U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur L. Ross was present the Minority Business Development Agency 50th Anniversary Celebration

March 5th, U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur L. Ross was present and remarks at the Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) 50th Anniversary Celebration in Washington.

Ross said, A lot of dedicated, passionate people have made it possible for the Minority Business Development Agency to achieve such a milestone. Congratulations! And thank you — to all the people who work in the small but mighty MBDA — for maintaining a five-decade tradition of excellence. Your service is needed now more than ever to assure the success and growth of minority-owned businesses throughout our nation.<

Ross said, The professional staff of MBDA have worked every day for 50 years with minority businesses throughout the country. When the agency was created, there were a scant 400,000 minority-owned businesses in the United States. Today, there are 11 million, up from four million in 2002.

When we look at minority employer firms, they generate $1.3 trillion in annual sales and have created more than 8.7 million jobs. That is a very big number, but with today’s fast-growing minority population, we need a lot more that we can grow to size and scale.

Since the agency’s inception, it is estimated that MBDA has worked with more than 13 million minority firms in the United States.  And, in just the last five fiscal years, MBDA helped facilitate almost $29 billion in contracts and financing to minority enterprises impacting 111,000 jobs.

One of the most promising avenues to individual prosperity and financial security is owning your own company. It is part of the American heritage and the American dream. And it is the reason so many aspiring people elsewhere in the world want to come to the United States: because it is relatively easy to start a business.

A great feature of the American society is we do not hold failure against anyone who tries. Every serial entrepreneur has had some failures, but they are outweighed by the subsequent successes. Most business start-ups consist of just one or two people initially, and they ramp up from there. With the advent of eCommerce and social media, it is easier than ever before for new companies to gain the attention of large numbers of customers.

Gross Domestic Product, Fourth Quarter and Annual 2018 (Initial Estimate)

Real gross domestic product (GDP) Feb 28th, increased at an annual rate of 2.6 percent in the fourth quarter of 2018, according to the “initial” estimate released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis. In the third quarter, real GDP increased 3.4 percent.

Due to the recent partial government shutdown, this initial report for the fourth quarter and annual GDP for 2018 replaces the release of the “advance” estimate originally scheduled for January 30th and the “second” estimate originally scheduled for February 28th.

The Bureau emphasized that the fourth-quarter initial estimate released today is based on source data that are incomplete or subject to further revision by the source agency. Updated estimates for the fourth quarter, based on more complete data, will be released on March 28, 2019.

The increase in real GDP in the fourth quarter reflected positive contributions from personal consumption expenditures (PCE), nonresidential fixed investment, exports, private inventory investment, and federal government spending. Those were partly offset by negative contributions from residential fixed investment, and state and local government spending. Imports, which are a subtraction in the calculation of GDP, increased.

The deceleration in real GDP growth in the fourth quarter reflected decelerations in private inventory investment, PCE, and federal government spending and a downturn in state and local government spending. These movements were partly offset by an upturn in exports and an acceleration in nonresidential fixed investment. Imports increased less in the fourth quarter than in the third quarter.

Current dollar GDP increased 4.6 percent, or $233.2 billion, in the fourth quarter to a level of $20.89 trillion. In the third quarter, current-dollar GDP increased 4.9 percent, or $246.3 billion.

The price index for gross domestic purchases increased 1.6 percent in the fourth quarter, compared with an increase of 1.8 percent in the third quarter. The PCE price index increased 1.5 percent, compared with an increase of 1.6 percent. Excluding food and energy prices, the PCE price index increased 1.7 percent, compared with an increase of 1.6 percent.

Personal Income

Current-dollar personal incomeincreased $225.1 billion in the fourth quarter, compared with an increase of $190.6 billion in the third quarter. The acceleration in personal income reflected an upturn in farm proprietors’ income and accelerations in personal dividend income and personal interest income. Compensation of employees decelerated.

Disposable personal income increased $218.7 billion, or 5.7 percent, in the fourth quarter, compared with an increase of $160.9 billion, or 4.2 percent, in the third quarter. Real disposable personal income increased 4.2 percent, compared with an increase of 2.6 percent.

Personal saving was $1.06 trillion in the fourth quarter, compared with $996.0 billion in the third quarter. The personal saving rate — personal saving as a percentage of disposable personal income — was 6.7 percent in the fourth quarter, compared with 6.4 percent in the third quarter.

Updates to third quarter GDI

For the third quarter of 2018, the percent change in real GDI was revised from 4.3 percent to 4.6 percent based on newly available tabulations from the BLS Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages program.

2018 GDP

Real GDP increased 2.9 percent in 2018 (from the 2017 annual level to the 2018 annual level), compared with an increase of 2.2 percent in 2017.

The increase in real GDP in 2018 primarily reflected positive contributions from PCE, nonresidential fixed investment, exports, federal government spending, private inventory investment, and state and local government spending that were slightly offset by a small negative contribution from residential fixed investment. Imports, which are a subtraction in the calculation of GDP, increased.

