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Article | 5 min |
Employee meeting with HR rep
Once upon a time, most businesses could rely on wages and salaries to attract talented employees. Securing the services of strong candidates was often purely a question of money. But much of that has since changed—and quickly—in the post-COVID-19 hiring and retention landscape. For many job-seekers, money is no longer enough. As a result, some businesses needed to prioritize their benefits package to attract top talent. Multiple trends can be seen driving the shift in attention toward employee benefits. Inflation rates hit multi-decade highs in the early 2020s, prompting some job-seekers to...
Article | 5 min |
Picture of statue at Federal Reserve
Commonly known as the Beige Book, this report is published eight times per year. Each Federal Reserve Bank gathers anecdotal information on current economic conditions in its District through reports from Bank and Branch directors and interviews with key business contacts, economists, market experts and other sources. The Beige Book summarizes this information by District and sector. An overall summary of the twelve district reports is prepared by a designated Federal Reserve Bank on a rotating basis. Overall Economic Activity Retail sales, including autos, remained mixed; sales of...
Article | 5 min |
Black and white image of hands typing on a keyboard
Work with banking partners you can count on to help you achieve growth goals It’s still sunny economically in the greater Phoenix area and William (Bill) Callahan, President & CEO of Arizona Bank & Trust, a division of HTLF Bank, expects it to continue into 2024. “It doesn’t feel like business has dropped off dramatically,” he said. He’s seen profit margins decline, but customers have created strategies to deal with changing economic realities. Commercial and industrial customers make up about 75 percent of the bank’s portfolio. Clients are building something, selling products or in service...
Article | 5 min |
Welder working on piece of equipment
The potentially transformative capabilities of advanced AI, automation, and robotics technology are ushering in a new era for manufacturing. Yet, at the same time, extracting value from the digital transformation is more complicated than it might seem. Case in point—an overwhelming 88% of companies report difficulties measuring value from technological investments . The same report found that 85% of companies struggle to simultaneously update operating models to accommodate their new visions and cover the upfront investment costs for new technology. These challenges are further compounded for...
Article | 5 min |
Quarterly Market Review: Q4 2023 By: Paul Dickson, Director of Research and Giri Krishnan, Senior Portfolio Manager The “Soft-Landing” Has Become the Default Scenario The Federal Reserve signaled that it is likely done with rate hikes. The markets responded favorably, nearly doubling the annual return on the S&P 500. This signaling also moved the U.S. Aggregate Bond market from being in the red to having a decisively positive year. The pivot in policymakers’ outlook was somewhat of a surprise given that the data-informed policy has not improved nearly as much as their stance has changed. While...