Global Economy, Economic Environment, Regional Economic Integration, Money & Finance, Currency, Government Finance
The European Central Bank is making another attempt at stability through dramatic measures. Europe's falling prices, currency, punitive rates on bank profits, and convoluted politics all complicate the effects of policymaking. Recent data on industrial production and GDP have been promising, however.
Leadership, Human Resources, Benefits, Health Benefits, Risk & Compliance, Legal, Labor & Employment Practices
In a decision that adopts the minority position of two courts of appeals out of a total of eight that have ruled on the issue, the Supreme Court held that ERISA health benefit plans may not seek reimbursement from third-party settlements plan participants receive when the participant has spent the funds on nontraceable items. While the case in question concerned a health benefit plan, the implications for other types of ERISA plans, including pension and disability plans, is unclear.
Americans are surrounded by manufactured goods at home and work— so how can the manufacturing sector represent only 11% of GDP? The explanation is that it doesn’t. MAPI Foundation research examining the full value chain reveals that manufacturing accounts for 32% of GDP. We also find that the manufacturing multiplier is almost three times as high as official data suggest.
Leadership, Human Resources, Employee Relations, Employee Communication
Governments and employers (including Google) are experimenting with nudging people into better decisions, including those shaping productivity, health, safety, and personal finances. In some cases, employers can see benefits from actions as simple as stocking smaller plates in company cafeterias and rephrasing reminders for employee flu shot clinics.
The United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit issued a significant decision interpreting the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA). The court decided on an issue of first impression that job applicants may bring disparate impact claims of age discrimination under the ADEA against prospective employers whose policies and procedures lack a discriminatory intent and are purportedly neutral on their face, but nevertheless have a discriminatory effect.
The EPA's Clean Power Plan creates winners and losers, with anticipated advantages for the environment but higher electricity costs and lower GDP relative to baseline forecasts. Two dozen states have already filed lawsuits over the plan and the House passed two joint resolutions to kill it.
Corporate Affairs, Corporate Social Responsibility, Sustainability, Sustainable Business Practices, Risk & Compliance, Environmental Management, Environmental Resource Management, Energy Management, Risk Management, Risk Assessment & Planning
World leaders gathered in Paris for COP21 in the hopes of reaching a pact to cut greenhouse emissions, slow the rise in global temperatures, and tackle the “global threat to security in the 21st century.” Business leaders are also getting involved because they see it as an important opportunity and essential part of risk mitigation strategies.
Global Economy, Economic Environment, Growth & Innovation, Research & Development, Research, Innovation
While measuring potential GDP—the maximum output achievable without provoking inflation—is not an exact science, it is clear that U.S. potential has slowed significantly since the 1980s and 1990s. Slower labor force growth and productivity are causing the sluggishness, although it is likely that government statistics do not accurately account for several types of 21st-century innovation.