Reviewing the NFP Data

080404_jobs_numbers_details

Courtesy CNBC

Fist off, the numbers:  BLS reported Payroll employment dropped 20,000, far below the consensus estimates. Unemployment fell to 5.0%.

If you believe the headline numbers are an accurate reflection of the current US employment situation, then you can stop reading this, and head over to this article. Everyone else should feel free to keep reading.

Let’s consider a few items:

Private payrolls have fallen for five straight months. Weakness in the goods-producing sector is intensifying;

Employees working part time jobs is +306k this month to 5.2 million. This increase is either because a) Hours have been curtailed; or B)They cannot find full-time employment. Note that if your hours get cut back, you do not show up in the Unemployment Rate or any layoff data. 

As noted earlier, the Birth/Death model was a major distortion. (in several months, we will get the revisions). Lets look at how the B/D has changed from April 2007 (+262) to April 2008 (+267):

+45k construction jobs v 37k April 2007
+8k jobs were added in financial activities versus 1k last April.
+72k in
professional/business services versus 48k last April.

+83k in leisure/hospitality
(95k last April).

I am certain that some country on some planet in our galaxy is adding more jobs in construction and finance versus one year ago, but it ain’t the USA on planet Earth, that’s for sure.

Net_birth_death_adj_may_2_2008

Remember, the B/D adjustment is not a one for one addition, it goes into the total employment measure (not just the increase) then gets seasonally adjusted.


The primary payroll improvement was in the service-providing sector.
Ian Shepherdson of High Frequency Economics suggests this is noise, as
the the seasonal factor
was 81,000 bigger than in April 07. (Easter seasonal problems?)

• The overall trend is increasing weakness in job creation.

>


UPDATE: May 2, 2008 10:38

A brief explanation of the B/D adjustment:  The changes in the Birth Death model were designed to capture new job creation that BLS was missing at the early stages of a recovery.  However, the improvements in accuracy at that part of the cycle seem to be wildly offset by a decrease in accuracy in the latter parts of the cycle — i.e., early turns in employment pre-recession.

 

>

Sources:
Employment Situation Summary
THE EMPLOYMENT SITUATION:  APRIL 2008
http://www.bls.gov/news.release/empsit.nr0.htm
Download April_2008.pdf

CES Net Birth/Death Model
http://www.bls.gov/web/cesbd.htm

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What's been said:

Discussions found on the web:
  1. John Borchers commented on May 2

    It looks like the market finally figured it out.

    Big dumping now going on.

  2. gordon commented on May 2

    The number is a bald-faced lie.There is no way the birth-death can add more construction & finance jobs than April 2007.The employment number goes to the White House before release, according to Phil Grande radio(philsgang.com)

  3. wally commented on May 2

    “+72k in professional/business services versus 48k last April.”

    Is there some formulaic reason for things like this or are we talking flat out dishonesty by lying liars in the US government?

  4. brasil commented on May 2

    “If you believe the headline numbers are an accurate reflection of the current US employment situation, then you can stop reading this, and head over to this article. Everyone else should feel free to keep reading.”…man that was funny when I jumped to the article just to see what it was and …there he was smiling at me..lololol

  5. Espumoso commented on May 2

    But the headline font announcing this miracle at the top center of the NYT and WP is *really* big so it must be true.

  6. cinefoz commented on May 2

    Excerpt from AP story:

    On the jobs front, construction companies slashed 61,000 positions in April. Manufacturers cut 46,000 and retailers got rid of 27,000. Those losses were eclipsed by job gains in education and health care, professional and business services, the government and elsewhere.

    Question: This says good jobs were cut and replaced by underclass jobs. It says construction was cut by 61,000, not increased by 45,000. Where do you see construction jobs increasing by 45,000?

    Oil is going back up and gold is inching up. Silver, copper, gas, natural gas: all up. The basic cost of living is not coming back down soon. This is what’s killing the economy, not housing or finance. Fix this and everything improved over time. Otherwise, we’re looking at a complete shift of the standard of living in the wrong direction. Insidiously, it will be in the form of a slow motion rockslide.

