Posts belonging to Category Unemployment



No-deal Brexit uncertainty forces UK producers to plan factory shutdowns

Excess stock leading to a collapse in sales for UK producers.

British companies have drawn up plans to temporarily close factories after demand for their goods nose-dived following Theresa May’s decision to delay Brexit, senior industry figures have told Business Insider.

Producers have seen production levels collapse due to what one industry chief called the “stop-start” Brexit effect.

Fears of a no-deal Brexit in March and April led many companies to build up large stockpiles of goods.

http://www.businessinsider.com

 

Uber and Lyft strikes

US drivers stop taking rides in protest over pay

Rideshare drivers are striking and protesting in major cities across the United States, with many participating in a 24-hour strike of the Uber and Lyft apps that began at midnight on 8 May.

Cities affected by the stoppage – which varies in length from two-hour strikes to day-long boycotts – include Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco, San Diego, Philadelphia and others. Strikes are also expected overseas in Britain, Australia and elsewhere.

The protests come the day before Uber launches its shares in a public offering on the US stock exchange.

http://www.theguardian.com/

Low productivity jobs continue to drive employment growth

Employment is rising in OECD countries

The latest Compendium of Productivity Indicators says the trend has compounded the impact of generally weak business investment on productivity growth. The downward pressure on wages may have allowed firms to defer investment decisions, instead meeting increased demand by hiring additional staff and, in turn, undermining the potential for investment-driven productivity growth, the report says.

In France, Germany and the United Kingdom, the top three sectors with the largest employment gains between 2010 and 2017 accounted for one third of total job creation but paid below average wages. Moreover, in Belgium, Finland, Italy and Spain, industries with above average labour productivity levels saw net job losses. The data show wage growth (adjusted for inflation) improving in recent years but remaining below pre-crisis rates in two thirds of OECD countries despite a period of negligible or slow wage growth, and earlier declines in purchasing power in the aftermath of the crisis. Indeed, real wages remain below crisis levels in Greece, Italy and Spain, and have also contracted in recent years in Belgium and Canada.

More jobs in lower paid sectors such as accommodation and catering and health and residential care, weigh on average wages across the economy as a whole.

http://www.oecd.org/

US economy grows by 3.2% in the first quarter

Exports rose 3.7% in the first quarter, while imports decreased by 3.7%

The U.S. economy grew at a faster pace than expected in the first quarter and posted its best growth to start a year in four years.

First-quarter gross domestic product expanded by 3.2%, the Bureau of Economic Analysis said Friday in its initial read of the economy for that period. Economists polled by Dow Jones expected growth of 2.5%. It was the first time since 2015 that first-quarter GDP topped 3%.

http://www.cnbc.com

Amazon’s warehouse-worker tracking system can automatically fire people without a human supervisor’s involvement

Amazon has fired more than 300 workers, citing productivity, at a single facility in Baltimore in a single year 

Amazon’s demanding culture of worker productivity has been revealed in multiple investigations. But a new report indicates that the company doesn’t just track worker productivity at its warehouses — it also has a system that can automatically fire them.

Amazon has fired more than 300 workers, citing productivity, at a single facility in Baltimore in a single year (August 2017 through September 2018), The Verge’s Colin Lecher reported. The Verge cited a letter by an Amazon attorney as part of a case with the National Labor Relations Board.

An Amazon spokesperson confirmed to Business Insider, “Approximately 300 employees turned over in Baltimore related to productivity in this timeframe. In general, the number of employee terminations have decreased over the last two years at this facility as well as across North America.”

Amazon’s system tracks a metric called “time off task,” meaning how much time workers pause or take breaks, The Verge reported. It has been previously reported that some workers feel so pressured that they don’t take bathroom breaks.

http://www.businessinsider.com

Tesla will roll out 1 million robot-taxis next year

Tesla to compete with Uber

On Monday, CEO Elon Musk revealed the company’s plans to compete with incumbents like Uber with the company’s strategy for an autonomous ride-hailing fleet. Robo-taxis are essentially any Tesla vehicle with autonomous-driving functionality. To turn a Tesla into a robo-taxi, a car’s owner simply adds it to the Tesla Network platform by way of the company’s app.
Musk said that by “next year for sure, we will have over 1 million robo-taxis on the road.” Riders will be able to summon a robo-taxi via the same Tesla app – similarly to how they call for an Uber or Lyft today. The key difference, of course, is that there won’t be a driver in the car.
http://www.msn.com/

What is Modern Monetary Theory (MMT) ?

