U.S. labor unions look increasingly white collar

August 25, 2016

A ruling that lets Ivy League graduate students organize will add to the growing share of cubicle-dwellers in the union movement. Education is one of the few sectors in which membership is increasing, albeit from a low base. The blue-collar stereotype is slowly fading away.

Contrary smoke signals bedevil Brexit firefighting

August 17, 2016

An unexpected drop in the number of people claiming jobless benefit jars with other, grimmer survey data. Monetary policy has already been eased to manage any post-vote slowdown and a fiscal stimulus is likely. Clashing signals make it harder for policymakers to target such help.

Merger “synergies” can’t just be code for job cuts

June 8, 2016

Most mega-deals leave companies with fewer staff, and higher sales and profit per head, a Breakingviews analysis shows. That’s capitalism. But the mood is changing, at least in pro-market Britain. Synergies do exist, but those reliant on cutting jobs may get harder to realise.

Brexit job risk threatens more than just bankers

April 15, 2016

The UK might miss out on 100,000 finance roles by 2020 if it quits Europe, a trade group says. The reason those outside the City should be concerned is that the real impact could be wider and more prolonged. The trouble is, immediate job losses elsewhere may seem a bigger risk.

Jobs and wages mean rate hikes are go!

December 4, 2015

Barring market meltdown at home or abroad, American job creation in November looks strong enough to allow Janet Yellen’s Fed to lift interest rates this month after seven years near zero. The shift in stance is overdue, but unexciting growth will keep the central bank wary.

Morgan Stanley tackling final profits puzzle piece

December 1, 2015

CEO James Gorman may lay off a quarter of fixed-income traders. The unit’s wild quarterly swings usually decide whether the firm hits or misses financial-return targets. While cuts will help, what the bank does with the division’s product mix and capital would be more telling.

Irrational U.S. waiter tips under healthy attack

October 16, 2015

Everything is wrong with America’s practice of giving gratuities. It’s unjust to waiters, more unjust to other staff, bad for the enterprise, hard on customers and an invitation to cheat on taxes. Maybe Shake Shack impresario Danny Meyer can help end an irrational tradition.

HSBC continues to wind back the clock

June 9, 2015

Four years since he started pruning the bank, CEO Stuart Gulliver is cutting risk-weighted assets by a quarter and shedding 50,000 employees. HSBC is returning to its roots as an Asia-focussed trade lender, though investors will have to wait almost three years to feel the effect.

German job miracle keeps defying gloom-mongers

May 29, 2015

Most experts predicted that January’s imposition of a national minimum wage would lead to heavy job losses. But employment in Germany keeps rising and economists are confused. The fears may yet be vindicated, although it could take a recession to show they were right.

EU migration policy is economically short-sighted

April 20, 2015

For many desperate and poor people, Europe is the nearest safe place to go to make a living. A sensible migration policy would recognise the region’s international appeal and manage the reality. But inward-looking politics make for bad economics and heighten the risks to life.