    Layoffs close to home are going on.

    I’m not buying into this market, although the lizard brain in me really wants to. (Buy NOW! before it’s all gone!) I’ll catch it on the flip side when earning announcements are over and people have time to think.

  7. Boom2Bust.com commented on May 2

    And the MarketWatch headline this AM (super-sized crackhead font, mind you)…

    “Take these jobs and love it”
    Stronger-than-expexted payroll numbers keep the bulls in business…

  8. gordon commented on May 2

    John- according to Phil Grande radio(philsgang.com),the birth death phantom jobs are created by the (corrupt) BLS looking at each Federal district’s (Fed Reserve Banks, I believe -7) FILINGS FOR NEW CORPORATIONS. They arbitrarily assign a number of employees these “new businesses” (many are bogus S-Corps set up as tax-dodges)MIGHT CREATE! (birth)
    Bingo!
    Also, prison inmates are counted as manufacturing jobs, according to Phil.

  9. Estragon commented on May 2

    Cinefoz,

    In answer to your question, note that the +45M construction figure is the B/D model adjustment. In other words, unadjusted construction job loss was -106M (-61M as reported – 45M adjustment).

  10. Rich Shinnick commented on May 2

    “Disreality’

    The market trades on “disreality” these days.
    1. Garbage loans are turned in to gold (treasuries),

    2.the market ignores long term systemic issues (more loan resets and Alt-A looming crisis, budget deficits). In fact, most commentators talk “long term” in terms of 6 months.

    3.Slowing “rates of decline” are good news. Nice spin.

    4. Birth Death Adjustment: BWAAAAA!

    Disreality-I made up a word, but I think it applies.

  11. Emmanuelle commented on May 2

    Barry,

    Why is it always when the data does not agree with your bets you attack the data? I have never ever seen you attacking negative data, only positive.

    You need help (with your unresolved internal conflicts and denial) and a little bit of spanking (for getting excessively bearish and missing the perfect buying opportunity in March, I hope you were smart enough not to go short despite suggesting here to the retail to go crazy short).

    Nobody is perfect, I still love you Barry!

    P.S. Let me know if you want me to do the spanking.

  12. Philippe commented on May 2

    Three consecutive months of Industrial survey of manufacturing (ISM below 50)is more eloquent than the hoovering of employment survey (It used to be pooled by students and once gathered dispatched for meditation)

  13. Johnnyvee commented on May 2

    If one ignores the B/D injection, NFP was negative 287,000. But, so what. This market refuses go down.

  14. gordon commented on May 2

    Espumoso: the BLS created 45K PHANTOM construction jobs, click on Barry’s BIRTH/death charts.
    As for education jobs, ARE YOU NUTS?? Here in California, they are slashing classes(art, music, athletics, etc) and passing out pink slips right and left! You can’t find a job teaching here if your life depends on it, unless you specialize in under-developed children or some preschool pro- bono work.

  15. cinefoz commented on May 2

    Estragon,

    Thank you for your reply.

    Regarding the B/D adjustment … WHAT KIND OF CRAP IS THIS? It looks like some kind of pointy headed dumbass shit. Why can’t a number just be a number without being spinned by something inscrutable and probably nonsensical?

  16. ron jeremy commented on May 2

    yes, data reeks of wikiality. but it’s a tough time to be short.

    ask doug kass with his all-in short from a couple of days ago.

    pick the low-hanging fruit while the getting is good.

    looks like the global olympics rally has already come and will go soon?

  17. Michael Donnelly commented on May 2

    I know the survey response rate doesn’t get any love, but I’ll try again.

    The Birth Death model adds a phantom 267,000 jobs, the survey response rate means the BLS adds a phantom 45 MILLION jobs. (32.7% of surveys are not available)

    It is very much to the BLS’s credit that when the remaining 32% of surveys trickle in over the next 3 months, that revisions aren’t insanely large.

