Labor & Economic News Blog

Friday, September 30, 2005

Sparton, which produces military, aerospace and medical products, backs out of plans to buy Iowa plant
MOUNT PLEASANT, Iowa -- A Michigan company that had planned to buy a southeast Iowa electronics manufacturing plant and save 350 jobs has backed out.


NWA pilots await next move
Northwest Airlines and its unions will settle their differences "one way or the other" by the end of the year, forecasts pilots union leader Mark McClain.


Northwest, Continental battle over pension bill
In Business
WASHINGTON, D.C. -- A nasty fight has sprung up on Capitol Hill among the nation's older airlines over which of them should get a break on federally required pension payments.


Northwest ups ante for pilot cuts
In Business
Northwest Airlines told its pilots union this week that it now wants $358 million in annual cost reductions, 11 percent more than its prior proposal, and an amount that the head of Northwest's pilot union called "extreme."


Boeing Machinists back in the fold
Boeing Machinists vote by an 80 percent margin to endorse a new contract with the aerospace company, ending the shortest strike in four decades after 28 days.


Crucial Italian budget approved
Italian ministers approve a controversial deficit cutting budget designed to reform the country's public finances.


France's jobless recovery stalls
France's jobless rate remains little changed in August, as the economy continues to perform sluggishly.


Sharp rise in India's growth rate
India's economic growth tops 8% in the first quarter, thanks to strong manufacturing output and consumer demand.


Upbeat Japan's economy picks up
Japan's economy steps up a gear in August, as unemployment falls while household spending rises.


Public sector growth in UK accelerating
The public sector is creating new jobs at a faster rate than private business, according to the latest official data. At the same time, UK productivity is now at its lowest level for 15 years, further figures from the Office for National Statistics showed.


Japan data suggests easing deflation, focus on BOJ
The nationwide core consumer price index (CPI), which excludes volatile fresh food costs, was down just 0.1 percent in August from the same month a year earlier.


IMF sees eurozone growth above 2.0 pct in 2007
Although eurozone growth has been 'disappointing' compared with the United States and the rest of the world, the IMF is relatively optimistic about the area's prospects, said its European department director, Michael Deppler. '


Canada's economy grows by 0.2% in July: StatsCan
OTTAWA - The Canadian economy advanced by a modest 0.2 per cent in July, Statistics Canada said Friday, with gains in the oil and gas industry offsetting hard times in the energy-dependent manufacturing sector.


Indonesian Students, Police Clash Over Gas
By By CHRIS BRUMMITT, Associated Press Writer
Riot police fired tear gas Friday at about 100 rock-throwing students who were among thousands demonstrating on the eve of drastic fuel price increases, which Indonesia's president defended as the only way to stave off an economic crisis...


Consumer spending falls, inflation rises (Reuters)
Reuters - U.S. August consumer spending and income fell, partly due to Hurricane Katrina, and inflation edged up amid record oil prices, bolstering expectations the Federal Reserve will keep raising interest rates.


Consumer spending falls, inflation rises (Reuters)
Reuters - U.S. August consumer spending and income fell, partly due to Hurricane Katrina, and inflation edged up amid record oil prices, bolstering expectations the Federal Reserve will keep raising interest rates.


Thursday, September 29, 2005

Striking Boeing workers prepare to vote on revised contract
In Business & Technology
Machinists union leaders have recommended that workers accept the revised contract offer. About 18,400 union members...


Kaiser, unions reach five-year contract covering 82,000 employees
Kaiser Permanente and its unionized workers announced a five-year contract Thursday covering 82,000 employees in eight states and Washington, D.C.. The Oakland-based HMO and union officials said the contract covers nearly all...


French PM Pledges More Budget Tightening (AP)
AP - French Prime Minister Dominique de Villepin pledged Thursday to further tighten public spending in 2007 — an election year — to bring France's budget deficit within EU limits.


Jobless claims plunge (Reuters)
Reuters - The number of Americans filing new claims for jobless benefits dropped by a larger-than-expected 79,000 last week as the number of hurricane-related applications dropped sharply, a government report showed on Thursday.


Manufacturers cut outlook for growth (Reuters)
Reuters - A U.S. manufacturing group on Thursday cut its outlook for 2005 growth and factory output due to the destruction of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita, but said economic expansion should rebound in 2006 as rebuilding begins.


Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Mayor: Job cuts in Detroit unless union deal in 20 days
Unless union workers agree to pay cuts and health care concessions in the next 20 days, the City of Detroit will be forced to lay off hundreds more workers to keep from running short of cash by the end of the year, city officials said Tuesday. The continuing dire financial outlook emerged as Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick briefed the City Council on his proposals for keeping the city solvent through the next budget year.


Gate Gourmet strikes peace deal
Former staff at Gate Gourmet vote to back a deal to end the industrial dispute at Heathrow Airport.


Unions in UK win vote to support strikes
Unions have won a Labour conference vote on their call for employment law changes to allow industrial action in support of a strike elsewhere. The Transport and General Workers' Union's motion, prompted by the dispute at airline catering company Gate Gourmet, was passed by 69% to 31%.


State of the unions
"Day One" saw US Airways exit bankruptcy Tuesday and merge with America West Airlines. Now, "Day Two" begins the long, tough task of putting their employee groups together.


Breakaway union federation wants Wal-Mart workers
Leaders from unions that broke away from the AFL-CIO pledged Tuesday to organize Wal-Mart Stores Inc. workers and reach out to those who lost their jobs due to Hurricane Katrina.


Italian unions call for transport strike
ROME -- The Sult union, one of the unions that called the strike, said flight attendants working at state airline Alitalia, as well as state railway and bus workers, would join the protest.


Norway authority okays N.Skog mill closure
The planned closure of the Union mill in south Norway, with annual capacity of 260,000 tonnes of paper, did not violate sections of competition laws barring an abuse of a dominant market position, the company said in a statement. '


Dutch economy still lagging behind Swiss, Scandinavian
A number of other small European countries - Finland, Sweden, Denmark, Norway and Switzerland - are in the top 10. Finland is actually in first place, followed by the US.


Nordic countries and East Asian tigers top the rankings in the World Economic Forum's 2005 competitiveness ran
Nordic countries and East Asian tigers top the rankings in the World Economic Forum's 2005 competitiveness rankings Australia, India, Ireland and Poland all ...


Outsourcing hub Bangalore sees 20 percent growth
BANGALORE, India - India's technology hub Bangalore experienced a 20 percent growth to 90 billion rupees ($2.05 billion) in its software and back-office outsourcing exports in the April-September half-year period, an official said today.


Higher percentage of Latino startups
Latinos and immigrants start companies at higher rates than white non-Latinos, while blacks increasingly are jumping into business ownership, a new study finds.