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is a fan of this geeky economic theory called MMT

  • MMT is a big departure from conventional economic theory. It proposes governments that control their own currency can spend freely, as they can always create more money to pay off debts in their own currency.
  • The theory suggests government spending can grow the economy to its full capacity, enrich the private sector, eliminate unemployment, and finance major programs such as universal healthcare, free college tuition, and green energy.
  • If the spending generates a government deficit, this isn’t a problem either. The government’s deficit is by definition the private sector’s surplus.
  • Increased government spending will not generate inflation as long as there is unused economic capacity or unemployed labour, MMT proposes. It is only when an economy hits physical or natural constraints on its productivity — such as full employment — that inflation happens because that is when supply fails to meet demand, jacking up prices.
  • MMT proponents argue governments can control inflation by spending less or withdrawing money from the economy through taxes.

https://www.businessinsider.com/

The Shutdown now hurts the US Economy

A chunk of revenues that they might never recoup

None of the 21 government shutdowns since 1976 made a real dent in the economy — purchases were simply delayed until the government re-opened and federal workers regained their lost wages.
This time is already different.
Businesses are warning investors that the nearly month-long shutdown has taken a chunk out of revenues that they might never recoup, like the $25 million that Delta Airlines lost because of fewer bookings than anticipated in February.

http://www.cnn.com

Upbeat employment report in US

U.S. economic strength

U.S. employers hired the most workers in 10 months in December while boosting wages, pointing to sustained strength in the economy that could ease fears of a sharp slowdown in growth.

The upbeat employment report from the Labor Department on Friday stood in stark contrast with reports this week showing Chinese factory activity contracting for the first time in 19 months in December and weak manufacturing across much of Europe.

Concerns about the U.S. economy heightened following surveys showing sharp declines in consumer confidence and manufacturing activity last month, which roiled financial markets. Both were seen as more red flags that the economic expansion, now in its ninth year and the second longest on record, is losing steam.

https://reuters.com/

White House meets tech executives on future of jobs

Bold ideas to ensure American dominance on AI

The Trump administration, which has had strained relations with technology companies, met on Thursday with top tech executives to discuss ways to “ensure American dominance” of innovation and the future of high tech jobs. Chief executive officers who participated included Microsoft Corp’s (MSFT.O) Satya Nadella, Alphabet Inc’s (GOOGL.O) Sundar Pichai, Qualcomm Inc’s (QCOM.O) Steven Mollenkopf and Oracle Corp’s (ORCL.N) Safra Catz, the White House said.

President Donald Trump briefly stopped by the meeting that focused on the latest and next-generation technology, including artificial intelligence (AI), a White House official confirmed. “We would like their bold ideas to ensure American dominance” on AI, 5G wireless communication, quantum computing and advanced manufacturing, a senior White House official said.

http://www.reuters.com

artificial intelligence, Board Directors, China, entrepreneur, Europe, global economy, global finance, jobs, stock exchange, stocks, taxation, Unemployment, USA

3.7 percent unemployment rate in US

A 49-year low

For a solid decade after the collapse of Lehman Brothers touched off a global financial crisis, there was good reason to think the U.S. economy remained broken, from skepticism about the health of the labor market to tepid economic growth and the moribund rate of interest paid on U.S. Treasury bonds.

