Amazon Will Not Open Second Headquarters in New York City

After protests and political opposition, Amazon decided to not open a second headquarters in New York City Feb. 14. The company said it does not have plans to begin a search for another headquarters location and will instead continue with plans to open headquarters in Arlington County, Virginia, and Nashville, Tennessee, according to Supply Chain D...
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UK Simplifies Customs Procedures in the Case of 'No-Deal' Brexit

The U.K. planned a way to simplify its customs process, should there be a "no-deal" Brexit. The policy, titled Transitional Simplified Procedures (TSP), allows full declarations to be made after the imports have already crossed the border. The TSP will also allow companies to pay the duty fees a month after importing the goods. The government recen...
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Construction Spending Sees Increase in November 2018

Construction spending rose by a total of 0.8% during November 2018, an unusually positive reading for the winter months in construction, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. Residential construction outlays accounted for the most of November's gain and nonresidential spending declined. Overall, spending is up 4.5% year-to-date. Residential spending...
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US Job Growth Unaffected by Government Shutdown

Job growth in the United States saw its best of 11 months in January, according to the Department of Labor, despite the 35-day partial government shutdown that furloughed approximately 800,000 workers. On Feb.1, Reuters reported the Labor Department's findings that there was no "discernible" impact on job growth last month. Hiring spiked in January...
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Dismal Outlook for 2019: Davos Forum

The World Economic Forum Annual Meeting in Davos, Switzerland, ended Jan. 25 with global economic leaders doubtful for the future. Compared to the 2018 annual forum, morale is far lower this year. At the beginning of the conferences, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) cut its global growth for 2019, setting the tone for the rest of the conferenc...
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Strategic Global Intelligence Brief for January 22, 2019

Short Items of Interest—U.S. Economy Flagging Consumer Confidence For the last couple of years, the consumer confidence level has been high and, in many respects, higher than would have been expected. The sense has been that consumers pay close attention to only a handful of factors as far as the economy is concerned—jobs, prices and the behavior o...
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China’s Exports and Imports Fall, Dismal Outlook for World Economy

China's exports have fallen, which has raised concerns in the global market. During the month of December exports saw the largest drop in two years, indicating China's economic power is weakening in 2019 with a smaller global demand, according to a recent article by Reuters. Along with this sharp decline, China posted its largest trade surplus with...
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US President Will Not Attend International Business Forum Amid Government Shutdown

U.S. President Donald Trump will be skipping the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting in Davos, Switzerland, amid the partial government shutdown. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and other White House officials may join the forum, which will take place from Jan. 22 to Jan. 25, but the president said he will not be in attendance. This foreshadows t...
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Real-Time Payments for Debit Card Transactions May Be on the Way

When customers pay by debit card, it can take one to three days before the payment is processed and cleared. With 36% of Americans planning to use debit cards for the holiday season, according to a TD Bank report, businesses must still wait for the payment to be settled by interbank transfer before they see the money. According to The Wall Street J...
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Elevator Speeches Contest Deadline EXTENDED

NACM has extended the deadline for the Elevator Speeches contest to 5pm EST Dec. 7, 2018. So if you missed out on earning .1 road map point toward your designation plus a chance to win a free registration to NACM's Credit Congress & Expo in Aurora, Colorado, on May 19-22, 2019, fret not—you still have until Dec. 7. To enter, submit your best el...
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Earn Roadmap Points and a Chance for Free Registration to Credit Congress: Elevator Speeches Contest

Only 11 days remain to submit your elevator speech for NACM's annual Elevator Speeches contest. The best speech—selected by NACM's editorial staff—will receive a free registration to NACM's Credit Congress & Expo in Aurora, Colorado, on May 19-22, 2019. Each participant also receives .1 roadmap point toward an NACM designation, regardless of wh...
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California Wildfire Recovery, Unlicensed Contractors

Future residential projects in California will likely take place farther outside of wooded areas, and more will be completed by licensed, contract workers. The Contractors State License Board (CSLB) reached out to thousands of residents affected by the California campfires and wildfires urging them to only work with licensed contractors to ensure p...
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First Blockchain Syndicated Loan a Success

During the week of Nov. 5, the first-ever loan between three countries was transmitted via blockchain. A total of $150 million in a syndicated loan for Red Eléctrica, the Spanish grid operator, was sent over a private blockchain network BBVA, which also worked with partners MUFG of Japan and BNP Paribas of France. This marks an innovation in the de...
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The 2018 Election Results on Public Construction Funding

The Nov. 6 election saw record voter turnouts across the country, making history in gubernatorial and Congressional elections. Results flooded in, changing the balance of power in the House of Representatives and shaking up statewide legislation. The construction industry saw changes too, primarily in terms of funding public projects. Several state...
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E-Payments Make Another Stride Forward for B2B Transactions

Another initiative to push e-payments in and paper checks out of the business-to-business (B2B) sphere emerged recently, this new method using libraries in a Business Payments Network (BPN). Visa and Billtrust announced an open buyer and supplier payments platform designed to digitize the payment chain between businesses. Most consumers have switch...
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Freight Shipments Fall in Q3, Spending Sees Increase

The effects of Hurricane Florence and tariffs on imported goods impacted 2018's Q3, seeing a 5.2% quarterly decline in freight shipments, according to the U.S. Bank Freight Payment Index. Year-over-year, freight shipments fell by 1.1%. Even with these drops, freight spend still increased by 13.5%, year-over-year. Constrained trucking capacity limit...
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Super Typhoon Yutu and Recovery Efforts in US Territories

One of the strongest storms to hit the U.S. since 1935 struck western U.S. territories Oct. 25, leaving more than 100 injured and one dead, according to KUAM News. Relief efforts continue, now with help from federal funds as a Major Disaster Declaration for Super Typhoon Yutu was confirmed Oct. 27. With such devastating damage, rebuilding efforts w...
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Large Firms in UK Still Pay Late Despite Legislation

The Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) in the U.K. announced this week that larger firms that do not pay their suppliers on time should be stripped of government contracts. Late payments have caused nearly 50,000 companies annually to shut down, according to The Guardian. The firms owe tens of billions of pounds, and the closures of these compani...
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Metals Market Reacts to Death of Saudi Journalist, China’s Economic Dip

The global equity market is reacting to geopolitical tensions as the price of copper fell amid the death of Saudi Arabian journalist Jamal Khashoggi and the slowing demand of copper in China, according to a recent article by Reuters . Benchmark copper fell a total of 0.7%, now costing a total of $6,196 per ton. Today, Turkey's president stated the ...
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Existing-Home Sales and Housing Starts Fall in September, Decreasing Consistently

Sales continue to fall for previously owned homes in the U.S., and September showed the sixth-straight monthly drop in sales, according to Bloomberg. Sales of these homes have fallen to the lowest level since 2015, and this consistent drop is the longest since 2014. Despite a lack of desire for purchasing older homes, U.S. housing starts also fell ...
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