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Another Mediocre Jobs Report

unemployment

Going into today’s release of the  January Jobs Report, consensus estimates from economists and market analysts tended to agree that we’d see job growth in the neighborhood of roughly 180,000 net new jobs added in the first month of the new year. There was some concern that the weather last month, which included snowstorms and frigid temperatures that descended as far south as the Deep South for a time, would have an impact on hiring and job-seeking, but most observers seemed to agree that the economy would bounce back from the incredibly disappointing numbers that we saw for December. In that report, we were hit with a one-two punch of bad news as jobs growth slowed to a pathetic 74,000 net new jobs and labor force participation dropped by a jaw-dropping 300,000 people. If there’s any good news coming out of January, it’s the fact that we were only hit with one punch this time around. Job growth increased to 113,000 net new jobs, but the seemingly “good news” is that the top-line Unemployment Rate dropped down to 6.6% while labor force participation actually ticked up just a little bit.

Here are the details from the BLS Report:

Total nonfarm payroll employment increased by 113,000 in January. In 2013, employment growth averaged 194,000 per month. In January, job gains occurred in construction, manufacturing, wholesale trade, and mining. (See table B-1.)

Construction added 48,000 jobs over the month, more than offsetting a decline of 22,000 in December. In January, job gains occurred in both residential and nonresidential building (+13,000 and +8,000, respectively) and in nonresidential specialty trade contractors (+13,000). Heavy and civil engineering construction also added 10,000 jobs.

Employment in manufacturing increased in January (+21,000). Over the month, job gains occurred in machinery (+7,000), wood products (+5,000), and motor vehicles and parts (+5,000). Manufacturing added an average of 7,000 jobs per month in 2013.

In January, wholesale trade added 14,000 jobs, with most of the increase occurring in nondurable goods (+10,000).

Mining added 7,000 jobs in January, compared with an average monthly gain of 2,000 jobs in 2013.

Employment in professional and business services continued to trend up in January (+36,000). The industry added an average of 55,000 jobs per month in 2013. Within the industry, professional and technical services added 20,000 jobs in January.

Leisure and hospitality employment continued to trend up over the month (+24,000). Job growth in the industry averaged 38,000 per month in 2013.

Employment in health care was essentially unchanged in January for the second consecutive month. Health care added an average of 17,000 jobs per month in 2013.

Employment in retail trade changed little in January (-13,000). Within the industry, sporting goods, hobby, book, and music stores lost 22,000 jobs, offsetting job gains in the prior 3 months. In January, motor vehicle and parts dealers added 7,000 jobs.

In January, federal government employment decreased by 12,000; the U.S. Postal Service accounted for most of this decline (-9,000).

Employment in other major industries, including transportation and warehousing, information, and financial activities, showed little or no change over the month.

On the bright side, there was a substantial upward revision for November’s jobs number from 241,000 net new jobs to 274,000 net new jobs, although the December revision added only another 1,000 jobs to that month’s disappointing 74,000 net new jobs. Additionally, U-6, which is a much broader measure of unemployment than the top-line U-3 number, dropped to 12.7% which is the lowest it has been at since December 2008, before President Obama took office and when the job losses from the recession were just beginning to hit their peak. Additionally, the labor force participation rate, which took a major hit in December’s numbers, inched up just a bit to 63%, indicating that at least some people were re-entering the jobs market last month. That is seemingly confirmed by the fact that the number of employed people is at its highest rate since June 2008, and that the number of people employed in the private sector is at its highest rate since March 2008.

