Wage Inflation Coming. Does This Mean Spiking Interest Rates?

By John Rubino – Re-Blogged From Dollar Collapse

Dave, the plumber who saves us every six or so months when a leaking pipe, water heater, or toilet threatens to destroy our walls and ceilings, was here the other day. As usual he fixed the problem right away and charged us less than expected. We love this guy.

While he was working I asked him how business was going. He claimed to be swamped to the point of turning away jobs. I asked why he doesn’t hire more plumbers to leverage his client list. Because, he replied, there are no available plumbers: “If a plumber is unemployed today there’s a really good reason for it.” In other words the home maintenance part of the labor market is hot and getting hotter.

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Jobless Claims Fall as Job Market Strengthens

By Thomson/Reuters – Re-Blogged From Newsmax

The number of Americans filing for unemployment benefits unexpectedly fell last week, pointing to a tightening labor market and strengthening economy at the start of the year.

Initial claims for state unemployment benefits slipped 1,000 to a seasonally adjusted 230,000 for the week ended Jan. 27, the Labor Department said on Thursday. Continue reading

When the Protests Die Down, Iran’s Economic Problems Will Live On

Re-Blogged From Stratfor

Highlights

  • Some of the grievances behind the recent wave of protests in Iran, such as disappointment with the nuclear deal and low oil prices, will remain beyond the government’s power to change.
  • Unstable food prices, decreasing purchasing power and high rates of unemployment and underemployment will continue to pose problems for everyday citizens across the country.
  • The sensitive reform measures necessary to overhaul subsidy systems, labor laws and business contracts, which are as much political as they are economic, will probably set off more unrest in the future. 

Students at the University of Tehran run for cover as tear gas is lobbed at demonstrators on Dec. 30, 2017.(STR/AFP/Getty Images)

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Minimum Wage Hikes Already Backfiring

Restaurant chain Red Robin is eliminating the “busboy” position at its 570 locations as a cost-saving measure to offset minimum wage hikes.

“We need to do that to address the labor increases we’ve seen,” Red Robin’s Chief Financial Officer, Guy Constant, told attendees at the ICR retail conference in Orlando, Florida, the New York Post reports.

1.4 Million Affected By Massive Power Outage In California, Arizona And Mexico

Sandy Huffaker/Getty Images

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California’s $15 Minimum Wage Could Backfire and Cost the State 400,000 Jobs

A newly released longitudinal study on the effects of the rising minimum wage in California reveals it negatively affects low-income workers.

“[A]pproximately 400,000 jobs would be lost” by 2022 “as a consequence” of California gradually imposing the first statewide $15 minimum wage, according to a study from the Employment Policies Institute, a conservative nonprofit research organization. “This estimate is conservative, as it measures the impact of California’s state minimum wage but does not account for job loss in counties that had insufficient data.”

NYC Fast Food Workers Join Nationwide Protests Against Puzder Nomination

Spencer Platt/Getty Images

Year-End Rate Hike

By Mark O’Byrne – Re-Blogged From http://www.Gold-Eagle.com

FOMC follows through on much anticipated rate-hike of 0.25%
– Spot gold responds by heading for biggest gain in three weeks, rising by over 1%
– Final meeting for Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen
– Yellen does not expect Trump’s tax-cut package to result in significant, strong growth for US economy
– No concern for bitcoin which ‘plays a very small role in the payment system’

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What Could Pop The Everything Bubble?

By Charles Hugh Smith Re-Blogged From http://www.Silver-Phoenix500.com

A Crisis That Can’t Be Solved By Just Printing More Dollars

I’ve long held that if a problem can be solved by creating $1 trillion out of thin air and buying a raft of assets with that $1 trillion, then central banks will solve the problem by creating the $1 trillion out of thin air—nothing could be easier.

This is the lesson of the past eight years: if a problem can be solved by creating new money and buying assets, then central banks will solve that problem.

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