The U.S. government released four new reports today
which further highlight the tough economic challenges the country is facing:
- The number of people claiming unemployment insurance dropped by 60,000 to 3.96 million. Although there is speculation on the cause of the drop, the number of claims remains at recessionary levels.
- Consumer spending decreased by a full percentage point in October, worse than expected.
- There were significant declines in the manufacturing sector, as orders for durable goods fell 6.2%, more than double what was expected by economists.
- New home sales also fell 5.3% to the lowest level since January 1991.
With the economy indicating that things are going to get worse before they get better, it is critical to take a look at your existing assets – most notably your human capital – and assess how to make them more productive and efficient. As employees are directly or indirectly impacted by layoffs, shrinking 401(k)'s or other anxiety stemming from the current economy, keeping them engaged and motivated is also essential to ensuring minimum disruption to your company's bottom line.