Editor’s Note – Here are two takes on yesterday’s jobs report. Dismal is an understatement, and Romney responded: ”If last night was the party, this morning is the hangover. For every net new job created, nearly four Americans have given up looking for work entirely.”
Between now and October 3rd, much will be going on behind the scenes as the two candidates set to square off, and unemployment will be key in the “domestic policy” debate. The next U.S. jobs report will be released Friday, Oct. 5, two days after the first debate in Denver.
by Stephen Lendman – IndyBay
Headlines obscured its ugliness. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported a dismal 96,000 jobs created. Whisper numbers suggested around 200,000. June and July totals were revised down 41,000. They’re usually momentum drivers for future data releases.
U-3 unemployment dropped from 8.3% to 8.1%. It’s because 368,000 workers hadn’t found jobs after over a year of looking. BLS calls them non-persons. They don’t exist. At the same time, it added a fictitious 87,000 jobs based on so-called birth/death calculations. They turn reality on its head.
The labor force participation rate fell from 63.7% to 63.5% month over month. Doing so hit a 30 year low. The total number of non-person workers surged 2.7 million. It’s 3.2% above a year ago. An astonishing 89 million Americans want jobs can’t find them. Their numbers equal Germany’s entire population.
America’s employment to population ratio fell from 58.4% in July to 58.3% in August. It’s the lowest since August 2011. Workers without jobs for six months fell monthly since spring. It’s because they can’t find employment and stopped looking. They’re leaving the labor market because their jobless benefits expired. If extended ones lapse, about one quarter of unemployed people only will get relief, but for how long who knows.
The newly unemployed who’ve been seeking work for five weeks or less increased 133,000. It’s 5% more than July. Mean and median unemployment duration rose in August. They stand at 39.2 and 18 weeks respectively.
Economist John Williams reengineers economic data based on more reliable decades earlier modeling. Payroll job gains were pathetically few. The broader Household Survey declined by 119,000. July plunged by 195,000. Real unemployment is 22.8%. Expect worse, not better, ahead.
Private payrolls barely registered half of expectations. Manufacturing dropped for the first time since September 2011. Down 15,000, it was the largest decline since August 2010.
Goods-producing employment is highly cyclical. It leads the rest of the jobs market. Expect service sector declines to follow. Manufacturers created virtually no jobs since April. It’s eerily similar to what happened in 2007. Perhaps another inflection point was reached.
Central bank policies and pronouncements so far divorced financial markets from economic reality. August report numbers had practically no redeeming features. The private payroll diffusion index slid from 54.3 to 50.2 month over month. It’s the lowest read in 30 months.
The manufacturing index collapsed. It fell from 50.6 to 36.4. It’s the weakest showing since August 2010. The index of aggregate hours worked barely gained 0.1%. In July it lost 0.2%. In Q 3, it’s running at 0.2% annualized growth. It’s half what Q 2 posted and slowest since Q 4 2009. It portends slower Q 3 GDP growth than Q 2′s weak 1.7% pace.
Hourly and weekly earning declined fractionally. The latter fell for the second straight month. It was the first time since winter 2009. Given rising food, energy, healthcare and transportation costs, household spending power is increasingly pressured. Forward-looking indicators portend further employment deterioration. Workweek and overtime hours growth are absent. The factory workweek declined for the past four months.
Most jobs created are part-time or temp low pay/poor benefit ones. Temp hiring tends to lead total employment up or down. It fell for the first time in five months.
In August, it’s significant that nearly twice as many people went on food stamps as found jobs. Recovery is pure fakery. Main Street America remains in protracted Depression. Half the population is impoverished or bordering on it. (Read the rest here.)
BY DIANE ALTER, Contributing Writer, Money Morning
From numerous angles, the August U.S. jobs report was disappointing – except for GOP presidential hopeful Mitt Romney, who used the numbers to blast U.S. President Barack Obama.
The Labor Department reported today (Friday) that U.S. employers added a paltry 96,000 jobs last month.
Unemployment and the economy are two of the most prominent issues of this year’s campaign, and Romney seized the opportunity to stake a political advantage following the dreary news.
“If last night was the party, this morning is the hangover. For every net new job created, nearly four Americans have given up looking for work entirely,” Romney said in a statement.
He continued stating that President Obama has not made good on his promises, and reiterated the message that the United States is no better off than it was four years ago when the president took office.
Romney pledged to create some 12 million new jobs by the end of his first term.
In a rally cry Romney said, “America deserves new leadership that will get our economy moving again.”
U.S. Jobs Report: The Numbers
Fewer jobs were added than forecast, but unexpectedly the unemployment rate ticked down to 8.1% from 8.3%. Don’t get too excited.
The reason for the drop was more frustrated unemployed workers have simply stopped looking for work. The economy has now logged 43 consecutive months with joblessness over 8%, and growth continues to wane.
Economists had been looking for between 120,000 to 125,000 jobs added in August. In the first quarter of the year, the average monthly job gain was a robust 225,000. Since then hiring has slowed.
To date, job growth has averaged 139,000 per month since the start of 2012. In 2011, the monthly gain was 153,000. Another startling number from Friday’s U.S. jobs report was the drop in the proportion of the population that is either working or looking for work.
Called the labor force participation rate, the figure dropped to 63.5%, the lowest level in 31 years. The number highlights how in addition to those who have simply stopped looking for a job, scores of America’s young adults are staying in school longer in attempts to avoid the dismal job market. (Read the rest here.)