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Wide open market

Job creation numbers were much lower than expected this August with only 230,000 positions added. Quite a bit less than the predicted 720,000. Yet other news reports suggest there is a labor shortage, not a job shortage. McDonalds in Oregon is hiring 14 and 15 year olds. Amazon has said it will drop the marijuana screening requirement in order to recruit more delivery drivers. Yahoo Finance says that half of US small businesses have positions to fill. Quite a few states have ended COVID relief payments, with Axios concluding that the reason people aren’t working is that they fear getting sick

It will be interesting to see how vaccine mandates play into this problem. Governor De Santis pointed out (linked above) that many people have worked through the pandemic, some by choice and others because they must, when no vaccination was available. NBC reported that 40% of staff in one Miami hospital remain unvaccinated. If they haven’t taken the vaccine by now, perhaps they don’t want to. What if they all resigned? 

The Federal Reserve says it will soon stop pumping stimulus funds into the economy in the light of rising inflation, which saw the largest increase in August since 2010. While Americans have noticed price increases on fuel and groceries, the National Economic Council Director says if you take out beef, pork, and poultry, prices are pretty normal. Raccoon, anyone?

Bitcoin had a bit of a crash last week on the back of El Salvador adopting the cryptocurrency as legal tender. The millennial President of El Salvador, who swept to power two years ago, is a bit of a dark horse.

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