Brazilian Currency Gains for Fifth Day in Six on Increased Trade, Inflows
28 (Bloomberg) -- Brazil's real gained for a fifth day in six on increased dollar inflows into South America's largest economy from record exports and trade surpluses.


Sanyo speeds up job cuts with high loss forecast
Sanyo boosted its net loss forecast for the year to next March to 140 billion yen ($1.24 billion) from 92 billion yen, citing sliding prices of electronics products and the lingering effect of earthquake damage to a chip factory last year.


Union slams decision to shelve Temporary Workers Directive
Trade unions have slammed a European Commission plan to scrap the draft ‘Temporary Workers Directive’ (TWD) which would have ensured temporary staff enjoyed the same conditions as permanent workers.


Major economic reforms in Kuwait
KUWAIT: In a pragmatic move to take optimum advantage of the recently concluded US-Kuwait free trade agreement, a special strategy for the country's major economic reforms will be introduced soon.


World Bank grants €41.4 mln for agricultural research in Romania
The World Bank will grant Romania a €41.4 million loan for agricultural research, food safety and agricultural consultancy as part of MAKIS project, "Modernisation of Agricultural Knowledge and Information System", ACT Media News Agency reports. The project will be carried out over five years (2005-2010) and will develop three components in the field on EU integration:


French unemployment falls for 6th month in row
PARIS, Oct 28 (AFP) - A drop in unemployment for the sixth month running in France is pleasing economists but has so far failed to convince householders of a brighter future. '


GM-CAW reach tentative agreement, strike by 17,000 workers averted
Canadian Auto Workers union president Buzz Hargrove leaves a scrum after providing an update on talks with General Motors of Canada in Toronto on Tuesday.


PanAfrica: Economic Growth Rate in Sub-Saharan Africa 'Strong'
This resilient growth performance has been obviously helped by the pickup in activity in South Africa, where the growth rate has increased,' he told reporters, 'and in many other countries' as well.


Ghana: Cost of Doing Business - Ghana Ranked 82nd in the World
In the just released 2006 Cost of Doing Business Report, the World Development Report ranked Ghana 82 out of 155 countries as a good place for doing business, compared to the 86th position it holds this year.


30.5 million people in sub-Saharan Africa need food aid, UN report warns
Cereal import requirements in 2005/06 are expected to remain high at about 3.2 million tonnes.


Boeing Machinists Could Return To Work This Week
The effect of the strike that began Sept. 2 should crystallize by the end of this week, when Boeing releases its September delivery statistics.


France plans for 2.25 pct economic growth next year (AFP)
AFP - France presented a budget for 2006 based on economic growth of 2.25 percent, a budget deficit just within EU limits and an oil price of 60 dollars.


Europe 'losing competitive edge'
Europe's core big economies are losing their competitive edge, but smaller Nordic nations hold their place. Britain, Germany, Spain and France all dropped in the rankings of the World Economic Forum's (WEF) latest global competitiveness report.


Slowest UK GDP growth in 12 years
The UK economy was growing at an annual rate of just 1.5% in the second quarter of 2005, according to new figures. The unexpected revision meant that UK growth was at its weakest since 1993.


MAKING ENDS MEET / The well-off are better off, but the ranks of the poor are growing, and middle- and low-income workers feel pressure of high prices
By Jason B. Johnson
The gap between high-income and low-income Americans is widening, the ranks of the poor in California and nationwide are swelling, and middle-class workers have lost ground compared with the 1970s, several national and state studies show. A disturbing...


Report: Illegal Immigration Increasing
By By STEPHEN OHLEMACHER, Associated Press Writer
Illegal immigrants are increasing despite tighter border security and now outnumber foreigners moving to the United States legally. The Pew Hispanic Center reported Tuesday that immigration in general has been picking up,...


SACRAMENTO / Prop. 75 backers, foes scrap at Capitol / Measure would hurt unions' political funding
By Christian Berthelsen
Conservative proponents of a November ballot initiative that would make it more difficult for public employee unions to make political contributions faced harsh questioning Tuesday from a legislative panel stocked with labor-friendly Democrats, who called the...


SAN FRANCISCO / Hornblower Yachts picked to operate ferries to Alcatraz / Union workers at Blue and Gold dismayed at change
By Carl Nolte
The National Park Service has picked Hornblower Yachts Inc. to take over the lucrative contract for ferry service to Alcatraz Island, it was announced Tuesday. The Park Service and Hornblower will now engage in exclusive negotiations for the Alcatraz...


SAN FRANCISCO / Fire Dept. initiates random drug tests
By Jaxon Van Derbeken
Fire Department officials began random drug and alcohol testing this week of the city's 1,600 firefighters. The testing comes after years of controversy over accusations that the department tolerated on-duty drinking. The plan is to test as many...


Strong Durable Goods Data Boosts Stocks
By By MICHAEL J. MARTINEZ, AP Business Writer
A strong showing from America's manufacturing sector sent stocks higher Wednesday as investors' concerns about a slowing economy eased. With Wall Street increasingly worried about consumer spending in the wake of the Gulf...


Weak outlook for state seen / Many are working under the table, UCLA group says
By Tom Abate
California's economic outlook is "mediocre at best" in the short term, according to an influential forecasting group, which says the state's job recovery has been too dependent on a housing boom that could go bust. The report set for release...


DaimlerChrysler to Cut 8,500 Mercedes Jobs
By By MATT MOORE, AP Business Writer
German-American automaker DaimlerChrysler AG said Wednesday it will cut 8,500 jobs at its Mercedes Car Group in a bid to return the troubled brand to profitability. The company said the cuts, which will take place in...


Snow pleased with China yuan moves (Reuters)
Reuters - The United States is pleased with China's currency steps but wants Beijing to move faster toward a free-floating yuan, U.S. Treasury Secretary John Snow said on Wednesday.


Tuesday, September 27, 2005

A Steadfast G.M. Faces Strike by Union in Canada Tuesday Night
The continued demands by General Motors for job cuts and reduced work breaks left open the prospect of a strike by the Canadian Auto Workers.


America West, US Airways Finalize Union
America West and US Airways finalized their union Tuesday, combining to form the nation's fifth-largest domestic carrier.


Breakaway Unions Meet to Form Federation
By By BETSY TAYLOR, Associated Press Writer
Leaders from unions that broke away from the AFL-CIO pledged Tuesday to organize Wal-Mart workers and reach out to those who lost their jobs due to Hurricane Katrina. The Change to Win Coalition met for its founding...


Northwest flight attendants fear becoming lowest paid in industry
BLOOMINGTON, Minn. -- As Northwest Airlines Corp. flight attendants prepare to return to the bargaining table, their union says the carrier's proposed cost-cutting target would make them the lowest paid in the industry.


