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U.S. wage increases subdued in first quarter

Worker pay rose as forecast in the first quarter, showing the steady drop in unemployment has yet to prompt employers to sweeten paychecks.

Date: 04/29/2016 | Business Wire

Jobless claims drop to lowest level since 1973

Jobless claims unexpectedly decreased to the lowest level since 1973, indicating the U.S. labor market remains a pillar of support in the world’s largest economy.

Date: 04/21/2016 | Business Wire

Union, not workers, behind push for $15 wage

When the Fight for $15 hosts its "Day of Action for Worker Justice"recently, the picket signs might as well have "SEIU" written all over them in big letters.The Service Employees International Union has been pulling the strings for a $15 minimum wage...

Date: 04/17/2016 | Commentary

Jobless claims decline to match lowest since 1973

The number of Americans filing applications for unemployment benefits unexpectedly declined last week to match a more than 42-year low, indicating employers are upbeat about an economy that bogged down in the first quarter.

Date: 04/14/2016 | Business Wire

Americans pessimistic about country’s path, poll finds

WASHINGTON — More than two-thirds of Americans think the country is moving in the wrong direction, the highest in nearly four and a half years, a new McClatchy-Marist Poll found.Fully 68 percent of adults think the country is on the wrong track, while just 27 percent...

Date: 04/09/2016 | Nation & World

U.S. companies added strong 200,000 jobs in March

WASHINGTON — U.S. companies added a solid 200,000 jobs in March, buoyed by strong gains in construction, retail and shipping, according to a private survey.Payroll processor ADP says that financial services firms also posted solid gains, while manufacturing employment barely rose.

Date: 03/31/2016 | Business Wire

Where we'll get our workers

We need a word that expresses both concern for a problem but also recognizes the opportunities that the problem presents.Opporconcernity? Brightsiding?While we work on that, consider the news coming out earlier this week about the graying of the state and local...

Date: 03/25/2016 | Editorials

Trade can help workers more than it hurts

Of the many dangerous trends in the 2016 election, the revolt against free trade that has captured both parties could do the most long-term damage. That's because protectionism would undermine future growth of the U.S. economy and subvert America's role as global leader.

Date: 03/20/2016 | Opinion Columnists

Rule would extend overtime pay to millions more

A proposal to extend overtime pay to millions more Americans took a step forward this week.

Date: 03/16/2016 | Business Wire

Jobless claims fall to lowest level in five months

Filings for unemployment benefits fell last week to the lowest level in five months as the number of firings remained consistent with a solid labor market.

Date: 03/11/2016 | Business Wire

Study effects of laws boosting minimum wage

The state of Oregon is the latest to join the march of states and municipalities that are raising their minimum wage rates in answer to calls to close the nationwide gap on income inequality and stagnant wages. Its governor on Wednesday signed legislation that over the next...

Date: 03/04/2016 | Editorials

U.S. companies add 214,000 jobs in February

WASHINGTON — U.S. businesses added a healthy 214,000 jobs last month, another sign that the U.S. job market remains resilient despite economic weakness overseas and tumult in financial markets.

Date: 03/02/2016 | Business Wire

Applications for U.S. jobless benefits increase

WASHINGTON — More people sought U.S. unemployment benefits last week, though the figure remained at a low level that suggests layoffs aren’t widespread.

Date: 02/26/2016 | Business Wire

Applications for jobless benefits fall to 3-month low

WASHINGTON — The number of people seeking unemployment aid fell last week to the lowest level since November, evidence that stock market turmoil and slow growth overseas haven’t caused U.S. businesses to cut jobs.

Date: 02/18/2016 | Business Wire

Many optimistic despite slower U.S. job growth

WASHINGTON — Consider looking past January's so-so job growth. At first glance, Friday's government report on U.S. hiring was a downer — 151,000 added jobs, well below the pace of the previous few months.Yet once you take a fuller view, a brighter picture of the...

Date: 02/06/2016 | Business Wire

Take the initiative to stand out at work

Ask any boss which employee in their firm really stands out as a star, and they will most certainly bring up the person who shows initiative. Everyone wants a hardworking employee who does a good job, but the person who goes beyond that and shows initiative is rare indeed (and seems to...

