September 5, 2008

The August Employment Report

Filed under: Economy,General,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 8:54 am

I didn’t have time to look at the predictions, which I’ll catch up to eventually.

The seasonally adjusted news is grim:

The unemployment rate rose from 5.7 to 6.1 percent in August, and non-farm payroll employment continued to trend down (-84,000), the Bureau of Labor Statistics of the U.S. Department of Labor reported today.  In August, employment fell in manufacturing and employment services, while mining and health care continued to add jobs.  Average hourly earnings rose by 7 cents, or 0.4 percent, over the month.

My reax: The POR (Pelosi-Obama-Reid) Economy, with its energy intransigence and its threat of massive 2009 tax increases, is wreaking its havoc. Party first, country second (if that), and workers (even unionized ones) be damned.

I thought a couple of weeks ago that President Bush’s initiatives to re-open drilling, the likely September 30 expiration of the ban on US offshore drilling, and the fall in worldwide oil prices that largely resulted from those two factors might stave off a report like this, but it appears not (how much worse would it have been if Bush hadn’t acted?). It’s clear that the idea that Obama might win in November is causing business owners and managers to be very cautious in their hiring.

I suspect we’ll also find that the four big basket cases (CA, MI, IL, OH) contributed disproportionately to the rise in the unemployment rate.

Wild card: Is the BLS’s estimate of the size of the workforce propertly taking the out-migration of illegals into account? If the unemployment rate “falls out” as a result of comparing the total workforce to those working, that would cause the calculated rate to be high by as much as 0.5%. This question will, of course, not be considered by the doom-and-gloom machine at the Associated Press and elsewhere.

More info will come later as time allows.


UPDATE: This is all time allows for, and may be all I do with the post. Here is what actually happened (i.e., not seasonally adjusted) since the beginning of 2006:


This is the 10th straight month where the jobs change trailed the same month of the previous year. My guess is that this situtation probably won’t turn for the better until December, or heaven knows when, if Obama somehow wins.

As I’ve said frequently, we really should have had another tax CUT about a year ago, and we should have been taking advantage of our own energy resources many years ago.


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