April 5 (Bloomberg) — Service industries expanded in March at the fastest pace since in more than three years, a sign the U.S. recovery is extending beyond manufacturing and starting to create jobs. The Institute for Supply Management’s index of non- manufacturing businesses, which make up almost 90 percent of the economy, rose to 55.4, the highest level since May 2006, from 53 in the prior month. Today’s figure exceeded all forecasts in a Bloomberg News survey. Readings above 50 signal expansion.This is good news. Read the whole article here.
They say employment figures are a “lagging indicator” which is stock market speak for measurements that we look back on for perspective. That is, economic growth happens first, then employment picks up. This makes logical sense because obviously, companies don’t start hiring before new business picks up. But once new orders come rolling in for all manners of products and services, companies scramble to hire in order to accommodate the increasing demand. This is why it is so heartening to see the following chart showing the employment figures over the last two years. Follow me over the jump for analysis. Continue reading…
In what has to be among the cruelest April Fools Day pranks I have seen in years, some practical jokers dressed up as In-N-Out Burger employees appeared in Manhattan’s Union Square this morning. They had a printed banner saying that In-N-Out was preparing to open its first New York outlet. For those uninitiated, NYC-based Allen School Students, In-N-Out Burger is about the very best burger joint ever! There is no East Coast analog to speak of. (Shake Shack is good, but not in the same ballpark I am afraid.) But to give you Northeasterners a point of reference, it would be like telling a West Coaster that Famous Ray’s Pizzeria (or insert your favorite NY pizzeria here) was planning to open up outlets in Los Angeles. Did you know there is no New York style pizza to be had in California? I spent 10 years driving thousands of miles around the Golden State without finding any decent pie. Anyway, now that my burger dreams are crushed, Allen School Online students in California and Nevada: Do me a favor. Go have a Double Double animal style and animal fries for me please! Oh and chocolate shake!!!
The following was posted by Congressman John B. Larson, Democrat from Connecticut after last night’s historic passage of health insurance reform.As soon as health care passes, the American people will see immediate benefits. The legislation will:
- Prohibit pre-existing condition exclusions for children in all new plans;
- Provide immediate access to insurance for uninsured Americans who are uninsured because of a pre-existing condition through a temporary high-risk pool;
- Prohibit dropping people from coverage when they get sick in all individual plans;
- Lower seniors’ prescription drug prices by beginning to close the donut hole;
- Offer tax credits to small businesses to purchase coverage;
- Eliminate lifetime limits and restrictive annual limits on benefits in all plans;
- Require plans to cover an enrollee’s dependent children until age 26;
- Require new plans to cover preventive services and immunizations without cost-sharing;
- Ensure consumers have access to an effective internal and external appeals process to appeal new insurance plan decisions;
- Require premium rebates to enrollees from insurers with high administrative expenditures and require public disclosure of the percent of premiums applied to overhead costs.
I know not all of our readers are located as I am in the Northeast. However, if the news reports have been even partly accurate, this Winter season has been one of the more brutal ones in recent memory. Snow totals in the Northeast have been on the high side of the spectrum and my relatives in Southern California have been getting more rain there than they see in five years combined. So it is with great anticipation that I await the 14th of March. This coming Sunday, March 14th, at midnight, we all set our clocks one hour ahead. While we lose one hour of sleep in the transaction, we gain one more glorious hour of evening sunlight to use outside, after close of business hours. That’s one more hour to spend walking, studying, reading or washing the car. Of course, it is still probably too cold in many parts of the country to spend much of this extra daylight time out of doors. But rejoice! For the last day of Winter is not far behind this Sunday’s “Spring Ahead”. The Vernal Equinox happens on March 21. This marks the first day of Spring and not a moment too soon. I dreamed last night that we were taking to cover off the swimming pool. Can you tell I am ready for swimming and barbecues? How about you?
Sooner or later, most people will have to apply for a job online. The number of employers who utilize the online application method to find the best people continues to grow. Some people feel that the online application process limits their ability to showcase particular skills and stand apart from the competition. It really does not have to be that way. Here are some suggestions on how to use the electronic application process in an effective manner. Continue reading…
With unemployment high and so many candidates competing for so few positions, the strength of your resume is even more important than ever. I found this great breakdown of “don’ts” at Investopedia.com a great site for info on basic economic concepts and financial information. While we have done resume posts in the past, this list really gets into some of the mistakes folks have been making lately in their attempts to make their resume stand out against the sea of resumes that recruiters are swimming in.
The New York Times reported over the weekend on an imminent surge in new medical schools to open in the US this year. From that article:
“The proliferation of new schools is also a market response to a rare convergence of forces: a growing population; the aging of the health-conscious baby-boom generation; the impending retirement of, by some counts, as many as a third of current doctors; and the expectation that, the present political climate notwithstanding, changes in health care policy will eventually bring a tide of newly insured patients into the American health care system.If all the schools being proposed actually opened, they would amount to an 18 percent increase in the 131 medical schools across the country.”For some perspective on the significance of this development, follow me past the jump. Continue reading…
Developing time management skills, like any other worthwhile endeavor, requires planning and then lots of practice. But the benefits of mastering your own schedule can be felt in all areas of your life; personal and professional. The overall point of focusing on time management is to become more aware of how you use your time and break your days up between work, study, family, social activities and sleep. Follow me past the jump for some ideas on how to begin the process and practice of better time management.Continue reading…