Labor & Economic News Blog
Monday, November 30, 2009
Recent GAO Report on Recovery Act's Jobs Impact Widely MisunderstoodRecent GAO Report on Recovery Act's Jobs Impact Widely Misunderstood
Many observers have misread a November 19 report from the Government Accountability Office (GAO) examining the government’s claim that the part of this year’s American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) consisting of grants, contracts, and loans has created or saved roughly 640,000 jobs to date. Some observers have interpreted the GAO report as concluding that ARRA as a whole has created or preserved fewer than 640,000 jobs. Others seem to assume the report suggests …
Friday, November 20, 2009
Relief for States and Struggling Families Provides Substantial Boost to EmploymentRelief for States and Struggling Families Provides Substantial Boost to Employment
The economy is in a very deep hole and faces a long climb back to full employment. Policymakers can make that climb easier by extending or bolstering key provisions of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) enacted at the start of the year — particularly those related to unemployment insurance and state fiscal relief, whose scheduled expiration would otherwise exert a job-killing drag on the economy. Unfortunately, it is all too easy for policymakers …
Joblessness Across the US: Unemployment Rates, by StateJoblessness Across the US: Unemployment Rates, by State
California Jobless rate hits 12.5 percentState jobless rate hits 12.5 percent
The number for October sets another modern record.
Thursday, November 19, 2009
Senate Health Bill Improves Employer Responsibility ProvisionSenate Health Bill Improves Employer Responsibility Provision
The “employer responsibility” provisions of the health reform bill that Senate leaders unveiled yesterday reflect notable progress in lessening the disincentives that the Senate Finance Committee health bill would have created for employers to hire workers from low- or moderate-income families. Significant disincentives to hire or retain such workers remain, however, for a substantial number of employers, a matter that will require serious attention when …
Veteran substitute teachers win back seniority rights in L.A. UnifiedVeteran substitute teachers win back seniority rights in L.A. Unified
Veteran substitute teachers in Los Angeles will get more work and a shot at keeping their health benefits after the teachers union approved an agreement restoring their seniority rights.
Trying to get ahead in the slow laneTrying to get ahead in the slow lane
In the organized chaos of the San Ysidro border crossing, Deciderio Mauricio Cantera is a specialist. He is el churrero, the churro seller. But in changing times, even the best hawkers are struggling.
AOL Plans to Cut Its Work Force by One-ThirdAOL Plans to Cut Its Work Force by One-Third
AOL said on Thursday that about 2,500 jobs will be lost after it is spun off from Time Warner next month.
O.E.C.D. Sees Bumpy Path to RecoveryO.E.C.D. Sees Bumpy Path to Recovery
The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development on Thursday delivered a cautious assessment of the global economy.
The Case for a Job-Creation Tax CreditThe Case for a Job-Creation Tax Credit
An economist argues that the government should embark on a job-creation program by making it cheaper for companies to hire new workers.
Wednesday, November 18, 2009
Current Employment Statistics Latest NumbersCurrent Employment Statistics Latest Numbers
Change in Payroll Employment:
-190,000(p) in Oct 2009
Change in Average Hourly Earnings:
+$0.05(p) in Oct 2009
Change in Average Weekly Hours:
unchanged in Oct 2009
Change in Manufacturing Average Weekly Hours:
+0.1(p) in Oct 2009
Change in Aggregate Hours Index:
-0.2(p) in Oct 2009
Change in Real Earnings:
-$0.01(p) in Oct 2009
The Scouting Report: Metro Areas and the Uneven Economic RecoveryThe Scouting Report: Metro Areas and the Uneven Economic Recovery
What stands in the way of recovery? On November 18, Alan Berube and Politico Senior Editor David Mark answered questions about how the nation’s large metropolitan areas—including Washington, DC—have fared in the downturn.
Some Organizers Protest Their Union’s TacticsSome Organizers Protest Their Union’s Tactics
After six years working in the laundry of a Miami hotel, Julia Rivera was thrilled when her union tapped her to become a full-time union organizer.
