Monthly Archives: January 2013

THE “R” WORD…NO RELATION TO THE “F” WORD

BY: Adam Gavriel

The new “R” word that economists would like to see on everyone’s mind this year is, “rebound” and not, “recession.” Reports from Bloomberg on January 31st show the economy will bounce back in the current quarter after gains for consumers and businesses in the final three months of 2012.

“It would be a mistake to view this drop in GDP — driven by temporary corrections in defense spending and inventories — as a possible harbinger of recession,” Nigel Gault, chief U.S. economist for IHS Global Insight in Lexington, Massachusetts, said in an e-mail. “We expect GDP growth to rebound to around 2 percent in the first quarter.”

GDP saw gains of 2.2 percent in 2012, and many economists believe it will be on the same track this year with gains in the neighborhood of 2-2.3 percent.

“Growth in economic activity paused in recent months, in large part because of weather-related disruptions and other transitory factors,” the Federal Reserve said yesterday at the conclusion of a two-day meeting in Washington. “Household spending and business fixed investment advanced, and the housing sector has shown further improvement.”

There’s a reason why they’re called “natural disasters.” Superstorms like Hurricane Sandy, and Katrina seven years ago do more than just ravage destruction on the lands that are unfortunate enough to see these storms land on. These monsters also take out local businesses and reduce spending in the area. When it hits major areas like New Orleans with Katrina, or New York City with Sandy, these can have not only a domestic effect, but a global one as well. The United States economy finally seems to be rebounding after the hurting that Sandy put on the east coast. There’s that word again, rebounding.

But what does all this have to do with the job market? Well…

Government figures that are to be released soon are projected to show that employers added 165,000 workers to payrolls, an increase of 10,000 from the number in December.

Home-building also rose 11.9 percent last year, it’s best increase since 1992. And as we have reported here on the blog at OutOfOurMind, home-building is a key factor in economic recovery, especially among young families.

There are varying reports and viewpoints on how the economy is going. Of course, a rebound after a recession isn’t something to get too proud about, but it is certainly a step in the right direction; and these steps need to start somewhere. While the numbers aren’t as promising as they need to be, the economy at some points seems headed in the right direction, while stalling at others.

Estimates of recovery are great, but until it comes to fruition in reality, it’s all speculation.

Here at Crossroads Consulting we have been trying to get Americans working again. With over fifty job postings from around the nation, our job is to make sure you get one! If you’re not confident in your resume or interviewing skills, we can help you there as well.

All we want to do is make this process as easy as possible for you, and maybe provide a few laughs along the way in what we know can be a dark time.

Remember, “We’re putting the ‘Human’ back into ‘Human Resources.’”

ECONOMY – SLOW, SLOWER, SLOWEST

BY: Adam Gavriel

Reports from Bloomberg.com today suggest that the United States economy may be on a slow path to recovery. The article reports that claims for jobless benefits in the US have hit a five-year low, decreasing 5,000 to 33,000 in the week ended January 19th. This is the fewest jobless claims since the same week in 2008.

Although some economists do not believe in an optimistic view here, just chalking it up to the times.

“The swings are attributable to the calendar,” said Brian Jones, senior U.S. economist at Societe Generale in New York, who projected a drop to 328,000. He said the numbers probably will rise at the end of the month as the calendar returns to normal. “We’re going to pay for this,” he said.

Mr. Jones is backed up by the fact that the new payroll tax at the start of the year will shake household confidence, causing consumer confidence to also falter. As part of a budget agreement, Congress has agreed to raise social security from its 4.2% rate back to 6.2% This in turn is causing some layoffs around the countries, as employers have to match all taxes from their employees.

American Express Co. has announced that they will be cutting 5400 jobs, or about 8.5% of their workforce. They are not alone as Morgan Stanley has also announced 1600 job cuts forthcoming.

“We’re being aggressive with our cost base,” Morgan Stanley Chairman and Chief Executive Officer James P. Gorman said on a Jan. 18 earnings call. “We live in a world of continued regulatory uncertainty.”

