Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Jobs Jump; High-Paying Jobs Lost; Minimun Wage Jobs Surge -- May 3, 2015

Prologue: The Magic Numbers
First time claims, unemployment benefits: 400,000 (> 400,000: economic stagnation)
New jobs: 200,000 (< 200,000 new jobs: economic stagnation)
Economists estimate the labor market needs to create about 125,000 jobs a month to keep the unemployment rate steady, though estimates vary -- Reuters
I will stick with 200,000 (the "magic number" prior to the Obama administration) -- it's a nicer, "rounder" number to remember.

Over the first two years that I had been posting these updates, it had become clear/obvious that the figures were often suspect, if not outright falsified. On November 18, 2013, it was reported that, indeed, unemployment figures have been falsified.
In the home stretch of the 2012 presidential campaign, from August to September, the unemployment rate fell sharply — raising eyebrows from Wall Street to Washington. 
The decline — from 8.1 percent in August to 7.8 percent in September — might not have been all it seemed. The numbers, according to a reliable source, were manipulated. 
And the Census Bureau, which does the unemployment survey, knew it.
 Take the numbers for what they are worth, I guess. Not much. As so much else with ObamaNation.
Anyway, all that prologue for background for today's jobs story. The AP is reporting:
U.S. companies stepped up hiring in May, a private survey found, evidence that employers remain confident in the economy even after it contracted at the start of the year. 
Payroll processor ADP said Wednesday that businesses added 201,000 jobs last month, up from just 165,000 in the previous month. April's increase was the smallest in a year and a half.
The figures suggest that the economy is recovering after it shrank at a 0.7 percent annual rate in the first quarter. 
The economy is recovering? After seven years and gazillions of dollars in stimulus? I would hope so.
Of course, back in April when the job growth was 165,000, the mainstream media said that although low, things were looking up. And so now, after a gazillion dollars in stimulus, seven years of "recovery," we're back to 201,000 jobs -- and before the Obama administration moved the goal posts -- where 200,000 jobs were a "minimum" to prevent economic stagnation.

The bad news: the increase is in low-paying minimum wage jobs:
Manufacturers cut 5,000 jobs, the third straight monthly decline. The drop in factory jobs likely reflects the impact of the stronger dollar, which makes U.S. goods more expensive overseas and cuts into export sales. 
Services were the main driver of job growth, adding 192,000 jobs. Those gains were led by shipping, retail, and professional and business services, which includes higher-paying industries such as accounting and engineering.
"The drop in factory jobs likely reflects the impact of the stronger dollar." I doubt the stronger dollar has anything to do with this. It's all about the rig count. It's all about the oil and gas industry being hammered. It's all about the anti-growth sentiment in DC. It's all about the Keystone being killed. It's all about the Sandpiper being sandbagged. Get those projects going, and high-paying manufacturing jobs will come back in a heartbeat. 

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