  18. dwkunkel commented on May 2

    This is what is know as RDE – Rectal Data Extraction.

  19. Andy Tabbo commented on May 2

    I can smell optimism in the air…Larry Kudlow on CNBC looks like he’s ready to start break dancing like it’s 1984. We’re setting up for a nice turn later this month. The key ingredient was a good dose of optimism and happiness amongst investors.

    AT

  20. Evan Myquest commented on May 2

    If one goes back to the jobs/s&p chart awhile back there was a couple up bars after the first jobs dip before the deluge. I for one am getting sick of the numerical ‘El Cid’ game going on by ‘our’ US gov’t. ~m

  21. Gérard commented on May 2

    Bears,

    You are so pathetic. I did not see you screaming murder in January when the Birth/Death model subtracted -378K jobs.

    ~~~

    BR: That’s becuase you didn’t look: Here’s what i wrote: “January’s Birth/Death adjustment has been traditionally negative, as it reflects the layoffs and closings of holiday seasonal business. In January 2007, it was -175k. In January 2008, it leapt to -378k.”

    http://bigpicture.typepad.com/comments/2008/02/us-payrolls-fug.html

  22. stuart commented on May 2

    Great post Barry. The things is, your objective critique of the data is an analysis, once again not undertaken by anyone the MSM where a greater audience is reached. Why not? This abdication of critical journalism by the MSM is in itself one of the largest stories over the past year. Complicit in deceit,… I choose not to want to believe that, yet more and more, unless I just conclude they’re blind, naive and lazy, I have too. With very few exceptions why the free pass on objectivity and critical analysis by those the MSM, simply letting this spin go unchallenged?

  23. Michael Donnelly commented on May 2

    That wasn’t crazy for a January

    Jan 2004 -321,000
    Jan 2003 -393,000

  24. Ross commented on May 2

    It’s all just a game. To trade off of any single number is a recipe for losses.

    By the way, I thought we put this to bed last year. Did we not?

  25. Bob Abouey commented on May 2

    The BLS site itself has a pretty good site addressing the birth / death adjustments. It appears to me that based on those facts that they make a good case that the birth / death adjustments do not correlate closely with underlying employment growth (in either direction) and that the adjustments reduce the size of the benchmark revisions.

    i.e. see the chart labelled “over the year total nonfarm and residual net birth/death employment from the QCEW” supporting the conclusion: “Because the residual net birth/death employment component is relatively stable, the ratio of it to total employment change can vary substantially from year to year. In slower growth years (for example, March 03-March 04), the ratio is much different than in stronger growth years (for example March 04-March 05). The table also shows than even in a year where total nonfarm employment declines, the residual net birth/death employment component is positive (for example March 01-02). Put another way, the residual net birth death amount itself is relatively stable but its relationship to overall net employment change varies, depending on the magnitude of the overall change, almost by definition.”

    And on reducing benchmark revision, see table “Simulated CES benchmark revisions if net birth/death adjustments not made”

    Note that the universe for this analysis is largely since 2000, so perhaps a broader time series would show something different.

    However, with regard to the data analyzed, it appears to me that BLS has a sound statistical argument for using these adjustments.

    One main question for Barry or others who know – Barry states: “The changes in the Birth Death model were designed to capture new job creation that BLS was missing at the early stages of a recovery. However, the improvements in accuracy at that part of the cycle seem to be wildly offset by a decrease in accuracy in the latter parts of the cycle — i.e., early turns in employment pre-recession.”

    Is there a source showing the “decrease in accuracy in the latter parts of the cycle?”

    http://www.bls.gov/ces/cesbdtech.htm

  26. gordon commented on May 2

    CNBC just claimed re: 65K lost construction jobs -” POTENTIALLY… WILL RE-TRAIN…AND BOUNCE INTO HEALTHCARE”.
    So, from framing or drywall to nursing? Or cleaning bedpans?

