Foxconn Tiptoes Out of The Jungle

Foxconn Technology—responsible for assembling iPhones, Xbox 360s, and Dell computers—announced a 25 percent pay raise for its employees at Chinese factories on Saturday. News of the raise comes after weeks of increased scrutiny of the working conditions at the plants, which together employ 1.2 million workers who work as much as 14 hours a day. The pay raise comes with a limit on overtime hours. “This is the way capitalism is supposed to work,” said David Autor, a MIT economist, to The New York Times. “As nations develop, wages rise and life theoretically gets better for everyone. The reaction from consumers will test the viability of moving away from low factory wages. As Autor said, "In China, for that change to be permanent, consumers have to be willing to bear the consequences. When people read about bad Chinese factories in the paper, they might have a moment of outrage. But then they go to Amazon and are as ruthless as ever about paying the lowest prices.”

 

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The unemployment rate may be dropping, but many of the newly employed are in temporary positions. The statistics reflect the changing way both Americans and companies perceive work, as well as the potential vulnerability of the dropping unemployment rate.
 

 

Reason to Get Out of Bed in the Morning

You have the day off! Thank lawmakers for legislating the long weekend in 1968. Thanking George Washington and Abraham Lincoln probably wouldn't be a bad idea either.

 
TIME

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