Sep
29
2012
1

#rsrh Barack Obama has been a nightmare for African-Americans trying to get jobs.

OK, let’s just make this real simple.

In case it isn’t obvious, the above is a graph of the unemployment rate for the last ten years (2012, naturally, has only eight months’ worth of data; equally naturally, the Obama administration isn’t going to be improving said rate any time soon anyway).  I’ve sorted it out by the whole population; whites; and blacks. (data via the Bureau of Labor Statistics).  And as you can see from that graph, African-Americans have been more seriously hurt by this thoroughly rotten economy than whites have; the slow convergence towards the average rate that we saw happening throughout the Bush administration was wiped out in a quarter. And they will apparently continue to be more seriously hurt by this thoroughly rotten economy.  And, as near as anybody can tell, the Obama administration is remarkably indifferent to the widespread economic problems being faced by one of the Democratic party’s most loyal constituencies. (more…)

May
04
2012
1

#rsrh Hey, the BLS report is out!

Just now:

Nonfarm payroll employment rose by 115,000 in April, and the unemployment rate was little changed at 8.1 percent, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Employment increased in professional and business services, retail trade, and health care, but declined in transportation and warehousing.

Well, that’s… not great, but not too bad…

The civilian labor force participation rate declined in April to 63.6 percent, while the employment-population ratio, at 58.4 percent, changed little.

OK, that’s bad.  That number represents half a million people leaving the working force (H/T: @cayankee).  And here’s the thing: those half million aren’t going to go live in a box by themselves for the next six months.  They’re going to be continuing on with their lives… and reminding other people that no, we’re not actually in a recovering economy.  Quite the contrary.

So I invite the administration to tout that 8.1% unemployment; because this isn’t sympathetic magic.  Over a third of the civilian workforce isn’t in fact, well, working: and while many of them can’t work, many of them can.  If there were jobs, which there are not.

Feb
03
2012
4

#rsrh Good news on the job front: we’re all the way down to 8.3%!

Down .2 percent, 243K jobs added.  Looks like actual job growth, and not people giving up as usual.  Good news for the administration, although not that good:

…they’re still woefully underperforming their promises with regard to the economy.  Still, baby steps and all that, right?

Jan
06
2012
3

#rsrh Hey, forgot to check the BLS today.

Fairly good news, all things considering: 200K jobs added, unemployment ticked down to 8.5%.  A good deal of that is seasonal, unfortunately: still, we can hope that it’s sustained in the upcoming months. (more…)

Dec
15
2011
1

#rsrh QotD, In Which I Am Laconic Again edition.

Diana Furchtgott-Roth of RealClearMarkets estimates that two provisions of the Republican version of the jobs bill – fast-tracking the Keystone ethical oil pipeline, and modifying eligibility on unemployment benefits could shave a full point off of the unemployment rate in 2012. The major obstacle? President Obama himself, who opposes both.  Diana thinks that he shouldn’t.  In fact, she thinks that Obama’s been given a gift by House Republicans:

Luck has once again struck President Barack Obama-if he has the wit to recognize it and use it.

If.

(Via Ben Domenech’s Transom.)

Moe Lane

Dec
02
2011
2

#rsrh The single most alarming thing about the BLS report…

…is the possibility that this White House will read no further than the reduction of the U-3 rate down to 8.6%, and conclude that they’ve done something right.  When what instead happened here, based on general observations of people on my Twitter feed who know more about unemployment statistics than I do*, is that we’re seeing a combination of reduction in workforce, seasonal hiring, and revision of past numbers finally catching up with us.  If none of that sounds particularly great, well, it’s not.  The AP ‘s college-try spin to the contrary.

But enough negativity: if the White House would like to give the economy a real shot in the arm, there’s actually an easy way to do that.  TURN THE KEYSTONE PIPELINE PROJECT BACK ON.  And energy production generally.

Moe Lane

*There are quite a few people out there who qualify.

Nov
27
2011
4

Why I’m sending my kids to electrician’s school.

Because this problem isn’t going to get any better any time soon.

Ferrie Bailey’s job should be easy: hiring workers amid the worst stretch of unemployment since the Depression.

A recruiter for Union Pacific Corp., she has openings to fill, the kind that sometimes seem to have all but vanished: secure, well-paying jobs with good benefits that don’t require a college degree.

But they require specialized skills—expertise in short supply even with the unemployment rate at 9%. Which is why on a recent morning the recruiter found herself in a hiring hall here anxiously awaiting the arrival of just two people she had invited to interviews, winnowed from an initial group of nearly five dozen applicants. With minutes to go, the folding chairs sat empty. “I don’t think they’re going to show,” Ms. Bailey said, pacing in the basement room.

Or maybe it’ll be plumber’s school.  Or welding.  Doesn’t really matter: until people don’t have to spend tens of thousands of dollars a year to get poorly educated for white-collar jobs that don’t actually exist, some sort of technical training is looking more and more attractive. We’re always going to need electricians and plumbers, and they can improve their minds on their lunch breaks.  Which they’ll get, because we’re always going to need electricians and plumbers.

Heck, the way the gender gap is accelerating these days in white-collar employment they’ll end up marrying well, too.  I am going to laugh my butt off if we end up back at the 1950s model, only it’s the woman with the 9-t0-5 office job and the man with the part-time work/primary caregiver role…

Nov
04
2011
1

#rsrh Oh, *goodie.* The new employment numbers are out.

One year before the 2012 Presidential election, and the unemployment rate is 9%.  Which is pretty much what it’s been since May.  What’s that?  What were we promised that it was going to be at this point?

Why, just over six percent:

I don’t know about the rest of you, but that just under 7% unemployment that we were told we’d be facing if we didn’t pass the ‘stimulus’ bill is looking pretty darn good right now.

Moe Lane

Jul
08
2011
1

The Democrats and unemployment, summed up in one screencap.

Hopefully, Andrew Breitbart is there.

[UPDATE] Jaw-dropper of the he-ran-in, then he-ran-out press conference itself: the President actually – and shamelessly – embraced the so-called “Bush tax cuts” that he campaigned against in 2008, and (extremely reluctantly) went along with in 2010.

I really should add some commentary to this, but what can I say that this picture does not?

The President’s eventual remarks on the job report will be available here.  Real Soon Now.

Moe Lane (crosspost)

Jul
08
2011
--

7.4% unemployment!

Wow.  7.4 percent unemployment.  I remember those far-off days* when seeing that number would have made me wince and worry; now I whistle at how well the economy’s doing.  7.4 unemployment, these days?  That’s great!

A shame that it’s also Canada.

Canada added more jobs than economists forecast in June, led by part-time staff and transportation workers, keeping the country’s unemployment rate at a 2-1/2 year low.

Employment rose by 28,400, Statistics Canada said today in Ottawa, exceeding the 15,000 median estimate in a Bloomberg News economist survey. The jobless rate was unchanged at 7.4 percent, the lowest since January 2009.

Note that the Canadians never got above 8.7% unemployment, either.  Then again, they also didn’t have the American Democratic party do a stimulus program for them.

Moe Lane

PS: Job report out at 8:30 AM.  Word is, higher than expected job growth, economy/unemployment still stagnant.  Personally, I’m hoping that it’s better than that, and that the announced remarks from the President later this morning aren’t just more bravado on his part.

PPS: This… is bad. 18K jobs added, 9.2 unemployment, the White House is scheduled to quietly panic later today.

*May 2009, to precise.

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