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Dollar, dollar bills: Bigger bonuses for vaxxed Whirlpool employees

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Employees of the appliance company have a lot to lose, both physically and financially, if they choose to not roll up their sleeve.

A shield against COVID and one thousand dollars richer

As efforts ramp up to get the rest of America’s population vaccinated, appliance company Whirlpool is offering their staff a staggering incentive. 

Employees who choose to roll up their sleeves will receive a $1000 cash bonus. 

That’s $800 more than their previous offer, with employees first promised cash awards of $200. 

It comes as vaccination rates in the US state of Michigan straggle, with only just over half of their population fully vaccinated.

Both newly vaccinated and previously vaccinated employees will be eligible for the pricey incentive, according to company spokesperson Chad Parks.

“Our employees’ health and safety remains our top priority.”

“Throughout this pandemic they have been working tirelessly to serve our consumers, who are depending on our products more than ever to clean, cook and provide proper food and medicine storage in their homes, and we are working to ensure we can deliver.”

Another company on the incentive bandwagon

Whirlpool joins Devon Energy and Bolthouse Farms who are offering their employees $500 each to get vaccinated, as cases across the nation continue to rise.

There seems to be a growing trend as more companies look to award their employees for getting the jab, opposed to mandating the vaccine.

Investment company Vanguard launched a similar incentive earlier this year.

The cash bonus cost the company roughly $16,500, issuing each eligible employee a $1000 dollar grant until October 1st.

It’s unclear for how long Whirlpool’s offer will last.

A step in the right direction

The bonus follows the announcement of the Biden administrations’ emergency rule, stating that large companies must ensure their entire workforce is vaccinated, or tested weekly.

Companies that don’t comply with this rule could face costly fines of up to $14,000 per violation.

Written by Rebecca Borg

Business

EU plans to force USB-C chargers for all phones

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EU plans to make USB-C connectors the standard port for all smartphones and tablets, angering Apple

The European Commission rules to force manufacturers to create a universal charging solution for phones and small electronic devices. The European Commission is aiming to have a common charging port for all mobile phones, tablets, cameras, headphones, and handheld videogame consoles.

The ruling has been in the making for a decade, with environmental concerns the main driving force behind the historic move.

Reducing waste

The rule will reduce waste by encouraging consumers to re-use existing chargers when buying a new device. Politicians have been pushing for this uni9versal charging rule for over a decade.

Disposed and unused charging cables generate approximately 11,000 tonnes of waste per year.  Research shows the average person owns around three mobile phone chargers.

A decade ago there were about 30 different types of chargers, now, phones use either USB-C, lightning, and USB micro-B.

Rotten Apple

The move would see all smartphones in the EU sold with the same charger, a motion Apple is not happy about. The tech giant says this move would damage ongoing innovation.

The tech giant is the main manufacturer of smartphones using a custom charging port, as its iPhone series uses an Apple-made “Lightning” connector. Apple argues its Lightning connector is used by one billion active iPhone users.

“We remain concerned that strict regulation mandating just one type of connector stifles innovation rather than encouraging it, which in turn will harm consumers in Europe and around the world,”

Apple spokesperson

The proposed changes would apply to the charging port on the device body and will also standardise charging speeds. It may be a number of years before the proposals come into effect.

It will be thoroughly debated by the European Parliament and national Governments.

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Trade war fires up as U.S companies pass tariffs onto consumers

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Japan Exports

The trade war between the United States and China is continuing to heat up, but this hasn’t stopped American businesses from leaving the Chinese mainland

This all follows the US implementing tariffs on billions of dollars worth of Chinese consumer products in a bid to bring manufacturing back to American shores.

A new report has found this is hurting the US economy and has not been successful in pressuring China to change any of its economic policies.

Meanwhile, businesses based in either China and America have remained “deeply integrated” with the other… with foreign investment into China hitting a record high of US$144.4 billion in 2020.

This comes as Joe Biden moves to review US policy towards China, including the previous policies of Donald Trump.

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Energy prices soar for Europeans as winter chill approaches

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There are growing concerns for European residents as energy prices continue to skyrocket in the lead-up to winter

The wholesale prices of natural gas in Britain, France, Spain, Germany and Italy have reached record highs, with overall household bills now through the roof.

This all comes as the continent braces for a cold winter and fuel is needed for increased electricity generation.

Meanwhile, the Europen Consumer Organisation warns it has seen a huge price increase… saying “It’s worrying ahead of the winter when gas consumption will necessarily increase.”

This latest price hike is being caused by a number of factors… including a depletion of natural gas stockpiles during a cold spring and a growing demand for gas in China.

Russia is also supplying less gas to the market than it ever has before.

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