WBEZ | Economy http://www.wbez.org/news/economy Latest from WBEZ Chicago Public Radio en Tesla Preparing To Charge Into Affordable Car Market http://www.wbez.org/news/tesla-preparing-charge-affordable-car-market-114796 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//main-images/tesla_wide-eef662697aaceafda5f95005764fa2d4ca6609b6-s800-c85.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>The next Tesla car is expected to be revealed and made available for pre-order next month. And while the auto world is still waiting to see specs and drawings, one thing is already known: the price.</p><p>As promised,&nbsp;<a href="http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2016-02-09/will-the-tesla-model-3-really-sell-for-25-000">Elon Musk tells Bloomberg</a>, the Model 3 will cost $35,000 &mdash; before any incentives.</p><p>Tax credits for purchasing electric vehicles could push the sticker price below the average cost of a new car in America ... maybe. The Model 3 won&#39;t go into production until 2017, and if it&#39;s delayed, the incentives that lower the price might not be available.</p><p>From the beginning, Tesla Motors has had its eye on the average American consumer &mdash; not the super-rich car collector or the early adopter electric enthusiast, but your mainstream buyer who wants a car they can afford.</p><p>It might not have looked that way &mdash; the carmaker&#39;s first model was the luxury Roadster, with a six-figure price tag. The second car, the Model S sedan, has a base price of around $70,000.</p><p>But in 2012, when the Model 3 was just a twinkle in Musk&#39;s eye, NPR&#39;s Sonari Glinton<a href="http://www.npr.org/sections/alltechconsidered/2012/09/25/161700525/teslas-big-gamble-can-the-electric-car-go-mainstream/">wrote about Tesla&#39;s dreams for the future</a>.</p><p>&quot;We did, I think, receive some unfair criticism because we had the Tesla Roadster, and people would say, &#39;Well, why are you making this expensive sports car?&#39; As though we somehow felt that there was a shortage of sports cars for rich people or something,&quot; Musk said then.</p><p>&quot;I would try to take pains to say, look, our goal from the beginning has been to drive forward the electric car revolution, and we needed time to refine the technology &mdash; get to version two, get to version three. And really, with version three &mdash; the $30,000 car &mdash; that&#39;s where it becomes mass market.&quot;</p><p>&quot;Version three&quot; has been a long time coming, though. Tesla&#39;s latest release was the Model X &mdash; an SUV that was&nbsp;more&nbsp;expensive than the Model S, not less. (The first Model X cars manufactured were packed with bells and whistles that pushed the price higher still &mdash; the Signature line, the only one available to early buyers,&nbsp;<a href="http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2015/09/30/444721375/tesla-unveils-its-model-x-complete-with-a-bioweapon-defense-button">cost $130,000 and up</a>).</p><p>The Model X was delayed for&nbsp;<a href="http://www.latimes.com/business/autos/la-fi-hy-tesla-modelx-launch-questions-20150930-story.html">nearly two years</a>, and since it was launched last fall, only<a href="http://www.fool.com/investing/general/2016/01/14/how-many-model-x-units-could-tesla-motors-inc-ship.aspx">a small fraction</a>&nbsp;of the pre-ordered vehicles have been delivered.</p><p>But this March, Tesla is set to reveal its long-promised mass-market vehicle. Musk has<a href="https://twitter.com/elonmusk/status/639172302530215936?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">said since 2015</a>&nbsp;that the price would be $35,000, Jalopnik notes.</p><p>The average cost of a new car in America is $31,000,&nbsp;<a href="http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2016-02-09/will-the-tesla-model-3-really-sell-for-25-000">Bloomberg reports</a>. With the nationally available $7,500 electric car tax incentive, Tesla&#39;s Model 3 would be cheaper than average.</p><p>Some states offer additional incentives. In Colorado, where the extra tax incentive is as high as $6,000, depending on the battery size, the price of a new Tesla could conceivably be $21,500 &mdash; cheaper than a new&nbsp;<a href="http://www.toyota.com/camry/">Toyota Camry</a>&nbsp;or&nbsp;<a href="http://automobiles.honda.com/accord-sedan/price.aspx">Honda Accord</a>.</p><p>But that&#39;s only true if Tesla gets the car to market on schedule,&nbsp;<a href="http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2016-02-09/will-the-tesla-model-3-really-sell-for-25-000">Bloomberg notes</a>.</p><p>The Model 3 is set to go into production in 2017. The incentives &mdash; which are tied to the number of electric cars sold by a carmaker and then phase out over time &mdash; might start to fade out in 2018.</p><p>&mdash; <a href="http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2016/02/10/466267066/tesla-preparing-to-charge-into-affordable-car-market?ft=nprml&amp;f=466267066"><em>via NPR</em></a></p></p> Wed, 10 Feb 2016 15:47:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/news/tesla-preparing-charge-affordable-car-market-114796 5 Things to Know About President Obama's Budget http://www.wbez.org/news/5-things-know-about-president-obamas-budget-114779 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//main-images/gettyimages-509158914-4f1cb8a19e6a3b899bd501a21bc94f279d7da0a1-s800-c85.jpg" alt="" /><p><div id="res466145095" previewtitle="Copies of President Obama's budget sit on a table in the Senate Budget Committee room."