Here are our top staffing industry news picks for the month of April
The U.S. Department of Labor has announced a proposed rule to revise and clarify the responsibilities of employers and joint employers to employees in joint employer arrangements. This proposal would ensure that employers and joint employers clearly understand their responsibilities to pay at least the federal minimum wage for all hours worked and overtime.
Surging labor costs and slower revenue growth likely will lead in to a decline in corporate profits in both the U.S. and other advanced economies, according to a study on labor market trends by the Conference Board. Companies in the U.S. that may experience the biggest losses are those employing many blue-collar workers, who now command higher pay due to their scarcity.
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services has launched an H-1B Employer Data Hub to provide information to the public on employers petitioning for H-1B workers. The data hub allows the public to search for H-1B petitioners by fiscal year (back to fiscal year 2009), North American Industry Classification System code, employer name, city, state, or ZIP code.
The first measure of the CNBC/SurveyMonkey Workplace Happiness Index is an optimistic 71 out of 100, according to a survey of 8,664 workers by CNBC and SurveyMonkey. Eighty-five percent of respondents say they are very or somewhat satisfied with their jobs. Despite the overall optimism, only 9% of workers gave top ratings across all five categories of the Workplace Happiness Index.
Construction, agricultural, and hotel and lodging companies need immigrants to fill out their employee rosters. The lack of immigrant talent has contributed to a dearth of talent and higher wages. The average wage of nonsupervisory workers in residential construction is up 6% from a year ago. Pay is rising even among those in less-skilled construction trades.
The National Federation of Independent Business' Small Business Optimism Index ticked up 0.1 points to 101.8 in March, a historically strong level and an indication that small businesses continue to power the economy after being briefly shaken by January's government shutdown. Overall, the index anticipates solid growth, keeping the economy at "full employment" with no signs of a recession in the near term. Labor market indicators improved.
The economy may not take a big leap forward because the stimulative effects of deep tax cuts and higher government spending last year have faded, and the global economy is weaker. But the ultra-strong labor market, even if it softens up in the months ahead, remains an antidote to the threat of recession for an economy that will soon set a record for the longest expansion ever.
Demand for temporary workers in the U.S. is expected to increase 1.6% on a seasonally adjusted basis for the 2019 second quarter when compared with the same period in 2018, according to the Palmer Forecast by G. Palmer & Associates. The Palmer Forecast indicated a 2.7% increase in temporary help for the 2019 first quarter. Actual results from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics came in at 1.7%.
Business activity grew modestly in New York State, according to the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. The headline general business conditions index rose six points to 10.1, indicating that growth picked up somewhat but remained fairly subdued. New orders rose slightly, and shipments continued to grow modestly.
The S&P 500 and Nasdaq Composite registered their highest closings ever yesterday. In the first four months of this year, stocks have flourished thanks largely to a more accommodative U.S. Federal Reserve. The Fed announced in January that it would hold interest rates steady, paving the way for the stock market's strongest first-quarter run in over 20 years.
U.S. staffing companies employed an average of 3.4 million temporary and contract workers per week in the fourth quarter of 2018, according to the quarterly ASA Staffing Employment and Sales Survey—2.0% more than the same quarter in 2017 and the most for any quarter since 2005.
The number of people who applied for unemployment benefits in late April climbed to a two-and-a-half month high, but the increase likely was exaggerated by spring break and the Easter holiday. Jobless claims advanced by 37,000 to 230,000 in the week ended April 20. Economists surveyed by MarketWatch had anticipated new claims of 201,000.