U.S. Labor Market: What Is Going On?

There is much trepidation.  The US employment report is at hand.  There is great uncertainty as market participants realize that even state of the art forecasting techniques have a general weak ability to anticipate the marginal change between the large number of people who get jobs every month and the almost as large number of people […]

Great Graphics: Capital Gets Organized, But Not Labor

It should have been a lay-up. United Auto Workers were trying to unionize a Volkswagen plan in Chattanooga, Tennessee and they did not face management hostility. Far from it. Volkswagen wanted the union to facility worker councils that are used throughout the company’s factories to ostensibly help productivity and morale. Volkswagen even let the union […]

Pay and Productivity: Both Due for a Raise in the UK

Pay is of vital importance to most people in this country, productivity holds the key to our long-term prosperity. So two vital questions. Will this be the year when real wages finally start rising again after a prolonged squeeze? And, closely related, is this when productivity shrugs off its post-crisis stagnation and starts growing? The […]

Jamie Dimon’s $10 Million Raise is a ‘Common Sense’ Fraud Reward

Andrew Ross Sorkin (and his “Deal Book” team at the New York Times) seemed to have built an insurmountable lead in the race to be declared the most unctuous panderer to the financial plutocrats who grew wealthy by leading the frauds that blew up our economy.  As I wrote recently, Politico became my instant dark horse candidate for the Street’s […]

UK Unemployment Tumbles—A Nice Kind of Headache for the Bank of England

We have been used to strong job market figures, but these were corkers. The employment rate, 72.1%, is up by 0.5 points in September-November, compared with July-August. The rise in the latest three months, an astonishing and record 280,000, took the level of employment to 30.15 million. The unemployment rate, now the most-watched indicator thanks […]

Jobless Claims Fell Again Last Week

New filings for unemployment benefits inched lower last week, dropping for the second week in a row. The decline of 2,000 to a seasonally adjusted 326,000 for the week through January 11 is a welcome sign, of course. But the trend looks a bit sluggish lately, raising questions about the potential for stronger growth in the labor […]

Fear is Why Workers in Red States Vote Against Their Economic Self-Interest

Last week’s massive spill of the toxic chemical MCHM into West Virginia’s Elk River illustrates another benefit to the business class of high unemployment, economic insecurity, and a safety-net shot through with holes. Not only are employees eager to accept whatever job they can get. They are also also unwilling to demand healthy and safe […]