Outsourcing turns wheel of globalization
Cheap labour, lower transport costs and widespread access to the Internet and communications has helped to develop the Asia/Pacific outsourcing sector into a multibillion dollar industry.


College divide threatens to keep the poor in poverty
Over the past 30 years the poor have made little progress earning four-year degrees, increasingly the key to better jobs and middle-class security.


Africa in need of educated leadership
Africa in need of educated leadership Richard Akinjide Chief among the forces affecting political folly is lust for power, named by Tacitus as 'the most flagrant of all the passions.'


Desperate migrants lay siege to Spain's African border
Waves of would-be migrants descended on the 10ft fence before dawn, deploying scores of makeshift ladders in what authorities called the biggest attempt of its kind to force entrance to the enclave.


Kenya issues ultimatum to US on trade talks
By Elizabeth Mwai Kenya will only support the US position at the forthcoming World Trade Organisation's ministerial conference in Hong Kong if the US government lifts a travel advisory it has issued on Kenya, the Government said yesterday.


Spanish police thwart migrants from Africa
MADRID About 500 Africans tried to scale a fence between Morocco and Melilla on Tuesday in the biggest attempt this year to use the tiny Spanish enclave in North Africa as a route into Europe, Spanish officials said.


Agreement with EU could hurt Kenya
Nairobi Kenya's chances of fighting poverty and growing its economy will be harmed if it signs a new economic agreement with the European Union in 2008, a human rights group said.


Retirement plans pose challenges for some workers
In Business
Long life can be a liability. People want to ease out of work. And where to find the money?


German Business Confidence Unexpectedly Up (AP)
AP - German business confidence improved unexpectedly in September but executives' outlook appeared to darken after the Sept. 18 election failed to produce a conclusive result, a closely watched survey showed Tuesday.


Fed must be vigilant on inflation: Yellen (Reuters)
Reuters - The U.S. Federal Reserve must continue to uphold its promise of price stability by keeping inflation at bay, San Francisco Fed President Janet Yellen said in London on Tuesday.


Consumer Confidence Plummets in September (AP)
AP - Consumer confidence plummeted almost 19 points in September, its biggest drop in 15 years, as Americans worried about the economic fallout of Hurricane Katrina and rising gasoline prices.


Monday, September 26, 2005

Thousands of Sears retirees to see health costs increase
HOFFMAN ESTATES, Ill. -- Thousands of retired Sears Holding Corp. workers under the age of 65 will soon have to cover the full costs of their medical insurance as the company bids to reduce costs after being acquired by Kmart.


PDC complaint filed vs. teacher
In News
OLYMPIA Washington -- The Evergreen Freedom Foundation has filed a complaint with the state Public Disclosure Commission, alleging that a representative of the Federal Way Education Association broke the law by putting a union newsletter, which contained a candidate endorsement, in teacher mailboxes.


Boeing says strike changed nothing, but analysts foresee more outsourcing
By on Business & Technology
The Puget Sound region has already lost some Boeing work because of the Machinists strike. Last week, the company's fabrication division...


Boeing reaches agreement with union — strike likely over
By on Local News
The 23-day-old Boeing Machinists strike looks all but over.


Boeing negotiators sit back down with Machinists union
In Local News
Boeing Co. has resumed contract talks with the striking Machinists union, a Boeing spokesman said today


Labor's new frontier Service sector demands new organizing tactics
By on Business & Technology
As the Boeing Machinists strike enters its fourth week, unions representing a much larger constituency are gearing up for their own effort...


Machinists, Boeing nail down contract
By on Business & Technology
The Machinists strike at Boeing looks all but over as union members reacted enthusiastically to details of a tentative agreement reached...


San Francisco schools union authorizes potential strike
Members of the San Francisco public schools service workers' union have voted to authorize a strike if mediation fails, union representatives announced over the weekend. Spokesman Thomas Dewar would not release the results, but said there was a high...


HAYWARD / Judge upholds city's living-wage ordinance / Cintas is ordered to reimburse 220 underpaid workers
By Henry K. Lee
An Alameda County judge has ordered Cintas, the nation's largest uniform rental company, to pay more than $800,000 in back pay for violating the city of Hayward's living-wage ordinance. In what is believed to be the first ruling of its kind over living-...


Boeing, Union Reach Tentative Agreement
By By ALLISON LINN, Associated Press Writer
Workers and management at Boeing Co.'s commercial airplane division hammered out a tentative agreement that could allow the airline giant to resume production quickly. Thousands of machinists will vote Thursday on whether to...


3 generations of retirement plans
In Business
One American family traces the course of retirement income from big, safe-bet pensions to a 401(k), to a third generation that expects nothing from anyone. They are the Williams family -- grandpa Bruce, son Brian and grandson Erik.


Pensions are in crisis
In Business
Retired mechanic Randy Daly had two thoughts when Northwest Airlines declared bankruptcy: "I'm going to lose medical benefits for me and my wife," he said. And, "If my pension gets turned over to the government, I'm going to lose some more money."


On business: Support for airline pension relief 'a jump ball'
In Business
There's sympathy in Congress for legislation that would permit Northwest and Delta Airlines extra time to make good on at least some of the billions in unfunded obligations they have made to current and future retirees, according to this week's edition of Pension & Investments, a trade magazine.


Polish election to decide pace of economic reform (Reuters)
Reuters - Poles vote on Sunday in a parliamentary election expected to move the European Union's biggest newcomer to the right and set the pace of economic reform.


Polish victorious right to kick off coalition talks (Reuters)
Reuters - Poland's center-right parties crushed the ruling left in an election on Sunday, exit polls showed, but face tough coalition talks as they remain split on the economy and will battle a presidential vote on October 9.


Snow, Chinese officials discuss currency (Reuters)
Reuters - U.S. Treasury Secretary John Snow on Saturday told Chinese officials greater exchange rate flexibility is necessary to help the global economy deal with economic distortions, a U.S. official said.


Greenspan sees house price cushion (Reuters)
Reuters - WASHINGTON (Reuters)- Though mortgage debt is rising, most Americans have built up so much equity in their homes that they could weather a price drop without serious harm. Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan said on Monday.


Friday, September 23, 2005

Labor shortage could mean crisis for ag
Raisin grape harvesting going full speed ahead in sunny Madera County as a lone worker, center rear, places the fruit on trays to dry.


Minimum wages in Washington rising again
Washington state's minimum wage - already the highest in the nation at $7.35 per hour - is likely to rise to $7.63 per hour on Jan. 1, 2006.


Minimum wage hikes in Oregon: There they go again
Wage jumps to $7.50 in JanuaryMitch - Oregon farmers will pay their workers at least $7.50 an hour come Jan.