(If you are one of the employees affected by this story, please comment below and tell us how we can help! Or just vent!)

The number of Americans who continue to collect jobless benefits fell by 71,000 to 3.16 million, the fewest since July 2008.

While the numbers appear positive at first glance, all things seem to balance themselves out in the economic venue. Booms are often accompanied by busts, and vice versa.

It is extremely discouraging to hear that in a time of such uncertainty, big name players like American Express and Morgan Stanley will have to resort to layoffs, while the country tries to remedy the recession that has hit it throughout most of this past decade.

As the economy tip-toes between the line of boom and bust, remaining in purgatory, at Crossroads Consulting we are trying to get American’s working again.

With over 50 job openings that we are updating daily across the nation, we want to see your resume today!

If you’re not confident in your resume, we can take care of that for you as well with our recommended resume optimization service.

Remember, “We’re putting the ‘Human’ back into ‘Human Resources.’” Do not hesitate to let us know if there is anything, we can do to make your job hunting experience easier.

SOME DOOZY INTERVIEW QUESTIONS

BY: Adam Gavriel

We all know that job interviews are a stressful period of the hiring process. It’s one that many of us may feel unprepared for. Of course, there are the usual questions that include: “tell me about your strengths,” “tell me about a time where you had to do multiple projects in a limited time-frame,” and the ever popular “what are some of your weaknesses?” These are all the questions that you could expect an interviewer to ask. But what about those that you’re not prepared for?

The critical thinking questions or those questions isolated to a certain field or company. Well, unlike Manti Te’o’s girlfriend, these questions as published by CBS are 100% real. Continue reading

OUR PERPETUAL UNDER-PERFORMING ECONOMY

BY: Adam Gavriel

The American Economy remains at an indefinite unbalance. A report from Bloomberg.com today cites that more Americans than expected have filed for unemployment benefits last week. The jobless claims increased by 4,000 to 371,000 for the week ended January 5th. Even more unsettling is the fact that many economists expected that number to drop from 367,000 to 365,000.

Despite avoiding the Fiscal Cliff, the government still can’t seem to find a way to churn the economy in the right direction, and keep it on a path to improvement.

“Claims are in a pretty steady range, but the story isn’t in firings so much as it is in hiring,” said Michael Hanson, a senior U.S. economist at Bank of America Corp. in New York, who projected 375,000 claims for the week. “Hiring has been okay. The process is sluggishly moving forward. We need to see better payrolls data to get faster economic growth.”

On top of the 371,000 who had filed for unemployment benefits, 1.99 million Americans are collecting emergency and extended payments. As part of the agreement reached by Congress on New Year’s Day, $30 billion will be paid this year of federal benefits for long-term unemployed workers. This number down from $45.5 billion from last year.

Thirty states reported an increase on claims, while 23 reported a decrease.

While the American economy works more like a domino effect, where one domino falls and all the pieces should fall into place; the two biggest dominoes have to be: Consumer spending, and small-business hiring. If you’ve been keeping up with the blog here, you already know that small-business are the lifeblood of the American economy.

On the topic of consumer spending, it speaks for itself. As consumers pump more money into the economy, business can afford to hire more workers, and the process repeats itself.

Of course there are tons of factors that affect the economy, but you have to wonder at this point if the bigger dominoes need to be pushed a little bit harder.

With this recession continuing to be lurk around like a ghost over everyone’s shoulder, everyone needs to start doing their part to improve the American economy. That includes from the suits in DC, down to your next door neighbor. This is one of those extreme times in American history where we all need to band together and work this out for the betterment of the nation. It’s time to put party differences aside to work across the aisle to get the important elements completed in order to make America strong again.

At Crossroads Consulting we are trying to do our part, but we need YOUR help! With over 50 job postings across the nation that we are looking to hire for TODAY; we need to see your resume as soon as possible! If you’re not confident in sending your resume to employers, we can help you there too with a fast and easy resume service.

It is our main mission to get Americans working again. Here at Crossroads Consulting, our motto is what we live by.

We’re putting the ‘Human’ back into ‘Human Resources.’