  27. Michael Donnelly commented on May 2

    Want to amend my 45 million number. Most of the 32.7% of survey’s the BLS doesn’t yet have are from small companies, so I should not have muliplied 0.327 * total employment. So the number of jobs the BLS has to estimate is likely much, much smaller.

    How much smaller we don’t know because the BLS refuses to release the raw number of jobs it has collected in it’s 67.3% sample.

    My point remains. The big reason why the BLS had a 69% return rate in April of 2007, 70% returned in 2006, and 72% returned in April 2005, is because many of those smaller companies are now out of business.

  28. Vermont Trader commented on May 2

    OIL FUTURES: Crude Tops $116/Bbl On Brighter Econ Picture

    Crude is like a kid brother who won’t leave you alone.

    You look over and you think “who invited you to the party?, you’re going to ruin everything”.

  29. Loulou commented on May 2

    Barry!

    When will you have the balls to admit that you were wrong (same as you were wrong predicting Dow 680 in 2006) instead of torturing the data trying to find some hope for your ultra-bearish thesis?

  30. jb commented on May 2

    Looking at the BLS employment situation summary data:

    http://www.bls.gov/news.release/empsit.nr0.htm

    the number reporting civilian employment rose from 153,784 in March to 153,957 (+173) in April. Regardless of how the birth/death adjustments are made, does this show essentially no change in civilian employment?

  31. Philippa Dunne & Doug Henwood commented on May 2

    * The age composition of household employment gains was rather lopsided. More than half, 57%, of the gains went to teenagers, and another 29% to those aged 20-24. So-called prime-age workers, aged 25-54, accounted for just 4% of the gain.

    So, given all its internal blemishes, it would be wrong to conclude that the economy and the job market are stabilizing from the April employment report. Certainly the sour – and worsening – public mood detected by pollsters suggests a troubled economy. An economy providing lots of part-time jobs to the young, and few fulltime jobs to the prime-aged, is one that could have a hard time sustaining life. As we’ve been saying for some months, it’s looking like the job market is eroding, but not collapsing – appropriate, given the slow pace of hiring during the expansion. While erosion is probably better than outright collapse, it could go on for longer than many people expect.

  32. Philippa Dunne & Doug Henwood commented on May 2

    * The age composition of household employment gains was rather lopsided. More than half, 57%, of the gains went to teenagers, and another 29% to those aged 20-24. So-called prime-age workers, aged 25-54, accounted for just 4% of the gain.

    So, given all its internal blemishes, it would be wrong to conclude that the economy and the job market are stabilizing from the April employment report. Certainly the sour – and worsening – public mood detected by pollsters suggests a troubled economy. An economy providing lots of part-time jobs to the young, and few fulltime jobs to the prime-aged, is one that could have a hard time sustaining life. As we’ve been saying for some months, it’s looking like the job market is eroding, but not collapsing – appropriate, given the slow pace of hiring during the expansion. While erosion is probably better than outright collapse, it could go on for longer than many people expect.

  33. Philippa Dunne & Doug Henwood commented on May 2

    * The age composition of household employment gains was rather lopsided. More than half, 57%, of the gains went to teenagers, and another 29% to those aged 20-24. So-called prime-age workers, aged 25-54, accounted for just 4% of the gain.

    So, given all its internal blemishes, it would be wrong to conclude that the economy and the job market are stabilizing from the April employment report. Certainly the sour – and worsening – public mood detected by pollsters suggests a troubled economy. An economy providing lots of part-time jobs to the young, and few fulltime jobs to the prime-aged, is one that could have a hard time sustaining life. As we’ve been saying for some months, it’s looking like the job market is eroding, but not collapsing – appropriate, given the slow pace of hiring during the expansion. While erosion is probably better than outright collapse, it could go on for longer than many people expect.

  34. Philippa Dunne & Doug Henwood commented on May 2

    * The age composition of household employment gains was rather lopsided. More than half, 57%, of the gains went to teenagers, and another 29% to those aged 20-24. So-called prime-age workers, aged 25-54, accounted for just 4% of the gain.

