Business News

China Manufacturing Grows

Market volatility is at very low levels, by absolute and historical standards, as the SP 500 posted its 22nd record high of the year on Friday. (CNBC)

China’s manufacturing activity expanded for the first time in 6 months in June showing the world’s second largest economy may be stabilizing. The report showed broad across the board improvement in almost every sector. (Associated Press)

While the economy has recovered all the jobs lost during the great recession the quality of those jobs is suspect. For example high paying construction and manufacturing jobs made up 15.3% of all jobs at the end of 2007 and now are just 13%.  Of the 8 million jobs regained since the recession only 3 million are jobs paying above the national average of $24.38 per hour.  (Market Watch)

The number of federal workers under the age of 30 hit and eight year low of 7% in 2013 versus 25% for the private sector. Back in 1975 20% of the federal work force was under 30.  At the end of 2013, 45% of federal employees were older than 50 years. (Wall Street Journal)

Stock repurchases soared more than 60% in the first quarter of the year. Companies spent $159.3 billion buying back stock during the period. Much of that buying is being done with borrowed money at very low rates of interest. (Fox Business News)

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