Business News – American workers in 2018: Show me the money

Republicans reveal final tax plan details

America’s red hot job market is missing one ingredient: Strong wage growth.

It’s a big reason many Americans still feel left out of the recovery from the Great Recession.

Usually, when unemployment is this low — 4.1%, the lowest since 2000 — wages go up significantly. Companies have a hard time finding workers, and they have to pay more to recruit and retain them.

Not so in this job market. As of November, wages were only up 2.5% compared with a year ago. And since October 2010, the economy has added jobs every month, but wage growth has averaged a paltry 2.2%.

The final jobs report for 2017 comes out Friday, and it could offer hints about whether wage growth is finally starting to pick up.

In some corners of America, there are signs that it’s already happening. Small and medium-sized businesses are really feeling the pressure to find workers and raise wages.

Related: U.S. dollar hits 3-month low to start 2018

The share of employers who found few or no qualified job applicants in December was at an all-time high, 54%, according to a report published Thursday by the National Federation of Independent Business, which polls firms with 500 employees or less.

About 23% of employers told NFIB that they plan to pay employees more in the next three to six months. That matches a level last seen in March 2000, and the only time it was higher was December 1989. NFIB has conducted its survey for 40 years.

Mike Olsen is in that boat. When he founded the education tech firm Proctorio in 2013, he says it wasn’t hard to find a qualified engineer in Scottsdale, Arizona. But now it’s become his biggest employment problem.

“We used to have the advantage, and now I feel like we don’t,” says Olsen, 29. “As unemployment decreases, these employees have the upper hand.”

To keep the workers he has, Olsen says he’s raised wages 15% in the past year. An entry-level engineer at Proctorio earns $75,000 to $80,000 a year.

Related: Workers see fewer chances of promotion and raises, survey shows

Proctorio, which has 28 employees, designs camera technology that monitors students during exams to prevent them from cheating. Its technology monitors facial expressions, eye twitches and mouth movement. About 500 universities use Proctorio.

“We’re doing about 3 million exams a year. We have a lot of people trying to cheat,” Olsen says.

But he’s struggling to find qualified engineers and customer service advocates. He’s also looking for a “professional cheater” to poke holes in the software they’re developing.

Olsen is confident he’ll find a qualified cheater, but for his typical job postings, he can’t hire just anybody: Only one in 10 applicants is worth a phone call. Of the people who get phone calls, he figures one in 20 makes it to an interview. And out of that group, one in 10 gets a job offer.

Proctorio is also in a particularly hot job market. In Phoenix, small businesses raised wages in December more than any other metro area — 5.25% from a year ago, according to a report by Paychex, a payment processor, and IHS Markit, an analytics firm.

Related: 2017 was the year of the red hot job market

That makes sense: Unemployment in Phoenix is 3.7%, below the national average. Arizona did raise its minimum wage this week to $10.50 an hour, but for many employers like Olsen, that’s not the biggest problem.

He’s competing for engineers against Amazon (AMZN), which has an office in nearby Tempe, Arizona. Olsen says some of his engineers came to him last year saying they had offers for more money elsewhere. Knowing how hard it would be to replace them, Olsen has had no choice.

“We had to match it,” he says.

He adds that Proctorio is a business that only succeeds with speed: Schools need to know immediately if a student has cheated. Having engineers work together well as a team to make that fast judgment call is critical for the company.

Olsen has also decided to match competing offers because battling with Amazon is only his second-biggest problem. His first: A lack of skilled workers in the Phoenix area.

Olsen says many engineers educated in Arizona prefer to move to tech hubs like Austin or the Bay Area. That means Olsen has to pay up to persuade more to stay.

“I think we’re going to have to keep increasing” wages, Olsen says. “But it’s probably not sustainable.”

CNNMoney (New York) First published January 4, 2018: 10:26 AM ET

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Technology News – Google has planted its flag at CES

Google’s here, and it’s planning something big. The company’s presence is impossible to miss as you drive down Paradise Road toward the Las Vegas Convention Center. Like much the rest of the show, the company’s parking lot booth is still under construction today, but the giant, black and white “Hey Google” sign is already hanging above it, visible from blocks away.

