Democrats & Liberals Archives

December Jobs A Disapointment, Unemployment Shrinks

The workforce continued to recede as it’s done for most of the last decade. While jobs only grew by 74,000 unemployment still declined to 6.7%.

This was a disappointment though not completely unexpected. Numbers came in far below expectations but some at places like the blog Calculated Risk were already worried about how weather and the spike in unemployment claims during the reference week might have affected the number. This last report of the year will see two more revisions though. We may very well see this number improve slightly over time as the last few months have done.

Just to continue to hammer nails in the coffin of one talking point, it's good to note that virtually all net new jobs this year were full time. There was talk back in June how something like 75% of new jobs in 2013 were part time and Obamacare was blamed. Since then there were far more full time jobs than part time so much so that there was almost no net growth in part time jobs this year compared to full time.

While the year might be ending on a sour note overall this was a very good year for the economy and next year looks to be even better. GDP growth for the 3rd quarter of the year came in at 4.1% and they're guessing that the 4th will be somewhere around 3%.

The Big Four indicators show sustained growth that has accelerated in the last quarter. This is all good news.

Let's recap a bit to close:

  • The deficit is down 38% from $1.1 trillion to $680 billion
  • Light vehicle sales up 7.5% from 14.4 million to 15.5 million
  • Unemployment down to 6.7% from 7.9%
  • New home sales up 17% from 368,000 to 433,000
  • Over 2 million more people are working today than this time last year
Posted by Adam Ducker at January 10, 2014 1:42 PM
Comment #375576

There is reason for optimism in our national economy. And yet, we are over $17.3 Trillion in debt and according to Adam adding another $680 Billion in deficit spending.

Until our debt is addressed and ways found to reduce it, I wouldn’t open any champagne.

Posted by: Royal Flush at January 10, 2014 3:14 PM
Comment #375578

Given enough time, the stimulus created by our unbelievable fortune in fracking will pull the economy out of the doldrums, despite mistakes. That energy security will - already has - improved our economic and geopolitical position.

It is just taking much longer to recover than anybody thought.

Posted by: CJ at January 10, 2014 3:30 PM
Comment #375582

I think that this headline says it all

“Unemployment Falls to 6.7% Because of People Leaving Workforce”

Posted by: CJ at January 10, 2014 5:24 PM
Comment #375586

Actually the headline for this article should be, “December Jobs A Disappointment; Employment Shrinks” because that is what really happened, at least in relative terms. We did not produce enough jobs to keep up.

Posted by: CJ at January 10, 2014 5:49 PM
Comment #375589

Jobs report is in all likelihood an anomoly, to be revised in a short while, due to weather conditions and other measurement factors.

And yes, it is to be expected that the unemployed who have sought jobs for which there were 20 applicants or more for each position for more than a year, would eventually give up upon the effort for some other strategy. The Government could have averted some of this by passing the infrastructure bill which would have invested in our future commerce. But, Republicans refused. Republicans cause unemployment and then try to blame the unemployed instead of their own economic killing policies.

Posted by: David R. Remer at January 10, 2014 5:58 PM
Comment #375593


We spent a fortune on the so-called stimulus. What % of that went into infrastructure?

Obama says that this is the worst recession since the great depression. It is not really the worst recession. The one of the 1980s had higher unemployment and a higher rise in poverty. But the Obama recovery is the worst.

Posted by: CJ at January 10, 2014 8:09 PM
Comment #375594

It’s hilarious hearing Dan Celia from AFR talk say “What recovery?” when we had one bad month after we averaged 214,000 jobs over the last four months and every other indicator is strong for the economy this month. The right wants so bad for the economy to fail under Obama that it still continues to delude itself and ignore reality.

Posted by: Adam Ducker at January 10, 2014 8:53 PM
Comment #375595


We had a recovery. Economies recover. This one is very weak.

I am very thankful for fracking, which is what is really hold us up.

Posted by: CJ at January 10, 2014 9:39 PM
Comment #375606

—-6.7% is Bad now? Is that the standard of an infraction in the economy.
I’m a kid of the 70’s, I have quite a few stories to tell you pampered brats!

