Afternoon Coffee: Holiday Hiring Ramps Up Early, Chicago Leads Warehousing Boom

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The pace of hiring for the temporary holiday workforce is ramping up earlier and faster than ever this year, according to the Wall Street Journal. The current low unemployment rate, however, is forcing companies to offer higher wages, loosen disciplinary policies and even operate bus routes to and from warehouses.

Chicago Warehouses

Meanwhile, the greater Chicago area has been the sight of much of the logistics boom spurred by the growth of e-commerce retailers such as Amazon. As the Chicago Tribune reports, the region led the U.S. in the past year with a net of 22.3 million square feet of new warehouse space occupied.

Rare Earths

Between increasing consumer demand for electronics and the rising popularity of hybrid and electric vehicles, rare earth metal prices have jumped considerably, Nikkei Asian Review reports. Demand for magnetic elements in particular has spiked, with prices for neodymium and terbium up 90% and 36% from a year earlier.

Import Prices 

And finally, an economic update: The cost of imported goods rose 0.6% in August, MarketWatch reports, only the second increase in the past six months.

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