The acceleration in real GDP from 2017 to 2018 primarily reflected accelerations in nonresidential fixed investment, private inventory investment, federal government spending, exports, and PCE, and an upturn in state and local government spending that were partly offset by a downturn in residential investment.

Current-dollar GDP increased 5.2 percent, or $1.02 trillion, in 2018 to a level of $20.50 trillion, compared with an increase of 4.2 percent, or $778.2 billion, in 2017.

The price index for gross domestic purchases increased 2.2 percent in 2018, compared with an increase of 1.9 percent in 2017. The PCE price index increased 2.0 percent, compared with an increase of 1.8 percent. Excluding food and energy prices, the PCE price index increased 1.9 percent, compared with an increase of 1.6 percent.

During 2018 (measured from the fourth quarter of 2017 to the fourth quarter of 2018), real GDP increased 3.1 percent, compared with an increase of 2.5 percent during 2017. The price index for gross domestic purchases increased 2.1 percent during 2018, compared with an increase of 1.9 percent during 2017.

SBA Appoints David M. Glaccum as Associate Administrator of Office of International Trade

WASHINGTON – U.S. Small Business Administrator Linda McMahon announced the appointment of David M. Glaccum as the Associate Administrator of the SBA’s Office of International Trade (OIT). In this role, Glaccum will work to increase the number of small business exporters as well as the volume of exports by American small businesses. As Associate Administrator of OIT, Glaccum’s duties will include overseeing the execution of three program divisions: 1) federal and state trade development; 2) international trade and finance; and 3) international affairs and trade policy.

“I am pleased to welcome David to the SBA,” McMahon said. “His experience in improving and streamlining processes at the United Nations combined with driving results for major initiatives on behalf of the state of South Carolina will be a tremendous asset to entrepreneurs as the SBA continues to show the world the benefits and opportunities of working with America’s small businesses.”

Glaccum brings a variety of experience in federal and state government to the position. While serving as Chief of Staff to United Nations Ambassador Nikki Haley he was able to reduce budgets by finding and eliminating unused resources, improving operational efficiency, and led the development of U.S. “Peacekeeping Principles” that have been applied to all 15 peacekeeping mission renewals, resulting in nearly $900 million in savings to the United Nations peacekeeping budget. 

While working as then Governor Haley’s Deputy Chief of Staff and Policy Advisor he successfully led state-wide initiatives to improve South Carolina’s Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program and worked to ensure proper disaster response and recovery financing and allocation of state resources following Hurricane Matthew in October 2016.  Prior to his time with Haley he served as Chief Counsel to South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham where he led the drafting and negotiations on a wide array of complex policy initiatives ranging from criminal and civil justice reform to counter-terrorism enforcement.

Glaccum earned a bachelor’s degree in Culinary Management from the Art Institute of Pittsburgh and a Juris Doctor degree from the University of South Carolina School of Law.

DHS Proposes Merit-Based Rule for More Effective and Efficient H-1B Visa Program

WASHINGTON—The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced today a notice of proposed rulemaking that would require petitioners seeking to file H-1B cap-subject petitions to first electronically register with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) during a designated registration period. Under the proposed rule, USCIS would also reverse the order by which USCIS selects H-1B petitions under the H-1B cap and the advanced degree exemption, likely increasing the number of beneficiaries with a master’s or higher degree from a U.S. institution of higher education to be selected for an H-1B cap number, and introducing a more meritorious selection of beneficiaries.

The H-1B program allows companies in the United States to temporarily employ foreign workers in specialty occupations that require the theoretical and practical application of a body of highly specialized knowledge and a bachelors or higher degree in the specific specialty, or its equivalent. When USCIS receives more than enough petitions to reach the congressionally mandated H-1B cap, a computer-generated random selection process, or lottery, is used to select the petitions that are counted towards the number of petitions projected as needed to reach the cap.

The proposed rule includes a provision that would enable USCIS to temporarily suspend the registration process during any fiscal year in which USCIS may experience technical challenges with the H-1B registration process and/or the new electronic system. The proposed temporary suspension provision would also allow USCIS to up-front delay the implementation of the H-1B registration process past the fiscal year (FY) 2020 cap season, if necessary to complete all requisite user testing and vetting of the new H-1B registration system and process. While USCIS has been actively working to develop and test the electronic registration system, if the rule is finalized as proposed, but there is insufficient time to implement the registration system for the FY 2020 cap selection process, USCIS would likely suspend the registration requirement for the FY 2020 cap season.

