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FACT CHECK: Anti-Obamacare chorus is off key PDF  | Print |  E-mail
Written by CALVIN WOODWARD, Associated Press   
Thursday, 06 February 2014 07:32

EDITOR'S NOTE _ An occasional look at political claims that take shortcuts with the facts or don't tell the full story

WASHINGTON (AP) — New estimates that President Barack Obama's health care law will encourage millions of Americans to leave the workforce or reduce their work hours have touched off an I-told-you-so chorus from Republicans, who've claimed all along that the law will kill jobs. But some aren't telling it straight.

The analysis by the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office predicts the law will give several million people an opportunity to work less or not at all, because they won't be stuck in jobs just for the sake of keeping the health insurance they get from employers. To some Republicans, that amounts to "wreaking havoc on working families," ''dire consequences for workers" and a shower of pink slips across the land — conclusions unsupported by the report.

The study estimates that the workforce will be reduced by the equivalent of 2.3 million full-time workers by 2021 as people choose to leave it. More would take early retirement, work fewer hours or otherwise rearrange their work-home balance to take advantage of new subsidies for health insurance and new markets for individual policies that don't depend on having a job.

In a key point overlooked in the GOP response, the report says, "The estimated reduction stems almost entirely from a net decline in the amount of labor that workers choose to supply, rather than from a net drop in businesses' demand for labor."

Last Updated on Thursday, 06 February 2014 07:37
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Volvo to cut 4,400 jobs in 2014 PDF  | Print |  E-mail
Written by MALIN RISING, Associated Press   
Thursday, 06 February 2014 07:29

STOCKHOLM (AP) — Truck maker AB Volvo said it plans to lay off 4,400 employees this year as it revealed a 37 percent slide in fourth quarter profits.

Volvo CEO Olof Persson said the job losses, which include the previously announced reduction of 2,000, will affect employees worldwide in group truck operations, as well as in technology, sales, marketing, IT, finance and human resource departments.

Persson said the cuts will help Volvo use its resources more effectively and are a consequence of the company's transformation. The reductions will start immediately and are expected to be largely completed during 2014.

The job losses came as the company reported net profit of 548 million kronor ($84 million), down from 869 million kronor a year earlier. The fall was largely due to the extra costs involved in updating its trucks.

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Fears of slowdown sharpen focus on U.S. jobs report PDF  | Print |  E-mail
Written by CHRISTOPHER S. RUGABER, AP Economics Writer   
Thursday, 06 February 2014 07:30

WASHINGTON (AP) — Fears of an economic slowdown are heightening anticipation of what Friday's U.S. jobs report for January might reveal.

Stock markets have sunk after signs of weaker growth in the United States, Europe and China. Turmoil in developing countries has further spooked investors. The upheaval has renewed doubts about the Federal Reserve's next steps.

Evidence of healthy U.S. job growth would help soothe those jitters. It would suggest that the world's biggest economy is still expanding solidly enough to support global growth.

"The best antidote right now for all these problems is a robust U.S. economy," said Carl Riccadonna, an economist at Deutsche Bank. "The whole world is watching, even more so than usual."

Yet anyone looking to Friday's report for a clear picture of the U.S. economy's health might be disappointed. Unseasonably cold winter weather could distort January's hiring figures. Revised estimates of job growth last year and the size of the U.S. population might further skew the data.

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10 U.S. states considering Internet gambling bills PDF  | Print |  E-mail
Written by WAYNE PARRY, Associated Press   
Wednesday, 05 February 2014 11:29

ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. (AP) — A group that tracks gambling-related legislation worldwide says least 10 U.S. states are considering bills to legalize or expand Internet gambling this year.

The study by Gambling Compliance also finds slim chances for a national law to regulate Internet poker. It predicts a major effort by opponents of online gambling to block it in Congress.

So far, three states allow Internet gambling: New Jersey, Nevada and Delaware.

The report says proposals for new or expanded Internet betting could be considered in California, Colorado, Hawaii, Illinois, Iowa, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Mississippi, New Jersey and Pennsylvania.

In California, one of the largest potential markets, Indian tribes are trying to agree on how to legalize Internet poker.

The report also says Nevada may consider expanding online bets beyond poker.


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