Friday, November 8, 2013

Jobs report out today!! Still creating too many lower wage, lower benefit jobs relative to the whole. However, I DID find a bright spot...

The latest jobs report is out (October 2103).  About 204,000 jobs added in October (2013). It surpassed expectations. In the first graphic below are the major categories jobs are slotted into.  I highlighted categories where the job gains were the largest.

One encouraging sign is under "Professional and Business Services" is only 3,300 of the 44,000 jobs created were of the Temporary type. The ratio of  number of "Temporary Help Services" jobs to the total is much lower compared to the previous reporting periods you see listed. It was 17% a year ago (9,000/53,000) and 7.5% (3,300/44,000) in October 2013.  It certainly nets out much better compared to August and Sept of 2013.  Hey, I am trying real hard here to find a green shoot.

Fewer Temporary workers, more Full-time employees.  That is a signal of SOME confidence in the economy on the part of businesses in a category that employs people in higher wage jobs, for the most part. See the image below the jobs number for the major categories of jobs that fall under "Professional and Business Services".

The number of Retail and Leisure/Hospitality jobs created at this time does not really impress me THAT much.  They are generally lower wage, lower benefit jobs.  While it is nice to have them, when one looks at the overall employment picture you want to look not only at the quantity of jobs but the quality of them as well.

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Nice graphs showing trends in GDP and the Labor Markets...

Here some valuable metrics that give some perspective on the state of the economy and its short and long(er) term prospects.  These are unusual in that they give a band (shaded BLUE) for margin of error. Having just studied GDP and Unemployment in class, the top right and bottom right graphs are very helpful.

Source: Dave Reifschneider, William Wascher, and David Wilcox, Federal Reserve Board
Source:  Wonkblog
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