Another month, another dismal jobs report. 80,000 new jobs, about 6,000 in manufacturing/goods producing. The rest? McJobs. But we only use that word when a Republican holds the White House, so President Obama has that going for him. Which is nice.
The last couple months of job creation were revised upwards, which is how we managed to drop to 9.0% from 9.1%. Labor participation held steady at an anemic 64.2%.
At this point in Reagan’s first term after fighting out of that dismal recession, the economy added more than 270,000 jobs. There were about 85 million fewer Americans back then. So to get comparable job growth today, we would have needed to add almost 370,000 jobs last month. Instead, we got 80k — or not much more than one-fifth of what we need.
Instead, “real” unemployment — calculated by the labor force as it stood in January, 2009 — is still up over 11%. Underemployment is still over 16%.
Wages were up 0.02%, almost enough to make up for the 0.03% wages shrank over the last couple of months.
Our economy is barely treading water. GDP growth is fair-to-middlin, but until the Leviathan takes its boot off the economy’s throat, this is as good as it gets.