Economy

Incomes for bottom 99% of American families increase

Incomes for bottom 99% of American families increase

According to data compiled by economist Emmanuel Saez, last year, incomes for the bottom 99% of American families increased 3.3% to $47,213, which is the biggest annual gain in the past 15 years. The data was released by the Washington Center for Equitable Growth on Monday.

Saez, a professor at the University of California-Berkeley, said in a summary of his findings, "For the bottom 99 percent of income earners, this marks the first year of real recovery from the income losses sparked by the Great Recession".

Congress fails to renew Export-Import Bank’s charter

Congress fails to renew Export-Import Bank’s charter

The Export-Import Bank charter expires on Tuesday for the first time since it was created to help United States businesses during depression to export their products.

The bank on which several local companies were dependant has to face the situation as congress failed to renew the bank's charter because of opposition from Republicans who say it amounts to corporate welfare.

The federal Export-Import Bank's principal role is to guarantee commercial bank loans made to foreign businesses to buy US products. The bank also makes direct loans and provides export credit insurance to protect against losses to companies from non-repayment of loans.

Puerto Rico’s governor acknowledges government and publicly owned utilities can’t pay $72 billion debt

Puerto Rico Governor Alejandro Garcia Padilla

Puerto Rico Governor Alejandro Garcia Padilla said that the US commonwealth cannot pay its roughly $72 billion in debts. He called for a negotiated agreement with bondholders to delay payment for a number of years.

A comprehensive debt-restructuring plan will be developed by Puerto Rico officials by the end of August. Padilla said, "Without such a plan, "the option is unplanned and unilateral default of our obligations, with all the negative consequences that this implies for each and every one of us".

Puerto Rico bonds' price sold in 2014 touched record lows of around 68 cents on the dollar Monday. Mr. Padilla said that they cannot allow the heavy weight of the debt to force us to choose between paying their creditors and paying their policemen, teachers and nurses.

Important Things to Keep in Mind before Retirement

Important Things to Keep in Mind before Retirement

Retirement might sound peaceful to some or even exciting in some cases, but it can actually be a difficult landscape to understand and navigate. One can even get rid of this problem by guiding his/her savings with a retirement calculator.

Figuring out how much one can expect to get in Social Security benefits can be difficult, said experts.

For many Americans, Social Security benefits are the base of their retirement incomes. Whether one is close to retirement or years away, it’s about time they need to know the basic Social Security facts. Check out some of the most important ones to know below.

Following points will tell who all are eligible for benefits:

Ikea Group to increase hourly minimum wage of workers

Ikea Group to increase hourly minimum wage of workers

According to reports, Ikea Group is going to raise the hourly minimum wage paid by it to workers in the US by 10% to $11.87. The company has taken the step to keep employees from shifting to other merchants that have recently increased wages.

The increase will take effect from January 1 and has come after a 17% increase to $10.76 an hour this year. According to the company, the latest increase will have an effect on 32% of Ikea’s hourly retail staff, together with some workers in distribution.

German business morale worsens in June

German business morale worsens in June

German business confidence weakened for a second straight month in June. Greek debt crisis is hitting corporate boardrooms across Europe's largest economy.

Based on a monthly survey of some 7,000 firms, Ifo's business climate index dropped to 107.4 in June from 108.5 in May. That was its weakest reading and was below the Reuters consensus forecast for a reading of 108.1.

Although German economic growth is supported by record-low unemployment, ambiguity over the unity of the euro area has obscured the outlook. The country could miss debt repayments and ultimately be forced out of the bloc if the region’s governments fail to reach agreement with Greece on reforms to unlock bailout payments.

Greece’s last chance to unlock more bailout funds

Greece’s last chance to unlock more bailout funds

Greece is left with last opportunity to release more bailout funds at a meeting of European leaders and finance ministers.

It is required to reach a conclusion; otherwise Athens will most probably miss a refund to the IMF and move it toward default and probably out of the eurozone.

After five years of strictness, Greece's economy shrank by a third and unemployment almost triple, from 9.1% in January 2009 to 25.4% in February this year. All this drove tens of thousands of Greeks below the poverty line.