><div data-crop-type="">President Obama unveils his 2017 budget proposal today. It&#39;s an aspirational blueprint that details how he would set priorities if he controlled the government&#39;s checkbook ... which he doesn&#39;t.</div></div><p>&quot;This budget is not about looking back at the road we have traveled,&quot; Obama said. &quot;It is about looking forward.&quot;</p><p>But congressional Republicans are looking past the president. House Speaker Paul Ryan dismissed the budget as &quot;a progressive manual for growing the federal government at the expense of hardworking Americans.&quot;</p><p>Here are five big things you need to know about Obama&#39;s eighth budget blueprint.</p><p><strong>1. It&#39;s his last ... and least influential</strong></p><p>The president&#39;s budget is invariably described as &quot;dead on arrival&quot; when it reaches Capitol Hill. This one got that label weeks earlier.</p><p>Republican leaders of the House and Senate Budget Committees don&#39;t even plan to hold a token hearing on the $4 trillion White House spending plan. Obama will be out of office less than four months into the budget year. And the roll-out of the budget itself is overshadowed by the New Hampshire primary.</p><p><strong>2. </strong><strong>More red</strong><strong> ink</strong></p><p>President Obama boasted in his State of the Union address of cutting the deficit as a share of the economy by three-quarters during his time in office. This year, however, the deficit is creeping up again &mdash; largely as a result of tax breaks extended by Congress at the end of 2015.</p><p>The president&#39;s budget projects that deficits will remain in a manageable range &mdash; less than 3 percent of GDP &mdash; for the next decade. That includes some rosy assumptions, though, about tax revenues, health care savings and immigration reform.</p><p><strong>3. Domestic shots across the bow</strong></p><p>The president&#39;s budget includes a variety of proposals designed to provoke a debate with Republicans. On the revenue side, these include a new $10/barrel tax on crude oil which would add up to 24 cents a gallon to the price of gasoline, higher taxes on capital gains, and a renewed push to close what the White House calls the &quot;trust fund loophole.&quot; On the spending side, the president has proposed more investments in clean energy, mass transit, summertime meal subsidies for poor children, and expanded unemployment insurance.</p><p><strong>4. Security spending, on the ground and online</strong></p><p>Obama is seeking $11 billion for the battle against ISIS, $3.4 billion to shore up European defenses and discourage Russian aggression, and $19 billion to enhance the nation&#39;s cybersecurity.</p><p><strong>5. A few nods to bipartisanship</strong></p><p>While the overall budget is going nowhere, a few of its more modest ideas may have legs. The White House notes there&#39;s bipartisan support for accelerating cancer research, offering more treatment to people addicted to heroin and prescription pain medication, and expanding a tax credit to help low-income workers who don&#39;t have children.</p><p><a href="http://www.npr.org/2016/02/09/466143593/five-things-to-know-about-president-obamas-budget?ft=nprml&amp;f=466143593"><em>&mdash; via NPR</em></a></p></p> Tue, 09 Feb 2016 15:06:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/news/5-things-know-about-president-obamas-budget-114779 Obama Administration Releases Budget Plan, but it’s Dead on Arrival http://www.wbez.org/programs/here-and-now/2016-02-09/obama-administration-releases-budget-plan-it%E2%80%99s-dead-arrival-114778 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//main-images/0209_presidential-budget-624x429.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>Although President Obama is ready to release his budget for the 2017 fiscal year, Congress has the final say on how the country&rsquo;s money can be spent.</p><p>While the legislature can allocate more or less money to certain suggestions in the $4 trillion plan, Republicans in control of the Senate and the House have already said they&rsquo;re not even considering the president&rsquo;s proposal. One sign of this: the White House budget director was not invited to present the proposal for the first time in 40 years.</p><p>The president&rsquo;s initiatives include a huge oil tax, Vice President Joe Biden&rsquo;s &ldquo;moonshot&rdquo; to cure cancer, education and employment, and Medicaid expansion.&nbsp;NPR White House correspondent&nbsp;<a href="https://twitter.com/HorsleyScott?ref_src=twsrc%5Egoogle%7Ctwcamp%5Eserp%7Ctwgr%5Eauthor">Scott Horsley</a>&nbsp;speaks with&nbsp;<a href="http://hereandnow.wbur.org/2016/02/09/budget-plan-obama"><em>Here &amp; Now&rsquo;s </em></a>Jeremy Hobson to discuss what&rsquo;s next for the budget.</p></p> Tue, 09 Feb 2016 15:00:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/programs/here-and-now/2016-02-09/obama-administration-releases-budget-plan-it%E2%80%99s-dead-arrival-114778 Millennials Lagging Behind Boomers in Entrepreneurhsip http://www.wbez.org/programs/marketplace/2016-02-09/millennials-lagging-behind-boomers-entrepreneurhsip-114774 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//main-images/mmillennials.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>Millennials may be&nbsp;<a href="http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2015/05/11/millennials-surpass-gen-xers-as-the-largest-generation-in-u-s-labor-force/" target="_blank">surpassing Gen X</a>&nbsp;in the workforce, but a new government&nbsp;<a href="https://www.sba.gov/sites/default/files/advocacy/Millenial_IB.pdf" target="_blank">report&nbsp;</a>says they&#39;re not opening their own businesses quite yet.