The latest report on West Michigan’s economy finds it is flat and has turned slightly negative. 

Jobless rates in November were down about one-percent from year ago levels in the Kalamazoo and Battle Creek labor markets. 

"For Natura Architectural Consulting LLC, business this year has exceeded expectations. Revenues are up at the Grand Rapids firm that had surpassed its growth goals for 2015 as of mid-November, and Natura continues to bring aboard new clients, said owner Nate Gillette. He expects business to stay strong for the foreseeable future." (MiBiz)

Beth Harpaz / Associated Press

Web sites such as Airbnb make it easy to rent out your home. But you might end up in trouble with your local government. In some cities, zoning precludes short-term rentals. Others require inspections and a certificate for any would-be landlord.

That’s the case in the City of Kalamazoo, where one Airbnb has prompted a discussion within the city about the difference between a guest and a customer.

"Michigan's jobless rate inched up in November as more previously idle participants returned to the workforce seeking jobs. The one-tenth-of-a-point rise to 5.1% still left the rate at almost the lowest point in recent years. The national unemployment rate in November stood at 5% in November." (Detroit Free Press)