After Greek negotiators ended a separate meeting on Saturday with Tsipras, government spokesman Gabriel Sakellaridis said, "Austerity must end.A different Europe is necessary, a different Europe is possible".

Job Openings in April Jumped 5.2 %, says Labor Department

Job Openings in April Jumped 5.2 %, says Labor Department

Data tracked by government showed that advertisement for job openings by US employers in April is the highest in past 15 years.

The Labor Department on Tuesday revealed that the number of open jobs at the end of April jumped 5.2 % to 5.4 million. The data indicates that employers anticipate stronger customer demand in the coming months.

Officials said that the US job market has remained quite healthy even as the economy weakened at the beginning of the 2015.

The steady hiring by the US employers shows that businesses see the economic slump as having resulted mainly from temporary factors such as a harsh winter.

On Friday, the government said that employers added a strong 280,000 jobs in May after a healthy gain in April.

Forecasts of China’s Economic Growth and Consumer Inflation for 2015 revised down

Forecasts of China’s Economic Growth and Consumer Inflation for 2015 revised

Owing to increased downward pressure on economic growth, economists at China's central bank have reduced their growth and consumer inflation forecast for 2015.

On Tuesday, the report was posted on the central bank's website. Economists at the People's Bank of China (PBOC) said that they have lowered the forecast despite their predictions that Chinese home prices and foreign demand will strengthen.

These factors will boost China's economy in next six months. "We estimate that our country's gross domestic product growth in the second-half of the year will be higher than in the first-half", affirmed the economists.

McDonald’s reports 0.3% decline in global sales for May

McDonald’s reports 0.3% decline in global sales for May

McDonald’s reported decline in its same-store sales for the month of May. On Monday, the Oak Brook, Illinois-based company, said that its global comparable sales decreased 0.3% in the period. According to Consensus Metrix, analysts predicted a 0.9% drop on average.

However, sales in Europe were considerably good and they compensated the company’s sluggish growth in both Asia and its home country. European comparable sales rose 2.3 % while the analysts had projected a 0.65% gain.

Asit Sharma, an analyst at the Motley Fool said that although gain in Europe is encouraging, investors are still waiting for the company’s performance in the US to improve.

NYC is worst place to retire in US

NYC is worst place to retire in US

A new study conducted by financial services company Bankrate Inc said that the worst city in the US to retire is New York.

Bankrate’s first-ever analysis on the topic ranked 172 metro areas across the country on a number of factors, which include cost of living, high taxes and weather, health-care costs.

New York City finished last out of 172 cities followed by Little Rock, Arkansas and New Haven, Connecticut. According to Bankrate, Buffalo was the fourth worst metro to retire and Newark, New Jersey, was the fifth-worst.

Albany became the sixth-worst metro to retire because of high cost of living, high crime, below average weather and very high taxes.

DavidsTea stock increases as much as 39%

DavidsTea stock increases as much as 39%

DavidsTea Inc, a specialty tea retailer that grew rapidly in the US and Canada, has announced expansion plans after the recent market debut. The company stock increased as much as 39% during the US debut, making the company worth nearly $630 million.

IPO of the company increased approximately $97 million after the stock was priced at $19 per share, more than the top end of the anticipated price range of $17-$18. On Friday, the stock reached a high of $27.24 in early trading on the Nasdaq.

It is the second company from Canada that has been listed on the US exchange this year. Last month, e-commerce software maker Shopify Inc listed its shares on the New York Stock Exchange and the Toronto Stock Exchange.

US economy adds 280,000 jobs in May, tackling economic issues to some extent

US economy adds 280,000 jobs in May, tackling economic issues to some extent

The US government announced that in May, 280,000 jobs have been added by the US economy. This increase is said to be the largest in five months; it helped deal with slow growth in the earlier year.

According to Robert Kleinhenz, chief economist of the Los Angeles Economic Development Corporation, “This is a good report. Despite the weak first quarter GDP reading, momentum in the economy is holding up”.

According to reports, the official unemployment rate increased slightly to 5.5% from 5.4%; this was because more people were seeking employment with improved job market. A year ago, the jobless rate in the country was at 6.3%.

