BY HAWAII REPORTER

Hawaii Unemployment Rate Steady at 6.4 Percent

Hawaii’s December seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was at 6.4 percent for the sixth consecutive month. That was a full 3 percentage points lower than the national rate last month.

The Hawaii Department of Labor and Industrial Relations said there were 593,350 people employed last month and 40,250 unemployed.

The state does not report unemployment on a seasonally adjusted basis for the counties. But on an unadjusted basis the numbers also show Hawaii’s rate was lower than national numbers.

For the different islands the seasonally unadjusted rate was:

Island                          December 2010           December 2009

Oahu                           4.8 percent                  5.3 percent

Hawaii County            8.7 percent                  9.4 percent

Kauai                           7.9 percent                  8.7 percent

Maui Island                 7.3 percent                  8.6 percent

Molokai                       12.0 percent                11.8 percent\

Lanai                           5.8 percent                  8.6 percent

Judge Alito Reportedly Skips State of Union for Hawaii

A number of national media outlets are reporting U.S. Supreme Court Justice Samuel A. Alito Jr. won’t be journeying to Capitol Hill Tuesday night to hear the State of the Union address by President Barack Obama.

Alito reportedly is reportedly in Honolulu teach law classes.

Last year Alito reacted to Obama’s criticizing of a campaign finance ruling by mouthing the words “not true” from a seat in the gallery.

Bank of Hawaii Reports Slightly Better Q4 Net Income

Bank of Hawaii Corp., Hawaii’s second-largest bank ranked by deposits, reported fourth-quarter net income was $40.6 million, or 84 cents a share, or slightly better than last year when it earned $40.5 million or 84 cents in the quarter.

The bank said it experienced deposit growth during the three month period along with a slight improvement in its loan portfolio.

“The Hawaii economy is continuing to recover due, in part, to improving arrival and spend statistics in our visitor industry. Bank of Hawaii is well positioned to meet the needs of our marketplace as conditions improve,” said Peter S. Ho, chairman, chief executive officer and president.

The bank said the return on average assets in 2010 was 1.45 percent, up from 1.22 percent in 2009. The return on average equity for the year was 18.16 percent, up from 16.42 percent in 2009.

JAL Group to fly Larger Aircraft on Haneda-Honolulu Route

JAL Group said it will switch to a larger Boeing 777 aircraft between Tokyo’s Haneda Airport and Honolulu to meet what it says is robust travel demand.

JAL currently flies a Boeing 767 on the route and will make the switch the week of March 27.

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