Notwithstanding those sliver’s of good news, the truth is that this is yet another disappointing jobs report that potentially indicates underlying and continuing weakness in the economy. While the numbers up through November were seemingly showing strong growth in the jobs market consistent with what we now know to be stronger than expected economic growth as measured by year-over-year G.D.P. growth, December and January seem to suggest that the 1st Quarter of 2014 will fall into the same sluggish trap that we’ve experienced practically every year since the Great Recession ended. Without fail, each one of those years has shown sluggish growth in the economy in at least the first two quarters of the year followed by stronger than expected growth in the 3rd and 4th Quarters. While it’s true that growth is growth, the annual growth numbers that we’ve seen since 2009, which have averaged below ~2.5% per year, are hardly in the range that you would want to see them, and are likely a large part of the reason that jobs growth has averaged around a disappointing 180,000 to 183,000 for the balance of the economic recovery that began in mid-2009. While it’s possible that we’ll see some further revisions for December and January in next month’s report, at the moment the past two months of Jobs Reports seems to be indicating that the economy started slowing down again after November. Given the signs of similar slowdowns happening overseas that have been playing havoc with the numbers on Wall Street the last several weeks, that doesn’t bode well for the opening months of 2014 at all.

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About Doug Mataconis
Doug holds a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May, 2010 and also writes at Below The Beltway. Follow Doug on Twitter | Facebook

Comments

  1. OzarkHillbilly says:

    Doug continues to repost the same comments from the month before on the newest jobs reports. In other news, water is wet, dog bites man, bear sh!ts in woods. But people are beginning to seriously ask, “Is the Pope Catholic?”

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 1

  2. al-Ameda says:

    On the bright side, there was a substantial upward revision for November’s jobs number from 241,000 net new jobs to 274,000 net new jobs,

    Additionally, U-6, which is a much broader measure of unemployment than the top-line U-3 number, dropped to 12.7% which is the lowest it has been at since December 2008, before President Obama took office and when the job losses from the recession were just beginning to hit their peak.

    Notwithstanding those sliver’s of good news, the truth is that this is yet another disappointing jobs report that potentially indicates underlying and continuing weakness in the economy.

    I just don’t understand why the financial crash of 2008 – which resulted in the vaporization of over 20% of the aggregate wealth of Americans, $18 Trillion – continues to have an ongoing effect today?

    At the time of Obama’s inauguration in 2009, the economy was Losing jobs at a rate of over 700,000 per month. Today we are experiencing modest economic growth and slow steady improvement in overall employment. I think that that is not disappointing.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 1

  3. gVOR08 says:

    So Doug — what do you think we should do about it?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 1

  4. C. Clavin says:

    Healthcare added 17,000 jobs in January…so apparently Obamacare isn’t destroying that industry as Republicans predicted. Shocked aren’t you?

    8.5 million jobs added in 47 straight months of Private Sector job creation.
    And, as per Doug’s wishes, we keep slashing Public Sector jobs…85,000 jobs in just the last 12 months alone.
    And yet Doug is still not happy. Why aren’t you happy Doug?
    And more importantly…where is the economic boom that you fools keep promising will come with shrinking the Government???

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 3

  5. Moosebreath says:

    Kevin Drum has useful analysis, complete with chart. After noting that since the end of the recession, private sector employment is up 6.8% and public sector employment is down 3.4%, he concludes:

    “This is the price of austerity. If public sector employment had been growing normally during this period, we’d have about a million more jobs than we do now and the unemployment rate would probably be below 6 percent. We are our own worst enemies.”

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 0

  6. stonetools says:

    Guess the Republican economic sabotage efforts are still working. Their voting to cut unemployment benefits is of a piece with their strategy to deny the Administration economic success by strangling the economy with austerity and spending cuts.
    To be honest, what’s annoying is not that Doug has fallen for this nonsense.His ideology blinds him to see what is obvious to any objective observer.It’s that the Obama Administration doesn’t bluntly call attentiion to this strategy and openly accuse the Republicans of strangling the economy for political gain. I would have done so months ago

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  7. C. Clavin says:

    @stonetools:

    I would have done so months YEARS ago

    FTFY

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  8. Pinky says:

    Without fail, each one of those years has shown sluggish growth in the economy in at least the first two quarters of the year followed by stronger than expected growth in the 3rd and 4th Quarters.

