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Jobs report — the new definition of “good”

Jobs report — the new definition of “good”

The jobs report released today is “good” news compared to what has been.

165,000 net new jobs were added. That’s good. Approximately 230,000 net new jobs would need to be added just to keep pace with population growth, so we’re still not actually growing the job market relative to population.

The new “good” still stinks.


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Ragspierre | May 3, 2013 at 9:49 am

“Stinking” good jobs report…

But mostly stinking.

Things cannot get much better. I think by design.

Juba Doobai! | May 3, 2013 at 10:06 am

When I look at the jobs report and the percentage drops in unemployment, I know somebody somewhere is BSing us. How is it possible for insignificant gains in unemployment to have such a big effect on the unemployment percentages? it can’t.

MaggotAtBroadAndWall | May 3, 2013 at 10:28 am

This pretty much proves that Obama’s sequester rhetoric of gloom and doom was a flat out lie.

Much uncertainty is being removed and is making people more optimistic:

1) Obama and the Democrats decided to make the Bush tax rates permanent for 99% of the population after demagoguing them non-stop for political gain for half a decade.

2) I’ve left several comments in the Tip Line about the stunning domestic oil & gas boom. That is a huge, enduring structural positive for the economy. Obama’s EPA can still screw that up at any time, but so far he has kept the zealots at the EPA on a tight leash to allow the fracking boom to proceed.

3) The further away from the housing bust we get, the closer we get to a real housing recovery.

4) Corporate profit margins have literally never been higher.

5) The Federal Reserve has never been this loose with monetary policy this long (which will eventually be a risk for inflation or blowing new asset bubbles, but not for a while). Everybody who has a mortgage, and businesses and corporations with debt in their capital structure, have refinanced it and are now carrying debt at the lowest interest rates in my life.

6) We’re out of Iraq and we’re expected to be out of Afghanistan next year.

7) The Republican donors have forced Republicans to signal they will not play hardball when bargaining on raising the debt ceiling when that vote comes up soon.

8) No matter how hard Europe tries to blow itself up, it keeps muddling along.

The missing link is fiscal policy. Some reports say Obama wants to get a big deal done on the debt/deficit/entitlement/tax reform to cement his legacy. If he is serious about that AND it is structured closer to the way Republicans want it done, look out. We may get a Reagan/Clinton like economic boom of 3.0% to 3.5%, maybe even 4% GDP growth.

The risks are Obamacare – which is and was a self inflicted disaster. China and other emerging markets are also slowing down, in some cases sharply. But much uncertainty has been removed and the positives outweigh the negatives. For now.

    BannedbytheGuardian in reply to MaggotAtBroadAndWall. | May 3, 2013 at 8:26 pm

    The housing rise has to include the abandonment of many houses & complete districts & rebuilding elsewhere.

    The low class residents have to be driven out first. It is the way of urban development across the globe to revitalised inner cities.

    Anyhow that is what I look for in building numbers . The where .

    Location location location.

Is it really “net” new jobs? The number usually reported is “new” jobs, and the job losses are reported separately. That’s one way to hide the decline. The other is to forget about those who have been unemployed so long they have lost their benefits.

    Ragspierre in reply to Valerie. | May 3, 2013 at 11:05 am

    The number that really matters is the labor participation rate…

    which is at a 35 year low.

Since all them thar’ statistics are gathered in “fuzzy” ways, (such as estimates from each state etc), and the monthly totals for jobs created are always outnumbered by new claims for unemployment benefits not much credibility can be given to positive outlooks.

Seems to me that the guv’ment is adding five plus five and getting fifteen…

Midwest Rhino | May 3, 2013 at 3:14 pm

labor participation at 35 year low


total hours worked was lower.

So, many employers are turning full time workers into part timers. Restaurants and bars are hiring. If you just graduated college you need to make good tips to pay off that worthless degree loan. Try impressing customers with that liberal trash talk you learned from the tenured profs, as you serve Chili’s chimichangas and pick up dirty dishes.

Don’t fight the fed they say, and the fed is throwing $85 billion/month into the marketplace. They have no choice but to keep screwing the elderly and other savers with negative real interest rates. Some sort of correction or crash will happen, which seems to be the goal.

BannedbytheGuardian | May 3, 2013 at 8:31 pm

The dubious news is the continuing the below replacement interest rates are almost Sharia economics.

It is called walking headlong into the fire but people must have nice things.