Seems like everyone is focused on last year because the numbers are all of a sudden looking a little better or something. But unemployment is still almost 8% and that’s the sunny number produced by BLS. The U6 number which includes everyone is still close to 15%. Job growth is still anemic as most say we would need to be growing at 250k per month to even start making a dent in unemployment. And let’s not forget that GDP growth for the fourth quarter of 2012 was contracting.
All I know is if this were 2003 under Bush, the Democrats would be yelling their heads off in the House and Senate about people starving and dying in the streets. They might even march on the White House.
But not for Obamamessiah:
MARKETWATCH – The U.S. created a modest 157,000 jobs in January and the unemployment rate ticked up to 7.9%, but the economy added one-third of a million more jobs in 2012 than previously estimated, with a large chunk coming in the final months of the year.
Yet the slackened pace of job growth in January takes a bit of the shine off the report. The number of jobs added to the economy in January fell short of the 170,000 forecast of analysts polled by MarketWatch.
The pace of hiring in the first month of the new year suggests businesses remain cautious about taking on new employees amid continuing budget wrangling in Washington, an increase in U.S. taxes and a global economic slowdown.
The U.S. would have to add jobs at double January’s pace for an extended period to drive down unemployment back to precession levels of under 5%. Instead, the unemployment rate crept back up, which is not good news to the Federal Reserve.
The central bank has said it will keep interest rates ultra-low until the jobless rate moves sharply lower. The Fed has also taken steps to keep longer-term rates low to make it easier for people to buy cars, houses and other big-ticket items.