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No salary for 800,000 US government workers

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A partial shutdown of the U.S. government could slash job growth by as much as 500,000 in January and lift the unemployment rate above 4.0 percent unless the impasse in Washington is resolved before next Friday, economists warned.

Some 800,000 government workers missed their first paycheck on Friday following the partial shutdown which started on Dec. 22 as President Donald Trump demanded that the U.S. Congress give him $5.7 billion this year to help build a wall on the country’s border with Mexico.

The Labor Department, which has not been affected by the shutdown, surveys employers and households for its closely watched employment report, which includes nonfarm payrolls and the unemployment rate, during the week that includes the 12th of the month.

For this month, the pay period for most federal employees that includes the week of the 12th runs from Jan. 6 to Jan. 19.

About 380,000 workers have been furloughed, while the rest are working without pay.Unless the government reopens next week, furloughed workers will probably be counted as unemployed, as they would not have received a salary during the pay period survey.

“So, if the government remains closed past January 19, then furloughed federal workers will not receive pay during the survey week, meaning that we’d very likely get a big drop in the headline payrolls report, something on the order of perhaps 500,000 to 600,000,” said Omair Sharif, senior U.S. economist at Societe Generale in New York.That could result in the first monthly decline in employment since September 2010 and snap a string of 99 consecutive months of jobs gains.But if Congress decides to pay these workers retroactively as was the case following the October 2013 government shut down, they would be considered employed.“You can look at the private sector payroll figure to bypass this distortion, but it’ll create some uncertainty and prevent us from getting a clean read on the labor market,” said Sharif.

The economy created 312,000 jobs in December, the most in 10 months. Trump likes to boast about the strong labor market as one of his crown achievements.

The shutdown, which on Friday tied the record for the longest in the nation’s history, could also drive up the unemployment rate in January.

Reuters

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ODM Politician among those arrested over Ksh2 Billion Fake Cash at Bank

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A politician was on Tuesday arrested in connection to the fake Ksh2 billion that was discovered at a safety deposit box at Barclays bank, Queensway branch.

The owner of the safety deposit box, Dr Eric Otieno Adede, had vied for the Homabay Town Constituency seat in 2017 but lost to Peter Opondo Kaluma.

The identities of other individuals being held in connection to the fake cash syndicate are Ahmed Shah, who was posing as an investor, accomplices Elizabeth Muthoni and Irene Wairimu Kimani as well as Boaz Ochich and Charles Manzi who are bank officials.

The bank clarified that the contents of the deposit box were only known to the politician.

Initial reports had stated that the money seized was Ksh17 billion but Directorate of Criminal Investigations George Kinoti clarified that the money was valued at Ksh2 billion.

The money had been kept in the safety deposit box in denominations of $100 bills.

 

 

Dr Eric Otieno Adede’s poster for the 2017 General Election

Tuesday’s bust comes barely a month after DCI detectives discovered Ksh32 billion in fake currency at a house in Ruiru, Kiambu County.

The police revealed that the currencies, which included both local and foreign, was linked to one of the suspects who impersonated President Uhuru Kenyatta.

The currency, estimated to be in billions, had been traded out to unsuspecting Kenyans in Shillings, Dollars, Japanese Yen and other denominations.

In an earlier report by Kenyans.co.ketwo of the seven suspects lived lavish lifestyles with one owning a fully furnished 10-bedroom house in Karen and the other having spent Kshs 5 million on a wedding attended by MPs in 2017.

The suspects included Duncan MuchaiIsaac WajekecheWilliam SimiyuDavid Luganya, Anthony Wafula, Gilbert Kirunja and Joseph Waswa alias Henry Waswa.

Clockwise: Ahmed Shah, Erick Adede, Irene Wairimu Kimani, Elizabeth Muthoni arrested in over to fake Ksh2 billion syndicate

-kenyans.co.ke

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Police impound two more luxury vehicles which are registered as motorbikes

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Detectives on Tuesday impounded two top of the range vehicles which were registered as motor cycles.

Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) said the two vehicles, a Range Rover Overfinch and a Mercedes S500 with registration numbers KBN 591A and KBG 330E, reportedly belonged to an official of the Nairobi County.

The vehicles were found in his premises and inside the boot of the Mercedes police officers also recovered two pairs of number plates KCR 985U and KCR 196P.

The recovery comes just three days after detectives impounded two vehicles for evasion of duty through an organized racket which purports that they were manufactured at a fictitious company in Mombasa.

The two Mercedes Benz (registration numbers KCR 565 W and KCR 195 P) which were impounded on Saturday, belonged to Ms Cynthia Wanjiru Gitonga and Mr John Mwangi respectively.

According to the DCI, the two cars were declared as having been manufactured as trailers in a Mombasa-based firm.

Just last week the Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) intercepted three high-end fuel guzzlers at the Mombasa Port which were on transit to Uganda.

The three vehicles – a Range Rover Sport, a Range Rover Vogue and Land Rover Discovery – confirmed stolen in Interpol’s motor vehicles database were reportedly concealed in a container which was supposed to be ferrying household goods.

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Flying squad discover billions in fake currency at Barclays Bank branch

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BY OLIVIA MUNGWANA

Police in Nairobi have stormed a bank in the city centre in search of fake currency.

Detectives from Flying Squad stormed into Barclays Bank, Queensway branch, located on Mama Ngina Street at 1pm on Tuesday.

According to the star, flying Squad officers have intercepted billions in fake currency at Barclays Branch.

The Star reports that police sources said the owners were using the money to con people.

“It’s fake and was found inside a safe in the bank,” the sources said adding that they are currently investigating the matter.

 

Barclays in a Tweet said the fake cash belonged to a customer who has a safe in the bank

A customer who holds a personal safe deposit box at our Queensway branch was this morning intercepted by police at the branch. Police are currently investigating the contents of his safe deposit box. We are assisting the authorities to investigate this matter fully.” 

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