    Yes, that’s what has happened, but why should we expect to see that continue? You talk about it happening every year, but that’s four data points. If there’s no economic reason underlying the pattern, then there’s no reason we should expect to see it continue. For the life of me I can’t think of an underlying economic reason for the pattern. Maybe if the fiscal crises happened at the same time every year, but that hasn’t been the case.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  9. mantis says:

    Doug,

    Republicans and idiotic austerity measures are entirely to blame for this. If you want better jobs numbers, vote for Democrats. Otherwise (including and especially voting for Libertarians), you are voting against your stated goals.

    It is as simple as that. The right kills jobs. That is their goal.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 3

  10. David M says:

    High unemployment and crappy job creation numbers are easy problems to solve. Have the government hire some people. It’s really not more complicated than that.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1

  11. C. Clavin says:

    @David M:
    Today 22 million people work for the Government…the lowest number since 2005.
    During Bush43′s first term he grew the Government at 4%. If Obama had done the same…not more…but the exact same as a Republican did…there would be 2 million more people employed at a minimum.
    Think for a minute about the impact of 2 million more jobs.
    Instead we have been pursuing a fools errand…enthusiastically promoted by economic frauds like Doug and his Republican party…austerity in the face of recession. Tell me what exactly it has accomplished? Every single month Doug writes the same f’ing post about a weak economy…but he never, ever, accepts any responsibility for his flawed ideology and the damage it continues to cause.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 1

  12. David M says:

    @C. Clavin:

    And there’s no sound reason to think we shouldn’t have done more after the great recession. Even doing the same would have been a mistake, it should have been much more.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 1

  13. JohnMcC says:

    And in other news the federal deficit shrank again to $514 Billion. Possibly there is a connection?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 2

  14. David M says:

    @JohnMcC:

    No one cares about the deficit. Not only do they not actually care, most don’t know what it is.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  15. @gVOR08:

    I don’t know that we can do anything about it.. Much of the problem appears to be structural

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 2

  16. Ben says:

    @Doug Mataconis:

    I don’t know that we can do anything about it.. Much of the problem appears to be structural

    I think three quarters of a million gov’t jobs that have been slashed has something to do with it. You seem to be ignoring that.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 1

  17. stonetools says:

    @Ben:

    Doug can’t even be serious saying that. He knows damn well there are things to be done.One thing that can be done is to pass extended unemployment benefits. As he himself says, there is no good reason whatsoever not to pass that, and this would be a job creation measure all by itself, since the money would go right back into the economy in he form of increased consumer spending.
    Anything else, of course, would require government action , and that’s verboten to a libertarian like Doug. Once the ideological blinders are off, there’s a ton of things to be done, from rebuilding our infrastructure to simply rehiring those government workers to programs helping long term unemployed to relocate. Krugton the Invincible wrote a book on it, and he is usually right about this stuff .

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  18. bill says:

    @al-Ameda: yet there’s still a million less employed than when he took office. the gov’t doesn’t like to “count” them, the ones who have just dropped out of the job market.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 2

  19. Tyrell says:

    There are better ways to stimulate the economy, create jobs, and improve the country.
    One project that is desperately needed is the rebuilding and modernizing of the electrical grid. The electrical system is vulnerable to terrorist attacks, solar storms (it almost happened in 2011), and breakdown from age. Rebuilding and modernizing it would result in job creation, security, and improved efficiency. There is agreement in Washington on that. It is probably a matter of time before there could be a total breakdown resulting in an apocalyptic nightmare. Look at the recent news report from California concerning the attack on an electrical station.
    Our interstate highway system is overdue for repair and overhaul. New technology can make driving safer and quicker. Imbedded lighting, soft barriers, wider lanes, lanes just for trucks and buses, heating to melt snow and ice, and runway type lighting are just a few ideas. Imagine highways that are safe to drive at 100mph + !!
    There needs to be the challenge of sending a manned mission to Mars (or Venus) by 2020. Imagine the excitement and interest this would stir up! Our young students would once again get involved in science. And we remember the pride of this country in the 1960′s space program. USA #1!!
    These are a few ideas. These would provide real jobs instead of tax money being spent on such things as studies of “Twitter”, South American rodents, or shopping habits!!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 1

