The passage of a major infrastructure bill, the end of a foreign travel ban, a reconsideration of inventory strategies, and the potential for a “wage-price spiral” are among the top business news items this morning.
Congress has passed a $1 trillion infrastructure bill after the House of Representatives approved the measure. The long-delayed legislation makes major investments in a variety of physical infrastructure as well as climate initiatives and expanding broadband internet.
A United States will resume allowing foreign travelers into the nation starting today with certain caveats, easing restrictions that had been in place as a precaution against COVID-19. The move is buoying hopes among retailers, who see the renewal of international travel as increasing their potential holiday shopping profits.
Amid ongoing supply chain challenges, businesses are reassessing how they manage their inventories. The bottlenecks have helped illustrate how companies can be negatively affected when they have too few necessary materials on hand, but also show the risks of having too much stock available.
Employees have been enjoying greater leverage as businesses face labor shortages and compete for available talent, but are often discovering that their wage increases aren’t keeping track with inflation. The Federal Reserve says it is closely monitoring these trends, especially as demands for further compensation hikes could lead to a corresponding jump in the price of goods due to a “wage-price spiral.”