Business Report: Raw materials shortage, interest rates, COVID-19 relief funds, rising home prices

NJ businesses are dealing with both labor shortages and a lack of raw materials

New Jersey businesses aren’t just dealing with labor shortages, they’re also dealing with a shortage of some raw materials. Christopher Maher, chairman and CEO of OceanFirst Bank, says his New Jersey clients are having trouble sourcing several products now, including semiconductors.

Rising prices and inflation are also impacting businesses. The Federal Reserve might have something to say about that. Federal policymakers began a two-day meeting on interest rates Tuesday and will announce any decisions Wednesday. Federal officials may comment on how rising COVID-19 cases could impact the economy’s recovery.

The Murphy administration is holding two virtual meetings this week to solicit input on how to spend $6 billion in coronavirus relief funds. Some of the money has been earmarked for things like rental assistance or to help people pay their utility bills, but now the state wants to hear about other possible issues for the funds.

Home prices continue to break records, according to the latest housing report from S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller. Its housing index measures average home prices in cities across the country. Over the past year ending in May, the index rose 16.6%. That’s the fastest pace in more than 16 years.

We’re in this together
For a better-informed future. Support our nonprofit newsroom.
Donate to NJ Spotlight