News

Labor and Employment

Kimberly Redmond | Equities.com |

Americans opened their wallets and spent last month, giving retail sales an unexpected rebound after plunging the month before, the US Commerce Department reported Thursday.

The continued surge in COVID-19 cases nationwide, however, has changed where Americans are spending their money.


Reuters | Equities.com |

The number of Americans filing new claims for jobless benefits fell last week to the lowest level in nearly 18 months, offering more evidence that job growth was being hindered by labor shortages rather than cooling demand for workers.

Initial claims for state unemployment benefits dropped 35,000 to a seasonally adjusted 310,000 for the week ended Sept. 4, the Labor Department said on Thursday.


AP News | Equities.com |

Inspired by the New Deal-era Civilian Conservation Corps, President Joe Biden and congressional Democrats are pushing for a modern counterpart: a Civilian Climate Corps that would create hundreds of thousands of jobs building trails, restoring streams and helping prevent catastrophic wildfires.

Building on Biden’s oft-repeated comment that when he thinks of climate change, he thinks of jobs, the White House says the $10 billion program would address both priorities as young adults find work installing solar panels, planting trees, digging irrigation ditches and boosting outdoor recreation.


Reuters | Equities.com |

Half of U.S. small-business owners reported unfilled job openings in August as finding qualified workers remains an ongoing challenge, a trade group said on Thursday.

The National Federation of Independent Business said in its monthly jobs report that 50% of small business owners reported unfilled job openings in August on a seasonally adjusted basis, up from 49% in July. August's reading is 28 percentage points higher than the 48-year average of 22%.


Reuters | Equities.com |

Walmart said on Thursday that it plans to raise wages for more than 565,000 store workers by at least $1 an hour, as the all-important holiday shopping season is set to kick off in the middle of a desperate labor crunch across the country.

With its third wage investment over the past year, Walmart's U.S. average hourly wage is now $16.40, Walmart U.S. Chief Executive John Furner said in a memo to staff.


AP News | Equities.com |

Millions of jobless Americans who have depended on federal unemployment aid as a financial lifeline are about to lose those benefits just as the delta variant of the coronavirus poses a renewed threat to the economy and the job market.

Two programs — one that provides jobless aid to self-employed and gig workers, the other to people who’ve been unemployed for more than six months — will expire Monday. As a result, 8.9 million people will lose those weekly benefit payments, according to an estimate by Oxford Economics.


Kimberly Redmond | Equities.com |

Walmart Inc plans to hire 20,000 employees for its supply chain division to help keep merchandise moving ahead of what is expected to be a busy holiday shopping season.

In a press release Tuesday, the Bentonville, Arkansas-based retail giant, said the positions, which will be a mix of part-time and full-time jobs, will be in more than 250 Walmart and Sam’s Club distribution centers, fulfillment centers and transportation offices.


Kimberly Redmond | Equities.com |

General Motors Company (NYSE: GM) is requiring US-based salaried employees to disclose their COVID-19 vaccination status to help guide the automaker’s safety protocols going forward.

In response to a nationwide surge in coronavirus cases, GM introduced a confidential reporting requirement earlier this month for its 48,000 white-collar workers and is encouraging hourly workers to report their status as well, according to The Detroit Free Press.


Reuters | Equities.com |

Delta Air Lines on Wednesday said employees will have to pay $200 more every month for their company-sponsored healthcare plan if they choose to not be vaccinated against COVID-19.

The move to add a surcharge to health insurance contributions is the latest tactic by corporate America to push employees to get the shots to fight the pandemic.


AP News | Equities.com |

The number of people seeking unemployment benefits fell last week for a fourth straight time to a pandemic low, the latest sign that America’s job market is rebounding from the pandemic recession as employers boost hiring to meet a surge in consumer demand.

The Labor Department reported Thursday that jobless claims fell by 29,000 to 348,000. The four-week average of claims, which smooths out week-to-week volatility, also fell — by 19,000, to just below 378,000, also a pandemic low.