Listen, unless Congress is prepared to make the Census a continuous thing (rather than a once every 10 years thing,) we’re still stuck in a bit of a spot here in the land of Coca-Cola, no matter the President says the economy’s “getting better by the day.”
I don’t know how else to say: this was a very bad, damaging jobs report. We are almost a year away from the point most people consider the end of the recession, last July, and if you buy the Bureau of Labor Statistics data, the private sector created 41,000 jobs in May. Sure, the unemployment rate fell, but that has more to do with people dropping out of the labor force rather than finding jobs, which also incidentally is not a good sign (and of course, those people once up a time were counted as part of the labor force rather than conveniently excluded these days.)
My colleague and co-host on the Markets Hub, Madeleine Lim, opined earlier this week that we are starting to see what the economy looks like without all that government stimulus.
The economy added 430,000 jobs in May. The Census Bureau added 411,000. The private sector added 41,000 (the public sector actually lost 20,000 jobs as states are being forced into a Grecian-style austerity mode.) With 15 million people out of work, and nearly half of them out of work for more than six months, you have to have some seriously rose-tinted glasses to interpret that as a sign of strength.