UCLA Anderson Forecast Presents: The Hispanic Impact on the Southern California Economy; Los Angeles

Wednesday September 28th, UCLA

UCLA Anderson School of Management presents the quarterly UCLA Anderson Forecast economic conference, “The Hispanic Impact on the Southern California Economy.” Industry experts will discuss the growing impact of the Hispanic population on business, politics and society in California. The UCLA Forecast economists will present their September 2005 economic outlook for the nation, State and region.

The Economic Forecast for the Nation, State and Region:
Edward Leamer, director, UCLA Anderson Forecast.
Michael Bazdarich, senior economist, UCLA Anderson Forecast.
Christopher Thornberg, senior economist, UCLA Anderson Forecast.
Ryan Ratcliff, senior economist, UCLA Anderson Forecast.
Distinguished Speakers Include:
Antonio Villaraigosa, Mayor, City of Los Angeles.
Albert Carnesale, chancellor, UCLA.
David Hayes Bautista, professor of Medicine, director of the Center for the Study of Latino Health and Culture, UCLA.
David Kostin, chief sector strategist, Goldman Sachs.
Sergio Garcia de Alba Zepeda, Deputy Minister for Small and Medium Enterprises at the Mexican Ministry of Economy.
Monica Lozano, publisher, La Opinion.
Roberto Barragan, president, Valley Economic Development Corp.
Vincent Liuzzi, regional president, Wells Fargo.
Alberto Alvarado, director, Small Business Association.

7a.m. to 12p.m., Wednesday, September 28, 2005.

Korn Convocation Hall, UCLA Anderson School of Management.

Media: Hilary Rehder, Office of Media Relations, (310) 206-7707.Public: Winnie Ocean, Business Forecasting Office, (310) 206-1495.


Schwarzenegger starts campaign with effort to woo Hispanics
Arnold Schwarzenegger's rise from immigrant to Hollywood superstar won him the hearts of California's big Hispanic population two years ago, and their votes helped elect him governor.


Imf Predicts Higher Growth For Chile
A biannual report released by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) on Wednesday increased Chile's projected growth for 2006, but reduced slightly the figure for 2005.


Brazilian Economy to Expand as Much as 5 Percent Next Year, Levy Says
23 (Bloomberg) -- Brazilian Treasury Secretary Joaquim Levy said he expects economic growth to accelerate to as much as 5 percent next year.


IMF says Latin America better able to weather risk
Most Latin American countries have made structural reforms in the last three years that have improved their fiscal and debt profiles, Singh told reporters.


Private firm in UK help hospitals recruit east European doctors
HOSPITALS in the UK are turning to eastern Europe for specialist doctors because of a recruitment crisis and is using a private firm to find them.


Slovak labour getting more expensive
THE COST of Slovak labour is increasing fast. According to figures from Eurostat, the increase in the cost of Slovak labour was the third highest in the EU in the second quarter of 2005, the daily SME reported.


Martin challenges Irish firms to expand in eastern Europe
Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment Michel Martin, has urged Irish business to exploit opportunities in central and eastern Europe or watch as their competitors carve out a lucrative niche in some of the continent's most vibrant markets.


Russia, Ukraine should unite against economic crime - minister
MOSCOW, September 23 (RIA Novosti) - Both Russia and Ukraine are suffering from economic crime and should make joint efforts to tackle it, Russian Interior Minister Rashid Nurgaliyev said Friday.


BEC Bahamas strike action threat
By Raymond Kongwa
The Bahamas Electrical Workers Union (BEWU) marched on the BEC headquarters yesterday and threatened strike action after stalled negotiations.


Strikes in Barbados not the answer
JOSEPH GODDARD, General Secretary of the National Union of Public Workers (NUPW), said on Monday of last week that Government should set up an independent inquiry into the cause of the high number of industrial disputes in the public sector.


Telewest in UK fined over inflexible working
Telewest also offered Deborah Clarke, a call centre worker with seven years under her belt with the cable firm, an apology and agreed to work more closely with the Equal Opportunities Commission (EOC) in avoiding similar clashes in the future.


Connersville Indiana Visteon workers OK pact
Indy Star
Union members at the Visteon auto parts plant in Connersville have approved a new two-year contract. International Union of Electronic Workers-Communications Workers of America Local 919 members voted Thursday 913 to 526 in favor of the contract, union president John Pavy said.


Ford to reduce outside staffers
Ford Motor Co. , in the midst of eliminating 2,750 salaried position by year's end, also has been reviewing thousands of positions held by contract workers and will eliminate an unspecified number of those positions as well. "There are some contractors," Ford spokesman Tom Hoyt said Thursday of the impending cuts. He would not say how many contractors Ford employs through outside companies, sometimes called agencies.


In Wixom, workers at Ford await fate
Moufid (Moe) Leon says he hears a different story almost every day from the workers who stream into the restaurant he owns across the street from the Wixom Assembly Plant, the 48-year-old facility where workers build the Ford GT, Lincoln Town Car and Lincoln LS. Many of the patrons at Leon's, where lunch specials are $5.95, work at the plant, judging from the plastic Ford badges clipped onto their pockets, and Leon says he frequently asks them: "Any news?"


WHY CAN'T WE ALL GET ALONG?: Racial tensions seem to be rising, but some are working to bridge the divide in Detroit
Detroit Free Press
A historically segregated region undergoing rapid racial change. Several recent hate crimes. The worst economic climate in years. A mayor fighting for his political life. The emotional issue of a 24-hour Wal-Mart moving into a suburban neighborhood.


Furnitureland stores in UK in administration
Furnitureland collapses amid strong competition and weak demand, putting 500 jobs at risk across the UK.


Morrisons UK warns of depot closures
Morrisons has warned it may close three depots at the centre of strike talks, with the loss of 2,500 jobs.


France boosts family incentives
France pledges more money for families with three children to get working women to have more babies. The new measures include extra tax credits for childcare, 15,000 new creche places and more government money for mothers who take time off work to have their third child: a parental leave allowance of 750 euros (£509) a month for one year, though mothers can opt to claim the old benefit of 512 euros (£347) a month for three years instead.


Mine safety drive fails in China
China admits that a campaign to put safety before profit in the lucrative but hazardous coal mines has failed.


No breakthrough over trade deal
Officials from the EU, the US, India and Brazil have ended a day of negotiations as a December deadline for a global trade deal looms. Their meeting in Paris comes as part of efforts to save World Trade Organization (WTO) plans for a free trade agreement by 2006.


Bank and airport strikes in India
One million workers at state-run banks and insurance companies in India are to go on strike on 29 September to protest against government backing for mergers.


