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•  From the Associated Press:

"The number of Americans applying for unemployment benefits rose last week despite signs that the US labor market is rebounding from last year’s coronavirus recession.

"Jobless claims rose by 18,000 to 206,000, still low by historical standards. The four-week average, which smooths out week-to-week volatility, fell by 16,000 to less than 204,000, the lowest level since mid-November 1969, according Department of Labor figures released Thursday.

"Altogether, 1.8 million Americans were receiving traditional jobless benefits the week that ended Dec. 4, down by 154,000 from the previous week."



•  From the New York Times:

"Kellogg said on Thursday that it had reached a second tentative agreement with a union representing about 1,400 workers at four U.S. cereal plants who have been on strike since early October.

"The tentative accord, which would cover five years, was announced about a week and a half after workers voted down an earlier agreement, prompting the company to announce that it would move ahead with hiring permanent replacements for the workers on strike."

The story goes on:  "Under the agreement that was voted down last week, the company would have immediately converted all employees with four or more years at Kellogg to veteran status, then converted an amount equivalent to 3 percent of a plant’s head count in each year of the five-year contract.  The rejected agreement would have also given veteran workers a 3 percent wage increase in the first year of the contract and cost-of-living adjustments over the course of the contract. It offered newer hires a progression from the low $20s per hour to just over $28 after their sixth year.

"A company spokeswoman said by email on Thursday that the new tentative agreement did not alter the process for converting newer hires to veteran status but that it 'addresses the union’s request' for cost-of-living adjustments for all employees in each year of the contract."

A union vote is scheduled for Monday.