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Photo: Mario Tama/Getty Images

Amtrak will reduce its schedule between New Year's Eve and Jan. 6 amid a recent spike in coronavirus cases among employees, according to a statement obtained by the Washington Post.

Why it matters: The Omicron variant has driven up infections across the United States, upending vacation plans and disrupting travel. About two dozen trains will be affected, according to the Post.

  • About 97% of Amtrack employees have received at least one dose of a COVID vaccine. Still, it's seen an uptick in positive cases, largely fueled by the new strain.
  • The trimmed schedule reduces about 1.5% of Amtrak's trains scheduled for the week, according to the Post.

What they're saying: "Amtrak regrets any inconvenience," the railroad said in the statement.

  • "We are continuing to monitor changing conditions and will make any further adjustments as required," it continued.

Go deeper

COVID is disrupting some North Texas school schedules

Expand chart
Data: N.Y. Times; Cartogram: Kavya Beheraj/Axios

Several North Texas school districts have canceled classes for the rest of the week, while others are now requiring students and staff to wear masks in response to a surge of new coronavirus cases.

Why it matters: Pediatric hospitals have reported an increase in positive COVID test results in the month since the first omicron case was reported in North Texas.

Why 401(k) rollovers are so annoying

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

If you happened to change jobs recently, you may have tried to transfer your retirement account from your former employer into an Individual Retirement Account or your new employer's 401(k) plan. If so, you probably encountered a bureaucratic gantlet — and you're not alone.

Why it matters: Kludgey processes around retirement account transfers result in people losing track of their funds, giving up important tax advantages, or otherwise disadvantaging themselves and being less prepared for retirement.

The hard math behind America's labor shortage

Data: Bureau of Labor Statistics, Congressional Budget Office; Chart: Axios Visuals

Yes, the pandemic has created unusual temporary labor market dynamics. But in the bigger picture, the 2010s were a golden age for companies seeking cheap labor. The 2020s are not.

The big picture: In the 2010s, the massive millennial generation was entering the workforce, the massive baby bo0m generation was still hard at work, and there was a multi-year hangover from the deep recession caused by the global financial crisis.