  20. C. Clavin says:

    @Doug Mataconis:
    Sure… To the extent that self-inflicted austerity and public sector job cuts are structural.
    The structural problem we have is economic know-nothing’s getting their agendas instituted.
    The solutions are obvious.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

  21. C. Clavin says:
  22. anjin-san says:

    @ Doug

    I don’t know that we can do anything about it.

    If that is really how you feel, why do you continue with these one-note posts? Why not just declare that the world has changed, and move on to something else?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  23. rudderpedals says:

    @C. Clavin: That’s a great chart. Wish it went past 2011 but there’s such a huge piece of meat right there staring me in the face it doesn’t matter.

    See how the trend destabilizes and goes sharply negative early 2010? Just around the time Reinhart and Rogoff’s influential and ultimately infamously broken paper prescribing austerity during crises hit the streets.

    Here’s a nice recap of the R&R debacle http://www.newyorker.com/online/blogs/johncassidy/2013/04/the-rogoff-and-reinhart-controversy-a-summing-up.html .

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  24. John425 says:

    @mantis: Silly claptrap. If we Republicans are corporate oligarchs then why would we want to squeeze out workers who produce the goods that we profit by?

    When will the left ever notice that after 5 years, the vaunted Obama Administration has squandered billions (nay, trillions) to achieve exactly—nothing.

    In other news, the jobs report has been “surprisingly disappointing” for 60 months now. Somebody go over to the White House and wake them up.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 4

  25. anjin-san says:

    @ John425

    why would we want to squeeze out workers who produce the goods that we profit by?

    Because productivity gains based on IT & robotics have made it possible to produce the profitable goods (and let’s not forget services) while at the same time, squeezing out workers.

    the vaunted Obama Administration has squandered billions (nay, trillions) to achieve exactly—nothing.

    Well, here in the bay area, stimulus spending made major infrastructure projects possible that will continue to benefit hundreds of thousands of Americans on a daily basis long after you and I have left the scene, and they helped keep the local construction industry going during the worst economic downturn since the depression in the process. In addition to that, we gained all the obvious ancillary benefits of such large and not so large infrastructure projects in the process – jobs, local spending, etc.

    I don’t think “nothing” means what you think it means.

    If you are going to throw “claptrap” into the mix, think things through before you hit “post”…

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  26. John425 says:

    @anjin-san: FYI- I looked up stimulus projects in the Bay Area and there isn’t much to brag about. Billions allocated for infrastructure but not much to show for it.

    PS: It took workers to produce those robotic and IT goods and services. They didn’t appear out of thin air. They were imagined, designed, produced, financed and distributed by, guess who? —PEOPLE who worked!!!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1

  27. Stonetools says:

    @John425:

    You do know that Obama’s stimulus created millions of jobs and forestalled much higher unemployment, according to the CBO, right? And that your Republicans blocked each and every attempt by Obama to stimulate the economy since? And that the Republicans passed spending cuts that further depressed the economy, right?
    Are you really so much of a dumbass that you missed all that? On second thought, don’t answer that.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

  28. C. Clavin says:

    @John425:
    Wow… You’re awfully full of hate…and telling a lot of lies…for…you know…a Christian.
    Apparently you are only pretending to believe in Jesus.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1

  29. John425 says:

    RE: Stonetools and Clavin: Sure blame it on Bush and the Republicans, that’s a sure sign you can’t defend the Obama administration and “you got nothin”
    Somehow Clavin thinks he pinpoints me as a fundamentalist Christian. Probably because the asshat thinks my screen name denotes a Bibilical passage instead of my 425 area code.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  30. superdestroyer says:

    @C. Clavin:

    There was not 17,000 healthcare jobs added. In reality, there were no healthcare jobs added http://money.cnn.com/2014/02/07/news/economy/january-jobs-report/ where it states:

    The health care sector cut 400 jobs — the first month of job losses since 2003. Health care had been an industry with strong job growth throughout the recession.

