Business Briefs: Knoxville packager adds 231 jobs

Business Briefs: Knoxville packager adds 231 jobs

February 7th, 2014 by Staff Reports and Wire Service in Business Around the Region

Knoxville packager adds 231 jobs

An Algoma, Wisc.-based packing company will expand its Knoxville facility through a $43 million expansion that will add 231 jobs.

WS Packaging Group, Inc. officials announced the expansion Thursday and said the move is designed to boost production and consolidate its Knoxville facilities.

"Whenever a company already operating here decides to stay and expand, it further supports our goal of becoming the No. 1 location in the Southeast for high quality jobs," Gov. Bill Haslam said in a statement. "As a state with the lowest per capita debt in the nation and our superior logistical advantages, we pride ourselves on investing in incumbent businesses."

WS Packaging Group Inc. is one of the largest label converting operations in North America with more than 45 years of experience in label printing and packaging.

Jobless claims continue to drop

The number of people applying for U.S. unemployment benefits declined 20,000 last week to 331,000, suggesting that Americans are facing fewer layoffs and better job prospects.

The U.S. Labor Department said the four-week average, a less volatile measure, ticked up 250 to 334,000. That remains near pre-recession levels and serves as evidence that job losses have waned.

A total of 3.47 million Americans received benefits as of Jan. 18, down from 3.58 million the week before.