</p><p>The Small Business Administration&#39;s advocacy office found less than 2 percent of people born between 1982 and 2000 said they were self-employed, compared to 7.6 percent of Gen X-ers and 8.3 percent of baby boomers, according to 2014 census data. As the portion of employed millennials expanded steadily over the past 15 years, the portion of self-employed millennials only saw modest gains.</p><figure><p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="Chart via Small Business Administration" sizes="(max-width: 543px) 90vw, (max-width: 879px) 60vw, 900px" src="http://cms.marketplace.org/sites/default/files/selfemployedmils.jpg" srcset="http://cms.marketplace.org/sites/default/files/selfemployedmils.jpg 646w" style="height: 378px; width: 540px;" title="(Chart via Small Business Administration)" /></p><p>But how many entrepreneurs under 30 do you know? The Administration report notes there are many baby-faced business owners in Silicon Valley, but entrepreneurship generally doesn&#39;t peak until a generation reaches its 40s, and workers have had time to build a career. The report also compares past reports to look at how self-employment changed by age for each generation.</p><p>Though there&#39;s only data for millennials aged 32 or under, they seem to be starting their own businesses less often than previous generations did at their age. At 30 years old, less than four percent of millennials said they were self-employed, compared to 5.4 percent of Generation X and 6.7 percent of boomers.</p><p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="Chart via Small Business Administration" sizes="(max-width: 543px) 90vw, (max-width: 879px) 60vw, 900px" src="http://cms.marketplace.org/sites/default/files/selfemployed30.jpg" srcset="http://cms.marketplace.org/sites/default/files/selfemployed30.jpg 646w" style="height: 378px; width: 540px;" title="(Chart via Small Business Administration)" /></p><p>So it appears that fewer millennials are becoming entrepreneurs, but does that mean snake people are less entrepreneurial? That&#39;s less clear. The report notes it&#39;s possible millennials could eventually match or surpass prior generations over the next few decades.</p><p>There&#39;s also a big caveat around methodology here: the study looks a surveys in which people said their primary source of income over the past year came from self-employment, which could leave out new opportunities for entrepreneurship. The<a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2016/01/08/style/this-is-her-face-this-is-her-face-in-bread-any-questions.html" target="_blank">&nbsp;copywriter with a successful Instagram account&nbsp;</a>might make some money on the side, but she&nbsp;doesn&#39;t qualify unless she quits her day job. And what about the&nbsp;<a href="https://www.newyorkfed.org/medialibrary/media/research/current_issues/ci20-1.pdf" target="_blank">distressingly high number</a>&nbsp;of underemployed millennials who turn to the sharing economy for money? Ride-share services insist drivers are self-employed contractors, but a recent college graduate who drives Uber to make ends meet might not see himself that way.</p><p><em>Follow&nbsp;Tony Wagner&nbsp;at&nbsp;<a href="http://twitter.com/tonydwagner">@tonydwagner</a>.&nbsp;</em></p></figure></p> Tue, 09 Feb 2016 12:25:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/programs/marketplace/2016-02-09/millennials-lagging-behind-boomers-entrepreneurhsip-114774 States Not Waiting to Close Gender Wage Gap http://www.wbez.org/program/weekend-edition/2016-02-08/states-not-waiting-close-gender-wage-gap-114755 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//main-images/promo-map-seamus-5ff26edc77e279223fabd9c52ebce6cf20981954.png" alt="" /><p><div id="storytext"><p>Emily Martin created a&nbsp;<a href="http://nwlc.org/resources/wage-gap-state-state/">state-by-state map</a>&nbsp;of the gender wage gap in the United States. She calculated: Washington, D.C., has the smallest wage gap where women average nearly 90 cents to a man&#39;s dollar; Louisiana has the largest gap &mdash; women there earn just 65 percent of what men do.</p><div id="res465740798"><div id="responsive-embed-map-wage-gap-20160204"><iframe frameborder="0" height="650px" marginheight="0" scrolling="no" src="http://apps.npr.org/dailygraphics/graphics/map-wage-gap-20160204/child.html?initialWidth=774&amp;childId=responsive-embed-map-wage-gap-20160204" style="box-sizing: border-box; margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border-width: 0px; border-style: initial; font-style: inherit; font-variant: inherit; font-weight: inherit; font-stretch: inherit; font-size: inherit; line-height: inherit; font-family: inherit; vertical-align: baseline;" width="620px"></iframe></div></div><p>Nationally, women earn an average 79 cents for every dollar men do. The gender wage gap is even wider for black and Hispanic women.</p><p>Martin is the vice president and general counsel of the&nbsp;<a href="http://nwlc.org/">National Women&#39;s Law Center</a>. The gender wage gap that she reported is not a new issue. It was President Obama&#39;s priority from the start, and the first piece of legislation he signed into law was the&nbsp;<a href="http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=100027479">Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act in 2009</a>. On the seventh anniversary of the signing last month, he again made headlines by&nbsp;<a href="http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2016/01/29/464856100/to-shine-a-light-on-salary-gaps-obama-wants-companies-to-disclose-pay-data">announcing new rules</a>&nbsp;that would require companies to disclose pay data.