The median household income for U.S. families dropped 2.3% to $49,445 last year, marking the third year of decreases and putting earnings at about the same level as 1996 after adjustments for inflation, the Census Bureau reports. However, Americans' average net worth was $169,691 at the end of last year, up from $147,889 in 2007, as more money has been put into stocks, retirement accounts and other investments, according to the Federal Reserve.
Companies often overlook the talent under their own roof, Laura Schroeder writes. Either they ignore part-timers and other workers who don't fit the typical description of a blue-chip prospect or they give up too quickly on people who didn't become successful right away, Schroeder writes.
Hiring experts offer their favorite questions for uncovering important qualities about job candidates. For instance, one expert suggests asking applicants what they like to do after they finish their work. "The question is artfully vague, in that the applicant is not told if the answer should focus on work or personal activities," Michael Mercer says.
Fighting abuse of the Family and Medical Leave Act requires staying on top of trends in how employees take leave. This article rounds up 10 tips for monitoring workers' behavior fairly and accurately, including requiring certification of any reported medical condition, insisting on periodic status updates and using a relatively lengthy time frame to determine patterns. "Because evidence of a pattern of abuse is usually going to be circumstantial rather than medical, the employer must track such evidence over a long enough period so as to demonstrate that the suspicious absences are due to more than mere coincidence," this article notes.
U.S. authorities are reportedly investigating Deutsche Bank as part of a larger inquiry into questionable tax shelters offered by banks, according to people close to the matter. The German bank declined comment.