Now almost all of Wal-Mart’s 4,700 U.S. stores have a Cash360 machine, making thousands of positions obsolete. Most of the employees in those positions moved into store jobs to improve service, said a Wal-Mart spokesman. More than 500 have left the company. The store accountant displaced last August is now a greeter at the front door, where she still earns $13 an hour. “The role of service and customer-facing associates will always be there,” said Judith McKenna, Wal-Mart’s U.S. chief operating officer. But, she added, “there are interesting developments in technology that mean those roles shift and change over time.” Shopping is moving online, hourly wages are rising and retail profits are shrinking—a formula that pressures retailers, ranging from Wal-Mart to Tiffany & Co., to find technology that can do the rote labor of retail workers or replace them altogether.
China-based businesses have been sinking money into various automotive operations—from glass and tire makers to technology developers and car makers—for several years, reflecting Beijing’s goal of eventually dominating the world’s car business. That effort accelerated during the first half of 2017, with eight overseas deals totaling more than $5.5 billion in Chinese investments, compared with nine investments for all of last year. The list includes the takeover of troubled Japanese air-bag maker Takata Corp. , the purchase of a U.S. flying-car developer and the acquisition of a sizable stake in Silicon Valley’s Tesla Inc. TSLA 1.43% by games and social-media company Tencent Holdings Ltd.
The number of U.S. job openings hit a new high in April while hiring slowed, a sign that employers are struggling to find workers.
The number of job openings rose by 259,000 to 6.04 million, the Labor Department said Tuesday, the highest level recorded since the government started tracking the figure at the end of 2000. The number of hires, meanwhile, fell by 253,000 to 5.05 million in April.
The wealthiest state in the U.S. is having trouble collecting enough money to pay its bills, and the Democratic governor doesn’t think taxing the rich is the answer anymore.
The legislation in New York City, described as the “first of its kind” by its sponsor, is designed to solve these problems by enlisting employers in the fight before they are even unionized. Here’s how the Fast Food Worker Empowerment Act, as it is called, would work: If a fast-food worker so chose, his employer would be required to deduct contributions from his paycheck each month and remit them to a not-for-profit organization. That could include union-aligned nonprofits. A New York City local of the SEIU has already created one called Fast Food Justice.