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Friday, May 4, 2012

Another Obama Jobs Disaster

The April monthly jobs numbers are out, and they are bad for President Obama.

The numbers -- that is, if you even choose to believe them -- show that the private non-farm sector has basically stopped hiring. (Not that they were hiring much to begin with, in this supposed "recovery" that is only a recovery relative to the sharp recession of 2008-09.)

The Labor Department employment numbers show that our economic sectors that actually produce things have started shrinking again.  Any marginal employment growth is in retail trade, health care and professional and business services (combined +110,000).  In plain English, that means we have more Wal-Mart greeters, nurses, pharmaceutical salesmen, and cold-callers for mortgage modification and credit repair companies. The overall nonfarm numbers for February and March were revised slightly upward, further illustrating the April decline in growth.

Go to page 4 of the report and you will see that the civilian noninstitutional labor force actually shrank by about 350,000 for the month.  You will hear from political flacks for President Obama that "unemployment continues to decline" (officially, down to 8.1%) but page 4 of this report shows you -- in the government's own numbers -- that the civilian noninstitutional labor force participation rate declined from 63.8% in March to  63.6% in April.

Put bluntly, the official unemployment rate continues to decline -- because people continue to drop out of the labor force.

Another alarming fact: the average duration of unemployment jumped nearly two weeks, from 40 to 42 weeks (page 23, unadjusted number).

Eric Dixon is a New York lawyer, consultant and political strategist.

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