</p><p>But the issue has gone nowhere in Congress.</p><p>There are lots of reasons for the gender gap, but Martin says a stubborn, small part is still discrimination.</p><p>&quot;There&#39;s really disturbing social science studies out there that show that supervisors, male and female alike, without realizing it, will recommend lower salaries for women with equivalent qualifications to men,&quot; she says.</p><p>Facing pressure from a growing number of activists &mdash; who point out that more women than ever are primary breadwinners for their families &mdash; states are forging ahead on their own efforts. They have passed a string of equal pay laws in recent years, and more proposals have been introduced in two dozen states so far this year.</p><p><strong>A Patchwork&nbsp;Of State Laws</strong></p><p>The measures take a variety of approaches. At least five states have banned companies from retaliating if workers talk about their pay and compare notes. Some have made it easier for workers to sue over pay, while others have made it harder for companies to justify paying men more because of a &quot;factor other than sex.&quot; Martin says some courts have interpreted that to mean just about anything. A few proposals would bar employers from asking job applicants up front or in an interview about their pay history.</p><p>&quot;Because often your pay is set with some reference to how much you made at your last job,&quot; Martin says, &quot;the impact of pay discrimination can follow people through their careers.&quot;</p><p>Another trend is moving beyond equal pay simply for the exact same job title. Nick Rathod heads the&nbsp;<a href="https://stateinnovation.org/">State Innovation Exchange</a>, a network of progressive lawmakers. He says a&nbsp;<a href="http://www.npr.org/2016/01/01/461674998/calif-employers-must-comply-with-new-fair-pay-law">law passed last year in California</a>&nbsp;requires companies to offer similar pay for &quot;substantially similar&quot; jobs, such as a housekeeper and a janitor.</p><p>&quot;They&#39;ll do worker-based evaluation on things like their skill, their effort, their experience, that type of thing,&quot; Rathod says.</p><p><strong>Opposition Remains Despite Bipartisan Support</strong></p><p>Although it is mostly Democrats proposing these measures, Rathod says an equal pay bill recently&nbsp;<a href="https://malegislature.gov/Bills/189/Senate/S2107">passed the Massachusetts Senate</a>&nbsp;unanimously with the support of the local Chamber of Commerce.</p><p>&quot;It is a bipartisan issue,&quot; he says. &quot;And I think it&#39;s hard to be on the side of arguing that mothers and daughters should be paid less than men.&quot;</p><p>But that doesn&#39;t mean there isn&#39;t opposition.</p><p>&quot;When we look at each one of these bills, I&#39;m not sure if they&#39;re accomplishing the end goal,&quot; says Loren Furman, chief lobbyist with the&nbsp;<a href="http://cochamber.com/">Colorado Association of Commerce and Industry</a>. She finds the newly proposed legislation redundant given all the other regulations that are already in place.</p><p>&quot;We have a state wage act,&quot; she says. &quot;We have an anti-discrimination act. We have the federal NLRB (National Labor Relations) Act.&quot;</p><p>Furman says companies worry more laws could mean more lawsuits. She says they also worry about a Colorado measure that would ban them from asking job candidates up front about their pay history. Employers tell her they need that to know who is serious about a particular job, and who may be looking for anything they can get.</p><p>&quot;The worst thing for an employer is to hire somebody and then lose that person because they ultimately wanted (for example) $100,000,&quot; she says.</p><p>Whatever laws are enacted, states will be looking to see if they have any impact on a gender wage gap that has hardly budged for a decade.</p><p><a href="http://www.npr.org/2016/02/06/465587253/states-not-waiting-to-close-gender-wage-gap?ft=nprml&amp;f=465587253"><em>&mdash; via NPR</em></a></p></div><p>&nbsp;</p></p> Mon, 08 Feb 2016 11:32:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/program/weekend-edition/2016-02-08/states-not-waiting-close-gender-wage-gap-114755 Britain to Foreign Workers: If You Don't Make $50,000 a Year, Please Leave http://www.wbez.org/news/britain-foreign-workers-if-you-dont-make-50000-year-please-leave-114730 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//main-images/ukjobs.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>Britain&#39;s Prime Minister David Cameron promised back in 2010 to bring net migration down to 100,000 people a year. Six years later, it&#39;s more than three times that number.</p><p>That&#39;s one reason the government&#39;s Home Office decided that non-Europeans on skilled worker visas &mdash; known as Tier 2 visas &mdash; are not welcome to stay unless they are making at least 35,000 British pounds (about $50,000 a year).</p><p>The message is aimed at slashing migration to Britain and goes into effect in April. But critics call the new rule discriminatory and say it will strip Britain of lower-paid artists, health care workers and tradespeople.