wages

The nation’s largest trucking company has put another big crack in the dam created by investors and CEOs to block pay raises.

Since early 2017, “we’ve had to increase wages [by 10 percent and] we anticipate next year will be similar to what this year was,” company President Nicholas Hobbs told a group of Wall Street investment analysts on Oct. 14.

The pre-inflation pay raise of roughly 20 percent for truckers’ follows last month’s decision by Amazon to offer a $15 per hour starting wage to all of its warehouse workers, and it raises the pressure on the many CEOs and investors who have fiercely resisted wage hikes in President Donald Trump’s go-go economy.

Trump’s low-immigration/high-wage “Hire American” policy is forcing reluctant CEOs to compete for willing American workers because Trump has rejected corporate pleas for more immigrant blue-collar and white-collar workers. For example, Trump has drastically lowered the inflow of refugees, which previously had provided trucking companies with many new workers willing to work at low wages.

In response, CEOs and investors have helped block Trump’s more ambitious immigration reforms, and are now backing a proposal by Kansas GOP Rep. Kevin Yoder which expands several blue-collar and white-collar visa-worker programs. The proposal is hidden in the 2019 budget for the Department of Homeland Security and will be voted up-or-down in the lame-duck Congress during December.

Bloomberg reported:

J.B. Hunt Transport Services Inc. said late Monday its contract-services unit has raised wages by around 10 percent over the last 12 to 18 months to recruit new drivers …

“We have been recruiting drivers very well in this difficult market because of the pay that we’ve been able to price into our deals for our drivers,” Nicholas Hobbs, president of the contract-services business, said Monday on a conference call following the Lowell, Arkansas-based company’s third-quarter earnings release.

The company has almost 10,000 trucks on the road.

The company’s share value was $80 before the 2016 election, and it has grown to $113 by October 2018 amid Trump’s economy. The stock’s 40 percent growth boosted the investors’ value by roughly $3.6 billion up to $12.54 billion, and the pay raises effectively show the investors are being forced to share some of the increased value with their truckers, many of whom voted for Trump in 2016.

If the GOP wins the 2018 election, Trump is expected to renew his push for his “Four Pillars” reform plan which would further reduce the inflow of immigrant workers. The reduced immigration will force trucking companies to keep competing for workers by offering higher wages.

However, the rising wages will also accelerate the development and use of robot trucks, and will eventually force many younger truckers to find alternative jobs.

Overall, the Washington-imposed economic policy of economic growth via immigration shifts wealth from young people towards older people by flooding the market with cheap white-collar and blue-collar foreign labor.

That flood of outside labor spikes profits and Wall Street values by cutting salaries for manual and skilled labor offered by blue-collar and white-collar employees. The policy also drives up real estate priceswidens wealth-gaps, reduces high-tech investment, increases state and local tax burdens, hurts kids’ schools and college education, pushes Americans away from high-tech careers, and sidelines at least 5 million marginalized Americans and their families, including many who are now struggling with opioid addictions.

Immigration also pulls investment and wealth away from heartland states because coastal investors can more easily hire and supervise the large immigrant populations living in the coastal states.