Washington counties. Whitman County, for example, had December’s lowest jobless rate at 5.4 percent, while Ferry County had the most people out of work: 13 percent. King County’s unemployment rate was 6.1 percent.

Economists say the state economy added 42,100 jobs over the past year.

Spokane County data reflect modest year-over-year jobs gains in natural resources, business and professional services.

Japan trade deficit grows to record high

TOKYO – Japan’s trade deficit in 2012 rose to a record $78.3 billion, as fuel imports surged and a bitter territorial dispute with China hammered its exports.

The provisional figures reported by the Finance Ministry today showed the trade deficit narrowed, however, in December, to 641.5 billion yen ($7.25 billion) from the 954.8 billion yen shortfall in November. That’s despite a 5.8 percent drop in exports for the month.


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