</p><p>&quot;The estimates put the GDP loss at 181 million [pounds, equivalent to $264 million] to 761 million [pounds, equivalent to $1.1 billion], so that&#39;s a massive blow in the first year alone, for starters,&quot; Joshua Harbord says.</p><p>Harbord, who rattles off facts and figures about why he thinks this move will hurt Britain, might sound like an expert on immigration. But he&#39;s not. Harbord performs at kids&#39; birthday parties as a pirate. And when he heard his friend Shannon Harmon might be forced to leave, he got angry.</p><div id="res465451252" previewtitle="Joshua Harbod started a petition opposing the new rules that would set a minimum income requirement for workers from outside the E.U."><div><div><p>&quot;It was scaring Shannon and everybody it was affecting, and it felt like a massively mean policy that was apparently convincing my friends that they were worthless and unwanted,&quot; Harbord says.</p></div></div></div><p>Since no one else was doing anything about it, Harbord started a petition,&nbsp;<a href="http://www.stop35k.org/">Stop 35K</a>, to try to change the government&#39;s mind. Harmon, who is from Chicago, has a work visa and has been in the U.K. more than seven years. But she makes less than the amount needed to stay under the new rules.</p><p><img alt="Joshua Harbod started a petition opposing the new rules that would set a minimum income requirement for workers from outside the E.U." src="http://media.npr.org/assets/img/2016/02/03/british-1-5fa81121fdccc114834ac5d1a4d5c5071a02511a-s400-c85.jpg" style="height: 232px; width: 310px; float: left; margin-left: 10px; margin-right: 10px;" title="Joshua Harbod started a petition opposing the new rules that would set a minimum income requirement for workers from outside the E.U. (Leila Fadel / NPR)" /></p><p>&quot;It feels pretty horrible and unfair; that&#39;s why we&#39;re trying to fight it,&quot; she says. &quot;I don&#39;t think we should be valued on an arbitrary number that they&#39;ve made up. I mean, not that many people make that much money.&quot;</p><p>Harmon works for a nonprofit and says charity workers, who aren&#39;t paid well, contribute more than those in the finance industry. The changed rules will also affect health care workers, public transport workers and the many artists, musicians and actors who are drawn to London as a cultural hub.</p><p>&quot;It&#39;s just going to make places like London less dynamic, less cultural; it&#39;s just going to change the whole atmosphere,&quot; Harmon says. Come April, she will very likely have to leave her British life partner, her career and the U.K.</p><p>&quot;I leave everything, my whole life,&quot; she says.</p><p>Harbord and Harmon spend their nights brainstorming, working on their website and checking on the electronic petition. Every few minutes, the signatures increase. They are approaching the 100,000 they need for Parliament to consider debating the issue.</p><p>At present, immigration is a hot-button issue in Britain. There is another petition calling on the government to completely close the U.K.&#39;s borders. And last weekend, rival protests supporting and opposing immigration turned violent.</p><p>David Metcalfe, chairman of a committee that advises the government on immigration, recommended the plan that is scheduled to take effect in April.</p><p>&quot;It seems to me absolutely right,&quot; he says. &quot;They&#39;ve been here five years. If they&#39;re going to settle, they should be making a proper contribution in terms of productivity, which will be reflected in their pay.&quot;</p><p>Asked about critics who say it&#39;s an arbitrary measure that values money over other contributions to British society, he says: &quot;Pay, in my view, is the best measure of skill and contribution, but you are right, it&#39;s not a perfect measure.&quot;</p><p>Metcalfe says there will be temporary exceptions for people with skills such as nursing, because there is a shortage in the U.K.</p><p>Susan Cueva, however, has been trying to stop the new rules. She works with UNISON, a trade union that represents the public sector &mdash; people who work in education, health care and transport.</p><p>&quot;It&#39;s a policy that is not really based on sound judgment,&quot; Cueva says. &quot;I think from our point of view as a union, we always look at migrant workers as an asset and a resource in the country.&quot;</p><p>She says migrant workers make up at least 15 percent of the public sector workforce. And without them, she says, services will decline.</p><p><a href="http://www.npr.org/sections/parallels/2016/02/03/465407797/britain-to-foreign-workers-if-you-dont-make-50-000-a-year-please-leave?ft=nprml&amp;f=465407797"><em>&mdash; via NPR</em></a></p></p> Fri, 05 Feb 2016 14:25:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/news/britain-foreign-workers-if-you-dont-make-50000-year-please-leave-114730 Chinese-Led Investors Plan to Buy Chicago Stock Exchange http://www.wbez.org/news/chinese-led-investors-plan-buy-chicago-stock-exchange-114727 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//main-images/flickr_GeorgeTziralis.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>The&nbsp;Chicago&nbsp;Stock Exchange, founded more than a century ago, said it has agreed to be acquired by a Chinese-led investor group.</p><p>The buyers are considering opening a stock exchange in southwest China and also hope to list Chinese stocks in the U.S.,&nbsp;Chicago&nbsp;Stock Exchange CEO John Kerin said in an interview Friday. The exchange needs the cash from the buyout to launch its new trading products and platforms, Kerin said.