News

Labor and Employment

AP News | Equities.com |

The U.S. unemployment rate fell sharply in August to 8.4% from 10.2% even as hiring slowed, with employers adding the fewest jobs since the pandemic began.

Employers added 1.37 million jobs, the Labor Department said Friday, down from 1.7 million in July. The U.S. economy has recovered about half the 22 million jobs lost to the pandemic.

Friday’s report from the Labor Department added to evidence that nearly six months after the coronavirus paralyzed the country, the economy is mounting only a fitful recovery.


AP News | Equities.com |

Wall Street’s euphoria took a break Thursday, as steep losses in technology stocks dragged the rest of the market down with them.

It was the biggest decline for the U.S. stock market since early June, when investors were dealing with a surge of coronavirus infections in places like Florida, Texas and Arizona. There seemed to be no explicit catalyst for the sell-off, with economic data coming in roughly where the market had expected and no companies issuing foreboding warnings.

That said, the market felt due for a breather, investors said. Both the S&P 500 and Nasdaq hit record highs just the day before. Prior to Thursday, the S&P 500 had risen nine out of the previous 10 days.


AP News | Equities.com |

The number of laid-off Americans applying for unemployment benefits fell to a still-elevated 881,000 last week, evidence that the viral pandemic keeps forcing many businesses to slash jobs.

The latest figures, released Thursday by the Labor Department, suggest that nearly six months after the eruption of the coronavirus, the economy is still struggling to sustain a recovery and rebuild a job market that was devastated by the recession. In the previous week, more than 1 million had sought jobless aid.


Reuters | Equities.com |

U.S. private employers hired fewer workers than expected for a second straight month in August, suggesting that the labor market recovery was slowing as the COVID-19 pandemic persists and government money to support workers and employers dries up.

Large businesses accounted for the bulk of the job gains shown in the ADP National Employment Report on Wednesday, with small enterprises posting a modest increase. A $600 weekly unemploym...


Reuters | Equities.com |

United Airlines is preparing to furlough 16,370 workers when federal aid expires on Oct. 1 as the coronavirus pandemic continues to devastate the airline industry, it said on Wednesday.

Chicago-based United had over 90,000 employees before the pandemic brought the industry to a near standstill in March. It warned in July that 36,000 jobs were at risk of involuntary furloughs as demand remained weak.

Some 7,400 employees have ...


Reuters | Equities.com |

U.S. manufacturing activity accelerated to a more than 1-1/2-year high in August amid a surge in new orders, but employment continued to lag, supporting views that the labor market recovery was losing momentum.

The Institute for Supply Management (ISM) said on Tuesday its index of national factory activity increased to a reading of 56.0 last month from 54.2 in July. That was the highest level since January 2019 and marked three straight months of growth.

...


Reuters | Equities.com |

Casino operator MGM Resorts International informed its staff on Friday it would lay off 18,000 furloughed employees in the United States as the coronavirus-induced travel curbs hurt its operations.

The company will start the process on Monday, according to a letter from Chief Executive Officer Bill Hornbuckle to employees and seen by Reuters. MGM employed nearly 52,000 fulltime and 18,000 part-time people in the United States as of Dec. 31.

“Federal law requi...


AP News | Equities.com |

A growing number of U.S. companies are pledging to give workers time off to vote in the presidential election this November, an effort that’s gaining steam despite the government’s reluctance to make Election Day a federal holiday.

Starbucks said Thursday it will give its 200,000 U.S. employees flexibility on Election Day, encouraging them to plan ahead with managers and schedule time to vote or volunteer at polling places. The Starbucks app will also help customers learn how to...


AP News | Equities.com |

The Federal Reserve announced a significant change Thursday in how it manages interest rates by saying it plans to keep rates near zero even after inflation has exceeded the Fed’s 2% target level.

The change signifies that the Fed is prepared to tolerate a higher level of inflation than it generally has in the past. And it means that borrowing rates for households and businesses — for everything from auto loans and home mortgages to corporate expansion — will likely remain ultra-low for years to come.


AP News | Equities.com |

Just over 1 million Americans applied for unemployment benefits last week, a sign that the coronavirus outbreak continues to threaten jobs even as the housing market, auto sales and other segments of the economy rebound from a springtime collapse.

The Labor Department reported Thursday that the number of people seeking jobless aid last week dropped by 98,000 from 1.1 million the week before.

The number of initial claims has exceeded 1 ...