Goodyear Tire to Shut Down Plants
Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. said Friday it will close an undisclosed number of plants as part of a sweeping restructuring aimed at improving its North American tire business and saving up to $1 billion over the next three years. The Akron, Ohio-...


Brazil raises stakes over cotton
Brazil says it will ask the World Trade Organisation (WTO) for permission to impose sanctions on the US for failing to cut subsidies to cotton producers.


Zimbabwe: West Still Major Trading Partner Despite Look East Policy
EUROPE, America and Africa remain Zimbabwe's major trading partners despite government's Look East thrust, latest figures from the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) reveal. The figures show that local companies are still exporting the bulk of their products to traditional markets. Although the Look East policy started three years ago, the numbers indicate that there is very little business going on between Zimbabwe and Asian countries which are the major focus of the policy.


South Africa: Cosatu Dismisses IMF's Criticism of SA's 'Rigid' Labour Laws
THE Congress of South African Trade Unions (Cosatu) has slammed the International Monetary Fund's (IMF's) country report on SA, which found that the country's labour market was too rigid, and was hindering job creation. "The high levels of unemployment in SA cannot be blamed on the labour laws and minimum protection of standards that South African workers enjoy," Cosatu said yesterday.


IMF warns against signs of growing protectionism
The International Monetary Fund voiced fears yesterday about growing protectionist pressures and warned that a retreat from free trade could trigger a crisis for the global economy.


South Korean Third-Quarter Consumer Confidence Slumps to Lowest This Year
23 (Bloomberg) -- South Korean consumers are the most pessimistic they've been this year, primarily because higher oil prices are eroding their disposable incomes, the central bank said, citing a survey of 2,486 households.


World Bank Urges Focus On Crumbling Infrastructure In CIS
The World Bank annual meetings this week are reviving focus on infrastructure development as a way of lifting countries out of poverty. The new emphasis has special importance for the poorest of the Soviet successor states, which inherited major infrastructure stocks but have been unable to maintain them. This has contributed to a decline in living standards in states from Moldova


IMF sounds alarm over Russian reforms, Yukos controversy
The IMF has issued a blunt warning over stalled economic reforms in Russia and 'heavy-handed' state intervention as highlighted by the Yukos affair.


Business as usual: The World Bank, the IMF and the liberalisation agenda
At the G8 summit in July, world leaders s developing countries should have the right to set their own economic policies. Put into effect, this would mean an end to more than 20 years of rich countries using their power as donors and creditors to force trade liberalisation on poor countries.


Siemens to cut hours to save jobs
Siemens said in a statement that it had reached agreement with its general works council and the powerful IG Metall labour union with regard to a package of measures to make its communications division more competitive. '


Just When Airlines Thought Things Couldn't Get Worse
In April, Southwest Airlines prepared a business plan based on oil prices at an unimaginable level: $55 a barrel.


Berkowitz, Jolley get nod for Port of Seattle from King County Labor Council
By on Local News
The King County Labor Council said yesterday it endorsed Rich Berkowitz and Jack Jolley in races for the Port of Seattle Commission. The endorsements strengthened their...


Machinists strike hits air-cargo firm hard
By on Business & Technology
The effects of the Machinists strike are rippling out to Boeing's customers around the world. A nearly completed 747 freighter stuck inside...


Union Leaders to Fight Tax Cuts
By By WILL LESTER, Associated Press Writer
Labor leaders said Thursday they would work to defeat any efforts to pay for rebuilding the Gulf Coast by cutting important federal programs. And union leaders in the AFL-CIO cautioned against further tax cuts while the government is paying for a war...


Katrina thrusts race and poverty onto national stage / Bush and Congress under pressure to act
By Marc Sandalow
Searing images of destitute African Americans huddled on rooftops, freeway overpasses, and the floors of the Superdome and New Orleans Convention Center will remain vivid, for many Americans, long after the Gulf Coast is rebuilt.


Week in economics ( - In the US the Federal Reserve again raised interest rates , this time to 3.75 per cent, despite the after-effects of Hurricane Katrina.


Week in economics ( - In the US the Federal Reserve again raised interest rates , this time to 3.75 per cent, despite the after-effects of Hurricane Katrina.


Thursday, September 22, 2005

UK Temporary Workers Speak Out To Protect Choice
The Recruitment & Employment Confederation (REC) took the views and concerns of the UK temporary workforce direct to number 10 Downing Street on Tuesday 20 September.


Part-time work trend leading to 'underemployment"
A new study has found one in three part-time workers wants to increase their hours.

The Melbourne University's Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research says half of part-time working men and 33 per cent of women who work part-time would like more work.

The institute has called for greater recognition of underemployment as a social issue.
It says in the last few years the number of underemployed has increased to 600,000, compared with the number of unemployed which is 530,000.


EU immigrants deported by plane
Illegal immigrants being held by three EU countries are put on a flight back to Romania in the first operation of its kind.


Tanzanian 30-year pension delay
Some 3,000 angry Tanzanians are staging a sit-in at the Finance Ministry to protest at a 30 year delay in receiving their retirement pay. About 29,500 former employees of the now defunct East African Community in Tanzania are demanding $400m but the government says it cannot afford it.


Spain reinforces African borders
Spanish authorities in the enclave of Melilla in North Africa are reinforcing border fences targeted by immigrants trying to leave Morocco.


EEOC files sex discrimination case against Newman University
The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission filed suit Wednesday against Wichita's Newman University in U.S. District Court in Kansas City, alleging that college administrators discriminated and retaliated against a former dean.


'Tourism boosting Trinidad & Tobag's GDP, jobs'
The travel and tourism industry will account for 13.8 per cent of Trinidad and Tobago's GDP this year and provide 16.7 per cent of total employment.


Brazil jobs steady; tamer inflation allows rate cuts
Brazil's jobless rate held steady at a three-year-low in August, official data showed on Thursday, and tame inflation data dovetailed with central bank comments suggesting stable prices would allow more interest rate cuts to spur economic growth.


International Monetary Fund calls for U.S. tax increases
However, the International Monetary Fund is deriding that goal as 'relatively unambitious' and suggesting that a better target would be to totally eliminate the deficit by 2010 with the help of tax increases.


FDI in India below potential: IMF
WASHINGTON: Interest of Foreign investors in India is growing substantially, yet Foreign Direct Investment flows are well below potential, the IMF has said.


South Africa's GDP expenditure growth pass 6%
The increase in real GDP was not confined to the q/q saa data, as the year-on-year (y/y) increase was an even higher 6.2% in the second quarter from a 5.3% y/y gain in the first quarter.


IMF raises prospects for Africa
The world body in its twice-yearly World Economic Outlook predicted that after slowing to 4.8 percent this year from 5.4 percent in 2004, economic growth in sub-Saharan Africa should jump to 5.9 percent in 2006.