    It should be interesting to see what happens to healthcare jobs in the future and how the government begins to treat the sector if it is no longer providing job growth and as the government increasingly has to pay all of the coss.

    Also, could progressives put some effort into being consistent in their policy proposals. At one time, progressives want to cut a massive number of defense jobs but then progressive talk about expanding the public sector work force. How can progressives claim they are about the middle class when they want to lay off so many middle class defense workers.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1

  31. superdestroyer says:

    @C. Clavin:

    Here is the long term trend in healthcare jobs http://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2014/02/7-fascinating-nuggets-from-another-bewildering-jobs-report/283670/

    5. Whither Health Care: 2013 was the slowest year for health-care job growth since 1999. December was the first month on record that health care employment actually declined.

    When the government increases the regulatory burden on a sector of the economy while also lowering reimbursements, it makes sense that it would not grow very much. Do you really think hiring more budget analysts, communications specialists, and diversity coordinators is really the best thing for the economy. If the healthcare, defense, energy, retail, and transportation sectors are going to get smaller, there is now way that public sector employment is going to make up the difference. Why do progressives believe that the U.S. can be a country of freelance writers, academics, public sector employees, and the immigrants who work as their servants?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1

  32. grumpy realist says:

    @superdestroyer: when you come up with a solution to the problem of existing conditions, lifetime limits, and throwing cancer patients out of treatment because they may have forgotten about an asthma medication they took 15 years ago, then we can talk.

    You’ve never had to deal with a real health crisis, have you?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  33. Ben Wolf says:

    @Doug Mataconis: A structural unemployment problem means worker skills no longer match up with employer requirements. In such a situation we would expect to see increased unemployment in certain sectors of the economy as changes in labor demand occurred. Instead we see increased unemployment in allsectors. I’m skeptical that the skills of every group from sanitation workers to teachers to mathematicians to biologists became sub-optimal within a six-month period.

    It is much more likely our current problems stem from a massive demand shock and the reality that unemployed people cannot signal their desires to businesses. These businesses, uncertain as to what their future expectations should be regarding production quantities, adopt a wait-and-see approach by storing away cash rather than investing.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  34. superdestroyer says:

    @grumpy realist:

    So how does the government bend the cost curve on healthcare spending while also providing unlimited care to people who will demand it. Also, how do progressives resolve their concern for more jobs with their desired policy propsal to take the U.S. to single payer that will cause everyone who works in private health insurance to lose their jobs. I guess progressives expect all of them to become freelance writers with all of their free time.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1

  35. superdestroyer says:

    @Ben Wolf:
    I think you have forgotten that during the economic downturn, business finally took the time to determine who their products, employees, and locations that were not generating any profits and got rid of them. Part of the unemployment problem is that the economy does not need as many workers as it used to need. The progressives solution seems to be that increase the costs of labor from American citizens (while lowering it from illegal aliens) so that more people will have time to be artist and creative types instead of earning a pay check.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  36. C. Clavin says:

    @superdestroyer:

    So how does the government bend the cost curve on healthcare spending while also providing unlimited care to people who will demand it.

    Take some time to learn about the ACA. Of course “unlimited” is nonsense you throw in on your own, with no basis in fact.

    their desired policy propsal to take the U.S. to single payer that will cause everyone who works in private health insurance to lose their jobs.

    Oh my…you are prone to make shit up, aren’t you?

    The progressives solution seems to be that increase the costs of labor from American citizens (while lowering it from illegal aliens) so that more people will have time to be artist and creative types instead of earning a pay check.