It’s a slightly altered reconstruction of the whimsical invite the company sent out ahead of the show, right down to the neon blue looping slide connected to the side of the temporary structure.

Then, just as you’re wondering how the company could have pumped more into the event, two trains barreling in opposite directions pass one another on the Las Vegas monorail track out front, each baring the words, “Hey Google,” in bold, impossible to miss letters. 

Like the trains that bare its name, the company’s gone from 0 to 50 at the show with seemingly no ramp up. Outside of third parties building on top of its software solutions, Google’s never really had much of a presence at the event. All of the sudden, it seems, it’s everywhere. There’s some precedence for this, of course. At Mobile World Congress last year, the company put on a massive showing, complete with smoothies and Android sand sculptures.

Of course, a strictly mobile show made sense for the Android maker. CES is a much bigger and broader beast. But the through line is the same. At MWC, Google’s presence was all about Assistant on the phone. In this past year, the company has made a much more aggressive push to compete with Alexa in its quest to control the smart home. In 2017, it launched a family of Home products, brought a new pair of smart earbuds and began seeding Assistant onto smart speakers from third-party manufacturers.

That last bit, it seems, is a key to the show. It’s tough to say if the company is going to launch additional first-party products at the show, bucking its trend of launching at its own events like I/O. But CES is the perfect showcase to go next level with those partnerships. All of its major hardware partners are here — Sony, HTC, Lenovo, LG and the like.

Samsung may not have the most incentive to join up, assuming its planning to build out Bixby, but everyone else has a lot to gain from helping build out the Google ecosystem. Following Alexa’s path by moving off the smart speaker and on to other household items seems like a no-brainer at a show like this. 

And for Google, it’s the perfect opportunity step out from Alexa’s shadows and assert its in the smart home space once and for all.

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Strength Evolved: Air Power – Ram Trucks Videos

Strength Evolved: Air Power

A truck is the epitome of hard work. A sports car is about moving through the air with ease. Our goal was to do both in one vehicle: capability and aerodynamics. Learn how RAM Engineers have enhanced how the New 2013 Ram 1500 flows through the air.


With legendary power, performance and dependability, we’re determined to work hard and play even harder, boldly forging ahead to get the job done. 
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Bagger Hitachi Zaxis 470 und dicke Betonblöcke Dokumentation

Bagger Hitachi Zaxis 470 und dicke Betonblöcke Dokumentation

Abrissbaustelle am Hauptbahnhof Düsseldorf, hier macht die spezial Firma PundZ die komplexen Arbeiten, Dde Hallen an Gleis 1 und das Gebäude der Bundespolizei werden abgerissen


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The 88: A Tribute to Dale Earnhardt Jr. | Ford

The 88: A Tribute to Dale Earnhardt Jr. | Ford

Some call it competition. We call it family. Five Ford drivers come together to pay tribute to Dale Earnhardt Jr’s last race.

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The official YouTube channel for Ford Motor Company. Subscribe for weekly videos showcasing our vehicles, innovation and stories that inspire you to go further. Our videos are here for your entertainment, and you are welcome to use the share and embed links for all our videos, but the videos themselves are property of Ford Motor Company. You are not permitted to download any video and re-upload under any circumstances without written consent from Ford Motor Company.

The 88: A Tribute to Dale Earnhardt Jr. | Ford


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Volvo CE CONEXPO Experiences

Volvo CE CONEXPO Experiences

Check out our video from CONEXPO where you will see our simulators, virtual reality experience, Gold Rush autograph signing and our very popular 4D film.


