nytimes – An investigation finds support for the end of federal unemployment benefits.

Credit…Mario Tama / Getty Images

A slim majority of Americans say it’s time to end improved unemployment benefits.

The federal government offers the unemployed $ 300 per week in benefits in addition to their regular unemployment benefits. These benefits are expected to last until September, although 26 states – all but one Republican-led – either cut them early or plan to do so in the coming weeks.

Critics, including many business owners and Republican politicians, argue that the additional benefits discourage people from looking for jobs and make it difficult for companies to find workers. Supporters, including progressive groups and many Democratic politicians, argue that the benefits are needed as the economy continues to recover and the risks from the pandemic persist.

Republican arguments seem to resonate with the public. Just over half of Americans – 52% – want the added benefits to end immediately, according to a survey of 2,600 adults this month for The New York Times by the formerly known online research firm Momentive. under the name of SurveyMonkey. Another 30% want benefits to end in September, as planned. Only 16% want the additional benefits to continue indefinitely.

Views on benefits are divided along partisan lines. Of Republicans, 80% want the additional benefits to end immediately, compared to 27% of Democrats. But even among Democrats, most respondents don’t want the benefits to last last September.

The survey also asked respondents who were not working what prevented them from working. Thirty-three percent said they were looking for a job but “were unable to find one worth taking,” and 11 percent said they did not feel safe to return to work. Interviewees offered a range of other explanations, including:

  • “I don’t want to wear a mask and I don’t plan on getting the vaccine.”

  • “I just got fully immunized and will be back driving for Lyft next week.”

  • “Childcare and no luck in the job search. “

  • “Age. Businesses look at my age and are successful.

  • “The car broke down and no money to fix it.”

The survey included 65 respondents who said they were currently receiving unemployment benefits. When asked how they would behave if their benefits were cut, 17 responded that they still would not return to work. Most of the rest said they would take a job that pays less than they wanted, feel unsafe, or offer poor working hours or conditions.

By early June, some 3.5 million people were receiving benefits in states that plan to end all or part of emergency programs prematurely. A handful of states, including Alabama, Indiana, and Missouri, have already removed the additional payments; more than 700,000 people were receiving benefits in those states by early June.

Sara Blakely, right, the founder of Spanx, with her family in 2020.
Credit…Melissa Golden for The New York Times

As people start to slip into tight-fitting clothes again, shapewear brand Spanx has taken on Goldman Sachs to explore options, including a sale, reports the DealBook newsletter, based on several sources familiar with the situation.

Any deal could value Spanx at $ 1 billion or more and allow Sara Blakely, the founder of the brand, to retain some of her ownership in the company. Spanx generated $ 300-400 million in revenue in the past year and $ 50-80 million in operating profits.

People spoke on condition of anonymity because the interviews were confidential. Spanx did not respond to multiple requests for comment.

The brand has attracted interest from private equity firms, including Carlyle, whose past investments in brands include Beautycounter, OGX and Supreme, and TPG, which has invested in Anastasia Beverly Hills.

Sales of women’s dresses were up 50% the week before Easter compared to the same week in 2019, according to NPD, which could signal demand for form-fitting clothing as blockages lift and people return to the office and go out more. But key to the post-pandemic success of supportive clothing will be products that maintain a level of comfort that many have become accustomed to working in loose clothing over the past year and a half. And post-pandemic style trends are hard to predict, even professional forecasters admitting to the confusion.

Founded over 20 years ago, Spanx has become synonymous with the product it sells, such as Kleenex with Tissues. It has spawned competitors such as Kim Kardashian’s Skims, recently valued at $ 1.6 billion, which stands out with modern cuts and a wider color assortment. And Spanx was repelled by the emphasis on bodily neutrality and the rejection of the “culture of perfection”. In search of new growth, Spanx has expanded beyond men’s denim underwear, swimwear and undershirts.

Ms. Blakely has long resisted the sale or IPO of the company. But with private equity firms eager to spend unused capital and valuations on the rise, mainstream brands are eyeing a bright payday. Online fashion retailer Ssense announced earlier this month the first fundraiser in its 18 years of existence, which valued the company at more than C $ 5 billion ($ 4 billion). Many other brands, including Allbirds and Warby Parker, are planning public listings.

nytimes - An investigation finds support for the end of federal unemployment benefits.
Credit…David Degner for The New York Times

Larry Summers spent his last term in the White House as a leading economic adviser, and his political advice during the Great Recession – he rejected a more robust fiscal stimulus package on political grounds – has since been criticized for having contributed to a slow recovery.

He spent 2021 warning that the $ 1.9 trillion spending envelope passed by the Biden administration in March was too big for both political and economic reasons, while fearing the Federal Reserve was too slow to reduce the disorder. The result, he warned, could be overheating and runaway inflation, reports Jeanna Smialek for The New York Times.

Mr Summers combined the swagger of a former Treasury secretary with the seriousness of a respected scholar and hard-hitting lines – the stimulus was not just a bad idea, he said, it was the “least responsible policy “in four decades – to define a debate difficult to ignore. Reactions sprang from the White House and Janet Yellen’s Treasury, who expressed respectful but firm disagreement.

When Mr Summers started warning about overheating earlier this year, it seemed, for a moment, his influence might crack. The main democrats fired its most virulent ideas and critics have called them the dying breath of a failed ideology of economic centrism.

But Republicans seized on his arguments as proof of the administration’s reckless largesse. Inflation has become a major political talking point on the right, and as the data confirmed that prices were rising – which was widely expected, albeit not so quickly – the White House was forced to answer question afterwards. question about prices.

All the evidence suggests that the Biden administration has accepted Mr. Summers’ role as the unofficial whisperer of the economy and frequent gadfly. Although the administration has refuted its most damning criticisms – “it is simply wrong that our team is, I quote, ‘dismissive’ of inflationary risks,” economic adviser Jared Bernstein said at a press conference in February, referring to a particularly sharp summer – his students and charges spice up his ranks. Natasha Sarin, one of its co-authors, is now Assistant Undersecretary for Economic Policy at the Treasury Department. Brian Deese, the current head of the National Economic Council, was one of his collaborators during the financial crisis. The White House also enjoys Mr. Summers’ support for Mr. Biden’s surge in infrastructure spending.

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