The IMF has lost its influence
International Herald Tribune
Sometimes historic changes take place quietly, while no one is looking. Great institutions lose power with a whimper rather than a bang.


Strike threat as BA moves to punish union officials in August wild cat walkout
The walkout left 100,000 passengers stranded and cost the airline nearly 40m. Two of the union representatives face particularly serious charges and have been suspended, while a third has been allowed to continue working.


Union calls for Aer Lingus 'bullying' probe
By Paul O'Brien, Political ReporterA TRADE union representing staff at Aer Lingus has called for an independent investigation into the alleged bullying culture at the national airline.


UK factory orders 'remain weak'
Factory orders improved slightly in September - but remain near two-year lows, according to figures from the CBI.


Thanks to Rita, some Houston workers get 2 days off
Many companies across the Houston area quickly complied with Mayor Bill White's request to allow employees to take off today and Friday before Hurricane Rita hits. Banks closed branches, cellular telephone companies shuttered shops and big downtown law firms told their employees to go home.


Former union leader crosses Northwest mechanics' picket lines
MINNEAPOLIS -- Despite his long history as a union leader, Northwest Airlines maintenance inspector Mike Hurley is crossing the picket lines of striking mechanics.


Stagehands pactin Pittsburgh to cost Cultural Trust $2.6 million a year
The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust's tentative contract with the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees Local 3 will cost the nonprofit organization more than $2.6 million annually in wages and benefits.


Sony to Trim 10,000 Jobs in Restructuring
By By YURI KAGEYAMA, AP Business Writer
Sony Corp. said Thursday it will cut about 10,000 jobs, close 11 plants and shrink or terminate 15 unprofitable operations in an ambitious restructuring bid to revive its stumbling electronics business. The turnaround plan, which will reduce Sony's...


Delta Plans to Cut Up to 9,000 Jobs
By By HARRY R. WEBER, AP Business Writer
Delta Air Lines Inc. said Thursday it will cut up to 9,000 jobs, or 17 percent of the work force at its flagship service, and reduce pay and make changes to its route network to focus more on international flying as it moves swiftly to restructure its costs...


OSHA Levies Record Fine After BP Blast
By By ANABELLE GARAY, Associated Press Writer
BP Products North America, the owner of a Texas refinery where an explosion killed 15 people in March, was fined $21 million Thursday, a record for the government agency that oversees workplace safety. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration...


Jobless claims surge on Hurricane Katrina (Reuters)
Reuters - Hurricane Katrina's aftermath fueled a surge in initial U.S. claims for jobless aid last week to 432,000, the highest level in more than two years, the government said on Thursday.


Consumer Sentiment Erodes Key Index (AP)
AP - A widely followed gauge of future economic activity fell for the second straight month during August as consumer confidence sagged even before Hurricane Katrina struck the Gulf Coast.


Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Florida workers less confident
A third of Florida workers have told surveyors they are likely to look for a new job in the next year. That statistic, up from 28 percent in July, is from Spherion Corp.


Real workplace fight in Australian universities has yet to begin
MORE than half the universities in Australia are trying to finalise certified agreements that comply with the federal Government's Higher Education Workplace Relations Requirements by November 30.


As Fuel Costs Rise, Group Urges Federal Workforce to Telecommute
As fears of Hurricane Rita drove crude futures to a new record, an Internet-based pro-telecommuting group urged the federal government to take its own advice on energy conservation -- by promoting telecommuting among federal workers.


A Changing American Workplace, as Boomers Retire
Talk of the Nation, NPR Radio broadcast
September 21, 2005
As baby boomers start retiring, the nation's workforce will lose an immense amount of institutional knowledge. A look at what this means for the workplace, post-boomer.


Guangzhou Prison hosts job fair
BEIJING, Sept. 22 -- Some 120 inmates at the Guangzhou Prison signed letters of intention to work for 18 companies during a job fair held at the prison Tuesday.


Philippines cuts 2006 economic growth target
MANILA : Philippine government economic planners have cut their growth forecast next year by up to a percentage point with high oil prices seen as dampening consumer demand.


Union to meet Mt Cook New Zealand airline
Mt Cook Airlines will meet Engineering, Printing, and Manufacturing Union delegates in Christchurch today in a bid to resolve a strike by ground staff at Queenstown Airport.


Brussels to study HP job cuts
The French government asks the European Commission to investigate Hewlett-Packard's plans to cut 1,240 French jobs.


EU and US try to spur trade talks
EU and US officials make new efforts to resolve differences that are delaying a worldwide free trade agreement.


Attendants assail NWA
Northwest Airlines, flying while in bankruptcy, wants to position itself to outsource all flight attendant jobs on international flights, as well as all attendant jobs on planes with 100 or fewer seats.


Japan's Trade Surplus Shrank in August
Japan's trade surplus shrank 80 percent in August as rising crude oil prices increased the cost of imports to the country.


Tenure, Turnover and the Quality of Teaching
What is teacher quality? How can one measure it reliably? How does it relate to student learning? What can be done to improve it?


I.M.F. Warns of Imbalance in World Consumption
The International Monetary Fund said that global economic growth had become too dependent on a handful of countries, led by the U.S., that consume far more than they produce.


Boeing hopes to cash in on China's growing economy
The Boeing Co. predicts China will need more than 2,600 new airplanes worth $213 billion over the next 20 years as the country's economy expands and air travel becomes widespread, company officials said Tuesday.


Strike at Boeing concerns Japanese suppliers
By on Business & Technology
While wooing Japanese aerospace suppliers to set up shop in Washington state, Gov. Christine Gregoire is getting questions about the Machinists...


Raisin growers try to save crop after storm
By By JULIANA BARBASSA, Associated Press Writer
An early thunderstorm soaked California's vineyards and left puddles on trays of grapes left out to dry, threatening the nation's raisin crop even as many farmers missed the deadline that would qualify them for crop insurance.


Bankrupt Northwest to lay off 1,400 attendants
In Business
Northwest Airlines Corp. will lay off 1,400 flight attendants between Oct. 31 and January 2006, the bankrupt carrier told its flight attendants on Wednesday.


French Consumer Spending Surges in July (AP)
AP - French consumers flocked back to stores over the summer, lifting spending well above gloomy forecasts and providing a welcome boost to the economy, the national statistics agency said Wednesday.


UK finance minister under fire over economy ( - Gordon Brown's stewardship of the UK economy came under fire on Wednesday when the International Monetary Fund warned of flagging growth in the world's fourth biggest economy and the European Union complained about the UK budget deficit.


Britain falls foul of EU deficit rules (AFP)
AFP - The EU commission launched disciplinary action against Britain for breaching EU budget rules, in an embarrassing blow to London's ambitions to point Europe towards better economic governance.


