The Los Angeles County Superior Court plans to eliminate more than 500 jobs by the end of the week in a sweeping cost-cutting plan to close a projected $85-million budget shortfall for the next fiscal year.
On Friday, layoff notices will be hand-delivered to employees as 511 court positions are eliminated. While some positions will simply go unfilled, 177 people will lose their jobs, court officials announced Tuesday.
An additional 139 people will receive demotions and pay cuts, and 223 people will be transferred to new work locations, officials said.
June 12, 2013 No Comments
Job openings in the U.S. fell in April, showing companies were waiting to assess the effects of higher taxes and reduced government spending before committing to bigger staff increases.
The number of positions waiting to be filled fell by 118,000 to 3.76 million, the fewest since January, from a revised 3.88 million in March, the Labor Department reported today in Washington. The pace of hiring picked up and more people also left their jobs voluntarily, the figures showed.
June 11, 2013 No Comments
American employers took on more workers than forecast in May as the world’s largest economy weathered the impact of higher taxes and federal spending cuts.
Payrolls rose 175,000 after a revised 149,000 increase in April that was smaller than first estimated, Labor Department figures showed today in Washington. The median forecast in a Bloomberg survey called for a gain of 163,000. The unemployment rate climbed to 7.6 percent from 7.5 percent as a surge in the number of people entering the labor force swamped the number of positions available.
June 8, 2013 No Comments
First boom, then bust, then more bad luck. That’s how analyst Meredith Whitney views those states that experienced the meteoric rise, then fall of their housing markets in the last decade, spending the extra tax revenue during the boom times but not cutting back after the bust. She calls it “the negative feedback loop from hell” in her new book, Fate of the States: The New Geography of American Prosperity.
“Nevada and all across the United States, cities and states that were once flush with cash are running out of money needed to pay for libraries, safe streets, clean drinking water, and yes, schools,” writes Whitney. “Even worse, the debt they’ve rung up in order to close budget gaps are threatening governments’ ability to deliver these basic services not just today but also in the future.”
June 6, 2013 No Comments
If you’re a homeowner, recent news about double-digit price increases sounds terrific. But for buyers hoping to get a great deal on a house, the window of opportunity may be starting to close.
For the past several years, housing affordability has been at or near record levels. Three basic factors determine affordability: home prices, mortgage rates and household incomes. The optimal moment for buying a home now appears to have occurred in early 2012, when the median price was about $156,000 and the average interest rate on a 30-year mortgage was 4.2%. Mortgage payments for a typical family totaled just 12% of income back then, according to the National Association of Realtors (NAR) — the lowest portion since 1970, when the NAR started tracking such data.
May 30, 2013 No Comments
New home sales climbed strongly in April, an indication that a long-awaited building market comeback is strengthening.
Sales of newly built, single-family homes rose 2.3% above the prior month and were 29% above the same period last year. New homes sold at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 454,000 units, the Commerce Department reported.
“Home builders are enjoying a great start to the 2013 home selling season amid short supplies,” wrote Credit Suisse economists Jill Brown and Jonathan Basile, in an emailed analysis.
The overall housing market has rebounded this year as mortgage-interest rates remain low and inventory is tight. Sales of previously owned U.S. homes increased in April, hitting their highest level in nearly four years, the National Assn. of Realtors reported.
May 23, 2013 No Comments
In the first quarter of 2013, the U.S. saw 914 mass layoff events in the private sector, costing 154,374 workers their jobs.
Those might sound like daunting stats—but this is actually good news on the labor front. Given the depth and duration of the Great Recession, these results are considered a big rebound from previous years.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the number of layoff actions fell 29% from the same three-month period last year, and dropped 56% from the last quarter of 2012 when there were 2,123 mass layoffs in the private sector.
May 20, 2013 No Comments
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Retail sales unexpectedly rose in April as households bought automobiles, building materials and a range of other goods, pointing to underlying strength in the economy in the face of government austerity.
The Commerce Department said on Monday retail sales edged up 0.1 percent after a 0.5 percent decline in March. Economists had expected retail sales, which account for about 30 percent of consumer spending, to drop 0.3 percent last month.
“The overall tone of this report was quite encouraging as it suggests that U.S. consumers are continuing to successfully navigate against the steady fiscal headwinds,” said Millan Mulraine at TD Securities in New York.
May 13, 2013 No Comments
WASHINGTON (AP) — A survey shows U.S. home prices rose 10.5 percent in March compared with a year ago, the biggest gain since March 2006.
Core Logic, a real estate data provider, said Tuesday that annual home prices have now increased for 13 straight months. Prices are rising in part because more buyers are bidding on a limited supply of homes for sale.
Prices increased in 46 states over the past year — 11 of them posting double-digit gains. And when excluding distressed sales, which include foreclosures and short sales, prices rose in every state. A short sale is when a home sells for less than what is owed on the mortgage.
May 8, 2013 No Comments
Another lackluster quarter of economic growth is likely to have the same impact on the market as its predecessors—which is to say, not much.
Despite a prolonged period of weak improvement in gross domestic product, stocks have continued on a progressive, albeit bumpy, ride higher.
The 136 percent stock market surge over the past four years has come despite the weakest recovery since the Great Depression, and more recently signs that those expecting a period of stronger growth will be disappointed.
April 29, 2013 No Comments