US Employment Situation for January was Fundamentally Strong


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Growth of payroll jobs, just 113,000 in January, disappointed some observers but other indicators were strong, including a 6.6 percent unemployment rate, lower involuntary part-time work, and reduced long-term unemployment

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US Employment Situation for January was Fundamentally Strong

  1. Economics for your Classroom from Ed Dolan’s Econ Blog Forget the Weak Payroll Numbers. January’s Job Report was Fundamentally Positive February 8, 2014 Terms of Use: These slides are provided under Creative Commons License Attribution—Share Alike 3.0 . You are free to use these slides as a resource for your economics classes together with whatever textbook you are using. If you like the slides, you may also want to take a look at my textbook, Introduction to Economics, from BVT Publishing.
  2. 133,000 Payroll Jobs  Payroll jobs grew by just 74,000 in December, the second weak month in a row. The number disappointed many observers. However, other data in the latest report painted a more optimistic picture  On the positive side, November job growth was revised up to from 241,000 to 274,000  Also, the BLS rebenchmarked its data for all of 2013 to reflect a more careful count of payrolls. The rebenchmarking increased total job growth for the year by 136,000, bringing total gains to 2,322,000 February 8, 2014 Ed Dolan’s Econ Blog
  3. Unemployment Falls to 5-Year Low of 6.6 Percent  The US unemployment rate fell to 6.6% in December 2013, the lowest since October 2008 and down 0.4 percentage points over the last two months  The unemployment rate is the ratio of unemployed persons to the labor force. The labor force increased by 523,000 for the month. The number of employed workers rose by 630,000 and the number of unemployed decreased by 115,000  The unemployment rate is based on a survey of households that includes selfemployed and farm workers. It often differs from the separate establishment survey on which payroll jobs data are based February 8, 2014 Ed Dolan’s Econ Blog
  4. Broad vs. Standard Unemployment Rate  The BLS also provides a broader measure of job-market stress, U-6  The numerator of U-6 includes  Unemployed persons  Marginally attached persons who would like to work but are not looking because they think there are no jobs, or for personal reasons  Part-time workers who would prefer full-time work but can’t find it  The denominator includes the labor force plus the marginally attached  U-6 fell to 12.7 percent in January, a low for the recovery February 8, 2014 Ed Dolan’s Econ Blog
  5. Involuntary Part-time Work Falls Sharply  One component of the broad unemployment rate consists of people working part-time “for economic reasons,” popularly known as “involuntary part-time” employment.  This category includes workers who would like full-time work but can’t find it, or whose employers have cut their hours below full time  Involuntary part-time work, which has been elevated throughout the recession and recovery, fell sharply in January February 8, 2014 Ed Dolan’s Econ Blog
  6. Long-term Unemployment Falls to Low for Recovery  The recession and slow recovery have been characterized by unusually high levels of long-term unemployment  The percentage of the unemployed out of work for 27 weeks fell to 4.7 percent of the labor force, a new low for the recovery February 8, 2014 Ed Dolan’s Econ Blog
  7. Employment-Population Ratio Moves Up in January  The civilian employment-population ratio moved up to 58.8 percent in January  This ratio, which remains low by historical standards, in part reflects a weak job market and in part the effects of an aging population February 8, 2014 Ed Dolan’s Econ Blog
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