Date: 02/04/2016 | Business columnists

Obama rule would examine gender pay inequity

WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama proposed a new rule Friday that would require every large company in America to report employees' pay based on race and gender, an effort to reduce longstanding pay inequities for women and minorities.The new policy, already drawing...

Date: 01/30/2016 | Nation & World

Jobless claims fall more than expected after holidays

Applications for unemployment benefits declined last week from a six-month high, indicating firings remain low following the volatility typically associated with post-holiday staff adjustments.

Date: 01/28/2016 | Business Wire

We all need and deserve paid family leave

As Americans, we strongly value both work and family — but as citizens we've structured our economy and laws to too often force people to work at the expense of their families.We have given millions of parents the cold choice of leaving their job and not getting any...

Date: 01/27/2016 | Opinion Columnists

Raise the minimum wage, but $15 an hour may kill jobs

Two years ago, Thumbtack — a startup that connects consumers with local contractors — conducted a survey to see what they thought of proposals to raise the federal minimum wage from $7.25 to $10.10, as per President Obama's bid "to give America a raise."

Date: 01/24/2016 | Opinion Columnists

Jobless claims increase to six-month high

The number of applications for unemployment benefits unexpectedly increased last week to a six-month high, indicating tempered progress in the labor market.

Date: 01/22/2016 | Business Wire

Feds send warning shot on temp staffing agencies

WASHINGTON — The Department of Labor thinks more companies should take responsibility for their contracted workforces, and it's just told them exactly how and when.If there's one trend that's characterized the changing American workforce more than any other in recent...

Date: 01/20/2016 | Business Wire

Applications for jobless aid dropped last week

WASHINGTON — The number of Americans seeking unemployment benefits fell last week, reflecting a job market that continues to look persistently healthy.

Date: 12/24/2015 | Business Wire

Fewer Americans filed for unemployment aid last week

WASHINGTON — Fewer Americans applied for unemployment benefits last week, another sign of strength in the job market.

Date: 12/18/2015 | Business Wire

Jobless aid requests up last week; levels still low

WASHINGTON — Applications for U.S. jobless aid climbed last week, but the number of Americans seeking benefits remains close to historic lows in a positive sign for the job market.THE NUMBERS: Weekly applications for jobless aid rose 13,000 to a...

Date: 12/11/2015 | Business Wire

U.S. adds 211,000 jobs in November; Dow soars

WASHINGTON — If the Federal Reserve needed any final evidence that the economy is ready for higher interest rates, it got it on Friday.

Date: 12/04/2015 | Business Wire

High veteran unemployment appears to be in the past

Wal-Mart says it met its goal of hiring 100,000 military veterans and has upped its commitment to 250,000.A coalition of more than 200 other companies has scrapped its original objective of hiring 100,000 vets and vowed this month to make a million hires.

Date: 12/04/2015 | Nation & World

What’s behind L&I increases

Business owners don't want to see their rates increase; the question is whether they can plan well for their companies when rates swing widely up and down from one year to the next.The news Tuesday that the state Department of Labor and Industries had announced a 2 percent...

Date: 12/04/2015 | Editorials

Private sector adds 217,000 jobs in November

WASHINGTON — Private-sector employers accelerated their hiring last month, adding 217,000 net new jobs in the best performance since June, payroll firm Automatic Data Processing Inc. said Wednesday.The job growth topped an upwardly revised 196,000 in October and was...

Date: 12/02/2015 | Business Wire

Take a ferry for a spin, sort of

Agency recruiting new employees to head off shortage

Date: 12/02/2015 | Local News

Applications for jobless benefits fall sharply

WASHINGTON — The number of people seeking U.S. unemployment aid dropped sharply last week, the Labor Department said Wednesday, the latest sign that businesses are cutting few jobs.

Date: 11/26/2015 | Business Wire

U.S. employers advertise more job openings in September

WASHINGTON — Employers advertised more job openings in September but hiring was essentially unchanged.

Date: 11/13/2015 | Business Wire

For good or ill, nature of work is changing

Robots make the perfect employee. They don't complain, they don't get sick, and, as of this writing, they don't have babies. When robots can do the job in today's economy, they get the job.When they can't, a human must suffice. You still need a human to make the perfect...