</p><p>Terms of the deal were not disclosed. Kerin will continue as CEO after the deal closes.</p><p>Leading the investor group is Chongqing Casin Enterprise Group, a holding company based in Chongqing, China. Efforts to reach Chongqing Casin Enterprise Group were unsuccessful.</p><p>Kerin said the other investors are mostly based in China but their names are not being made public.</p><p>The&nbsp;Chicago&nbsp;Stock Exchange was founded in 1882, about 90 years after the New York Stock Exchange. It trades 8,300 stocks and exchange-traded funds that are also traded on other exchanges, such as the NYSE.</p><p>Companies don&#39;t exclusively list stocks on the&nbsp;Chicago&nbsp;Stock Exchange as they do on the NYSE, Kerin said. But after the buyout is complete, the&nbsp;Chicago&nbsp;Stock Exchange has plans to allow small companies that don&#39;t meet NYSE requirements to list stocks on the exchange.</p><p>The exchange has been also working on an on-demand auction product that is expected to be released in the spring.</p><p>The buyers said they plan to keep the&nbsp;Chicago&nbsp;Stock Exchange&#39;s business operations and trading platform in place. The exchange said the deal is expected to close in the second half of the year and needs to be approved by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.</p><p>If the deal is approved, it may be the first time a U.S. stock exchange is owned by Chinese companies. The World Federation of Exchanges said none of its U.S. members, which include the owners of the NYSE,&nbsp;Chicago&nbsp;Mercantile Exchange and others, have ever been owned by Chinese interests.</p><p>The&nbsp;Chicago&nbsp;Stock Exchange is not a member of the World Federation of Exchanges.</p><p><em>Follow Joseph Pisani at&nbsp;</em><a href="http://twitter.com/josephpisani"><em>http://twitter.com/josephpisani</em></a><em>&nbsp;.</em><em> His work can be found </em><em>at</em><em><a href="http://bigstory.ap.org/author/joseph-pisani">http://bigstory.ap.org/author/joseph-pisani</a></em><em>&nbsp;.</em></p></p> Fri, 05 Feb 2016 13:03:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/news/chinese-led-investors-plan-buy-chicago-stock-exchange-114727 Obama Celebrates 'Durable Economy' as Unemployment Drops Below 5 Percent http://www.wbez.org/news/obama-celebrates-durable-economy-unemployment-drops-below-5-percent-114726 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//main-images/jobs2.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>The U.S. economy added just 151,000 jobs in January while unemployment dropped slightly, to 4.9 percent, according to the latest figures from the&nbsp;<a href="http://www.bls.gov/news.release/empsit.nr0.htm">Bureau of Labor Statistics</a>.</p><p>Economists had expected to see about 190,000 new jobs.</p><p>The unemployment rate, which has held steady at 5 percent the past few months, dropped slightly to 4.9 percent. It&#39;s the first time unemployment has fallen below 5 percent since the recession.</p><div id="res465704391"><div id="responsive-embed-unemployment-20160205"><iframe frameborder="0" height="562px" marginheight="0" scrolling="no" src="http://apps.npr.org/dailygraphics/graphics/unemployment-20160205/child.html?initialWidth=556&amp;childId=responsive-embed-unemployment-20160205&amp;parentUrl=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.npr.org%2Fsections%2Fthetwo-way%2F2016%2F02%2F05%2F465686010%2Fu-s-added-151-000-jobs-in-january-unemployment-dropped-to-4-9-percent%3Fft%3Dnprml%26f%3D465686010" style="box-sizing: border-box; margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border-width: 0px; border-style: initial; font-style: inherit; font-variant: inherit; font-weight: inherit; font-stretch: inherit; font-size: inherit; line-height: inherit; font-family: inherit; vertical-align: baseline;" width="620px"></iframe></div></div><p>President Obama celebrated that benchmark by making a statement on the economy, noting that not only had unemployment returned to its lowest level in 8 years, but that the private sector had also seen 71 straight months of private-sector job growth. The growth of the economy is also &quot;finally starting to translate into bigger paychecks,&quot; the president said.</p><p>&quot;The United States of America right now has the strongest, most durable economy in the world,&quot; Obama said. But when asked by reporters, he acknowledge that many Americans are still feeling the effects of the recession &mdash; and that the labor force participation rate, 62,7 percent, is still comparatively low, indicating many Americans aren&#39;t actively looking for work.</p><p>Obama explained his position on the economy by way of a workout analogy:</p><blockquote><div><p>&quot;We should feel good about the progress we&#39;ve made, understanding that we&#39;ve still got more work to do.</p><p>&quot;It&#39;s sort of like, you know, I&#39;m 54 now so I&#39;ve got to work out harder to stay in shape. And you know, if I&#39;m feeling good in the gym I want to acknowledge that what I&#39;m doing is working. Because otherwise I&#39;ll just go off and have a big double bacon cheeseburger or something, because I&#39;ll think, well, this isn&#39;t working.</p><p>&quot;No &mdash; if it&#39;s working then we should be staying on that same path. That doesn&#39;t mean that I&#39;m where I&#39;m where I necessarily want to be, it doesn&#39;t mean that I stop doing some hard work to get where we need to go.&quot;</p></div></blockquote><p>The January jobs report also revised the more-robust job growth during the end of 2015, shifting the overall total downward: November&#39;s job gains were changed from 252,000 to 280,000, the BLS says, and in December, the economy added 262,000 new jobs, rather than 292,000.