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What Monetary Policy Needs Is Fiscal Stimulus

The Kansas City Federal Reserve Regional Bank held its annual research symposium at Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming this week. The focus was on the limits of monetary policy. The challenge faced by central bankers is that since the Great Depression, the world has faced deflationary pressures from overcapacity. Oil prices have plummeted, Chinese steel floods the global markets and workers remained frustrated with low wages and finding full-time work. Central bankers have run into a problem because their primary tool of interest rate policy to stimulate the economy has run into the limit of zero nominal interest rates. At zero, they are essentially giving away money. But investment remains stuck on low. And one way to stir the economy, to prompt inflation that gives the room of rising prices for firms to make profitable investments, isn’t happening.

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Working People Rally Against Trump's Anti-Union Tactics in Las Vegas

Working People Rally Against Trump's Anti-Union Tactics in Las Vegas

Today, hundreds of workers protested and rallied in front of Trump International Hotel Las Vegas. Culinary Workers Union members and Trump Hotel Las Vegas workers were joined by our Ironworkers brothers and sisters from across the country who were in town for their national convention.

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Black Lives Matter, at Least Every Four Years for Two Weeks

Image courtesy Wikimedia Commons

The Olympics is a constant exercise in irony and hopefulness for African Americans. Since John Taylor won a gold medal at the 1908 Olympics in London, in the no longer contested medley relay, African Americans have hoped that winning gold for the United States would transform America’s dialogue on race. The hope was it could transform the discourse to see African American Olympians, as all Olympians, as exceptional; and, rather than exceptions to their race, as examples of their race and the families that supported and nurtured their excellence.

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Make Your Back-to-School Shopping Union-Made!

Image courtesy Pixabay

Around the country, classes are starting up again, students are getting ready to learn once more and parents are rushing out to buy the supplies their children need for school. When shopping for those necessary items, you can make sure that your purchases support working families. Here is a list of union-made school supplies.

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83% of Registered Black Women Support Equal Pay, and They Vote

83% of Registered Black Women Support Equal Pay, and They Vote

Today is Black Women’s Equal Pay Day. It’s almost September, and black women, who earn just 66 cents to the dollar of white men, have hit the point in the year when their earnings, added to last year’s, match what their white male counterparts made in 2015. According to the Economic Policy Institute, the wages of black women compared with white women are falling further behind.

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The Federal Reserve and Black Unemployment

The Federal Reserve and Black Unemployment

The Federal Reserve Open Market Committee (FOMC) that determines U.S. monetary policy met in July.  Its job is to weigh the state of the American economy, both the labor market and inflationary pressures to set policy.  In an interesting note, its discussion of the labor market explicitly noted the condition of the African American and Hispanic unemployment rates.  More than just an aside, reflecting on the status of June’s labor market the minutes of the meeting show the following note:

“The unemployment rates for African Americans and for Hispanics stayed above the rate for whites, al­though the differentials in jobless rates across the different groups were similar to those before the most recent recession.”

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