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Archive for the ‘employment’ Category

A key bit of history to understand today

Posted by Charles II on June 3, 2011

Paul Krugman pointed out a very important article if one wants to understand the high unemployment of today.

Unemployment in the Depression by three different standards

Solid line: Employment, counting people working for, e.g., the WPA as unemployed (!) Unemployment 25%–>15%
Long dashes: Employment, counting people working for, e.g., the WPA as employed. Unemployment 23% –> 10%
Dots: Private non-farm jobs. Unemployment 30%–> 15%

So, New Deal policies reduced unemployment by about 1% per year by any measure, and employed about 5% of the workforce in projects like the WPA from 1932 on. But because the 1937 recession, brought on by conservatives much like the idiots in charge of the Congress, caused unemployment to rise by about 5%, the solid line looks less impressive than the others. This is what Republicans use to argue that the New Deal didn’t work.

But there’s another point to consider. How quickly can the economy absorb jobs after an extended recession? In a short-lived recession, guys are laid off, but plants remain intact. So, they be brought back to work very quickly. In a longer recession, skilled people move away to find new jobs, and plant equipment may be sold off. It is much, much more difficult to get things started again. There have only been three economic dislocations in modern economic memory that qualify: the Great Depression, the Reagan Recession of 1981, and the Dubyan Recession of 2008. In the Great Depression, as the graph shows, the rate of re-employment prior to the 1937 recession was about 2.5-3% annually. If one takes a more conservative approach, and assumes that the 1937 recession was a natural pendulum swing, then re-employment took place at about 1% annually.

As one can see from this graph, re-employment during the 1982 recession was 2% annually (although it left unemployment stuck at very high levels), while the current rate of re-employment is projected to be less than 1% annually–and that may be optimistic.

The New Deal worked. The Geithner-Summers-Obama plan has not. The difference, really, is the number of people employed by government stimulus.

Posted in economy, employment, history | 3 Comments »

Employment Numbers: Not As Bad Once Revised Upwards

Posted by Phoenix Woman on January 10, 2011

New Deal Democrat makes the point that overall, the employment numbers aren’t as bad as people are saying — largely because they keep getting revised upwards, well after most folks aren’t paying attention:

On Friday I noted the near-universal use of the word “disappointing” to describe the December jobs report. In fact, with no more than three exceptions, every initial report on nonfarm payrolls in 2010 has been “disappointing.” Two months later, after upward revisions, they have usually been in line with initial expectations. But by that time the econo-punditocracy has moved on to disappointment with the newly-current initial nonfarm payrolls report.

What happened with November’s jobs report is typical. Expectations were raised by good ADP and TrimTabs estimates – Private payrolls on the order of 90,000 or even higher were expected. Yet the initial report was a “devastating” 39,000. The following Monday, after painstakingly picking apart the report, I wrote that it was likely to be revised considerably higher, and that in particular the retail hiring portion of the report was probably an outlier that would get raised.

One month later and November has been revised higher by 31,000. Further, retail hiring for both October and November has been revised higher in particular, to the point where the combined October and November numbers aren’t “disappointing” at all.

In fact, it turns out that every single monthly jobs report for 2010 was in positive territory, and all but one of those reports had been revised upwards after its initial release.

Posted in economy, employment | 1 Comment »

Unemployment Recovery Similar To Previous Recent Recessions

Posted by Phoenix Woman on December 22, 2010

Bonddad discusses why all of the ideological camps discussing the current state of the economy have an interest in poor-mouthing it.

By way of backing up his argument, he cites the fact that the unemployment rate recovery has been so far quite similar to those of past recession recoveries.

Something to ponder.

Posted in big money, economy, employment | 7 Comments »

Obama Created More Jobs In 2010 Than Bush Created In Eight Years

Posted by Phoenix Woman on October 24, 2010

That’s right, Obama created more jobs in 2010 than Bush created in eight years. Private-sector jobs, too.

Check it out, courtesy of News Junkie Post:

Year Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
2000 249 121 472 286 225 -46 163 3 122 -11 231 138
2001 -16 61 -30 -281 -44 -128 -125 -160 -244 -325 -292 -178
2002 -132 -147 -24 -85 -7 45 -97 -16 -55 126 8 -156
2003 83 -158 -212 -49 -6 -2 25 -42 103 203 18 124
2004 150 43 338 250 310 81 47 121 160 351 64 132
2005 136 240 142 360 169 246 369 195 63 84 334 158
2006 262 326 304 174 31 69 232 141 100 43 201 177
2007 194 104 239 92 149 55 -20 -71 52 86 128 70
2008 -10 -50 -33 -149 -231 -193 -210 -334 -458 -554 -728 -673
2009 -779 -726 -753 -528 -387 -515 -346 -212 -225 -224 64 -109
2010 14 39 208 313 432 -175 -66 -57 -95

Go to NJP for graphic representations thereof.

Posted in 2010, economy, employment, President Obama | 1 Comment »

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