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The unbelievable Derek Trucks “Chevrolet” instudio WRDU – Chevrolet Videos

The unbelievable Derek Trucks "Chevrolet" instudio WRDU

bob the blade with derek trucks-the guy is just amazing everyone. this is the real deal. november 2005 raleigh nc. Sorry Mike Mattison! This is the video version, not the on-air version-you can hear him singing on the on-air version which I don’t have! You should have heard him though-wow. My apologies for the crap at the end-left it in there by mistake


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Pitman arm and Center Link Installation – Chevy/GMC Trucks and SUVs – GMT800

Pitman arm and Center Link Installation - Chevy/GMC Trucks and SUVs - GMT800

This is part 4 of a video series documenting replacement of the Pitman Arm, idler arm, idler arm bracket, inner tie rod, and outer tie rod on my 2004 Chevy Tahoe.
This video documents installation of the Pitman arm and center link.

All parts were purchased from Rock Auto.

Outer Tie Rod:

Inner Tie Rod:

Pitman Arm:

Idler Arm:

Idler Arm Bracket:

Links to the other videos in this series are below:

Pitman Arm Removal:

Idler Arm Removal:

Idler Arm Installation:

Pitman Arm and Center Link Installation:

Tie Rod Removal:

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Business News – Tech exec raises $100,000 for Roy Moore accuser

Can we ever know what happened with Roy Moore?

The internet is rallying to help a Roy Moore accuser rebuild after a fire destroyed her home this week.

Tina Johnson had said failed U.S. Senate candidate Roy Moore grabbed her on the buttocks in 1991.

Silicon Valley tech executive Katie Jacobs Stanton quickly helped raised tens of thousands of dollars for Johnson through a GoFundMe crowdfunding campaign.

Stanton, a former executive at Twitter, is the chief marketing officer at genetic testing startup Color Genomics. She told CNNMoney that she read about the fire at Johnson’s home on Twitter and swiftly took action.

The account, set up on Friday, exceeded its fundraising goals of $10,000, then $20,000, then $40,000 in just a few hours.

A new donation target was set for $100,000, and met shortly after it was increased on Saturday

“It’s important to support women who are bravely using their voices to make the world better for other women. I was really upset to see the news about her home today. Money won’t erase what happened, but I truly hope it will help,” Stanton said.

Stanton previously worked at Google and served as a director of citizen participation for the Obama administration.

The campaign represents a new dimension for the #MeToo movement, which went viral after allegations against film mogul Weinstein came to light in October. People are now rallying by making tangible support for an alleged victim.

Stanton said she has experienced sexual harassment in her own career but has not been a “loud voice” in the movement. “I’m inspired by the courage of women like Tina.”

Related: 2017 was the year of (certain) women’s voices

Johnson lost the home where she has lived for the past 10 years with her husband and 15-year-old grandson. Alabama authorities said arson was being investigated. The Etowah County Sheriff’s Office said there doesn’t appear to be a connection to the allegations against Moore.

In a call on Friday, Johnson said she first learned of the GoFundMe campaign from a local reporter and spoke with Stanton on Friday evening.

“Honestly, I’m in shock like I was the day it happened. I can’t comprehend all this, it’s just overwhelming,” she told CNNMoney, stressing that the money will be put toward getting a stable home. “I need a home for my grandson.”

Johnson said she “can’t believe” the support that has poured in.

Related: How men can hep women fight sexual harassment

Johnson was among eight women who came forward to say Moore acted inappropriately with them. She was 28 at the time of the incident she recounted. Moore has denied all the accusations.

“I did what I thought was right,” she told CNNMoney about coming forward with her story.

CNNMoney (New York) First published January 6, 2018: 3:51 PM ET

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Technology News – Cassette tapes are back, kind of

Add the surprise return of the cassette tape to the long list of why the last couple of years have been some of the strangest in recent memory. After a number of strong years for the vinyl record, the media’s successor had a good 12 months, as sales in the US rose a solid 35-percent, according to Nielsen Music

The cassette tape doesn’t appear to be on track for the same kind of romantic renaissance vinyl has been undergoing over the past decade, but a few pop culture milestones have driven its numbers back up. All three top spots were dominated by Guardians of the Galaxy soundtracks, marking the format’s best year since 2012.

