THE ECONOMY, WAGES, AND TALENT SUSTAINABILITY: Failure to Increase Debt Ceiling Could Have Serious Economic Consequences

August 29, 2017

Congress has just 12 workdays in September to pass legislation to increase the debt ceiling and keep the government running.  While both bills face serious challenges, failure to increase the debt ceiling could have significant economic consequences, while shutting down the federal government will have a more muted impact on the economy.  Although a few of the individual appropriations bills in Congress include policy riders involving the National Labor Relations Board and Labor Department, as in previous years, any continuing budget resolution and/or omnibus appropriations bill will most likely be relatively free of such riders.
Tax Reform  While the House and Senate GOP leadership and key committee chairmen have made headway on tax reform, settling on which deductions to cap or eliminate in order to reduce rates will be more challenging.  Tax writers appear to be zeroing in on some traditional sacred cows, such as capping the mortgage interest deduction, tossing out the state and local tax deduction, and trading the deduction for interest on business debt for full expensing for small businesses as ways to pay for lower rates.  However, the inability to enact an ACA repeal and replace bill in July means the corporate rate would likely end up being between 22 percent and 25 percent.  One of the big questions—should the tax changes be permanent?—hasn't been decided, and early agreement on broad tax issues doesn't ensure Congress will be able to pass an actual tax bill.  The House has a better chance of passing a bill before the end of 2017, but it could be 2018, if then, before a final bill lands on President Trump's desk.
Moderate U.S. Economic Growth Expected, Wage Gains for Low-Income Workers Pick Up  According to the latest survey of business economists, economic growth is expected to be 2.5 percent for the remainder of 2017 and 2.4 percent for all of 2018.  Wage growth is expected to remain relatively modest for this stage of economic expansion, although some industries have seen average weekly earnings grow more than 3.5 percent over the past year.  For the first time in years, pay for the lowest-income Americans is rising faster than for other groups.  Weekly pay for full-time earners in the lowest 10th percentile of the wage scale rose at a faster rate last quarter, year-to-year, than for any other group measured, including those in the highest income group.  In the meantime, the economy is expected to create 178,000 jobs per month for the remainder of the year, 
Jobipedia Makes Strides in 2017 Jobipedia continues to prove itself a premier resource for college students and early career job seekers, being projected to surpass 2 million unique visitors again this year, and currently boasting nearly 70,000 followers on Facebook.  A recent article on highlights Jobipedia as a reliable outlet for job seekers to gather and receive honest advice about the many facets of a new career and the job hunt.  In July, more than 20 hiring experts from 8 contributing companies gathered in Fort Worth for the 3rd Annual Jobipedia Networking Conference.  Some of the conference discussions included a contributor-led presentation on how to develop early talent and a look at the growing trend of artificial intelligence in hiring and recruiting.  Additionally, it was decided that Jobipedia will begin to coordinate a monthly email consolidating relevant news articles related to early career hiring, internships, recruiting, and training and development.  These monthly emails will be distributed to the contributing hiring experts and any of their interested colleagues in talent acquisition.  If you or your colleagues in Talent Acquisition would like to receive these monthly round-ups, or if you would like to learn more about Jobipedia, email Mike McGuiness at