Headlines obscured its
ugliness. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported a dismal 96,000
jobs created. Whisper numbers suggested around 200,000. June and July
totals were revised down 41,000. They're usually momentum drivers for
future data releases.
U-3 unemployment dropped from 8.3% to 8.1%. It's because 368,000 workers
hadn't found jobs after over a year of looking. BLS calls them non-persons.
They don't exist.
At the same time, it added a fictitious 87,000 jobs based on so-called
birth/death calculations. They turn reality on its head.
The labor force participation rate fell from 63.7% to 63.5% month over
month. Doing so hit a 30 year low.
The total number of non-person workers surged 2.7 million. It's 3.2%
above a year ago. An astonishing 89 million Americans want jobs can't
find them. Their numbers equal Germany's entire population.
America's employment to population ratio fell from 58.4% in July to
58.3% in August. It's the lowest since August 2011.
Workers without jobs for six months fell monthly since spring. It's
because they can't find employment and stopped looking. They're leaving
the labor market because their jobless benefits expired. If extended
ones lapse, about one quarter of unemployed people only will get relief,
but for how long who knows.
The newly unemployed who've been seeking work for five weeks or less
increased 133,000. It's 5% more than July. Mean and median unemployment
duration rose in August. They stand at 39.2 and 18 weeks respectively.
Economist John Williams reengineers economic data based on more reliable
decades earlier modeling. Payroll job gains were pathetically few. The
broader Household Survey declined by 119,000. July plunged by 195,000.
Real unemployment is 22.8%. Expect worse, not better, ahead.
Private payrolls barely registered half of expectations. Manufacturing
dropped for the first time since September 2011. Down 15,000, it was
the largest decline since August 2010.
Goods-producing employment is highly cyclical. It leads the rest of
the jobs market. Expect service sector declines to follow. Manufacturers
created virtually no jobs since April. It's eerily similar to what happened
in 2007. Perhaps another inflection point was reached.
Central bank policies and pronouncements so far divorced financial markets
from economic reality. August report numbers had practically no redeeming
features. The private payroll diffusion index slid from 54.3 to 50.2
month over month. It's the lowest read in 30 months.
The manufacturing index collapsed. It fell from 50.6 to 36.4. It's the
weakest showing since August 2010. The index of aggregate hours worked
barely gained 0.1%. In July it lost 0.2%. In Q 3, it's running at 0.2%
It's half what Q 2 posted and slowest since Q 4 2009. It portends slower
Q 3 GDP growth than Q 2's weak 1.7% pace.
Hourly and weekly earning declined fractionally. The latter fell for
the second straight month. It was the first time since winter 2009.
Given rising food, energy, healthcare and transportation costs, household
spending power is increasingly pressured.
Forward-looking indicators portend further employment deterioration.
Workweek and overtime hours growth are absent. The factory workweek
declined for the past four months.
Most jobs created are part-time or temp low pay/poor benefit ones. Temp
hiring tends to lead total employment up or down. It fell for the first
time in five months.
In August, it's significant that nearly twice as many people went on
food stamps as found jobs. Recovery is pure fakery. Main Street America
remains in protracted Depression. Half the population is impoverished
or bordering on it.
Lost public ector jobs make things worse. Instead of creating them during
hard times, nearly 700,000 federal, state and local positions were shed
since summer 2008. Around half are teachers.
It's part of Obama's anti-public education jihad. He wants it commodified
into another business profit center. Teaching and learning don't matter.
Corporate America's bottom line counts most. At issue is sacrificing
a generation of youths on the alter of money power wanting more of it.
Obama menaces freedom and other democratic values. Besides waging war
on humanity multiple ways, since taking office in January 2009, employment
is down 261,000.
The jobs creator lost them big time. Those generated stand in stark
contrast to bountiful good full-time ones. They were plentiful most
often from the 1940s through the 1960s.
Since the 1930s, negative employment only happened once at this stage
in the presidential cycle. It was during Bush's first term. He got a
second because of electoral rigging.
He lost in 2000 and 2004 but served eight years as president. Whether
Obama matches him remains to be seen. At this stage, it's close.
Wall Street favors both candidates. Whatever the outcome, they'll win.
They still get to choose. Whatever they want, they'll get. In two months,
we'll know what they've already decided.
BLS releases seasonally adjusted numbers. Unadjusted figures paint a
different picture. The over 16 aged non-institutional labor population
isn't seasonally adjusted. It rose 212,000 to 243.6 million.
Unadjusted Household Survey labor force numbers contracted 1.27 million
in August compared to the adjusted 368,000 decline. The unadjusted participation
rate fell twice as much as the adjusted figure.
Seasonally adjusted August employment totals dropped 119,000 to 142.1
million. Unadjusted they fell 568,000. Last year they declined 49,000.
It 2010, they were down 115,000.
The adjusted August number of unemployed declined 250,000. Unadjusted
it fell 704,000. Normally that's positive. Not, however, when those
with jobs fall. The sum of the two, or decline in labor force size,
represents workers BLS declared non-persons.
They need work but can't find it. Washington erased them. Doing so shamelessly
tries hiding dismal employment conditions. Not according to White House
Council of Economic Advisors Chairman Alan Krueger.
Inverting reality, he claimed:
"Today’s employment report provides further evidence that the U.S. economy
is continuing to recover. It is critical that we continue the policies
that are building an economy that works for the middle class as we dig
our way out of the deep hole that was caused by the severe recession
that began in December 2007."
Millions of Americans wanting work can't find it. Most able to are woefully
underemployed. Instead of full-time/high pay/good benefit jobs, they're
stuck with low pay/few benefit part-time or temp ones. Many people need
two to survive. Many spouses need employment to help meet family expenses.
Conditions are deplorable and worsening. Once plentiful higher pay full-time
jobs reside in low wage countries. American workers are left high and
Republicans and Democrats don't care. They're long on rhetoric, short
on performance, contemptuous of human need, and belligerent against
anyone, group, or nation opposing them.
It's been this way for decades. It accelerated post-9/11. It's fast-tracking
toward oblivion. For growing millions, it's nightmarish.
Each generation since the 1970s is worse off than its predecessor. The
American dream no longer exists. Neoliberal ideologues planned it that
Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
His new book is titled "How Wall Street Fleeces America: Privatized
Banking, Government Collusion and Class War"
Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com and listen to cutting-edge
discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News
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