Monthly Archives: September 2015

Why So Many Without Work

Help Wanted

It’s not there aren’t good jobs – it’s that there aren’t good candidates:

Durham, N.C. — U.S. job openings are at a record high of 5.8 million, and a new survey from Duke University provides a key reason: Employers say they can’t find workers with required skills for many openings. As a result, employers are planning to boost pay in an attempt to find workers. They also continue to push for more foreign workers through high-tech visas known as H-1Bs. The risks of a workers’ skills gap? A less competitive U.S. economy, and companies might be forced to relocate overseas if they can’t find workers here, warns a Duke economics professor.

*Mostly they are saying they can’t find employees with the required skills,” Duke finance professor John Graham tells WRAL TechWire, referring to the just-released Duke-CFO Global Business Outlook survey.

It’s just not high-tech, either. Graham says companies need more mechanics, more people who can work in the “trades” like welders.

Affirming U.S. government data released Wednesday about the millions of open jobs, 93 percent of companies participating in the Duke survey say they have job openings.

Why? Finding talent.


Affordable Housing – Durham, NC

Affordable Housing

I’ve said time and time again that I don’t begrudge the Liberal her intentions – noble to be sure.  Rather, I begrudge her policies:

Residents said 85 to 100 affordable apartments should be put on the site, and many held up signs expressing frustration with the high cost of living downtown, where rents often top $1,000 a month.

The reason rents are so high is that supply hasn’t been able too keep up with demand.  And the reason for THAT is almost always restrictive zoning laws.

If we allow builders  more flexibility is how and what they build, the more building that will take place allowing housing costs to come down.

See Houston vs San Francisco.

According to Stan Humphries, chief economist of Zillow, local regulations are at the root of the supply problem. “Zoning, parking minimums — these inadvertently drive up the fixed cost,” Humphries said at the Atlantic’s summit on the economy.

And when fixed costs go up, builders have an incentive to create more expensive housing, he said.

“That’s why places like Houston don’t have the same housing crisis that San Francisco does,” he said. San Francisco is known for its strict building rules, while Houston doesn’t have a zoning code at all.

Econ 101 – though you may not find that offered in a “Comparative Arts” major.