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The state of Connecticut is mired in a financial crisis. Facing a projected $1.7 billion deficit over the next two years, the General Assembly has yet to agree on a new budget to cover that gap while maintaining crucial services. Earlier this week, an article published in The Atlantic asked the question, "What on Earth is Wrong with Connecticut?"

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Efforts on the state level to introduce paid family leave are critical to overcoming gender equity problems in the workforce, according to advocates.

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According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, an estimated 56 percent of women will be employed or looking for work by the year 2024 -- that's a nearly one percent decrease from 2015.

Still, investment in female leadership has grown at some workplaces -- including Connecticut-based United Technologies Corporation.

An estimated 222,000 jobs were added to the U.S. economy in June, according to the monthly employment report released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics Friday.

"The job gains were better than expected — most economists had predicted a gain of 180,000 jobs," NPR's Chris Arnold reports for our Newscast unit.

The unemployment rate rose slightly to 4.4 percent from 4.3 percent — a 16-year low that was hit in May.

Under pressure from the growth of online retailing, TV shopping giant QVC intends to acquire its rival HSN Inc. in a $2.1 billion deal.

The merger, announced Thursday, would create a company with $14 billion in annual sales, NPR's Yuki Noguchi reports.

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