    So, given all its internal blemishes, it would be wrong to conclude that the economy and the job market are stabilizing from the April employment report. Certainly the sour – and worsening – public mood detected by pollsters suggests a troubled economy. An economy providing lots of part-time jobs to the young, and few fulltime jobs to the prime-aged, is one that could have a hard time sustaining life. As we’ve been saying for some months, it’s looking like the job market is eroding, but not collapsing – appropriate, given the slow pace of hiring during the expansion. While erosion is probably better than outright collapse, it could go on for longer than many people expect.

  35. Philippa Dunne & Doug Henwood commented on May 2

    * The age composition of household employment gains was rather lopsided. More than half, 57%, of the gains went to teenagers, and another 29% to those aged 20-24. So-called prime-age workers, aged 25-54, accounted for just 4% of the gain.

    So, given all its internal blemishes, it would be wrong to conclude that the economy and the job market are stabilizing from the April employment report. Certainly the sour – and worsening – public mood detected by pollsters suggests a troubled economy. An economy providing lots of part-time jobs to the young, and few fulltime jobs to the prime-aged, is one that could have a hard time sustaining life. As we’ve been saying for some months, it’s looking like the job market is eroding, but not collapsing – appropriate, given the slow pace of hiring during the expansion. While erosion is probably better than outright collapse, it could go on for longer than many people expect.

  36. Philippa Dunne & Doug Henwood commented on May 2

    * The age composition of household employment gains was rather lopsided. More than half, 57%, of the gains went to teenagers, and another 29% to those aged 20-24. So-called prime-age workers, aged 25-54, accounted for just 4% of the gain.

    So, given all its internal blemishes, it would be wrong to conclude that the economy and the job market are stabilizing from the April employment report. Certainly the sour – and worsening – public mood detected by pollsters suggests a troubled economy. An economy providing lots of part-time jobs to the young, and few fulltime jobs to the prime-aged, is one that could have a hard time sustaining life. As we’ve been saying for some months, it’s looking like the job market is eroding, but not collapsing – appropriate, given the slow pace of hiring during the expansion. While erosion is probably better than outright collapse, it could go on for longer than many people expect.

  37. Philippa Dunne & Doug Henwood commented on May 2

    * The age composition of household employment gains was rather lopsided. More than half, 57%, of the gains went to teenagers, and another 29% to those aged 20-24. So-called prime-age workers, aged 25-54, accounted for just 4% of the gain.

    So, given all its internal blemishes, it would be wrong to conclude that the economy and the job market are stabilizing from the April employment report. Certainly the sour – and worsening – public mood detected by pollsters suggests a troubled economy. An economy providing lots of part-time jobs to the young, and few fulltime jobs to the prime-aged, is one that could have a hard time sustaining life. As we’ve been saying for some months, it’s looking like the job market is eroding, but not collapsing – appropriate, given the slow pace of hiring during the expansion. While erosion is probably better than outright collapse, it could go on for longer than many people expect.

  38. Philippa Dunne & Doug Henwood commented on May 2

    * The age composition of household employment gains was rather lopsided. More than half, 57%, of the gains went to teenagers, and another 29% to those aged 20-24. So-called prime-age workers, aged 25-54, accounted for just 4% of the gain.

    So, given all its internal blemishes, it would be wrong to conclude that the economy and the job market are stabilizing from the April employment report. Certainly the sour – and worsening – public mood detected by pollsters suggests a troubled economy. An economy providing lots of part-time jobs to the young, and few fulltime jobs to the prime-aged, is one that could have a hard time sustaining life. As we’ve been saying for some months, it’s looking like the job market is eroding, but not collapsing – appropriate, given the slow pace of hiring during the expansion. While erosion is probably better than outright collapse, it could go on for longer than many people expect.

  39. Philippa Dunne & Doug Henwood commented on May 2

    * The age composition of household employment gains was rather lopsided. More than half, 57%, of the gains went to teenagers, and another 29% to those aged 20-24. So-called prime-age workers, aged 25-54, accounted for just 4% of the gain.

