Monday, November 5, 2007

The Latest BLS Jobs Report, Room for Hope?

From The Wall Street Journal:

“Employers added 166,000 jobs in October, the Labor Department said, the most in five months. The unemployment rate remained unchanged at 4.7% despite widespread worries that the odds of a recession are rising.

‘Parts of the economy are fraying, but the labor market hasn't broken,’ said J.P. Morgan economist Haseeb Ahmed.”

From FXStreet:

“Employment is a lagging indicator. Typically, employment does not turn down until after a recession has already started. However, the unemployment level has already risen from 4.4% to a current 4.7%. And the household survey suggests that the rate is rising faster than in the payroll survey. As unemployment rises, consumer spending will also soften. And the Slow Motion Recession will become evident.”

From the Daily Reckoning:

“OK… So the BLS says 166K jobs were created in October… But when we look under the hood, we find that it probably lost 211K jobs! OUCH! Did you know that the BLS actually does two surveys? One is the payroll survey, which they massage… The other is the household survey, where they call 60,000 homes (at random) and ask how many people are in the home, how many of those people have jobs (part-time or full-time), how many people want jobs who don't have them, and so on. This survey covers people who are employed both by large and small employers, illegal immigrants, etc.”

From the Atlanta Journal Constitution:

“The economy added about 166,000 jobs in October, according to the BLS. After months of subpar job growth, the modest number was a better-than-expected bottom line.

Only the details were troubling: Losses continued in manufacturing, housing and retail, and more than 200,000 people dropped out of the labor force. But service sector hiring was healthy, and overall job growth was the best since May.”

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