The Marvel Cinematic Universe film and its 2017 sequel have helped foster a newfound romanticism for the once mighty media, along with hit Netflix series, Stranger Things, which got its own cassette soundtrack release this summer. Those retro soundtracks monopolized the top four spots, with a Hamilton Mix Tape hitting number six. Some era appropriate albums also make the list, including Prince’s Purple Rain and Nirvana’s Nevermind.

Total U.S. sales hit 174,000 units this past year — that’s up from 129,000 the year prior. That, in turn, was up a whopping 74 percent from the year prior. Of course, that’s just a fraction of vinyl sales for the year, which hit 14.32 million — a nine-percent bump over a year prior.

Still, that’s all just a drop in the bucket compared to the 169.1 albums sold in 2017. Naturally, the numbers are all rosy for the music industry. That number was down 17.7 percent from a year prior.

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Bobcat Depth Check System Episode 3: Sustaining a Grade – Bobcat Videos

Bobcat Depth Check System Episode 3: Sustaining a Grade

Bobcat Excavator Product Specialist Tom Connor shows how an operator can use the depth check system to sustain a grade while excavating. He also shares a few tips that will help ensure your grade stays level while connecting and extending your trench. Follow these steps to help ensure accuracy on your next grading project with a depth check system.

1.) Position the excavator in line with where you’re trenching.
2.) Lower the bucket and use the bucket teeth to find the target depth.
3.) Lower the excavator blade to plant the machine.
4.) Set the depth check system’s benchmark using the dashboard instrumentation.
5.) Begin excavating.

For more information on our depth check system, watch the other videos in the series and visit

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Liebherr Mobilkran LTF 1060

Liebherr Mobilkran LTF 1060

Kurze Aufnahmen am Kran und dann den Rest von meinem Fenster. An dem Gebäude werden zur Verbesserung der Lebensqualität Balkonen eingebaut.
20 Okt 2016 67 Aufrufe


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Technology News – RIP IPO (1602-2018) | TechCrunch

In comparison to an anemic 2016 for venture-backed technology IPOs, 2017 was a much better year. Companies as diverse as Yext, Cloudera, Blue Apron, StitchFix, and SendGrid all went public last year, not to mention one of the most anticipated IPOs of the past few years, Snapchat. Looking forward to this year, there are a bunch of potential companies on the docket that could go public, and times couldn’t be better given the record highs of the S&P 500 and the Dow.

Now, I know what you are thinking: you just declared the IPO dead this year, you weekend clickbaiter. How can a robust market be the death of the IPO? Well, you clicked, so let’s get started.

There are growing dark clouds on the horizon for the future of IPOs. It looks likely that Spotify will run a direct listing, bypassing bank underwriting on the way to the public markets. Blockchain is increasingly drawing the attention of retail investors cynical of IPOs and their corruption. And funds like the SoftBank Vision Fund are increasingly raising private capital to protect companies from the ravages of vulture funds.

At issue is an increasing awareness that the current IPO system is corrupt beyond belief, an insiders game at the end of a company’s growth cycle that rewards those who know the right people while shortchanging retail investors in the process. That awareness is not going to recede, especially when alternative options are increasingly viable.

I caveat this prediction of the death of the IPO by noting that their supposed death has been predicted many times before. When Google decided to do a Dutch auction-style initial offering more than a decade ago, commentators predicted it could spell doom for banks looking to run investor roadshows. When the IPO pipeline dried up a few years ago, commentators were again saying that this was it.

Obviously, companies are going to “go public,” in the sense that they will publicly trade a security of some kind. What’s changing though is that the old regime of big banks charging large fees to underwrite an IPO is crumbling and being replaced by a robust set of alternatives. Bankers are even starting to lose their jobs to automation — Goldman Sachs, for instance, has already developed software to handle the IPO process. One can’t help but see this as a bid to increase efficiency to compete.

