News Brief: "The Happs" in the USA, Russia, the UK & NZ
December 16, 2014
This is what entrepreneurs, small business and startups need to know in our world wrap up today!
USA: EntreHub News Brief: "Walton about to slap the Koch brothers out of the field"
Russia: EntreHub News Brief: "The Problem with Russia"
USA: EntreHub News Brief: "America's Middle Class on the UP"
New Zealand: EntreHub News Brief "NZ Wage Growth on the Up"
United Kingdom: EntreHub News Brief "Retail in Trouble?"
"Walton about to slap the Koch brothers out of the field"
Did you know that the richest women in the world is Christy Walton? Any week now the famed Wal-Mart heiress will overtake the USA's Koch brothers for the 6th wealthiest person in the world as Wal-Mart stocks inch even further up. The Koch fortune is taking a little bit of a hit thanks to falling oil prices! It stands to reason that Wal-Mart stock is on the up as we near the busiest retail period of the year - Christmas.
"The Problem with Russia"
Sanctions are beginning to bite in Russia and its looking like a tight place to do business if you're a#startup #entreprenuer. then not only are you fighting a domestic consumer market in decline you're also facing a currency crisis the Government is finding hard to keep under control. When Russian banks closed for business on Monday the deposit rate for interest was sitting at 10.5% - its now sitting at 17% fueled also by falling oil prices. The message? steer clear of Russia for now #entrepreneurs! President Putin may be running out of options and backed into a corner the Russian bear may come out mauling which means the economy still has a tough road ahead.
"America's Middle Class on the UP"
There is no clearer indication of an improvement in the US economy than the increase in average hourly and weekly earnings. This means that there is wage growth in the US economy that hasn't been seen in the last few years to the same degree. The increase may not look like much (growth in wages) at only 0.4% but it was a lot high than experts were forecasting (double). For #startups#entrepreneurs and #smallbusiness this is a good indication that the operating environment is showing consistent signs of recovery ahead of the crucial consumer Christmas period which is the busiest for retailers of the year. The middle class in the US have a supporter in the labor secretary Thomas Perez who said recently that “It’s time for the middle class and the aspiring middle class to share in the dividends of their hard work,” he added. “The folks at the top end have been doing great and our prosperity hasn’t been shared.” Watch this space!
"NZ Wage Growth on the Up"
A report out by services company Hay in New Zealand has forecast a net growth in salary levels by 3% - up slightly from last years forecast 2.8%. This could be an indicator that wage growth in New Zealand could be a good attraction strategy for many smaller business and start-ups (especially in the tech sector) who have challenges in attracting local skilled talent. In the month of October there was also a reversal in the trend of more New Zealander's leaving for Australia - which could be a sign that the Australian economy is in trouble - and more kiwi's returning home. Great news for #smallbusiness and #startups who may have a greater pool of talent and skills to draw from!
"Retail in Trouble?"
Its not looking great for small business retailers across the UK. According to a recent PWC report town centers across the UK saw 964 net shop closures in the period between January and September this year meaning a number just could not hold out for the expected retail Christmas rush. Sectors most at risk included traditional goods retailers such as shoe and clothing outlets. Ironically enough there has been a marked increase in the number of coffee shops opening as well as American fast food joints! Does that mean that the brits are turning away from tea and fish and chips towards McDonalds and Starbucks? Irrespective, for #startups #entrepreneurs and #smallbusinessunderstanding trends and market data can determine the difference between success and failure - so - would you open a coffee shop or a shoe shop? go coffee!
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