Overseas Headlines – September 07, 2020

United States:

Factory Owners Hiking Pay to Lure Workers Even With Jobless Rate

“As the economy picks up, America’s warehouse and factory owners increasingly find they can’t fill jobs without boosting meager wages. E-commerce is driving a surge of orders, with U.S. manufacturing expanding in August at its fastest pace since late 2018. That has employers racing to bulk up staff to keep production rolling and satisfy demand. “Ultimately it’s going to be a permanent change that these lower-end workers are going to get more money,” said Mike Skordeles, an economist with SunTrust Banks Inc. People won’t relocate or travel great distances for a low-paid job, so wages will have to rise, he said.”



Italy Business Elite Gets a Taste of Government Intervention

“Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte made it clear to the country’s corporate elite that he’ll be calling the shots more often in a pandemic-stricken economy. Conte and cabinet members showed up in force over the weekend at a gathering of financial and company leaders on the shores of Lake Como in northern Italy. Meanwhile, many executives and investors stayed away or sent deputies as a surge in coronavirus cases put a damper on the event.”



China Returns to Old Construction Playbook to Boost Growth

“China is returning to its stimulus playbook, with local governments borrowing a record amount to spend on infrastructure this year to drag the economy out of its coronavirus- induced slump. In past stimulus cycles — such as after the global financial crisis — China splurged on roads, airports, and railways, and racked up huge debt. For the past few years, much of this spending has been funded by bonds tied to projects that are meant to make enough money to repay the debt.”




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