Date: 11/06/2015 | Opinion Columnists

Challenge for state: Recruiting, retaining 147 new troopers

OLYMPIA — The Washington State Patrol is seeing its ranks depleted faster than can be replenished. It can't recruit enough new troopers to fill existing vacancies and newer...

Date: 11/02/2015 | Local News

Jobless aid applications fall to 42-year low

WASHINGTON — The number of people seeking U.S. unemployment aid barely rose last week and the average level of applications in the past month fell to a 42-year low.

Date: 10/29/2015 | Business Wire

U.S. employers advertised fewer jobs in August

WASHINGTON — The Labor Department said employers advertised fewer job openings in August and kept hiring flat.Job openings slid to 5.4 million in August from a record high 5.7 million in July. Hiring was little-changed at 5.1 million.

Date: 10/17/2015 | Business Wire

Unemployment applications drop to 42-year low

WASHINGTON — The number of Americans seeking unemployment aid fell last week, matching the lowest level in 42 years, strong evidence that employers remain confident enough in the economy to hold onto their staffs.

Date: 10/15/2015 | Business Wire

A fifth of small-business owners say pot at work is OK

A fifth of small-business owners say they would allow an employee with a medical marijuana prescription to use the drug while at work, according to a survey released Wednesday by insurance company Employers Holdings.

Date: 10/15/2015 | Business Wire

Applications for jobless benefits fell last week

WASHINGTON — Fewer Americans sought unemployment benefits last week, as employers hold onto workers despite a recent slowdown in hiring because of global pressures weighing on the U.S. economy.

Date: 10/09/2015 | Business Wire

Why are raises elusive with record U.S. job openings?

WASHINGTON — Companies have posted a record number of job openings just when a diminished proportion of Americans are either working or looking for work.That combination ought to push up pay. Yet it hasn't worked out that way, at least not yet. Wage growth actually...

Date: 10/04/2015 | Business

Blame wage gap on the gap between employee, employer

Could there be a reason for the widening pay gap that's not exactly economic? There could be.The employment rate has fallen to a very low 5.1 percent. A tightening labor market is supposed to lead to higher wages, but that's not happening. Some of the lowest wages are...

Date: 09/17/2015 | Opinion Columnists

County Council to vote on mostly symbolic hiring freeze

EVERETT — Snohomish County Council members are set to vote Wednesday on imposing a hiring freeze for government employees, in another sign of unease over finances.The move might put other leaders on notice, but the main effect would be symbolic."I...

Date: 09/16/2015 | Local News

U.S. jobless claims hit a 42-year low

WASHINGTON — Fewer Americans applied for unemployment benefits last week, keeping this key indicator of labor market health near historic lows.The Labor Department said Thursday that weekly applications for unemployment benefits dropped 6,000 to a seasonally adjusted...

Date: 09/10/2015 | Business Wire

U.S. job openings soar to record high of 5.8 million

WASHINGTON — The number of available jobs jumped sharply in July to the highest level in 15 years, evidence that confident employers sought to step up hiring to meet greater demand for their goods and services.

Date: 09/09/2015 | Business Wire

Worker safety at dairies needs the Legislature’s attention

As we celebrate Labor Day, I want to take this opportunity to thank all workers for the contributions they make to our economy. I hope all get to enjoy end-of-summer picnics and barbecues, watch a baseball game or participate in some other family activity this weekend.Last...

Date: 09/06/2015 | Commentary

NLRB decision: What's the definition of employer?

What makes an employer an employer?That's the question a new ruling by the National Labor Relations Board attempts to settle. The NLRB last week decided that contract workers and franchise employees — think of your local McDonald's — may more easily unionize...

Date: 09/06/2015 | Commentary

Professionals on tap for best salary boost in 8 years

Even as the landscape for wages looks bleak, at least one rung of the compensation ladder is doing just fine. And 2016 may be even better.

Date: 09/02/2015 | Business Wire

U.S. hiring reaches a six-month high in June

WASHINGTON — U.S. employers filled more of their available jobs in June, evidence that steady if modest economic growth is putting more Americans to work.

