The news that the economy added 175,000 jobs last month is a sign not of progress, but that we remain stuck in the same sluggish growth that has plagued the economy for some time.
Remember, you need about 150,000 jobs a month just to keep pace with the normal increase in the workforce. With millions of jobs lost due to the recession, it will take years to get back where we were at this pace.
That’s why the unemployment rate went up – because millions of people have stopped looking, and as they start they reenter the “workforce” and get counted as unemployed. This will continue for years, meaning stubbornly high unemployment.
What’s more, while job growth has been more robust than in the past, averaging 172,000 a month this year, the economy has actually gained only 155,000 per month during that last three months, decelerating from the rate of 200,000 per month during the first three months, as the Wall Street Journal notes.
The economy should have come roaring back years ago. It didn’t, and it doesn’t show any sign of doing so this year. We are stuck with a lingering misery that will be hard to alleviate as higher taxes kick in, Obamacare spreads its pall over the economy, and the Obamabureaucrats pile regulations onto the backs of businesses and individuals.