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July’s Ho-Hum Jobs Report August 2, 2013

Posted by geoff in News.
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Another mediocre jobs report this morning, with 161K jobs added. This time only 5/8 of the jobs were part-time, and only 37K people left the workforce. Nearly all the jobs were added in the service industry – on the goods-producing side we only added 4000 jobs (you can expect a post on Obama’s ill-fated promise to add a million manufacturing jobs later today).

Let’s look at the full-time jobs divided by the civilian non-institutional population:

FullTimeEmpvsCivPopAug2013

Basically no movement from last month. The press is sure to excited about the drop in unemployment from 7.6% to 7.4%, but by this metric nothing’s really changed.

Comments»

1. Jimbro - August 2, 2013

With one ear to the TV news this morning I heard the phrase “lowest unemployment numbers since the Bush years”.

2. Pupster - August 2, 2013

Not a lot of room for the inevitable “worse than we thought” revision in 2 weeks.

Are you still tracking (ominous music) THE CHART ?

3. Michael - August 2, 2013

The Chart became meaningless over time because it was reflecting apples-to-oranges comparisons that masked, for example, employers artificially avoiding full-time workers, or labor that exited the workforce in favor of early retirement, living off government benefits, moving back home with mom and dad because your degree is useless, etc. “Unemployment” over the long term is an elusive concept. To Geoff’s credit, he has focused on a simpler and more meaningful metric — what percentage of us are working and supporting everybody else? By that measure, the earners-to-moochers ratio has not gotten significantly better since the big drop caused by the last recession. We are treading water.

4. Michael - August 2, 2013

My only quibble is that the institutional population should count as moochers, just like I do. It may be that I am living off of money previously earned, but I am nevertheless a moocher today because I am a net drain on society’s resources. How come my fellow moochers in prison don’t count?

5. Michael - August 2, 2013

I think the new chart should have a title that says what it is — The Earners To Moochers Ratio™

6. geoff - August 2, 2013

The Chart became meaningless over time…

What Michael said. Pethoukis was still putting up the chart at AEI last I checked, but I don’t know why he bothers.

The only virtue of the chart is that our unemployment situation is pretty much exactly tracking what Geithner told Congress in March of 2010 (the green line I eventually added). It is mind-blowing to me that nobody raised a fuss over his prediction that we’d be in the doldrums for 5 years, and that he and the administration had no plan to fix it.

And they certainly haven’t done anything useful since then. Just pivoting and posturing.

7. geoff - August 2, 2013

I think the new chart should have a title that says what it is — The Earners To Moochers Ratio™

I did a The Earners To Moochers Ratio™ chart many years ago, calling it the “Atlas Groans” chart. Should probably resurrect it.

8. Michael - August 2, 2013

According to legend, the Eskimos solved the earners-to-moochers issue with elegant simplicity. When granny become unproductive, you would just put her on an ice floe and let her drift away to die in peace.

I have suggested that we take some initial small steps in this direction by, for example, ceding Detroit and Buffalo to Canada. Although I doubt that even the Canucks would be dumb enough to take them.

Michael - August 2, 2013

Just noticed that Klein woke up to this issue today.


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