Friday, September 2, 2011

Employment Report Disappoints

The Lehmann Letter (SM)

This morning the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that health care added jobs in August while all other sectors shed workers or showed virtually no change:

The consequence: No job growth last month.

Job Growth
(Click on chart to enlarge.)

Recessions shaded

As this letter has reported in the past, and the chart above makes clear, the economy must consistently add several hundred thousand jobs a month to provide evidence of robust and growing conditions. That hasn't happened during the recovery from the recent recession. Some months have attained that goal, but consistent job growth has eluded us.

That doesn't mean we're headed into a new recession: The feared double dip. But it does mean that high unemployment will linger, economic growth will be weak instead of robust and the stock market will not break through its pre--recession peak.

(The chart was taken from Enroll for additional charts on the economy and a list and calendar of economic indicators.)

© 2011 Michael B. Lehmann

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