St. Cloud State Economist and Dean, School of Public Affairs, King Banaian joined me on WJON today.  He says the stock market and economy are looking good.  Banaian says there is optimism with more and more people getting the Covid-19 vaccine, less likelihood of shutdowns or dial backs and warmer weather approaching.  Banaian says the restaurant/bar industry and pulled through the toughest stretch of the pandemic and with warmer weather and outdoor seating becoming available soon things are looking up.  He says some restaurants may decide to stay with increased space for patrons which some could consider to be appealing.  Listen to our conversation below.


During the past year many people chose to remodel their homes and few chose to sell their home.  King says the amount of homes for sale doesn't meet the current demand.  He says that may change but in the short term it is a sellers market.

The spring and summer many people chose to vacation close to home, go hunting and fishing, camping, golfing and other outdoor activities.  Banaian expects people to do similar things this spring and summer with the exception of longer car trips out of the state and increased activity at area resorts and campgrounds.

The United State federal government has issued lots of financial assistance to business and residents throughout the pandemic.  King says this money contributes large amounts of money to the national debt.  He says were are too dependent on China financially and he's concerned this could come and back and cause problems for the United States.  Banaian joins me on WJON monthly.

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The 25 Best Places to Live in Minnesota

Stacker compiled a list of the best places to live in Minnesota using data from Niche. Niche ranks places to live based on a variety of factors including cost of living, schools, health care, recreation, and weather. Cities, suburbs, and towns were included. Listings and images are from

On the list, there's a robust mix of offerings from great schools and nightlife to high walkability and public parks. Some areas have enjoyed rapid growth thanks to new businesses moving to the area, while others offer glimpses into area history with well-preserved architecture and museums. Keep reading to see if your hometown made the list.

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