Date: 08/13/2015 | Business Wire

What does it cost to boost fast food wages?

WASHINGTON — Would you pay 17 extra cents for a Big Mac if it meant the person who prepared it could earn a living wage? What about an extra 30 cents each time you ate out at any fast-food restaurant?These are the small prices we would have to pay on average to ensure...

Date: 07/30/2015 | Business Wire

U.S. economy needs many more jobs

WASHINGTON — The economy is adding a lot of jobs, but still needs to add a lot more.That's the simple message of the latest jobs report, which was good, but not quite as good as the headline numbers suggest. Now, if you're a glass-half-full kind of person, you'd point...

Date: 07/03/2015 | Business Wire

Working harder to relax so we can work harder

We ambitious strivers seeking guidance from fitness pros, decluttering experts and TED talks often find the day divided in two unequal parts. Three-quarters goes to overworking. The remaining quarter is for countering the ill effects of overworking. We do the latter not necessarily to...

Date: 06/25/2015 | Opinion Columnists

Get behind trade, worker bills

The path toward trade bills that would allow the U.S. to secure pacts with 11 Pacific Rim nations in the Trans-Pacific Partnership has had more uphill climbs and switchbacks than the Silk Road.Trade issues, specifically trade authority for President Obama and related worker...

Date: 06/23/2015 | Editorials

Paid family leave can offer many benefits

Paid family leave affects our country and our businesses and the personal lives of the parents trying to strive without it. The United States is one of only four nations in the world without a federal entitlement to paid leave for families (out of around 200 nations). So it is obvious...

Date: 06/17/2015 | Commentary

OSHA urges transgender access to preferred bathrooms

WASHINGTON — The federal government is strongly urging employers to give transgender employees access to bathrooms that correspond to their gender identity, marking a new policy front in the fast-moving campaign for transgender equality.

Date: 06/10/2015 | Nation & World

Noncompete agreements keep workers' pay low

In olden days, the way you kept good workers was to pay them more. That's no longer the case in many jobs. Companies have been using "noncompete" agreements to stop these workers from seeking better compensation at rival companies.Originally designed to stop tech...

Date: 06/05/2015 | Opinion Columnists

Jobless aid applications fall to 276,000

WASHINGTON — Fewer Americans sought unemployment benefits last week, a sign that job cuts remain low as employers are confident enough in the business outlook to hold onto their staffs.

Date: 06/04/2015 | Business Wire

L.A. approves landmark minimum wage increase

LOS ANGELES — Moving to the forefront of a national campaign to boost the incomes of low-wage workers, Los Angeles lawmakers voted Wednesday to approve an ordinance hiking the citywide minimum wage to at least $15 an hour by 2020.

Date: 06/04/2015 | Business Wire

U.S. business hiring picks up in May

WASHINGTON — U.S. companies stepped up hiring in May, a private survey found, evidence that employers remain confident in the economy even after it contracted at the start of the year.

Date: 06/03/2015 | Business Wire

What if we set a maximum wage for CEOs?

It's an ode to cognitive dissonance when pundits come out swinging (rhetorically) against a strong minimum wage or decent pensions for everyday working people but don't even bat an eyelash at big-time CEOs who take home millions of dollars a year or outsource local jobs —...

Date: 06/03/2015 | Opinion Columnists

Want to reverse income inequality? Join a union

I am proud to be a card carrying member of Local 32035 of the Communications Workers of America.It was not always thus. The Washington Post is an open shop, and I dropped my membership several years ago when the union was encouraging readers to cancel their subscriptions to...

Date: 05/26/2015 | Opinion Columnists

Higher wage did not meet promises

It is axiomatic that a knowledge of history is necessary to avoid repeating the mistakes of the past. When it comes to the minimum wage, Washington has a track record worth remembering.Amid heightened labor activism, however, state and local policymakers should carefully...

Date: 05/10/2015 | Commentary

Jobless claims hover near 15 year lows

WASHINGTON — Fewer Americans than forecast filed applications for unemployment benefits last week, dropping the average over the past month to the lowest in 15 years, indicating companies are holding on to workers.

Date: 05/07/2015 | Business Wire

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