Archive for Sunday, June 15, 2003

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June 15, 2003

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Weak economy creating weak raises, survey finds

In this sluggish economy it's good to have a job, no doubt about it. Still, if you have a job, it's not likely you're seeing a bigger paycheck these days.

In an income survey of 170 white-collar professionals, half said they received no raise with their last performance review. Of that group, 54 percent said the company's financial state was the reason, and a third blamed the overall sluggish state of affairs.

Of those who did get more money, about one in four said the raise was smaller than they expected.

The lack of income growth has also affected savings levels, with 70 percent of workers saying their 401(k) contributions have either stayed the same or decreased.

The survey was conducted last month by TrueCareers Inc., a career search site based in Reston, Va.

Technology

Sony turning focus to quality, executive says

Sony Corp. unveiled several high-end digital electronics products this week in a bid to strengthen its brand and differentiate itself from low-price Asian rivals.

The Japanese electronics and entertainment giant will begin selling the Qualia product line in Japan this month, including a $3,200 cigarette-lighter-sized digital camera and a $20,000 home theater projector.

It will launch the line in the United States and Europe soon, but the dates haven't been set, the firm said.

Chief Executive Nobuyuki Idei said Sony wasn't aiming to sell the Qualia products in bulk, but was instead focusing on quality.

Sony is studying about 70 Qualia proposals in various sectors and is developing 13 other products, although the company refused to give details.

Among the other Qualia products are an $11,000 television and a $12,700 audio console.

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