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Amazon accused of violating U.S. labor law after union supporters’ arrests

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© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: A banner reading “VOTE” is seen hanging at an Amazon facility on the first day of the unionization vote in Bessemer, Alabama, U.S., February 4, 2022. REUTERS/Dustin Chambers/File Photo

By Julia Love and Daniel Wiessner

(Reuters) -A group of Amazon.com Inc (NASDAQ:AMZN) workers seeking to form a union in New York filed a charge with U.S. labor regulators on Thursday after a high-profile organizer and a pair of employees were arrested outside a company warehouse, according to documents obtained by Reuters.

Amazon organizer Christian Smalls told Reuters on Wednesday he was arrested when he delivered warehouse workers food as part of the union campaign he is leading.

His quest to make Amazon’s JFK8 Staten Island warehouse a unionized facility will come to a head when workers vote starting March 25. The unfair labor practice charge filed on Thursday by a group of workers known as the Amazon Labor Union claims Amazon violated a settlement reached with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) in December.

As part of the settlement, Amazon pledged not to limit workers’ ability to engage with their colleagues in non-work areas during non-work time.

“Amazon.com Services has violated the National Settlement agreement,” the Amazon Labor Union stated in the charge. “Accordingly, we request an expedited investigation and immediate … relief in light of the upcoming election.”

In the charge, Amazon Labor Union alleges Amazon had employees Brett Daniels and Jason Anthony arrested on Wednesday in retaliation for their involvement with the union. Smalls previously worked at the warehouse and was fired in 2020 for allegedly violating company safety policies.

Amazon spokesperson Kelly Nantel said “the settlement pertains to the rights of employees to solicit on (the company’s) property, and we did nothing to stop employees from soliciting.” Amazon called the police on Smalls, and not the other two workers, Nantel said.

“Mr. Smalls – who is not employed by Amazon – has repeatedly trespassed despite multiple warnings. Yesterday, when police officers asked Mr. Smalls to leave, he instead chose to escalate the situation and the police made their own decision on how to respond,” Nantel said.

A second closely watched election is occurring at Amazon’s Bessemer, Alabama warehouse, with vote-by-mail being accepted until March 25 and the vote count starting March 28.

Earlier this week, the Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union (RWDSU) filed charges with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) accusing Amazon of unlawfully interfering in the election.

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Goldman Sachs stock forecasts: Goldman has downgraded its recommendation for global stocks for the next 3 months to “below market

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Goldman Sachs stock forecasts

A new Goldman Sachs stock forecast has emerged. Analysts at U.S. bank Goldman Sachs Group Inc. (NYSE:GS) have downgraded their recommendation for global stocks for the next three months to “below market” and maintained an “above market” recommendation for cash amid recessionary risks, Bloomberg writes.

“Current stock valuations may not fully reflect the risks involved, and there’s a chance they will drop even further before they bottom out. Also have a disappointing Goldman Sachs economic forecast,” the Goldman strategist team, led by Christian Muller-Glissmann, wrote.

BlackRock, the world’s largest company by assets under management, advises investors to “divest from most stocks.”

Experts at Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS) and JPMorgan Asset Management previously laid out similar concerns after the world’s top central banks signaled their firm’s resolve to fight inflation, sending global stocks plunging in the past few days.

Goldman analysts last week sharply lowered their forecast for the value of the U.S. S&P 500 stock index for the end of this year, to 3,600 points from the previously expected 4,300 points. The day before, the indicator finished trading at 3655 points.

Earlier, we reported that European stock markets are trading contradictoryly.

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European stock markets are trading contradictory today

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biggest european stock markets

During today’s trading the major European stock markets do not show unified dynamics. The composite index of the largest companies in the region, Stoxx Europe 600, decreased by 0.18% to 389.68 points.

European stock markets trading today

British stock index FTSE 100 was down 0.06%, while German DAX gained 0.19% and French CAC 40 gained 0.16%. Italian FTSE MIB rose by 1%. Spanish IBEX 35 decreased by 0.34%.

The British financial company Virgin Money UK PLC was among the leaders of the fall in the components of the Stoxx Europe 600 index, falling by 6.7%.

Shares of the Swiss manufacturer of heating and ventilation systems rose 8.4% as Berenberg’s experts improved their recommendations on the company’s securities and raised their price target.

Concerns about the state of the global economy are growing amid persistently high inflation and aggressive measures by major central banks to curb it, writes CNBC.

The elections in Italy are also in the spotlight. The Italian Democratic Party acknowledged defeat in early parliamentary elections that took place on Sunday, reported the media.

The market is also pressed by continuing geopolitical tensions with the ongoing “referendums” in several regions of Ukraine.

Meanwhile, the level of business confidence in the German economy in September fell to 84.3 points from 88.6 points in August, according to a report by the research organization IFO.

Earlier we reported that the yield of British government bonds rose to a 14-year high.

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Yield of British government bonds during recession rises to 14-year high

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yield on government bonds

Yield of British government bonds during the recession is rising today amid expectations that the Bank of England will have to raise rates sharply as a major fiscal stimulus announced by the government last week will lead to a further rise in inflation.

The interest rate on U.K. ten-year government bonds rose to 4.246% p.a. during trading, which, according to Refinitiv, is the highest since 2008.

Yield on government bonds

The yield on ten-year bonds was 4.087% compared to 3.827% at market close on September 23; the yield on two-year government bonds rose to 4.418% from 3.911%.

Last Friday, Britain’s Finance Minister Kwasi Kwarteng announced a massive tax cut that will affect individuals and businesses and increase the budget deficit this fiscal year by more than 70 billion pounds.

The stimulus measures of the new British government will require an increase in government bond issuance, which is one of the factors pushing down their prices. Rising rates could exacerbate difficulties in the economy by reducing disposable income and leading to a rise in the cost of mortgages.

Earlier we reported that investors in the U.S. are buying a record number of risk insurance contracts amid a sell-off.

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