    So, given all its internal blemishes, it would be wrong to conclude that the economy and the job market are stabilizing from the April employment report. Certainly the sour – and worsening – public mood detected by pollsters suggests a troubled economy. An economy providing lots of part-time jobs to the young, and few fulltime jobs to the prime-aged, is one that could have a hard time sustaining life. As we’ve been saying for some months, it’s looking like the job market is eroding, but not collapsing – appropriate, given the slow pace of hiring during the expansion. While erosion is probably better than outright collapse, it could go on for longer than many people expect.

  40. Philippa Dunne & Doug Henwood commented on May 2

    * The age composition of household employment gains was rather lopsided. More than half, 57%, of the gains went to teenagers, and another 29% to those aged 20-24. So-called prime-age workers, aged 25-54, accounted for just 4% of the gain.

    So, given all its internal blemishes, it would be wrong to conclude that the economy and the job market are stabilizing from the April employment report. Certainly the sour – and worsening – public mood detected by pollsters suggests a troubled economy. An economy providing lots of part-time jobs to the young, and few fulltime jobs to the prime-aged, is one that could have a hard time sustaining life. As we’ve been saying for some months, it’s looking like the job market is eroding, but not collapsing – appropriate, given the slow pace of hiring during the expansion. While erosion is probably better than outright collapse, it could go on for longer than many people expect.

  41. Philippa Dunne & Doug Henwood commented on May 2

    * The age composition of household employment gains was rather lopsided. More than half, 57%, of the gains went to teenagers, and another 29% to those aged 20-24. So-called prime-age workers, aged 25-54, accounted for just 4% of the gain.

    So, given all its internal blemishes, it would be wrong to conclude that the economy and the job market are stabilizing from the April employment report. Certainly the sour – and worsening – public mood detected by pollsters suggests a troubled economy. An economy providing lots of part-time jobs to the young, and few fulltime jobs to the prime-aged, is one that could have a hard time sustaining life. As we’ve been saying for some months, it’s looking like the job market is eroding, but not collapsing – appropriate, given the slow pace of hiring during the expansion. While erosion is probably better than outright collapse, it could go on for longer than many people expect.

  42. Philippa Dunne & Doug Henwood commented on May 2

    * The age composition of household employment gains was rather lopsided. More than half, 57%, of the gains went to teenagers, and another 29% to those aged 20-24. So-called prime-age workers, aged 25-54, accounted for just 4% of the gain.

    So, given all its internal blemishes, it would be wrong to conclude that the economy and the job market are stabilizing from the April employment report. Certainly the sour – and worsening – public mood detected by pollsters suggests a troubled economy. An economy providing lots of part-time jobs to the young, and few fulltime jobs to the prime-aged, is one that could have a hard time sustaining life. As we’ve been saying for some months, it’s looking like the job market is eroding, but not collapsing – appropriate, given the slow pace of hiring during the expansion. While erosion is probably better than outright collapse, it could go on for longer than many people expect.

  43. Philippa Dunne & Doug Henwood commented on May 2

    * The age composition of household employment gains was rather lopsided. More than half, 57%, of the gains went to teenagers, and another 29% to those aged 20-24. So-called prime-age workers, aged 25-54, accounted for just 4% of the gain.

    So, given all its internal blemishes, it would be wrong to conclude that the economy and the job market are stabilizing from the April employment report. Certainly the sour – and worsening – public mood detected by pollsters suggests a troubled economy. An economy providing lots of part-time jobs to the young, and few fulltime jobs to the prime-aged, is one that could have a hard time sustaining life. As we’ve been saying for some months, it’s looking like the job market is eroding, but not collapsing – appropriate, given the slow pace of hiring during the expansion. While erosion is probably better than outright collapse, it could go on for longer than many people expect.

