While the current jobless rate of 4.4% is less than half its 2009 peak, salaries are growing less than 3% from one year to the next and inflation -- a measure of U.S. economic growth -- has slowed 40 basis points this year to 1.5%. That's well behind the 2% the Federal Reserve said would indicate stable expansion and help justify continuing to boost interest rates.
Toyota & Mazda to build a new $1.6B plant here in the U.S.A. and create 4K new American jobs. A great investment in American manufacturing!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 4, 2017
Japan's Nikkei news organization first reported Friday that Toyota was planning to take a 5% stake in Mazda as part of a previously stated plan to develop clean-energy and self-driving vehicle technologies. The two groups confirmed the purchase Friday and said they would combine to invest in a U.S. plant under a cooperation agreement the two companies first revealed in May 2015.
"The greatest fruit of our partnership with Mazda is that we have found a new partner who truly loves cars," said Toyota President Akio Toyoda. "It has also sparked Toyota's competitive spirit, increasing our sense of not wanting to be bested by Mazda."