    Actually…I’m an “artist” and a creative type and I’m in the 96th percentile of income. So what’s your point?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

  37. C. Clavin says:

    @superdestroyer:
    A single data point or even two does not a trend make.
    Healthcare job growth is rosy…check almost every job on this page and the outlook is better than average.
    http://www.bls.gov/ooh/healthcare/home.htm
    You should really try to learn about a topic instead of just parroting right wing talking points. That way you might have something intelligent to contribute for a change.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  38. C. Clavin says:

    @John425:
    So then what you are saying is that we should simply ignore basic facts if they are inconvenient to John425′s point of view..
    OK then….

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  39. superdestroyer says:

    @C. Clavin:

    The future of healthcare is increased demand due to subsidized insurance (even though it is not really insurance( while lowering the supply due to lowering reimbursements for care. Thus, the progressives will achieve their desire to bend the cost curve by lowering supplying while increasing demand and while removing the ability of money to affect supply.

    Thus, one would have to be very wary of entering a career in health care. Lower pay due to lower reimbursements, a poorer work environment due to more regulation, and fewer good jobs.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  40. C. Clavin says:

    @superdestroyer:

    The future of healthcare is increased demand due to subsidized insurance (even though it is not really insurance( while lowering the supply due to lowering reimbursements for care.

    So based on your comment I can only assume that first thing tomorrow you are going to give up the health care subsidy you receive from the Government?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  41. anjin-san says:

    @john 425

    FYI- I looked up stimulus projects in the Bay Area and there isn’t much to brag about. Billions allocated for infrastructure but not much to show for it.

    Dude, you are full of it. Here is one that’s a few miles from where I live. This project has had a huge positive impact – created a great deal of positive economic activity, and fixed a major transportation choke point in a region that is kind of important to the economy as a whole.

    And then there is the he day to day improvement in the lives of the hundreds of thousands of people that use the tunnel, who are no longer losing 15-30 minutes of their lives to the traffic back up we used to have there every day. And the reduction in wasted gas. And air pollution. And wear and tear on everyone’s car.

    Where exactly did you learn to do research?

    http://www.caldecott-tunnel.org/index.php/project-overview/funding

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  42. anjin-san says:

    Another major infrastructure project funded by stimulus $$. Believe me, people in the bay area are not going to miss “Deadly” Doyle Drive, as it was known. Kind of an important stretch of road as it is San Francisco’s access to the Golden Gate Bridge.

    The historic south access road to the iconic Golden Gate Bridge, known as Doyle Drive or Route 101, was structurally and seismically deficient at the start of construction in 2009. The roadway was facing the same problem that threatens other parts of our nation’s infrastructure – the ravages of time and continual use. Originally built in 1936, Doyle Drive had reached the end of its useful life. In April of 2012, traffic was shifted onto a seismically-safe temporary bypass that will carry traffic until the replacement of Doyle Drive is complete

    http://www.presidioparkway.org

    I’ve lived here for 54 years – pretty sure that I know more about what goes on in the bay area than you do.

    Why do conservatives hate infrastructure spending in America and love it in Iraq? It’s a mystery.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  43. anjin-san says:

    It took workers to produce those robotic and IT goods and services. They didn’t appear out of thin air. They were imagined, designed, produced, financed and distributed by, guess who? —PEOPLE who worked!!!

    Umm. Yea. And now employers are using this technology to cut jobs. Do you really think “workers created the technology that is being used to replace other workers” is a clever argument? Or even a meaningful one?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  44. Ben Wolf says:

    @superdestroyer: When sales fall, firms reduce production. Businesses base employment from future expectations.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  45. gVOR08 says:

    @Doug Mataconis: The standard conservative response, ‘Nothing can be done.’ At least about problems that rich people don’t feel affect them. Disappointing. And likely untrue.
    @Ben: @stonetools: @Tyrell: and Krugman

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0