</p><p>One bright spot on the report: Wages. Average hourly earnings rose by 12 cents in January, to $25.39. The report says that over the year, wages have risen 2.5 percent overall.</p><p>Retail, restaurants, healthcare and manufacturing all gained jobs, the BLS says. But jobs were lost in transportation, warehousing, private education services and mining.</p><p>Meanwhile, NPR&#39;s Yuki Noguchi reports for our Newscast unit that other reports suggest layoff activity has increased:</p><p>&quot;The Labor Department said claims for new jobless benefits increased last week. And outplacement firm Challenger Gray and Christmas said planned layoffs spiked last month because of cutbacks in retail and energy,&quot; Yuki says. &quot;Last month, Walmart and Macy&#39;s both announced plans to pare down their workforces.&quot;</p><p>And last month, the Commerce department reported that&nbsp;<a href="http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2016-01-29/economic-growth-cools-as-american-consumers-temper-spendinghttp://www.bea.gov/newsreleases/national/gdp/gdpnewsrelease.htm">GDP growth had slowed to 0.7 percent</a>.</p><p><a href="http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2016/02/05/465686010/u-s-added-151-000-jobs-in-january-unemployment-dropped-to-4-9-percent?ft=nprml&amp;f=465686010"><em>&mdash;via NPR</em></a></p></p> Fri, 05 Feb 2016 12:52:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/news/obama-celebrates-durable-economy-unemployment-drops-below-5-percent-114726 U.S. Economy Added a Robust 292,000 Jobs in December http://www.wbez.org/news/us-economy-added-robust-292000-jobs-december-114720 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//main-images/getajob.jpg" alt="" /><p><div id="storytext"><div id="res462364817" previewtitle="A job seeker views a business card during a Giant Job Fair last month in Detroit. During 2015, employers created 2.65 million new jobs."><div data-crop-type="">The U.S. economy added 292,000 jobs in December while unemployment held steady at 5 percent, according to the latest figures from the&nbsp;<a href="http://www.bls.gov/news.release/empsit.nr0.htm">Bureau of Labor Statistics</a>.</div></div><p>The number of new jobs was higher than many economists had anticipated; NPR&#39;s John Ydstie says experts had expected about 200,000 new jobs.</p><p>In November, the BLS initially said the economy added 211,000 jobs &mdash; a &quot;healthy pace,&quot; as&nbsp;<a href="http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2015/12/05/458511046/more-jobs-cheaper-gas-and-rising-stocks-help-the-economy-look-up">NPR&#39;s Marilyn Geewax put it</a>.</p><p>That number has now been revised upward, to 252,000. The job gains for October have also been revised up, from 298,000 to 307,000.</p><p>With the revised numbers, the past three months have seen an average of 284,000 new jobs each month. The unemployment rate has held at 5 percent all three months.</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p data-pym-src="http://apps.npr.org/dailygraphics/graphics/unemployment-20160108/child.html">&nbsp;</p><script src="http://apps.npr.org/dailygraphics/graphics/unemployment-20160108/js/lib/pym.js" type="text/javascript"></script><p>&nbsp;</p><p>Professional and business services, the restaurant industry, health care and construction showed some of the strongest job growth in December, the Bureau says, while mining jobs declined and manufacturing jobs stayed stagnant.</p><div id="res462371741"><p>&nbsp;</p><blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"><p dir="ltr" lang="en">The economy added 292,000 jobs in December&mdash;a record-breaking 70 consecutive months of private-sector job growth.</p>&mdash; Barack Obama (@BarackObama) <a href="https://twitter.com/BarackObama/status/685471723915837440">January 8, 2016</a></blockquote><script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script><p>&nbsp;</p></div><p>The labor participation rate was little changed in December, and average wages fell by a penny.</p><p>Over the year as a whole, average wages rose 2.5 percent, the BLS says &mdash; the fastest rise since 2008. But a healthy growth rate for wages would be &quot;in the 3-4 percent range,&quot; writes&nbsp;<a href="http://blogs.wsj.com/moneybeat/2016/01/08/december-jobs-report-everything-you-need-to-know-2/">The Wall Street Journal</a>.</p><p>All told, employers created 2.65 million new jobs last year &mdash; not as strong as 2014&#39;s 3.2 million total jobs, but enough to make 2015 the second-best year for U.S. job growth since 1999, The Associated Press reports.</p><p>The news comes during a week of turmoil in the international stock markets. Chinese stocks plunged this week, while the S&amp;P 500 and Dow Jones Industrial average had their worst-ever start to a year.</p><p>Last month, the Federal Reserve&nbsp;<a href="http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2015/12/16/459989461/federal-reserve-announces-hike-in-short-term-interest-rates">raised interest rates</a>&nbsp;in the U.S. by 0.25 percentage point, signaling confidence in the American economy. It was the first change in the interest rate since 2008, and the first&nbsp;increase since 2006.