Monday, September 5, 2011

August job report shows NO new jobs; slow growth continues

August unemployment report shows zero new jobs. Black unemployment rises to 16.7%; National rate 9.1%

The August unemployment report was the worst this year. No new jobs were created. There was wide spread weakness across many industrial sectors. Only healthcare showed positive growth. The numbers were also reduced by -48,000 by the Verizon strike. Many economists and media watchers are concerned about a double dip recession. The last period of negative job growth occurred in July, 2010.

Below is a chart of the Major Category changes in employment.

A further review of the minor job creation categories shows the effect of the Verizon strike.

The national unemployment rate stayed to 9.1% and the Black unemployment rate rose to 16.7%. Economists routinely predict 80,000 to 100,000 new jobs. The stock market fell in a predictable fashion.

Private non farm payroll increased +17,000 which was off set by a drop of -17,000 government workers. Employment increased in business services by +28,000 while healthcare went up by +34,000. Manufacturing lost -3,000. Construction also lost -5K. The biggest drop was in local government jobs which fell by -17,000.

Black Unemployment Up Again

Black unemployment increased 1/2 a percentage point to 16.7%. The last time the Black Rate was was that high was in Jan 1984. That is 25 years ago. In Jan 2007, the rate was 7.9 percent. However, the rate was driven up by an additional 348,000 Black people joining the labor force.

About 2.99 million Black people remained unemployed in August, 2011. There was some good news, the Black labor force participation rate increased to 61.5%. The number of Blacks holding jobs grew by 155,000.

The long-term unemployed (out of work for more than 26 weeks) stood at 6.03 million. The long term unemployed are 42.9% of the total unemployed.

The number of part-time workers for economic reasons was 8.8 Million. These are people who would like full-time work but cannot find it. Marginally attached workers stayed around 2.6 million. These are people who have looked for work in the past 12 month but are not counted as part of the labor force.

The number of discouraged workers dropped year-to-year. Last June there were 1.6 million. Currently there are 977,000 discouraged. Discouraged workers have stopped looking for work because they believe no work is available for their skills.

Establishment Data

Non farm Payrolls showed no new jobs. The private sector added only 17,000 jobs which were offset by a -17,000 drop in government jobs Retail trade stores drop 7800 jobs business and professional services added 28,000. Health care and education services added +34,000 and manufacturing shrank by -3,000.

In other bad news, Temporary Help Services(THS) increased by 4700 jobs. THS is a closely watched, bell-weather category. Temp help is a quick, but expensive way, for employers to add staff. When the economy is grow temp help shrinks as workers are converted to permanent employees.

Construction was down -5,000 jobs. Construction employment is also closely watched as an economic indicator. Construction employment has been depressed since the collapse of the housing “bubble” in 2007.

And finally some downward revisions of prior month payrolls. The June new job creation number was revised down from +46,000 to *20,000 and July dropped from *117,000 to +85,000.

ADP reported 91,000 new jobs were added, a very low number for ADP.

The monster help wanted index was at 146 , the highest level of demand since October 2008.

The weekly initial unemployment claims was at 427,00 for the week ending July 7th, 2011, still above 400,000 below which the US economy is considered to be adding jobs.


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