Midwest Memo Afternoon Edition: Drugs, Courts and Candidates

Three stories you need to know about the Midwest economy.

1) Drug Price Lawsuit The Associated Press reports Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette has filed suit against pharmaceutical wholesaler McKesson Corp. He says the company inflated the prices of drugs it sold to the state’s Medicaid program. McKesson is based in California and is the largest pharmaceutical distributor in the country. Schuette estimates the state paid more than $2 million to the company, and is seeking a portion of that back. A judge in Seattle recently gave the go ahead for local governments to get together and sue McKesson for the same reason, reports Lawyers and Settlements.

2)Supremes Review University Patents: Another development in the courts that could have a big impact on Midwestern Universities is the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Sanford v. Roche. IP Frontline has an analysis of the case. Many universities in the Midwest bring in substantial revenue leveraging “their” patents, and say this is going to change the way they do business with potential inventors. This intellectual property case asked if universities can easily control the patent rights of an employee’s invention. The high court ruled that the inventor, not the school, controls the property rights. The justices clarified that the inventor has the right to sell or give the rights to a party other than the University, unless the University writes an iron-clad contract saying they can’t.

3) Candidates Take On The Economy: The 2012 presidential campaign can be expected to generate a lot of talk about how to improve the Midwest’s economy. Former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty is speaking today at the University of Chicago.

Former Minn Gov. Tim Pawlenty
Pawlenty is the first candidate to throw his hat in the ring from the Midwest – if you don’t count President Obama. Pawlenty’s website says he wants to propose cutting business and personal tax rates to spur economic growth. We’ll continue to cover the candidates’ ideas for economic growth in the region.





Midwest Memo, June 1, 2011

Five must-read stories about the Midwest economy

1) Exporting to economic growth. A study released today on nine Midwestern states shows that exports are helping to revive the economy.

Exports are helping the Midwest economy

Creighton University’s Business Conditions Index for the Mid-America region rose to 60.2, from 57.7 in April. The index is a survey of supply managers and purchasing executives, who rate the economy on a scale of zero to 100. Anything above 50 reflects growth in the next three to six months.

2) From yachts to wind. The recession forced many small manufacturers to find new products to make in an attempt to survive. Tiara Yachts, a Michigan manufacturer, is taking risks to keep its factory open and employees on the job. Lindsay Smith of our partner station Michigan Radio looked at the company.

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