  44. Philippa Dunne & Doug Henwood commented on May 2

    * The age composition of household employment gains was rather lopsided. More than half, 57%, of the gains went to teenagers, and another 29% to those aged 20-24. So-called prime-age workers, aged 25-54, accounted for just 4% of the gain.

    So, given all its internal blemishes, it would be wrong to conclude that the economy and the job market are stabilizing from the April employment report. Certainly the sour – and worsening – public mood detected by pollsters suggests a troubled economy. An economy providing lots of part-time jobs to the young, and few fulltime jobs to the prime-aged, is one that could have a hard time sustaining life. As we’ve been saying for some months, it’s looking like the job market is eroding, but not collapsing – appropriate, given the slow pace of hiring during the expansion. While erosion is probably better than outright collapse, it could go on for longer than many people expect.

  45. Philippa Dunne & Doug Henwood commented on May 2

    * The age composition of household employment gains was rather lopsided. More than half, 57%, of the gains went to teenagers, and another 29% to those aged 20-24. So-called prime-age workers, aged 25-54, accounted for just 4% of the gain.

    So, given all its internal blemishes, it would be wrong to conclude that the economy and the job market are stabilizing from the April employment report. Certainly the sour – and worsening – public mood detected by pollsters suggests a troubled economy. An economy providing lots of part-time jobs to the young, and few fulltime jobs to the prime-aged, is one that could have a hard time sustaining life. As we’ve been saying for some months, it’s looking like the job market is eroding, but not collapsing – appropriate, given the slow pace of hiring during the expansion. While erosion is probably better than outright collapse, it could go on for longer than many people expect.

  46. Philippa Dunne & Doug Henwood commented on May 2

    * The age composition of household employment gains was rather lopsided. More than half, 57%, of the gains went to teenagers, and another 29% to those aged 20-24. So-called prime-age workers, aged 25-54, accounted for just 4% of the gain.

    So, given all its internal blemishes, it would be wrong to conclude that the economy and the job market are stabilizing from the April employment report. Certainly the sour – and worsening – public mood detected by pollsters suggests a troubled economy. An economy providing lots of part-time jobs to the young, and few fulltime jobs to the prime-aged, is one that could have a hard time sustaining life. As we’ve been saying for some months, it’s looking like the job market is eroding, but not collapsing – appropriate, given the slow pace of hiring during the expansion. While erosion is probably better than outright collapse, it could go on for longer than many people expect.

  47. Philippa Dunne & Doug Henwood commented on May 2

    * The age composition of household employment gains was rather lopsided. More than half, 57%, of the gains went to teenagers, and another 29% to those aged 20-24. So-called prime-age workers, aged 25-54, accounted for just 4% of the gain.

    So, given all its internal blemishes, it would be wrong to conclude that the economy and the job market are stabilizing from the April employment report. Certainly the sour – and worsening – public mood detected by pollsters suggests a troubled economy. An economy providing lots of part-time jobs to the young, and few fulltime jobs to the prime-aged, is one that could have a hard time sustaining life. As we’ve been saying for some months, it’s looking like the job market is eroding, but not collapsing – appropriate, given the slow pace of hiring during the expansion. While erosion is probably better than outright collapse, it could go on for longer than many people expect.

  48. Philippa Dunne & Doug Henwood commented on May 2

    * The age composition of household employment gains was rather lopsided. More than half, 57%, of the gains went to teenagers, and another 29% to those aged 20-24. So-called prime-age workers, aged 25-54, accounted for just 4% of the gain.

    So, given all its internal blemishes, it would be wrong to conclude that the economy and the job market are stabilizing from the April employment report. Certainly the sour – and worsening – public mood detected by pollsters suggests a troubled economy. An economy providing lots of part-time jobs to the young, and few fulltime jobs to the prime-aged, is one that could have a hard time sustaining life. As we’ve been saying for some months, it’s looking like the job market is eroding, but not collapsing – appropriate, given the slow pace of hiring during the expansion. While erosion is probably better than outright collapse, it could go on for longer than many people expect.

