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More than 10,000 Deere & Co. workers appear ready to go on strike if negotiators can’t deliver a new agreement by the end of the day. The United Auto Workers union has said its members would walk off the job if no deal has been reached by 11:59 p.m. Wednesday. The vast majority of the union rejected a contract offer earlier this week that would have delivered at least 5% raises. Thirty-five years have passed since the last major Deere strike, but workers are emboldened to demand more this year after working long hours throughout the pandemic and because companies are facing worker shortages.

  • Updated

The number of Americans applying for unemployment benefits rose for the third straight week, a sign that the highly contagious delta variant may be slowing the job market’s recovery. The Labor Department said Thursday that claims were up by 11,000 last week to 362,000 the previous week.  Since topping 900,000 in early January, applications have mostly fallen steadily as the economy bounces back from last year’s shutdowns. But they’ve risen recently as coronavirus cases tick up again. The numbers, which are a proxy for layoffs, remain elevated: Before the pandemic hit the United States hard in March 2020, they were typically coming in at around 220,000 a week.