Pension costs dent Miami's budget
In the last four years, the number of firefighters and garbagemen serving the city of Miami hasn't changed. But the costs associated with those city employees have skyrocketed.


Tuesday, September 20, 2005

Little hope for Kenya slum
As the United Nations gathers to discuss anti-poverty measures, the BBC News website assesses how Africa could meet the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) in 10 years' time. Here, Gray Phombeah looks at life in a Kenyan slum.


NYU Fails Test of Workplace Democracy
UAW LOCAL 2110 NYU fails test of workplace democracy Its not going to be business as usual when New York Universitys fall semester starts. People are really fired up, says Jenny Shaw, a UAW Local 2110 bargaining committee member.


Workplace Improves For Gays But Most Still Have No Protections
In its fourth-annual Corporate Equality Index, HRC graded 402 U.S. companies with at least 500 employees on their treatment of LGBT workers.


The Workplace: A sickness in official jobless data
STOCKHOLM Unemployment statistics can be a key measure of success or failure for government policies. But in one important way, jobless numbers can be misleading. Take the cases of Sweden and Britain.


EEOC Files Suit Against Restaurant In Casino
LAS VEGAS, Nevada -- The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has filed a sexual harassment and retaliation lawsuit in federal court on behalf of five kitchen workers at The Noodle Shop at Mandalay Bay.


Angola: Extracting Industry Takes One Per Cent of Local Manpower
Angola's extracting industry (oil and diamond) provides job for only one percent of the national manpower, despite responding for 57 percent of the country's Gross Domestic Product.


World Bank in inequality warning
In a key report, The World Bank says inequality is at the root of poverty and poor economic performance.


1,200 corporate jobs in Houston to end with Foley's era
Houston will no longer be regional headquarters for Foley's, and its 1,200 corporate jobs here will be eliminated, Federated Department Stores announced Tuesday. The move is part of Federated's plan to cut costs and make Macy's its dominant national brand.


N.Y. Times, Philadelphia papers to cut jobs
NEW YORK // The New York Times Co. said yesterday that it would cut about 500 jobs, or about 4 percent of its work force, as part of a continuing effort to reduce costs. The reductions come atop another 200 jobs that were cut earlier this year.


Librarians Must Stay Silent In Patriot Act Suit, Court Says
The librarians challenging the USA Patriot Act must continue to keep quiet about their role in the case while the court reviews the order of confidentiality that bars them from speaking out.


Auto Workers and Chrysler Reach Deal in Canada
The Canadian Auto Workers reached a tentative agreement with DaimlerChrysler Canada that eliminates about 1,600 jobs and offers only limited wage and benefit gains.


Federated stores may cut 6,200 employees
Federated Department Stores said on Tuesday it is planning to cut as many as 6,200 jobs beginning next year and change all 62 Marshall Field's stores to the Macy's name in the fall of 2006 in its biggest steps yet since completing its acquisition of May Department Stores.


Authors accuse Google of 'massive copyright infringement'
By By LARRY NEUMEISTER, Associated Press Writer
An organization of more than 8,000 authors accused Google Inc. Tuesday of "massive copyright infringement," saying the powerful Internet search engine cannot put its books in the public domain for commercial use without permission.


German Economic Sentiment Slips in Sept. (AP)
AP - German economic sentiment fell substantially in September and dropped even more after inconclusive parliamentary elections, a think tank said Tuesday, in a sign that recovery prospects in Europe's largest economy are again losing momentum.


Housing Construction Falls for 2nd Month (AP)
AP - Construction of new homes slipped for a second month in August, providing fresh evidence that the nation's housing boom may be cooling.


Fed Boosts Rates, Downplays Katrina Fears (AP)
AP - The Federal Reserve boosted interest rates to the highest level in four years Tuesday despite the effects of Hurricane Katrina, saying fallout from the storm didn't pose a "persistent threat" to the nation's economic health.


Cabdrivers in Miami feel pinch of high prices at pump
Jean Abraham may soon turn in his taxi medallion. The Haitian immigrant works as a cabbie up to 18 hours a day picking up passengers at Miami International Airport, but skyrocketing gas prices prevent him from pulling a profit. To save money, he's napping in his Ford Crown Victoria instead of returning home to his three children in Hallandale Beach.


Monday, September 19, 2005

Mixed workplace mean better productivity for Qatari women
Doha: Qatari women find a workplace interesting if there are male colleagues around. Their productivity is raised and they show much interest in a job even if it is a boring routine. A local Arabic daily reported yesterday that it spoke to some 13 Qatari women employees of the Youth General Authority and they said it was a wonderful experience working with men.


Work-related deaths on the rise
The number of fatal work-related accidents is rising, the International Labour Organisation says.


Kuwait may raise foreigners' pay
Kuwait is considering moves to improve the lives of expatriate workers, who have been protesting over low pay.


U.S. pays unemployed workers to get degree
When Dura Automotive Systems closed its facility in Livonia and shifted production to Canada in 2003, Bill Koenecke, 35, suddenly found himself unemployed.


NWA rejects union role
Northwest Airlines says its striking mechanics won't be a party to its bankruptcy reorganization, at least when it comes to labor contracts. That's because the airline doesn't intend to try to undo the contract it imposed on them.


Quebec Rules Against Wal-Mart in Closing of Unionized Store
Quebec's labor relations board has rejected Wal-Mart Canada's claim that it closed a unionized store in that province for economic reasons.


ATA Proposal Gives Pilots a 4% Stake in the Airline
INDIANAPOLIS, Sept. 19 (AP) - Union leaders representing pilots at ATA Airlines have endorsed a new contract that gives them part ownership of the airline in exchange for wage concessions, clearing the way for a vote by the membership on the proposal, the union said on Monday.


State's job picture brightens / Employers expand payrolls in August; Bay Area count finally shows improvement
By Tom Abate
California's job picture continued to improve in August as employers added 17,200 nonfarm payroll jobs, while the unemployment rate held steady at 5.2 percent, the state Employment Development Department said Friday. The agency also raised its estimate...


Argent backs key demand by union / Hotel is 3rd to agree to a shorter-term contract for workers
By George Raine
San Francisco's Argent Hotel says it is willing to support a key union demand in order to end a protracted labor dispute that has hampered the city's lodging industry. Argent general manager Brian Hughes said Monday that the hotel is prepared to sign a...


States, Businesses Begin Hiring Evacuees
By By BRAD FOSS, AP Business Writer
The employment agency didn't open until 8 a.m., but Noel Tabb, a Hurricane Katrina evacuee from New Orleans, arrived at least 20 minutes early and sat anxiously on the edge of a shaded bench. "I need some income coming in," said the 57-year-old Tabb,...


