What? The Labor Department reported today that the economy created 217,000 jobs and Koffler is saying it’s a mixed report?
Yeah, it’s a mixed report. You wanna take this outside?
Sorry, its’ the New Yorker in me.
Yes, an increase of 217,000 jobs is a decent number. It’s not spectacular, but it’s good. The economy has added more than 200,000 jobs a month since February, which is also good.
But remember, we’re five years out of the recession. Job growth at some point should have been thumping at an even higher rate, and it never did. And it takes an increase of about 150,000 just to keep up with population growth.
What’s more, celebrating what finally seems to be a mildly humming job market at this point is like having a baby after being pregnant for two years. It’s nice to see the kid, but boy, what a miserable wait.
Now, here’s the other news. The unemployment rate was unchanged at 6.3 percent. Okay, it’s been coming down, hopefully this is just a pause. But there remains an intractable problem: The workforce is in decline. At 62.8 percent, the labor force participation rate stayed at its lowest level since the late 1970s.
Whether lured by expanding welfare benefits, conditioned to being out of work, depressed about their prospects, too old, or out of work so long they don’t think anyone will hire them, millions of people just aren’t working. This is the Obama economy – a new class of workers who seem to be completely stuck.
And so the jobs report is mixed.
Still wanna fight?