The Washington Post Sunday - - TAKING STOCK -

The world’s big­gest pen­sion fund posted the big­gest quar­terly gain in its his­tory as Ja­panese stocks surged and a plunge in the yen boosted over­seas in­vest­ments since Elec­tion Day. The Gov­ern­ment Pen­sion In­vest­ment Fund re­turned 8 per­cent in the three months ended Dec. 31, in­creas­ing as­sets to 144.8 tril­lion yen. The United States’ dwin­dling la­bor fed­er­a­tions and de­fend­ers of Amer­ica’s work­ers are tak­ing a page from cor­po­rate Amer­ica: fir­ing some of their own em­ploy­ees. The AFL-CIO con­firmed that it will dis­miss “sev­eral dozens” of the roughly 400 staff and fur­lough oth­ers work­ing at its head­quar­ters just north of Lafayette Square in Wash­ing­ton. Ear­lier, in De­cem­ber, the sep­a­rate Ser­vice Em­ploy­ees In­ter­na­tional Union warned em­ploy­ees that it “must plan for a 30 per­cent re­duc­tion” in its bud­get by Jan. 1, 2018.

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