A recap of this week’s top-five news items and resources from the intersection of business and government.
1. Md. gained 5,300 jobs in September; jobless rate fell to 4%
Maryland’s unemployment rate fell from 4.3% to 4% last month as the state, buoyed by hiring in the hospitality sector, added 5,300 jobs, according to preliminary data released last Friday by the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics. However, some sectors saw losses, most notably the financial sector, which decreased by 2,000 jobs, and the manufacturing sector, which lost 200 jobs.
Since the beginning of 2022, Maryland has gained a total of 59,300 jobs, the state Department of Labor said.
2. Pay increases may be good for workers but not for inflation. Here’s why.
How much wage increases are contributing to four-decade high inflation could determine whether we are seeing what economists call a “wage-price spiral” and could help unlock how high inflation may climb and how long it will stick around. In the second quarter, wages accelerated 5.1% annually, below the inflation rate but the fastest clip since the International Monetary Fund began publishing their World Economic Outlook series in 2002.
“Every month inflation remains high, the risk grows that inflation expectations… move higher too,” Henry Allen, Deutsche Bank analyst, said. “In turn, firms and individuals will factor this into their price-setting and wage-bargaining, and expectations of higher inflation then become a self-fulfilling prophecy.”
3. Tradepoint Atlantic to add 165-acre container terminal to support Port of Baltimore
Tradepoint Atlantic is adding a massive container terminal that will stretch 165 acres at the former Sparrows Point steel mill site, which will support growth at the Port of Baltimore. The terminal is expected to bring 1,000 new jobs to Tradepoint. The deal is a joint venture between private developer Tradepoint Atlantic and Terminal Investment Limited, a 22-year-old firm that moves shipping containers throughout 155 countries around the world.
“Tradepoint Atlantic has been a critical addition to the port since they began developing the Sparrows Point side. Today’s news strengthens Baltimore as one of the top ports in the U.S.,” said William P. Doyle, executive director of the Port of Baltimore.
4. Department of Labor’s independent contractor proposal takes aim at sole proprietors
The U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division recently proposed a regulation redefining how to classify employees and independent contractors under the Fair Labor Standards Act. The overarching thrust of the regulation is determining whether a worker is “economically dependent” on an employer for work and thus an employee, or in business for her/himself.
The proposed regulation redefining how to classify workers as either independent contractors or employees is one of the most impactful regulations ever issued by the Wage and Hour Division.
5. General Election guide for Maryland
A September public opinion poll conducted by Goucher College in partnership with WYPR and The Baltimore Banner found that the top three issues for Maryland voters were the economy, crime and public school education.
Early voting in Maryland began yesterday and will continue until November 3 with voting centers open from 7am to 8pm. Mail-in ballots can be requested until November 1 and must be either postmarked by Election Day or dropped off in person at one of the hundreds of drop boxes statewide.
Remember to vote for pro-growth business leaders who will unlock a brighter future through solutions and opportunities for all Marylanders!
OPPORTUNITY: Network with fellow business leaders and learn innovative DEI practices
Businesses Leading in Diversity, Equity & Inclusion
Wednesday, November 2
5- 7:30 PM
University of Baltimore
Use code at checkout for early bird rate: MDCC