Reynolds Business Weekly: November 5, 2018

by November 5, 2018

Google Walkout

Nearly 17,000 Google workers across the world walked off the job on November 1st to protest sexual harassment, discrimination, and systemic racism—and what they say is a lack of transparency and accountability at the company. The walkout was organized by several Google employees in response to a New York Times report on a large payout offered to an executive accused of sexual misconduct.

How to localize

One of the five demands made by Google workers was an end to forced arbitration in cases of harassment and discrimination. How has forced arbitration in these types of situations impacted companies in your area?

Another demand was a clear process for employees to report sexual misconduct safely and anonymously. Which local companies are leading the charge on this?

The pay and opportunity inequality that workers called on Google to end extends beyond the company. Dig into the data in a specific industry that affects your area.

Demand for Tiny Homes Increases

More than 60 percent of millennials would consider living in a home smaller than 600 square feet, and more than half of Americans would do the same, according to a survey by the National Association of Homebuilders, CNN reports.

How to localize

Zoning regulations can make purchasing tiny homes more difficult. Because zoning laws are incredibly specific, it’s worth looking into whether your area has minimum lot size requirements, prohibitions against specific structures, or other relevant regulations that could affect the cost of tiny homes or prohibit the construction of accessory structures.

Some communities have passed ordinances relaxing some of these restrictions. And several international Residential Code requirements, such as staircase specifications and ceiling height, have been relaxed this year in some jurisdictions, too.

What are the regulations and requirements in your area? Are there any variations from city to city? How do these rules or relaxed restrictions affect the tiny home market in your area?

Financial Effects of the Midterm Election

The effects of the U.S. midterm elections could ripple through the market, according to a Reuters report.

A Democratic takeover of the House could have effects on stocks if markets believe it will lead to political instability (such as impeachment proceedings or hearings involving the Trump administration), and this could be exacerbated if Democrats win both the House and Senate.

Other issues that could affect the market include changes to Trump’s tax cut package, further deregulation of industries, and international trade policies such as import tariffs. Additional spending or tax cuts could increase inflation and lead to higher interest rates.

How to localize

The economic impact of the midterm election is far-reaching, with the effects felt in not just the country, but the world. That said, trade policies and industry deregulation affect specific industries more than others, so the financial effects can vary. The midterm results will help you report on the next chapter of business reporting already done in your region.

For more ideas and tips, check out our reporting on covering trade tariffs and inflation.