For the IPO industry, direct listings are a disruptive disaster in the making.

I think few could have predicted that the life of the IPO would be bookended by the Dutch East India Company and the Useless Ethereum Token. Such is life. But make no mistake: the health of the IPO as it stands today has never been weaker. Without an immediate resuscitation, I don’t think it can make it.


Spotify hit some pretty high highs and low lows this week. The company announced that it had grown to 70 million paying subscribers, while Nielsen data showed that Americans now get a majority of their music from streaming services. At the same time though, Stefan Blom, the company’s chief content officer, left the company. And recent news of a massive lawsuit filed by music labels against the company certainly adds some dark clouds around the future of the business.

But the big news this week was that Spotify has filed confidentially with the SEC to go public sometime in the coming weeks. And based on a steady state of rumors going back months, it looks like the company intends to continue with a direct listing.

Direct listings are relatively rare, although are hardly novel. Companies that direct list still file most of the same information to the SEC (albeit on different forms). They also need to list on an exchange that accepts them, such as NASDAQ or the NYSE, which recently proposed to the SEC a policy change to allow direct listings. A little more hand waves and magic (i.e. logistics), and then one day the company starts publicly trading.

In a direct listing, Spotify won’t issue new shares, and thus, it won’t raise any capital in the process. It won’t go on an investor roadshow, nor will it hire bankers to underwrite the offering to help stabilize the debut price. It also won’t lockup inside shareholders for months — all of whom will theoretically be able to trade on day one.

For the IPO industry, direct listings are a disruptive disaster in the making. Big banks like Goldman Sachs are going to miss out on their traditional underwriting fees (which can reach tens of millions of dollars), and institutional investors who are used to buying IPO shares before they go public — often at a massive discount — are similarly locked out of the process.

Spotify’s debut will be bumpy, considering that direct listings have much less of a cultivated playbook around them to ensure they are executed effectively. Liquidity may well be extremely tight on the first day of trading, which will cause large gyrations in the stock price. The traditional goal of bank underwriters is to limit volatility for a new issue, and a direct listing is about as far from that as possible.

Why wait for shares to become available at the end of the growth cycle when you can just buy the token today and ride a company’s success?

But, that doesn’t mean it will be as disastrous as some commentators are talking about. The rise of algorithmic trading means that computers increasingly make the decision to buy and sell in the public markets. So when Spotify comes to market along with its financial data, those algorithms will analyze the stats and stabilize the price as fast as they do for any other IPO debut. Spotify also has the advantage of a powerful consumer brand which should help prop up its stock price among human traders as well.

Now, maybe Spotify is a one-off just like Google’s Dutch auction was a one-off. But Spotify’s direct listing is much cheaper as well as more efficient and democratic. A strong performance by the company could see a slew of other companies go the direct listing route this year and into the future.

Initial Coin Offerings & SoftBank

If all goes well though, Spotify is still going to end up on a public stock exchange, likely the NYSE. There are other forces of democratization and privatization though that are working against the future of IPOs: ICOs on one hand, and late-stage private capital on the other, best exemplified by the $98 billion SoftBank Vision Fund.

ICOs have been all the rage these days, as TechCrunch headlines and discussions with Uber drivers, baristas, and hairstylists can attest to. The ICO market went from a dribble of capital at the start of 2017 to end up at over $3.7 billion in capital fundraised by the end of the year.

Few people are as excited about the potential for ICOs as founders. As I wrote last month, founders can use the ICO process to not just finance their companies without dilution, but also to increase user engagement, optimize governance, and potentially edit the signals they send to traditional VCs.

Now, ICOs are generally considered a replacement for venture capital, and not for the public markets. But that in my mind is more a question of scale than of any sort of specific factor about these processes. When companies are occasionally raising $250 million or more in a single ICO compared to a median IPO fundraise of slightly less than $100 million, it’s a real alternative.

At least in theory, once a company conducts its ICO, the tokens the company sells are free to trade, which means that the company has “gone public,” albeit in a different way. Although participating in an ICO still requires some serious technical skills today, its increasing democratization will continue as product UX for purchasing tokens improves.