Target, Best Buy taking care of Gulf Coast workers
In Business
Two of Minnesota's big-box retail chains have shown big hearts when helping their Gulf Coast employees struck by Hurricane Katrina three weeks ago.


For NWA strikers, a fresh hope
In Business
Speakers at a solidarity rally in Bloomington for striking workers at Northwest Airlines said on Saturday that the Eagan carrier's decision to file for bankruptcy may help rather than hinder the walkout.


Friday, September 16, 2005

NWA union leaders still confident about strike
In Business
Four weeks into their strike and two days after Northwest Airlines filed bankruptcy papers, mechanics remained confident Friday that they will negotiate a new contract and save some of their jobs.


World poverty to deepen as environments degrade: World Bank
World Bank says Vietnam can reduce poverty Sustained economic growth can reduce the number of poor in Vietnam but ethnic...


New data underscores French economy weakness
A forecast of weak growth for the third quarter issued Wednesday by the Bank of France and poor trade data published Tuesday spelled more bad news for the French economy and bode ill for the rest of the year.


Ugandans Easy to Hire, Fire - World Bank
EMPLOYERS in Uganda find it easier to hire and fire employees than in any other country in Africa, a new World Bank study has shown.


Greenspan Renews Mortgage Giant Concerns
The multibillion-dollar holdings of mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac need to be reduced because their huge debt raises a potential danger to the U.S.


IMF warns on precarious state of household finances
Record levels of mortgage and credit card debt have left families 'potentially vulnerable' to a sudden economic shock, the International Monetary Fund warned yesterday.


Economic Growth in Turkey Hits the Target
Following the economic growth rates of 7.8 percent and 5.9 percent in 2002 and 2003, the rate of 9.9 in 2004 was a record. In the first quarter of 2005 however, it fell to 5.3 percent.


Korea's jobless rate falls in August
Last month's jobless rate was reported at 3.6 percent, down from 3.7 percent in July, the National Statistical Office said in a report.


State unemployment rate dipped to 4.7 percent in August
ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) _ New York state's seasonally adjusted unemployment rate dipped to 4.7 percent in August, down from 5.1 percent in July and 4.9 percent in June, state officials reported Thursday. State Labor Department officials said it was the lowest August unemployment figure in five years. It was 5.6 percent in August of last year.


New York City unemployment rates hits 17-year low
NYC unemployment rates hits 17-year low by New York City's seasonally adjusted unemployment rate declined to 5.1% in August -- its lowest level in 17 years, according to the state Labor Department.


Minimum wage in Guam may rise
About 10,000 workers on Guam are likely to benefit directly if Democrats in the Guam Legislature succeed in pushing for a two-tiered increase in the minimum wage, according to local Department of Labor statistics presented at a legislative public hearing yesterday. Benjamin Cruz has led a Democratic push for an increase in the minimum wage, now at $5.15 an hour.


Union: GM's Brazil Unit Plans to Cut Jobs
By Associated Press SAO PAULO, Brazil The Brazilian unit of General Motors Corp. plans to cut 600 jobs at one of its local units, the metal workers union said Thursday.


Unemployment rate in Philippines falls to 7.7% cent
By Roderick T. dela Cruz The country's unemployment rate dropped to 7.7 percent in July this year from 8.3 percent in April while employment rate rose to 64.6 percent, National Statistics Office data showed yesterday.


German Attitude Toward Job Cuts Changing -- Slowly
LONDON (Dow Jones) -- But a change of attitude doesn't necessarily mean a dramatic reform of labor law in a country where union representation on company supervisory boards gives significant leverage in preventing layoffs.


Poor workplace nutrition hits workers' health and productivity, says new ILO report
GENEVA (ILO News) - Poor diet on the job is costing countries around the world up to 20 per cent in lost productivity, either due to malnutrition that plagues some one billion people in developing countries or the excess weight and obesity afflicting an equal number mostly in industrialized economies, says a new study by the International Labour Office (ILO).


Mt Cook Airlines In New Zealand denies strike breaking
Mount Cook Airlines says there is no truth to suggestions it has broken the law by sending strike-breakers to Queenstown. Fifty ticketing and baggage-handling staff began an indefinite strike at midnight.


Northwest may outsource over half of its attendants
Flight International online news
Northwest has proposed a restructuring plan that will outsource almost 60% of its flight attendants. The plan is part of the newly bankrupt carrier’s revised cost cutting programme, which calls for $1.4 billion in annual wage and rule changes in addition to unspecified savings from changes to its pension contributions.


Unemployment drops in Hawaii to 2.6%
Hawaii's unemployment rate dropped to its lowest in almost 15 years last month, as key industries that have driven job growth maintained high worker levels or continued to grow.


Eagan expects to weather Northwest storm
The city of Eagan would have had a far trickier time weathering Northwest Airline's bankruptcy filing had it happened a decade earlier.


400 NWA pilots will lose jobs
The restructuring of Northwest Airlines apparently will affect at least 400 pilot jobs, the pilots union told its members late Thursday.


400 NWA pilots will lose jobs
The restructuring of Northwest Airlines apparently will affect at least 400 pilot jobs, the pilots union told its members late Thursday.


NWA pension plans in doubt
Northwest Airlines said it didn't want a strike, but one came. It didn't want to file for bankruptcy, then it did. Now airline officials say they would like to continue their pension plans, but some analysts doubt they will be able to.


Massachusett ends legal role on T's hiring policy
By Lucas Wall and Mac Daniel, Globe Staff
The Massachusetts state attorney general's office yesterday ended a 1997 equal employment opportunity agreement with the MBTA, declaring that the transportation authority is now protecting employees and job applicants from racial discrimination and harassment.


Jobless rate lowest since 2001 in Massachusetts
By Robert Gavin, Globe Staff
Massachusetts employers last month cut payrolls for the first time in a year, even as the state jobless rate dove half a percentage point to its lowest level since September 2001.


Chinese economy continues to boom
China's economy will continue to expand at a fast rate, the OECD says, but pollution and welfare remain problems.


Blair will 'call bluffs on trade'
Tony Blair says he will not accept failure to agree trade reforms to alleviate poverty at a meeting in December. Mr Blair pledged to start calling bluffs made on tariffs and subsidies, ahead of a World Trade Organisation meeting in Hong Kong in December.


Japan's businesses more confident
Japanese businesses are more confident, a survey shows, underlining the improving state of the world's second largest economy.


City unions in Baltimore criticize clinic's treatment of public workers
But finance director points to money saved, high satisfaction rateRepresentatives of several city labor unions criticized the contracted health services provided by Mercy Medical Center to public workers yesterday. They complained of cases in which police officers, firefighters and other employees are being forced to work despite suffering from health problems and job-related injuries.


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