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Association of Washington Business – Updated Weekly




Boeing, Amazon lead major Washington job surge

Washington's job market is rebounding and close to an all-time high, The Seattle Times reports.

Boeing and Amazon are leading the hiring surge. Amazon had 19,857 job openings in the first four months of the year, followed closely by Boeing with 19,737 openings.

Boeing is hiring as many as 80 machinists and 40 engineers, technical workers and interns weekly, union officials told the newspaper.

The state's labor force totaled 4,023,600 people in April 2022, and the unemployment rate was 3.6 percent, state officials report.

Still, the rebound in the state's labor market remains uneven, especially outside of Seattle or in the restaurant sector, for example.

Those who still haven’t found work may not be “feeling like their standard of living is anywhere near an all-time high,” University of Washington Economist Jacob Vigdor said.



Washington a negative outlier as most states have large reserve accounts

States across America are registering record budget reserves, according to a new report from the Pew Charitable Trusts. Washington state is an outlier, with a negative rainy day fund balance.

“The strength of states’ rainy day funds ranged widely—from 301 days’ worth of spending in Wyoming to a negative balance in Washington,” the report notes. “Washington was the only state to end the budget year with a negative rainy day fund balance after draining its savings of $1.7 billion; however, the state is projected to at least partially replenish its savings over the next several fiscal years.”

Contact Government Affairs Director Tommy Gantz to learn more and get involved.



Save the date: Policy Summit coming to Spokane Sept. 13-15

AWB’s premier event will have an especially elegant venue this year: the Historic Davenport Hotel in downtown Spokane. Tickets are now available for the 2022 AWB Policy Summit, scheduled from Sept 13-15.

The keynote speakers will bring a bipartisan view of national politics. Former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, a Republican, will join former Missouri Sen. Claire McCaskill, a Democrat, for a wide-ranging look at this year’s election and the bigger picture.

The event also offers both a business and an advocacy track to maximize content for employers, from sales and marketing to workforce and the economy. Policy Summit will be a hybrid event, but only the main stage program will be viewable by a virtual audience. Guests attending in-person will have opportunities to join breakout sessions and discussions, as well as networking events.

Book before June 11, 2022 to save $100 with early registration.

Register here. Contact AWB’s Carly Michael to learn about sponsorship opportunities.



AWB Institute and partners to present Workforce Summit in Seattle

Workforce is one of the top concerns for employers. The manufacturing and aerospace industries remain the top employing sectors in Washington. To help support these crucial industry sectors, the AWB Institute is joining with the Aerospace Futures Alliance and Career Connect Washington to host a summit on key workforce issues in Seattle on June 28 at the Museum of Flight.

This Workforce Summit will bring together employers to discuss the most pressing needs facing their industry when it comes to workforce, and how best to connect and collaborate with educational partners to ensure strong career pathways for young people into these high-wage, high-growth careers.

Register here. Contact Carly Michael for sponsorship opportunities at or 360.943.1600.


Memorial Day schedule
Next week's Fast Facts scheduled for Tuesday, May 31




Consumer spending increases in April by 0.9% despite economic headwinds

Sales of cars and electronics, along with spending in restaurants, increased in April, sending consumer spending figures up by 0.9% for the month. Americans kept spending despite inflation that is at a 40-year high, The Associated Press reports.

Employers are hiring and paying more. Families on average also have a fairly healthy level of savings. Many consumers are feeling that confidence and financial health, despite consumer prices being 8.3% higher in April than they were the year before. Families with fewer financial resources and confidence are cutting back on spending, buying cheaper store brands or smaller quantities – half gallons of milk instead of full gallons, for instance, as milk prices have increased by 15% over the past year.





Boeing honors 49 students on ‘STEM Signing Day’

Forty-nine students from across Washington state received honors last week from Boeing, Tallo, and Partnership for Learning on Washington State STEM Signing Day. The event recognizes students who are committing to study a science, technology, engineering or math (STEM) discipline after high school. Their fields of study including air traffic control, astrophysics, chemical engineering, computer science, medicine, neuroscience, statistics and more.

This profile features several STEM signees, including future air traffic controller Maram Bouhdache.


AWB seeks signatures for joint letter opposing emissions caps on steel and concrete manufacturing

A coalition of employers is pulling together signatures requesting state building regulators pull back on proposed new caps on emissions from the manufacturing of concrete and steel.

The proposal will drive up the price for all commercial, residential, and public works construction projects across the state. Washington employers already face record growth in inflation, fuel prices and other volatile supply chain constraints.

Read and sign the letter here. Contact AWB’s Mike Ennis to learn more.


New sponsorship, marketing opportunities available through Washington Business magazine

AWB has a new partner in bringing you Washington Business, our quarterly print magazine. Strategic Value Media will help put together the fall 2022 edition of Washington Business by taking over advertising sales and placement.

A representative from Strategic Value Media may contact you by email or phone about advertising in Washington Business. Please know this is a legitimate call and that SVM is partnering with AWB to provide you with this resource for advertising your products and services.

To learn more about advertising in Washington Business, please email, or for general questions about AWB’s magazine, contact Jason Hagey, AWB vice president for communications.





June's Employment Law Series focuses on non-competes, confidentiality and intellectual property

AWB’s popular employment law series continues June 1 by focusing on non-competes, confidentiality agreements, non-solicitations and intellectual property protection.

Learn the best way to protect your business strategies, proprietary information and personnel from your competitors. The presentation will also discuss recent proposed legislation restricting who may be subject to a non-competition agreement.

The webinar is scheduled for June 1 at 11 a.m. Learn more and register here.

You can also register for the On Demand Combo. This provides access to the recordings of previous webinars in the series and live access to  remaining webinars.



AWB awards: Help us recognize Washington’s top employers

The deadline is approaching to nominate worthy employers for AWB’s annual awards ceremony. AWB’s Washington Excellence Awards and Manufacturing Excellence Awards recognize employers who take care of their communities and employees through innovative workplace benefits, green initiatives, operational excellence and much more.

In order to recognize and celebrate Washington employers, we need your help. Complete our simplified, online form to nominate your own or another company today.

Our Washington Excellence Awards and Manufacturing Excellence Awards are driven by nominations (self-nominations are allowed and encouraged) and all entries are peer-reviewed by a panel of volunteer judges with expertise in the related categories. All awards are inspired by AWB’s mission and vision with emphasis on member success in innovation and entrepreneurship, highlighting those who excel at job retention and creation across the state. This is the reason we tour the state for Manufacturing Week each year, and honor excellence in Washington employers!

Nominations are all submitted online and the deadline is June 30.







“Despite the surge in prices weighing on their purchasing power, the U.S. consumer now appears to be single-handedly keeping the global economy afloat.” ~ Paul Ashworth, chief U.S. economist at consulting firm Capital Economics, after the U.S. Commerce Department released April figures showing consumer spending increasing by 0.9%.
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