Oops. Every time you think this Obama economy is gettin’ goin’ . . .
The economy generated only 142,000 new jobs in August, a sharp decline from the 200,000+ jobs it had been creating all year and a vast disappointment for economists who had expected the number to come in at around 225,000.
Meanwhile, in another disappointment, the already historically low labor force participation rate fell to 62.8 percent in August from 62.9 percent in July.
The economy picked up in the second quarter of the year, but it’s not clear that’s helping workers.
“Despite stronger job growth this year, government figures have so far offered little evidence that workers are seeing higher wages or that people who left the labor force during the recession are returning in large numbers,” the Wall Street Journal reported.
September’s upcoming jobs report now assumes great importance, as a second slack job report will suggest August’s number is not a “blip” but an accurate reflection of slowing job gains.
The unemployment rate declined to 6.1 percent, but that may be more a reflection of the number of people looking for jobs than actual employment gains.
White House Council of Economic Advisors Chairman Jason Furman said everything was going great:
Although the pace of job gains in August was below recent months, the broader trends are moving in the right direction. To continue to support the progress our economy has made, the President will act wherever he can to create good jobs, facilitate investments in American infrastructure and manufacturing, and make sure that hard work pays off with higher wages.
Well, higher wages will decrease the number of jobs, but, whatever.
Notice there’s nothing there about unleashing the private sector. “The president will act . . . ” Furman says, not recognizing that this is in fact the problem.
The President will “create good jobs.” Please, sir, leave us alone!