The Week Ahead: Labor Case Before Supreme Court and Jobs Numbers for September

The Supreme Court will open its new term by hearing arguments about whether companies can require workers to forfeit their rights to join together in lawsuits or arbitration proceedings against their employers.

Credit
J. Scott Applewhite/Associated Press

Here’s what to expect in the week ahead:

LABOR

Supreme Court to hear employee rights case.

On Monday, the first day of its new term, the Supreme Court will hear arguments about one of the central questions in today’s workplace: whether companies can require workers to forfeit their rights to join together in lawsuits or arbitration proceedings against their employers. The court accepted three cases that produced conflicting rulings in federal appeals courts. In two of those cases, the appeals courts ruled that employers violate federal labor law when they require employees to forfeit these rights. In a third case, the appeals court ruled these kinds of employment contracts can be legal. Because of the cost of legal representation, experts say, workers are far less likely to sue their employers over issues like safety violations or wage theft if they cannot band together to do so. Noam Scheiber

ECONOMY

An industry group will report on manufacturing.

The Institute for Supply Management will release its latest report on the state of American factories on Monday. Manufacturing has been a point of emphasis for President Trump both as a candidate and since taking office; in a speech Friday, he told the National Association of Manufacturers that “the era of economic surrender is over” and promoted his new tax plan, which would slash taxes on businesses. Manufacturing has performed well so far in 2017, and a survey on Friday found that executives in the sector are upbeat about the rest of the year. Ben Casselman

CYBERSECURITY

Ex-C.E.O. of Equifax Called to Capitol Hill

Consumers will finally get to hear from the former chief executive officer of Equifax, Richard F. Smith, who will testify before Congress about the credit bureau’s security breach that potentially exposed the sensitive data of 143 million Americans. Mr. Smith, who stepped down from his position last Tuesday amid mounting consumer outrage, will testify several times before congressional committees. His first stop, on Tuesday, will be at the House Energy and Commerce Committee: Its subcommittee on Digital Commerce and Consumer Protection is holding a hearing called “Oversight of the Equifax Data Breach: Answers for Consumers.”

On Wednesday, Mr. Smith will appear before the Senate Banking Committee for another hearing, which will also examine the circumstances surrounding the breach. Then, on Thursday, Mr. Smith is scheduled to testify before the House Financial Services Committee. Tara Siegel Bernard

AUTO INDUSTRY

Auto sales and a trip to Wall St. by Ford’s chief

On Tuesday, automakers are expected to report a slight uptick in new car sales in September, thanks to higher incentives, increased purchasing in the wake of hurricanes in Texas and Florida, and brisk Labor Day sales. It would be the first monthly rise that the industry has recorded since December. Analysts remain cautious for the longer term and expect sales to fall this year and again in 2018, after hitting a record of 17.5 million vehicles last year.

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