Currently, in years when the H-1B cap and the advanced degree exemption are both reached within the first five days that H-1B cap petitions may be filed, the advanced degree exemption is selected prior to the H-1B cap. The proposed rule would reverse the selection order and count all registrations or petitions towards the number projected as needed to reach the H-1B cap first. Once a sufficient number of registrations or petitions have been selected for the H-1B cap, USCIS would then select registrations or petitions towards the advanced degree exemption. This proposed change would increase the chances that beneficiaries with a master’s or higher degree from a U.S. institution of higher education would be selected under the H-1B cap and that H-1B visas would be awarded to the most-skilled and highest-paid beneficiaries. Importantly, the proposed process would result in an estimated increase of up to 16 percent (or 5,340 workers) in the number of selected H-1B beneficiaries with a master’s degree or higher from a U.S. institution of higher education.

USCIS expects that shifting to electronic registration would reduce overall costs for petitioners and create a more efficient and cost-effective H-1B cap petition process for USCIS. The proposed rule would help alleviate massive administrative burdens on USCIS since the agency would no longer need to physically receive and handle hundreds of thousands of H-1B petitions and supporting documentation before conducting the cap selection process. This would help reduce wait times for cap selection notifications. The proposed rule also limits the filing of H-1B cap-subject petitions to the beneficiary named on the original selected registration, which would protect the integrity of this registration system.

On April 18, 2017, President Trump issued the Buy American and Hire American Executive Order, instructing DHS to “propose new rules and issue new guidance, to supersede or revise previous rules and guidance if appropriate, to protect the interests of U.S. workers in the administration of our immigration system.” The EO specifically mentioned the H-1B program and directed DHS and other agencies to “suggest reforms to help ensure that H-1B visas are awarded to the most-skilled or highest-paid petition beneficiaries.”

Additional information on the proposed rule is available in the Federal Register. Public comments may be submitted starting Monday, December 3, when the proposed rule publishes in the Federal Register, and must be received on or before January 2, 2019.

Upcoming: 2018 Miss Asia International Pageant Final – Los Angeles

Millennium Biltmore Hotel Los Angeles
506 S. Grand Ave.
Los Angeles, CA 90071
December 8, 2018.
3:00PM – 7:00PM

2018 Miss Asian International Pageant

2018 Miss Asian International Pageant USA Final sponsored by the American International Chamber of Commerce will be held at the Millennium Biltmore Hotel Los Angeles at 1:30PM on December 8, 2018.

Entering the Miss Asia International Beauty Pageant can be a very fun and fulfilling experience. This year’s contestants will compete for an amazing array of prizes, including photo shoot packages, scholarships, opportunites in the entertainment industry in modeling and acting, and the prestige of a year-long reign as the title holder of the premier pageants.

In addition to the prizes, contestants will receive various benefits from the sponsors as well as a myriad of opportunities to attend high profile red carpet events in Los Angels, New York, and China, fashions shows, and fundraisers in support of noble charitable organizations. Each contestant will represent their ancestral country in order to promote their culture, tourism and strengthen our bonds though a unity of diversity.

Tickets and RSVP
Phone: 626-675-4918
Miss Asia International Pageant Committee Los Angeles

Upcoming: 2018 Miss Asia International Pageant China Final in Beijing

Crowne Plaza Hotel Beijing Lido
6 Jiangtai Road
Chaoyang District
Beijing, 100016, China
Nov 11th,2018
1:00PM

2018 Miss Asia International Pageant China Final in Beijing

American International Chamber of Commerce ( AICC) will host the 2018 Miss Asia International Pageant China Final in Beijing.

RSVP
Phone: + 8610-8532 4980
Miss Asia International Pageant Committee China

U.S. Secretary of Commerce Announces Henry Childs, II as National Director of the Minority Business Development Agency

Today, U.S. Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross announced that Henry Childs, II will be the new National Director of the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA). Mr. Childs will be the 17th National Director of the agency.

Established by an Executive Order in 1969, MBDA is the only Federal agency solely dedicated to the growth and global competitiveness of U.S. minority-owned businesses.

“Mr. Childs’ commitment to economic development in minority communities is an unrivaled asset to the Department of Commerce,” said Secretary Ross. “In his new role, I fully expect him to continue to vigorously pursue opportunities and growth for minorities as well as the country as a whole.”

In addition to his appointment as the National Director of MBDA, Mr. Childs serves as the Policy Advisor to the White House’s Office of Public Liaison where he leads the Administration’s outreach to the African American community. He also works closely with the Office of American Innovation on economic development issues for urban areas and urban revitalization.

“I am honored to be selected by Secretary Ross to lead the Minority Business Development Agency”, said Mr. Childs. “I look forward to working with the dedicated team at MBDA as we blaze the agency’s path into the future.”

Prior to his appointment as the National Director of MBDA, Mr. Childs served as the Economic Development Administration (EDA) Senior Advisor and Director of Strategic Initiatives for the U.S. Department of Commerce.

As Senior Advisor and Director of Strategic Initiatives, he provided counsel on economic development and fostered partnerships with other federal agencies as well as national and international organizations. Mr. Childs also oversees the Department of Commerce’s $1 billion in supplemental Congressional funds for disaster recovery and readiness grants after the natural disasters of 2017.