Wage increases surpass inflation; stimulus to small businesses to expire

The Doatian Bureau of Economic Statistics (DBES) released their February report today. Across all regions of Doatia, wages are increasing at unprecedented rates. Attributed to a combination of stimulus to small businesses, the Recardo administration’s wage increases, tax decreases for middle class earners, additional consumer spending, job increases, production increases, and an overall rebounding of Doatia’s economy, wages have surpassed inflation for 6 months for the first time since the 1990’s.

With inflation remaining below expected rates for over a year, wages have seen a drastic increase over the last 6 months, up an average of 14.5%. Bringing the average income of Doatians to $65,000 Doa/year, the average Doatian’s hourly wage is $31.25 Doa/hour, although the Federal minimum wage sits at $18, and is set to raise to $25 Doa/hour by 2028, and then index to inflation.

The DBES report states that in order to rent a 2 bedroom apartment anywhere in Doatia at 30% of income, the average Doatian would need to earn roughly $62,000/year. To purchase a home, the average Doatian would need to earn $68,000/year. To start a business, the average Doatian would need to earn $72,000/year. These statistics are not only good for the housing market and potential renters and homebuyers, but also small business growth as well.

The report also states that the average Doatian’s disposable income has risen to $22,000/year, from $18,500 just a year ago.

Doatian’s are spending more on electronics, clothing, groceries, and housing; driving economic growth.

Inflation has been maintained with strict enforcement of financial policy by Doatia’s financial institutions. Critics of such policies argue it inhibits Doatia’s economic growth, but proponents argue that it allows Doatia’s economy to grow while protecting consumers.

Several large corporations say their ability to pay wages to their workers will become increasingly difficult, and within 4-8 months, will result in layoffs. With superstore chain Ashton estimated that they will need to layoff about 25% of their employees. Unions, including Ashton Workers United (AWU) have threatened a summer of labor strikes if corporations move forwards with their layoff plans, citing shareholders income and highly paid executives as examples of how corporate hardship is a myth.

According to the nonpartisan DBES, only 3% of corporations lack the financial liberty to meet wage obligations and are resorting to layoffs to offset an increase in labor costs, in order to preserve executive bonuses and salaries, as well as shareholder payments.

PS Members Alexander McClax has introduced a bill to increase tax penalties on corporations that resort to layoffs unnecessarily, as determined by the DBES. The bill has been cosponsored by dozens of PS and EJP members, but has failed to gain traction among EJP leaders, and has been stuck in committee.

Small businesses are subjected to reduced wage requirements, but 28% expect to have difficulty meeting their obligations over the next year, with 16% expecting extreme difficulty and 4% currently experiencing extreme difficulty/considering layoffs.

Small business stimulus, which is supposed to increase production, profit margins, productivity, and support wage obligations for small businesses, is set to expire on March 31st, with no plan yet being put forth in the Chamber and Chancellor Recardo reportedly considering allowing the stimulus to expire, to reduce the deficit and promote more of a “market-based” economy.

A simple reauthorization of the small business stimulus would decrease the number of small business expected to have difficulty meeting wage requirements to 10%. A 5% increase of the small business stimulus would further lower that threshold to 4%.

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