Monday, February 22, 2016
Friday, November 06, 2015
Wednesday, October 14, 2015
- Dire Glimpses of What Pollution Is Doing in Bangladesh -- Bangladeshi photojournalist Probal Rashid's disturbing photos of his country's transformation as the world's clothier
- Faster, Cheaper Fashion -- Irish fast fashion retailer, Primark, is coming to North America. Their grand openings rival the black Friday shopping horrors we see south of the border.
Monday, July 27, 2015
Thursday, July 09, 2015
Related to my previous post, Pew Research recently published findings on how richer the world is getting -- and from this marco perspective, it's a lot of good news. Overall, the world is getting richer, and more people are being pulled out of poverty. The greatest shift is of course, coming from China, where there is a rapidly growing middle class -- but the promise of a global middle class is still a dream. The rich world remains the same -- North America, Western Europe and Australia.
There's lots of data and graphs to explore.
The race to the bottom continues. The OECD Employment Outlook 2015 is bad news cloaked in good news. Yes, unemployment is dropping across the world, but those returning to work are coming back part-time and/or for less money.
Friday, May 22, 2015
The latest OECD report on inequality paints a disturbing picture. The world is getting more unequal. The richest 10% of the OECD population now earns 9.6 times more than the poorest 10%. In 2012, the poorest 40% owned 3% of the household wealth in the OECD countries -- while the top 10% controlled over half; with the top 1% owning 18%.
Increasingly, the culprit is low paying, non-standard work (temporary and contract). Between 1995 and 2013, 50% of new jobs created fell into this category -- and the disproportionately are youth and females. No surprise there. The OECD warns that the long term economic and social cohesion impacts will be significant if governments don't take steps to address the gap. Businesses also need to step up, as there is a direct impact to their viability.
In Canada, income inequality has not increased during the economic downturn -- with Canada trending with the OECD average. But, the gap in pay between full-time workers and non-standard workers is huge. The OECD average has temporary workers earning 75% of their full-time counterparts. In Canada, that number is a a staggering 57%. Canada has the worst poverty numbers for non-standard workers than other OECD countries. And it gets worst. Unlike other OECD countries, the tax and benefit system doesn't do as much to address the inequality gap. Children are at most risk to being impacted by poverty, at 14.4%. Women fare better, by having better participation in the labour market than the other OECD countries -- but women in Canada suffer the greatest in gender pay gap, at 19% compared to the OECD average of 15%
The OECD recommends the promotion of gender equality, greater investment in education and skills, and redistribution of wealth via taxes and transfers -- specifically calling out the need for policies to be strengthened to ensure wealthier individuals and multinational firms, pay their share of taxes.