“Once upon a time Carter, r-preseedent was-a commin’-a-back from a little 8 year thing called-a Vietnam, it was a war up yon in yon Asia…

Posted by: simpleheaded at January 11, 2014 5:20 PM
Comment #375607

What an a**wipe post by Adam Fudrucker; 90 million Americans out of work and things are looking up. Only in the mind of a socialist could such BS exist.

Posted by: neocon at January 11, 2014 6:46 PM
Comment #375609

Once again, thanks for the article. This particular report was on the low side, but all in all, the trends are intact.

Curious thing to see conservatives complain about the lack of jobs, while at the same time they want to cut back extended unemployment insurance, food stamps, and other social programs. What do they really want? I think it is obvious. They have no clue. They claim they want deficit reduction, but they really do not- they ditch the sequester when it starts hitting military contracts. They pretend to care about jobs, but at the same time, every move they make takes the form of a fiscal brake, and actually hurts job creation. They just don’t want the country to succeed, because that will mean the Obama administration has succeeded.

Posted by: phx8 at January 11, 2014 7:59 PM
Comment #375613

What conservatives want phx8 is for people to quit relying on government to support them. But alas people like you can’t see that. What happens when government runs out of other peoples money to fund all those SOCIALISTIC programs? They can’t keep printing money. I think it’s time for people like you to tell Harry Reid to quit being an A** and allow some of the house bills to go to vote even though you may not like them.

Posted by: Rich KAPitan at January 11, 2014 9:23 PM
Comment #375614

Our government supports us. It is not us versus the government. It is We the People.

I do not understand why you would blame Reid for anything. The House Republicans are so divided, they can not even agree on their own most basic legislation, whether it is a Farm bill, Transportation bill, Immigration bill, or re-opening the government after a GOP shutdown. To this date, they have still failed to come up with a jobs bill, or an alternative to Obamacare that Republicans can agree upon, never mind coming up with something the Senate will agree to pass; in fact, most important legislation is being generated in exactly the opposite way; The Senate Democrats and Republicans agree on a compromise, strip a House bill and insert the Senate compromise, then return it to the House for passage. Since Boehner does not control his own caucus, the compromise legislation usually passes with the Democrats and a third of the GOP voting together.

Posted by: phx8 at January 11, 2014 9:30 PM
Comment #375615

Reid has tabled bills and jobs bills coming from the house. You call RINOS compromising???? Anything the Democraps in the senate send down to the house is called more spending for useless BS.

Posted by: Rich KAPitan at January 11, 2014 9:56 PM
Comment #375616


Re - “Curious thing to see conservatives complain about the lack of jobs, while at the same time they want to cut back extended unemployment insurance, food stamps, and other social programs.”

This is our fundamental difference. We want government to create conditions for prosperity. We want to improve our country through economic growth and the initiative of the American people. You want government to take care of people.

I personally think that we should indeed extend benefits, since the Obama recovery has been so slow and abysmal. But that is an emergency measure.

Re - Obama succeeding - We do not believe that many of the policies he is advocating can succeed. Clearly, they have not done so far.

Obama just misses the big point. He pushed a redistribute policy that has the ironic result of increasing inequality - yes inequality has spiked under Obama. He talks about transcending race - while his DOJ under Eric Holder pursues the most racist policies we can recall from DOJ.

So he interferes too much domestically, but his foreign policy is sort of “let it be”, so Iraq and Syria spiral out of control. He hopes the Russians will save our bacon. The Russians, meanwhile, see weakness and exploit it.

I will say there may be a big plus in John Kerry. I have been pleasantly surprised by him. Much better than Hilary and maybe a true diplomat.

Re Reid - he used a parliamentary maneuver to prevent any discussion of amendments by the minority. It was designed to be insulting and create trouble. Reid does not want legislation passed; he want to keep the issues raw for Democratic election prospects.