McDonald's workers protest for Minimum Wage Rise

McDonald's workers protest for Minimum Wage Rise

Many workers of fast food restaurant company McDonald's have been protesting to force the company to set minimum wage of about $15. According to reports, union members have reached near the McDonald's headquarters in Oak Brook as the fast food chain’s chief executive officer Steve Easterbrook will soon address annual shareholders meeting on Thursday.

According to police, about 2,000 protesters from different locations across the country on Wednesday gathered near the McDonald's headquarters to gain the company’s attention to raise the workers’ minimum wage. This is not the first time when workers of McDonald’s, the world's largest chain of hamburger fast food restaurants, have protested to urge the company to raise the minimum wage.

Salesforce.com CEO sells 25,000 Shares in Transaction on Tuesday

Salesforce.com CEO sells 25,000 Shares in Transaction on Tuesday

In a transaction on Tuesday, 25,000 shares of stock were sold by Salesforce.com CEO Marc Benioff. The average selling price for the stock was $72.17 and the total value was $1.8 million. The chief executive officer now directly owns 37,662,500 shares in the company. The valuation after the transaction remains at approximately $2,718,100,000.

The news about the transaction surfaced in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission. Trading on Wednesday saw decline of 1.85% in performance of shares of Salesforce.com, hitting $70.16. A trading volume of 9,728,295 shares was seen in the stock.

Potential IRS Spinoff Amendments Induces Yahoo’s Share Slump

Potential IRS Spinoff Amendments Induces Yahoo’s Share Slump

A prospective alteration in US tax regulations has caused a drop in Yahoo shares which fell 7.6% yesterday, though Yahoo affirms its plans to spin off its stake in Alibaba Group Holding Ltd.

The change discussed by US Internal Revenue Service (IRS) officials in Washington would create new US guidelines that might require a minimum size for active businesses, inside the spun-off company. Such amendments would affect Yahoo's planned tax-free spinoff of its 15% stake in Alibaba.

Los Angeles Workforce gets Wage Hike

Los Angeles Workforce gets Wage Hike

The Los Angeles’ workforce would soon have a reason to rejoice as the Los Angeles’ City Council has voted in favor, to increase Los Angeles’ minimum wage to $15 an hour, over the next five years, benefitting an estimated 800,000 workers in the city.

On Tuesday, the members of the City council voted, 14-2, to increase the minimum wage from the current $9 to $15 an hour by 2020. It’s the first of two votes needed to finalize the bill. This proposal was unanimously approved on May 13 by the city’s Economic Development Committee.

Supreme Court passes Ruling in favor of Edison International’s Employees

Supreme Court passes Ruling in favor of Edison International’s Employees

On Monday, the Supreme Court passed a ruling in favor of participants of 401(k) plan who objected the employers for offering investment options that damage their retirement savings through excessive fees.

Earlier, current and former employees of Edison International, public utility holding company based in Rosemead, filed complaints against the company. Now, the Supreme Court has revived claims by the employees. According to the employees, the company selected mutual funds with excessive fees.

Facebook Increases Minimum Wage to $15 per Hour

Facebook Increases Minimum Wage to $15 per Hour

Famous social networking site Facebook has announced wage hike and better standards for company contractors. As per sources, under new standard, the contractors will receive higher salaries and benefits similar to all the white-collar workers of the corporation.

Chief Operating Officer (COO) of Facebook Sheryl Sandberg announced yesterday that the minimum wage would be increased to $15 per hour. He further said the benefits provided to the contractors will be in accordance to the company’s policy.

This would include 15 paid vacations per year and $4000 worth of child support for maternity or paternity leave.

J.C. Penney Co Inc reports Smaller-than-expected Loss in Q1

J.C. Penney Co Inc reports Smaller-than-expected Loss in Q1

The chain of mid-range department stores, J.C. Penney Co Inc, has reported smaller-than-expected loss in the first quarter of the year. According to the company, the smaller-than-expected quarterly loss was due to increasing demand of apparel and handbags for women. The company has also lifted its annual margin target as according to the company, it has observed signs of getting a better grip on costs.

The Department store company based in Plano, Texas, also revealed that it has planned to sell Sephora beauty products online this month. According to the company, the decision has been taken as it has partnership with the product maker. Currently, J.C. Penney has over 500 outlets of Sephora within its store. The company has also stated that it has planned to open more Sephora outlets.




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