Last month, the Wall Street Journal published a report titled “How to Conquer Angst and Spur the Economy”. The report was based on the findings of a group of CFO’s convened in Washington, D.C. who were asked how to fix the economy. Many showed angst over government gridlock, others said we are now living in a 2% world (2% growth).
The group was divided into five tasks forces, the final conference voted on these…
TOP 5 OVERALL PRIORITIES:
1. Repeal all corporate tax preferences, then lower corporate tax rate to 25% or lower
2. Improve cybersecurity
3. Enact a territorial tax system to enable companies to deploy cash earned abroad in the US and encourage them to invest here
4. Government must recognize the vast opportunity in oil and gas and develop a coherent energy policy
5. Invest in infrastructure including pipelines, and electric transmission lines.
But I think they stopped short. While their recommendations focus on corporations, mine focus on putting money in the hands of the consumers. Here are FIVE MORE WAYS TO STIMULATE THE ECONOMY:
1. Fund public works projects at the state and local levels including roads, bridges, water treatment facilities, ports, and rails; will increase construction spending and increase employment in the trades.
2. Increase minimum wage. Current wages are at 1994 levels. If the minimum wage in the 70’s kept pace with inflation, the current minimum wage would be $21/hr. Raise minimum wage to $10/hr.
3. Loosen employment requirements for operating the cash register at retail jobs, the sector with the most openings and difficulty in filing them. Many 18 to 34 year olds, the ages typically with the highest rate of unemployment, are denied jobs for a host of reasons, most which don’t relate to a part-time, non-hazardous working environment.
4. Shift education priorities from a 2 path system, college or technical; to include a third path, entrepreneurialism and working for yourself. From 2000-2011 sole proprietors grew by 10.6 million; wage and salary employment by 105,000.
5. Increase lending to small business and the flow venture capital to start-ups. In 1970, sole proprietors accounted for 11% of employment, in 2011, 21%.