  49. Philippa Dunne & Doug Henwood commented on May 2

    * The age composition of household employment gains was rather lopsided. More than half, 57%, of the gains went to teenagers, and another 29% to those aged 20-24. So-called prime-age workers, aged 25-54, accounted for just 4% of the gain.

    So, given all its internal blemishes, it would be wrong to conclude that the economy and the job market are stabilizing from the April employment report. Certainly the sour – and worsening – public mood detected by pollsters suggests a troubled economy. An economy providing lots of part-time jobs to the young, and few fulltime jobs to the prime-aged, is one that could have a hard time sustaining life. As we’ve been saying for some months, it’s looking like the job market is eroding, but not collapsing – appropriate, given the slow pace of hiring during the expansion. While erosion is probably better than outright collapse, it could go on for longer than many people expect.

  50. Alfred commented on May 2

    Barry’s point is well taken. There needs to be considerable doubt about government statistics. Mike Mandel from BusinessWeek points out that personal consumption expenditure was actually negative in 1Q, if you take out “quirky statistics”. The government includes outlays for Medicare, Medicaid and a theoretical payment of rent (owner occupied rent) to the tune of several trillion dollars in its personal consumption numbers.
    The rebalancing of the CPI during the Clinton years and B/D adjustments in NFP are part of this whole Ponzi scheme.

  51. gordon commented on May 2

    The real 2006 federal budget deficit was $4.6 trillion, not a previously reported $248.2 billion, according to the 2006 Financial Report of the United States Government as released by the Treasury Department Friday.

    “The 2006 federal budget deficit of $4.6 trillion is $1.1 trillion more than the 2005 federal budget deficit,” econometrician John Williams, who publishes the website Shadow Government Statistics, told WND. “The Bush administration is in an untenable situation with a budget deficit this dramatic. Taxing 100 percent of all wages, salaries, and corporate profits would not eliminate a deficit of this magnitude, and cutting Social Security and Medicare spending is politically impossible.”

    In his subscription newsletter, Williams comments that the GAAP accounting numbers reported in the 2006 Treasury report show that, “the actual deficit number was nearly 19-times the size of the gimmicked ‘official’ deficit for 2006 of $248 billion. Total obligations were 4.2-times annual U.S. gross domestic product (GDP).”

  52. stuart commented on May 2

    The feds account for a deficit on a cash basis, only reporting in effect their own line of credit deficit, ignoring any unpaid country credit card, no matter how many trillions its liable for. Total BS. The math is impossible to deal with so they simply ignore it.

  53. me commented on May 2

    Loulou believes the unemployment rate actually fell to 5.0% too.

  54. kharris commented on May 2

    Service hiring boost probably isn’t and Easter distortion. Retail, transport and trade employment were all down. Leisure and hospitality up less than 10k, same as in March. The big service gains were in areas that aren’t that sensitive to holidays – hospitals and business services. The temps category might get a lift within business services, but it shed 9k jobs. Service hiring data may not be right, but they don’t appear to be wrong because of Easter.

  55. Gregg commented on May 2

    Re: mini-me “Unemployment rate is 5%. Period.”

    The problem is how you measure unemployment. The method used changes from time to time. According to http://www.shadowstats.com/alternate_data
    the unemployment rate could be as high as 9% to 13%.

    Also, I heard that if someone works 2 part time jobs, this counts as 2 people employed.

  56. Eric Davis commented on May 2

    *sniff sniff*….

    Starting to smell the manic Bullishness….

    Now if we can get a certain member of this board to start cussing talking about paulson cooking the numbers….

    How sad would it be to be some frothing bull, and just have to keep waiting for an up day so that they can try and get a piece of this Message board….

    “I’ll show them, I’ll post an anonymous comment calling the bears pussies… That will show them!!!”

  57. mrs bernanke commented on May 2

    i know the construction number us correct because i am a home builder in phoenix and i hired 61,000 new construction workers last month….it was difficult but i did it!

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