Employers added 304,000 new jobs to the US economy in January — once again surpassing economic forecasts, according to the latest jobs report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. However, the latest jobs report once again shows little wage growth, which remains the biggest weakness in the American economy. The average US worker hasn’t seen their paycheck get much bigger since the Great Recession, which ended around 2009.
The US Census Bureau just dropped its annual load of statistics on American poverty and income, and the data shows that 2017 was a good year for many Americans, and not-so-great for others. On the upside: 2.4 million more people snagged full-time jobs, the median household income ticked up, and poverty rates dropped slightly. The bottom 10 percent of US households — earning an average income of $14,219 — saw their incomes fall slightly compared to the previous year, adjusting for inflation.
This week, the Trump administration defied its “America First” rhetoric with a policy change that would make it easier for companies to hire guest workers from foreign countries. The Trump Organization is already poised to benefit from it. On Monday, the Department of Homeland Security raised the cap on H-2B visas for foreign guest workersfrom 66,000 visas per year to 81,000. On Thursday — just three days later — Trump’s properties told the Department of Labor that they wanted approval to hire 76 guest workers using those visas.
Mexico doesn’t want to be bossed around. After alarming the world with news about potentially ending NAFTA, Trump seemed to backtrack, saying in a Wednesday statement that he had “pleasant and productive” calls with the leaders of Mexico and Canada. “It is my privilege to bring NAFTA up to date through renegotiation,” he said. “It is an honor to deal with both President Peña Nieto and Prime Minister Trudeau, and I believe that the end result will make all three countries stronger and better.”