</p><p>&mdash;<a href="http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2016/01/08/462362534/u-s-economy-added-a-robust-292-000-jobs-in-december?ft=nprml&amp;f=462362534"><em> via NPR</em></a></p></div><p>&nbsp;</p></p> Fri, 05 Feb 2016 11:24:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/news/us-economy-added-robust-292000-jobs-december-114720 Why Some Still Can't Find Jobs as the Economy Nears 'Full Employment' http://www.wbez.org/programs/all-things-considered/2016-02-01/why-some-still-cant-find-jobs-economy-nears-full <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//main-images/gettyimages-185743197_wide-ca2aa052aea1cad8bc4df14edd823add15e92ad5-s800-c85.jpg" alt="" /><p><div id="res464870357" previewtitle="Economists use the phrase &quot;full employment&quot; to mean the number of people seeking jobs is roughly in balance with the number of openings."><div data-crop-type="">&quot;Full employment&quot; is a phrase economists use to explain how the job market recovers from a recession. We&#39;ll be hearing this phrase a lot as the&nbsp;<a href="http://www.bls.gov/news.release/empsit.nr0.htm">Labor Department</a>&nbsp;releases the latest jobs data on Friday. It&#39;s expected to show that employers added even more workers in January.</div></div><p>But the phrase doesn&#39;t tell the full story for millions of Americans either still out of work or who are looking for something better than part-time work.</p><div id="res464898219"><div>&nbsp;</div></div><p><strong>What is full employment and what does it mean?</strong></p><p>To economists, it&#39;s when the number of people seeking jobs is roughly in balance with the number of openings. It doesn&#39;t mean the unemployment rate is zero because that&#39;s not realistic. There will always be some unemployment. Companies have to close down obsolete operations, individuals have to quit their jobs to move with a spouse, or they might move to look for something better with higher pay.</p><p><strong>If the economists don&#39;t mean zero unemployment when they use the phrase &quot;full employment,&quot; what do they mean?</strong></p><p>Economists say a healthy job market has an unemployment rate somewhere between 4.6 percent and 5 percent. Some people are quitting, some people are getting hired &mdash; there&#39;s churn but no despair.&nbsp;<a href="http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2016/01/08/462362534/u-s-economy-added-a-robust-292-000-jobs-in-december">In December</a>, the national rate was 5 percent and now many predictions have the rate gliding down to 4.6 percent by July. So bingo, we&#39;re basically there at full employment. If all goes as expected in 2016, people who want jobs will be able to find them, and employers who need workers will be able to attract them.</p><div id="res464897368"><div id="responsive-embed-unemployment-20160108"><p data-pym-src="http://apps.npr.org/dailygraphics/graphics/unemployment-20160108/child.html">&nbsp;</p><script src="http://apps.npr.org/dailygraphics/graphics/unemployment-20160108/js/lib/pym.js" type="text/javascript"></script></div></div><p><strong>Is it really fair to use the term &quot;full employment&quot; when that doesn&#39;t seem to match the reality that a lot of people are experiencing?</strong></p><p>Those words can hit hard and they can hurt because it sounds like you must be doing something wrong. But really, unemployment is very regional. In West Virginia, there are counties today with unemployment rates of 12 percent or even 13 percent. But in California&#39;s Silicon Valley, the rate is virtually zero, with companies battling each other for workers. So geography matters!</p><p>And there are big differences based on age. For black teenagers nationwide, the unemployment rate is 21 percent. For women of any color, if you&#39;re 50, studies show you have a tough time getting back to the workforce. You become long-term unemployed. Besides age and location, more than anything, education determines your unemployment rate. For college graduates, it&#39;s 2.3 percent unemployment; for high school dropouts, 7 percent.</p><p><strong>Is &quot;full employment&quot; something that a lot of Americans are still going to experience as something very unsatisfying?</strong></p><p>If you&#39;re a 30-year-old with a college degree and a U-Haul, you&#39;re all set, you can find jobs. If you want to go to night school and you want to move, you can be part of that full employment economy. But the reality for a lot of people is that it is very hard. About 7.9 million people remain unemployed because they may not fit that demographic description. Like women in their 50s who may actually be at the center of a whole financial and emotional ecosystem, taking care of aging parents, as well as children and grandchildren, it can be very hard to move.</p><p><strong>Is this sort of a new normal in that what we call &quot;full employment&quot; is really not at all &quot;full&quot; but very uneven?</strong></p><p>Yes, we can say now that for younger, tech-savvy, well-educated people, jobs abound. The recession truly is over. And&nbsp;<a href="http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2016/01/08/462410820/the-employment-outlook-for-2016-is-looking-much-brighter">2016 should be a great year</a>&nbsp;for job hunting. But for people in their 50s with rusty skills or teenagers with relatively little education, the phrase &quot;full employment&quot; is a painful taunt.</p><p>&mdash;<a href="http://www.npr.org/2016/01/31/464856256/why-some-still-cant-find-jobs-as-the-economy-nears-full-employment?ft=nprml&amp;f=464856256"><em> via NPR</em></a></p></p> Mon, 01 Feb 2016 15:49:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/programs/all-things-considered/2016-02-01/why-some-still-cant-find-jobs-economy-nears-full