Tag: "unemployment"

Go Economy Go!

This morning’s employment report showed an old-normal, wide-spread increase in payroll employment of 288,000, with nice upward revisions in April and May totaling 29,000 jobs. This raised the average employment gains over the past three months to 272,000. The unemployment rate in June fell to 6.1 percent from 6.3 percent in April and May. The […]

The Devil in the Details of Today’s Employment Report

146,000 net new jobs were created in November according to the establishment survey of payroll employment. However, 49,000 were taken off the totals reported for the previous two months. If I were a conspiracy theorist, which I’m not, I would point out that the revisions of previous months were usually positive before the election with […]

Two Quibbles From Today’s Data

All day today, I’ve heard people say that there was no good news in the employment report. That is substantially true, but not totally true. For some time now, labor force drop-outs (shrinkage) have artificially lowered the official unemployment rate. Most pundits recognized that eventually that would reverse and returnees to the labor force would […]

Employment Dynamics–Gross Job Gains and Losses

The employment numbers we wait for on the first Friday of most months are net changes. How much did employment grow? These small net amounts obscure much of the churn in the labor market—the gross number of new jobs created minus the gross number of new job losses. It is worthwhile occasionally to review these […]

Extending Unemployment Insurance

The Beatings Will Continue Until Morale Improves Paul Krugman argues In today’s (July 5) New York Times that the case for extending the duration of unemployment benefits is stronger when the unemployment rate is higher. Even if empirical studies show that extending benefits reduces slightly the incentive to seek employment, that argument is weaker (and […]

Jobs Jobs Jobs – Trade Trade Trade

Warning: In terms of the title, I’m about to bury my lead. Either be patient, or jump ahead. Yesterday my dentist asked me if there was a short and sweet book I could recommend to him that would help him establish a framework for his thinking on matters economic. He thought he had good instincts […]

September Job Losses: A Different Perspective

Nonfarm payroll employment declined by another 263,000 jobs in September. According the the Labor Department release, over the recent period . . . “From May through September, job losses averaged 307,000 per month, compared with losses averaging 645,000 per month from November 2008 to April. Since the start of the recession in December 2007, payroll […]

Today’s Employment/ Unemployment Report

(The Glass is Half Full; not Half Empty)   The good news that employment declined less in August than in previous months is more important than the bad news of the rise in the unemployment rate. As I've noted here previously, the unemployment rate (from the household survey) had not kept up with employment losses […]

Is the Recession Ending?

(I'm Hopeful, but not Convinced)   A Technical Answer The Business Cycle Dating Committee (BCDC) of the National Bureau of Economic Analysis determined that the current recession began when payroll employment started declining in January 2008. I doubt that they well declare the recession over while payrolls continue to decline, even if we get positive […]

The Productivity Surge

A Mixed Blessing   Productivity  surged in the second quarter–up 6.3 percent in the business sector and 6.4 percent in the nonfarm business sector. These were the largest increases since the third quarter of 2003. Rising productivity is a blessing. It's a mixed blessing during periods of high unemployment, however, since the alternative is higher […]