In a heartbeat, that seemed to change this week, adding facts on the ground to Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell’s glowing portrait of a historically rosy and extended period of super-low unemployment, modest inflation and steady growth.
It came through Amazon.com Inc’s (AMZN.O) move to a $15 minimum wage, possibly setting the bar for companies nationwide. It came through a jump in long-term bond yields that signaled faith the gears of growth will remain engaged for a record-long recovery.
http://www.reuters.com

Boris Johnson humiliated Theresa May

Tory members cheered every word

Imagine being Theresa May, at half past 12 this afternoon. Walking, with your party chairman, through the venue of your party conference – when you happen upon a swarm of photographers. But those photographers aren’t here to see you. And nor, not far from the swarm, are the hundreds upon hundreds of your party members, who are currently standing in the most enormous, snaking queue.
The queue isn’t for the main hall, where your ministers are giving speeches to promote your policies. The main hall is practically empty. Your members aren’t interested. They don’t want to see your ministers, or hear about your policies.
http://www.telegraph.co.uk

Amazon Could Open Up to 3,000 Cashierless Stores by 2021

Shoppers use a smartphone app to enter the store

Amazon.com Inc. is considering a plan to open as many as 3,000 new AmazonGo cashierless stores in the next few years, according to people familiar with matter, an aggressive and costly expansion that would threaten convenience chains like 7-Eleven Inc., quick-service sandwich shops like Subway and Panera Bread, and mom-and-pop pizzerias and taco trucks.
Chief Executive Officer Jeff Bezos sees eliminating meal-time logjams in busy cities as the best way for Amazon to reinvent the brick-and-mortar shopping experience, where most spending still occurs. But he’s still experimenting with the best format: a convenience store that sells fresh prepared foods as well as a limited grocery selection similar to 7-Eleven franchises, or a place to simply pick up a quick bite to eat for people in a rush, similar to the U.K.-based chain Pret a Manger, one of the people said.
An Amazon spokeswoman declined to comment. The company unveiled its first cashierless store near its headquarters in Seattle in 2016 and has since announced two additional sites in Seattle and one in Chicago. Two of the new stores offer only a limited selection of salads, sandwiches and snacks, showing that Amazon is experimenting with the concept simply as a meal-on-the-run option. Two other stores, including the original AmazonGo, also have a small selection of groceries, making it more akin to a convenience store.
Shoppers use a smartphone app to enter the store. Once they scan their phones at a turnstile, they can grab what they want from a range of salads, sandwiches, drinks and snacks — and then walk out without stopping at a cash register. Sensors and computer-vision technology detect what shoppers take and bills them automatically, eliminating checkout lines.
http://www.bloomberg.com

Bernanke, Paulson and Geithner discuss the 2008 financial crisis

The three bailed out Wall Street to help Main Street

Former Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke, Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson and New York Fed President Timothy Geithner reflected on the financial crisis during a forum in Washington, D.C. A decade later, the three officials who helped pull the U.S. out of the financial crisis now struggle with the choices they made, particularly considering that the public still sees the moves as a bailout for Wall Street.
The three spoke during a forum at the Brookings Institution in a talk moderated by CNBC’s Andrew Ross Sorkin, who wrote “Too Big to Fail,” a chronicle of the crisis told from the inside of those who experienced it first-hand.
“We stepped in before the banks had collapsed and we did some things to fix the financial system which are very hard to explain because they are objectionable things,” Paulson said. “In the United States of America there’s a fundamental sense of fairness that the American people have. … You don’t want to reward the arsonist.”

Boris Johnson says May's Brexit plan 'worse than status quo'

Tory Brexiteers have attacked Theresa May’s Brexit plan

Boris Johnson and other leading Tory Brexiteers have attacked Theresa May’s Brexit plan at an event putting the economic case for leaving the EU without an agreement on trade. The Economists For Free Trade report said the UK had “nothing to fear” from a “clean break” from the EU and using World Trade Organisation rules. This could give an £80bn boost to the tax base and cut prices by 8%, it said. But the claims were branded “Project Fantasy” by Labour MP Chuka Umunna. And Chancellor Philip Hammond said the economic assumptions behind the analysis were “not sustainable” and out of line with other forecasts.
Mr Hammond, who earlier on Tuesday announced Bank of England Governor Mark Carney would be extending his contract until January 2020 to provide continuity after Brexit, has issued a fresh warning of “some turbulence” if the UK left the EU in March without a deal.