Posted by: CJ at January 12, 2014 6:29 AM
Comment #375617

20% of the American people are on Welfare and food stamps; real unemployment is 13-20% (blacks and Hispanics are much higher);stimulus money was wasted; Reid has blocked all real attempts to correct the economy from ever being voted; the Fed is propping up Wall Street by printing money; obamacare has destroyed and continues to destroy the economy; and yes, 90 million Americans are out of work. The left cries about divisions in the Republican House, but it is Democrat politicians who are running away from Obama’s programs as fast as they can. Ten more months and we will see how true the liberals claims are…

Posted by: DSP2195 at January 12, 2014 8:09 AM
Comment #375618

This is where we differ. Unlike many on the left, I would actually favor cutting back food stamps and extended unemployment benefits. This is because I believe the economy is a lot stronger than many would have you believe, particularly the MSM, which thrives on bad news, and seeks to appear ‘balanced’ by stressing what is wrong with the economy, rather than what is right. Notice the consistency of my point of view. If you really believe the economy is that bad, and unemployment is that bad, it would be monstrous to push food stamp cuts and do away with extended unemployment benefits. Any person with a shred of decency would not try to have it both ways. You can’t denounce the economy, then legislate in such a way as to make the suffering even more widespread.

Given the weakness of the recent unemployment report, I could be convinced to extend by three months the unemployment extension, but we should be thinking in terms of dropping them.

Posted by: phx8 at January 12, 2014 12:28 PM
Comment #375619

IMO phx8 99 weeks is enough to free load. That’s the problem with some thinking they are owed a living and many on the left feel government should provide those SOCIALISTIC entitlements from cradle to grave. Jobs are out there but many feel they are either to demeaning or don’t pay enough. So how much is enough??

Posted by: Rich KAPitan at January 12, 2014 2:43 PM
Comment #375620

State unemployment runs 26 weeks, and additional programs through the federal government can extend it to 47 weeks, or longer. Since the average time to find a job right now is @ 37 weeks, I would go along with 47 weeks, but no extension beyond that. The situation varies from state to state. Some states, like Nevada, are still having a terrible time, with unemployment rates as high as 9%; while other states, like North Dakota and South Dakota and Nebraska, have low unemployment rates under 4%, which is basically full employment.

So there needs to be some flexibility in the approach to unemployment insurance, and perhaps an incentive put in place for people willing to relocate for work in places that would normally be considered undesirable places to live.

Posted by: phx8 at January 12, 2014 3:39 PM
Comment #375621


Actually we have switched places. I would extend unemployment, since I think the economy has been uniquely bad. I wrote that above.

Re states with low unemployment - what is it that they have in common? And what characterizes those that have failed? We should try to figure out what works. The states are the laboratories of democracy.

Posted by: CJ at January 12, 2014 3:53 PM
Comment #375624

States with low unemployment tend to be ones with smaller populations, few urban centers, jobs generated from fracking & agriculature, and perhaps most importantly, they tend to be states that did not see suffer from the real estate crash.

States with high unemployment tend to have larger populations, large urban centers, and again, they were the ones that suffered the most from the real estate crash.

There are some interesting exceptions. Why would VT and HI have such low unemployment numbers? Why would MS, TN, and KY have such high ones?

Posted by: phx8 at January 12, 2014 4:42 PM
Comment #375625


Naturally, there may be some factors that result from particular circumstances, but we certainly can draw some lessons.

Texas is a very large state and yet does well. Rhode Island is very small and yet does poorly. And why has Texas been so consistently outperforming California, which has more natural gifts? Being near North Dakota is good, since they are benefiting from fracking, but California probably has more energy that could be harvested by fracking and does not.

BTW - my sister in law made a pile of money from a piece of land so sandy that she could not sell it because fracking fluid is mostly water and sand and Wisconsin sand is evidently very good.

Posted by: CJ at January 12, 2014 6:20 PM
Comment #375772

We can talk about the fact that Texas has the energy economy and all that.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at January 23, 2014 2:41 PM
Comment #375773

I just get the impression that overlooking the energy market, and how much of it is based nearby plays into that perception of Texas. I mean, both Government and Private economic factors figure into the level of employment.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at January 23, 2014 2:43 PM
Comment #377095

now as we reach march, well we are in march 2014…i have a feeling jobs and unemployment will be back on the rise because i have noticed companies laying ppl off left and right …mainly cause companies are run illogically by ppl now…spending they cant afford

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Comment #377402

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