The new National Living Wage and Minimum Wage Rates apply from 1st April 2017;
• Adult Rate (21 – 24 year olds) £7.05 per hour (from £6.95)
• 18 -20 year olds £5.60 per hour (from £5.55)
• 16-17 year olds £4.05 per hour (from £4.00)
• Apprentice Rate £3.50 per hour (from £3.40)
• Minimum Living Wage Rate for over 25s – £7.50 per hour (from £7.20).
The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) recently named and shamed 198 companies for failing to comply with NMW regulations. These included football clubs, hotels, care homes and hairdressers and they owed in excess of £466,000.
Census and Statistics Department revealed that the seasonally adjusted unemployment rate stayed at 3.3% from Oct-Dec 2016. Most industries saw a drop in the unemployment rate.
Key figures are as follows:
1. Total employment increased by about 10,700 from Sep to Nov 2016 to reach 3,817,000 in Oct to Dec 2016. Over the same period, the labour force also increased by around 2,200 from 3,936,900 to 3,939,100
2. The number of unemployed persons dropped by around 8,600
3. The underemployment rate remained unchanged at 1.4% for ten months in a row
The Government remarked that while the labour market can be expected to remain generally tightly in the near term, the potential repercussions of various external uncertainties on the local economy remain a cause for concern.
Social media company, Linkedin, conducted a survey on more than 13,000 millennial workers aged between 21 and 35 to gauge their career aspirations, and it was found that millennial workers are eager to see changes in their career pathway.
Key highlights of the findings are as follows:
1. 30% of the millennial workers surveyed expected to work for their current company for less than a year
2. 93% of Hong Kong millennial workers would like to learn more about job opportunities
3. 21% of respondents would like to try out a different industry
4. 64% of millennial workers rated work flexibility and staff benefits as their top concerns
The company has suggested strategies to attract millennial workers, which include leveraging social media platforms to engage job applicants at the outset, ensuring the hiring process is transparent, specifying career progression, and providing training and learning opportunities.
Starbucks, the world’s largest coffee chain, unveiled its plan to increase 10,000 new jobs each year in China over the next five years. Eyeing the flourishing coffee-drinking culture amid a booming middle-class, the company will open 500 stores every year, aiming to double its store count to 5,000 in China by 2021.
It was revealed Starbucks will tap 10-15 new urban markets in the country every year, while continuing to penetrate into megacities. There is still room for expansion in cities such as Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Shenzhen. China is Starbucks’ largest market outside the US.
According to the Mandatory Provident Fund Schemes Authority (MPFA)’s latest estimation, close to 4 million MPF account holders would be affected by the default investment strategy (DIS) fund or core fund, which is set to be implemented on 1 Apr 2017. Key facts are as follows:
- Around 1 million MPF account holders who have not indicated their investment direction (involving around HK$18 billion) will receive notification from the MPFA. If no investment options are indicated after 42 days the notification is issued, their amounts in the MPF accounts will go into the core fund 14 days after the deadline - The notification from the MPFA to the concerned MPF account holders will start to be issued from 1 Apr to 30 Sep 2017 - Close to 2.7 million MPF account holders who did not manage their personal MPF accounts after resignation, and around 300,000 MPF account holders with unclear indication of MPF investment options may be affected by the new arrangement - MPFA will come up with a series of education programmes to help MPF account holders understand the effects of core fund roll-out and actions needed