Jobless Benefits Will Expire Unless Congress ActsJobless Benefits Will Expire Unless Congress Acts
About one million laid-off workers will see their unemployment benefits end in January unless Congress acts quickly to renew existing
Monday, November 16, 2009
Local Governments to Face Large-Scale CutsLocal Governments to Face Large-Scale Cuts
Despite reports that the economy is recovering from the recession, there will likely be large-scale city government layoffs, deep cuts to local government services and halted or delayed capital projects in the next year or two. Mark Muro, policy director of the Metropolitan Policy program, explains economic cycles and their impact on city and local governments.
Friday, November 13, 2009
Increasing Medicare Tax on High-Wage Earners Could Help Pay for Health Reform and Strengthen Medicare's FinancesIncreasing Medicare Tax on High-Wage Earners Could Help Pay for Health Reform and Strengthen Medicare's Finances
Increasing the Medicare payroll tax on high-wage earners would represent a sound and well-targeted way of paying for health reform. It would also improve the solvency of Medicare’s Hospital Insurance (HI) trust fund and thereby strengthen this critical program, which provides health coverage for 46 million seniors and persons with disabilities. Hospital Insurance benefits in Medicare are funded primarily by payroll taxes on wages and self-employment income. Workers and …
How We're Doing: What's Blocking the RecoveryHow We're Doing: What's Blocking the Recovery
Despite the economy’s expansion in the last quarter, many American workers still lack jobs, the confidence to spend or a home to call their own. A team of Brookings experts began tracking data early this year to assess various dimensions of national and international well-being. The second quarterly "How We’re Doing" index looks at forces that stand in the way of a strong rebound and asks, "where are we going?"
California Higher Education Master Plan getting ignoredHigher education master plan getting ignored
California's Master Plan for Higher Education - which set academics ablaze with the promise of a nearly free college education for all who qualified - is limping toward the half-century mark largely ignored by lawmakers who don't even pretend they can live up to its expensive commitment.
Thursday, November 12, 2009
The Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation's $22 Billion DeficitThe Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation's $22 Billion Deficit
The Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC), which protects the pensions of 44 million workers, announced a $22 billion deficit for fiscal year ending September 2009. Douglas Elliott analyzes the three main reasons for the PBGC’s financial troubles, and cautions that there are serious structural problems within PBGC that cannot be blamed on the financial crisis.
West Contra Costa teachers' vote backs strikeWest Contra Costa teachers' vote backs strike
The threat of a strike hung over West Contra Costa Unified schools Wednesday, a day after an election recount confirmed district teachers narrowly rejected a contract that would have drastically cut benefits and pay.
Tuesday, November 10, 2009
Survey Finds Deep Shift in the Makeup of UnionsSurvey Finds Deep Shift in the Makeup of Unions
A study has found that just one in 10 union members is in manufacturing, while women account for more than 45 percent of the unionized work force.
Monday, November 09, 2009
Counting the Jobs Produced by the StimulusCounting the Jobs Produced by the Stimulus
When the stimulus package was enacted last winter, the Obama administration said its goal was to create or save 3.5 million jobs by the end of 2010. Gary Burtless analyzes how closely the administration is coming to achieving that goal so far. He finds that, on the whole, recent reports have understated the net effect of the stimulus program on overall employment by not taking into account the indirect effects of the stimulus on consumer spending and employment.
Friday, November 06, 2009
Jobless Rate Highest Since 1983Jobless Rate Highest Since 1983
The government says the nation's unemployment rate hit 10.2 percent last month, the highest since 1983. Economists had expected the figure to rise to 9.9 percent.
Wednesday, November 04, 2009
Retirement Account BalancesRetirement Account Balances
The retirement savings of American households took a big hit when the stock market crashed in 2008. Recently, however, a good portion of these losses has been reversed. This fact sheet follows trends in retirement account balances since the beginning of 2005.