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Business News – Why Wall Street’s tax party could be short-lived

Your tax reform questions answered

The tax cuts President Trump signed into law have helped start a party on Wall Street. But the celebration may not last long.

There’s little doubt that the massive business tax cuts will provide an instant and sizable boost to corporate America’s already booming bottom line.

The tax law is likely to improve the earnings per share of S&P 500 companies by 10.5% this year, Bank of America Merrill Lynch predicted Wednesday. Most of that comes from a sharply reduced corporate tax rate. The rest comes from companies spending their tax savings on stock buybacks.

Wall Street eagerly anticipated this tax bonanza. Expectations for stronger profits helped send stock prices soaring in 2017, and they’ve gone even higher early in 2018. Trump himself predicted on Twitter on Wednesday night that the stock rally still has “tremendous upward potential.”

That may be true. The bulls are betting that enormous tax savings will combine with the rejuvenated economy to accelerate corporate profits, the engine of the stock market, beyond 2018.

But Bank of America is warning that may be too optimistic.

“We see several reasons you could get the opposite: Strong earnings growth in 2018 marks the peak of growth and it slows down significantly thereafter,” said Dan Suzuki, senior investment strategist at BofA.

BofA projects stellar profit growth of 16% this year, but the firm’s new forecast for 2019 implies a deceleration to 5%.

earnings tax overhaul update

Related: Can the stock market bull keep raging in 2018?

One reason: Few economists believe the tax overhaul will create the long-term economic boom that Trump envisions.

Moody’s predicts the tax law will only help “modestly,” boosting economic growth by 0.1 to 0.2 percentage points. BofA sees a slightly bigger boost, but expects growth to slow in 2019 to 2.2% to 2.3%. That wouldn’t be good for corporate profits or the stock market.

Interestingly, one of the reasons BofA anticipates a slowdown in earnings is the tax law itself. “Tax reform could be a headwind to growth in 2019,” the report warns.

Why? First, Suzuki explained that companies will find it difficult next year to live up to their stellar growth of 2018 once the tax benefits are phased in.

Another problem: Many of the biggest beneficiaries of the tax law, such as consumer companies and telecoms, are facing “heightened competition as well as disruption.” Netflix (NFLX) has led cable subscribers to cut the cord. Amazon (AMZN) has upended brick-and-mortar retailers and now grocery store chains.

Suzuki said basic economic theory suggests that higher returns on investment caused by the tax law will allow companies to cut prices, chipping away at profits of more established companies over time.

Related: Only a small slice of companies have shared tax savings with workers

The other obstacle that Wall Street needs to navigate is the Federal Reserve.

If the tax law does accelerate economic growth, the Fed will come under pressure to scrap its promise to raise interest rates at a gradual pace. Some Fed officials hinted at that risk at the central bank’s December meeting, according to minutes released on Wednesday.

Accelerated rate hikes could “eventually weigh on overall economic growth” by increasing borrowing costs, BofA said.

Erin Browne, head of asset allocation at UBS Asset Management, cautioned clients in a recent report that Trump’s decision to “launch fiscal stimulus” with low unemployment and solid economic growth is a “recipe for a surge in wage growth.”

While higher paychecks would be welcomed by many Americans suffering from years of stagnant wages, Browne said a sharp influx of inflation would likely cause serious pain in the bond market that spreads to other asset prices.

So what does all this mean about the future of the eight-year bull market in stocks?

“We’re not making the call that a bear market is imminent,” said Suzuki. He pointed to how almost half of BofA’s list of 19 “bear market signposts” have not yet been triggered.

Two of the red flags that haven’t been raised are signals of excessive optimism among investors.

But Suzuki conceded that the tax cuts could “drive investor sentiment into euphoric levels, which would be very bearish for the market eventually.”

CNNMoney (New York) First published January 4, 2018: 8:45 AM ET

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