Small businesses caught in the crosshairs of UAW strike against GM

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The United Auto Workers are still on strike, economists are looking to Jerome Powell for a rate cut and the Department of Defense wants to beef up SMB cybersecurity. Hello, Humpday!

Small businesses caught in the crosshairs of UAW strike against GM

The United Auto Workers (UAW) strike against General Motors has entered its fourth week, and local and regional small businesses around the automotive plants are feeling the pinch.

Restaurants, suppliers and other businesses have noted a decrease in sales and revenues, resulting in layoffs, hiring freezes, or restricted hours of their own.

The Number: 50,000. In the largest strike since 2007, nearly 50,000 members of the United Auto Workers walked off General Motors job sites, resulting in the layoff of 1,200 truckers and workers by suppliers in Flint, Michigan alone.  

The Quote: “You have to support the people that support you. I do appreciate all the other customers that I have, but if it wasn’t for General Motors, we wouldn’t be here.”

Fed chair’s comments hint at possible rate cut

Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell’s recent comments about cooling job growth has some economists predicting that interest rates will be cut at the Fed meeting at the end of this month. The Fed raised interest rates 4 times last year and has reversed 2 of those hikes so far, with a third cut looking more than likely …

The Number: $480 billion. Some economists have also speculated that the Federal Reserve will buy up $480 billion worth of Treasury Notes over the next 2 years in an effort to provide case for short-term lending markets. 

The Quote: “Where we had seen a booming job market, we now see more-moderate growth.” 

New certification program seeks to help DOD and SMBs collaborate on cybersecurity

The Department of Defense is working on a new program to help small businesses protect themselves from the increasing threat of cybersecurity attacks by nation states. The Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certification program (CMMC) is a framework for grading a company’s security and “is really about leveling [the] playing field and protecting sensitive systems that require additional cybersecurity controls.”

Critics of the program believe it will place an undue burden on small businesses and prevent them from competing for government contracts.

The Number: $600 billion. Cybersecuirty adversaries cost the US $600 billion each year and the amount is expected to rise exponentially with the rollout of 5G and near unlimited bandwidth technology.  

The Quote: “We’re losing.”

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