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Entries in Umemployment (3)

Friday
Oct072011

Average Jobless Now Out of Work 40 Weeks

Creatas Images(WASHINGTON) -- Friday’s Labor Department report announced 103,000 jobs were added in September, leaving the unemployment rate at 9.1 percent. Here’s a closer look:

-- The average duration of unemployment is now 40.5 weeks, on average, which has more than doubled from three years ago. That means the average person needs to be able to fund the family budget for a 10-month job search.
-- The headline number is better than expected (expectations were at 60,000 new jobs). Private sector added some 137,000 jobs during the month. However, the number also counts 45,000 Verizon workers returning from a strike.
-- Since January, the U.S. economy has added one million jobs, but is still down 6.6 million since the start of the Great Recession.
-- The unemployment rate remains stuck at 9.1 percent for the past three months -- 14 million of our neighbors wanted to work last month, but couldn’t find any work.
-- Broader unemployment rate -- the U-6 -- which includes folks who are discouraged and those who took part-time work when they wanted full-time, ticked up during September to 16.5 percent (25 million people).
-- Hiring ramped up early in the year, but has slowed considerably since then. Economists believe the Japan quake/tsunami disrupted global supply chains, forcing layoffs and the downturn (thought to be temporary) continued as Congress lit up the world with its debt ceiling debacle and the ensuing S&P downgrade. The question, will the trend start heading back the other direction with holiday hiring.

Sector results:

-- Construction (+26K) mostly in non-residential civil and heavy construction.
-- Health Care (+44K) continued its trend of adding jobs -- thanks to aging baby boomers.
-- IT (+34K) had a healthy boost as striking telecom workers came back from the picket lines.
-- Manufacturing (-13K) was little changed in September relative to the large size of the sector.
-- Retail (+13.6K) also mostly unchanged.
-- Temp Help (+19.4K) was positive last month -- possible hints of continued growth.
-- Government (-34K) mostly coming from local government education (-24.4K).

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Aug042011

5 Signs of a Double-Dip Recession

ABC News Radio(NEW YORK) -- Though Congress forestalled a default on the country's debt obligations, the faltering stock market and several recent economic indicators are causing economists to worry about a "double dip" recession.

Ethan Harris, Bank of America Merrill Lynch economist for North America, said he sees a 20 to 30 percent probability that the country will enter a recession sometime in the next year.

"The odds of a double dip are rising," Harris told ABC News. "The sad thing is that with more effective policy in Washington the risk of recession would be much lower."

Critics of this week's debt deal say the spending cuts will do harm to an already fragile economy.

Here are five signs that together show a double dip recession could be closer than you think:

1. Unemployment:  The labor market has been one of the most significant sore spots on the economic recovery, says Ed Kashmarek, economist with Wells Fargo. Some 25 million Americans are out of work and unemployment rates remains stubbornly high. Payroll company ADP reported that the private sector added 114,000 jobs in July, far short of what's needed to get the job market moving again.

2. Pullback in stock market:  Kashmarek says the drop in the stock markets in the past two weeks is another indicator of a double-dip recession. "It's a leading indicator historically because stocks are looking at future expected profits for companies," he said.

3. Real wage growth
:  With relatively higher gas, commodity and food prices, real wage growth has declined. June's jobs report showed a 0.1 percent drop in wages. Add inflation and that stalls real wage growth. That's problematic for a country in which consumption comprises 70 percent of GDP.
 
4. Factory orders:  Kashmarek says factory orders demonstrate how much businesses are willing to invest their capital, which has a ripple effect on workers they hire and spending across the economy. "Many businesses have capital now," he said. "If they're not willing to invest in an era with low interest rates, a lot of cash on balance sheet and tax incentives, then that's a problem."

5. Consumer confidence:  The Conference Board's Consumer Confidence Index, which had declined in June, improved slightly in July, but that was after an eight-month low. Harris said a number of combined global affects are increasing the risk of a recession. "The economy was already suffering the after-effects of the Japan crisis and the rise in gasoline price at the start of the summer," Harris said. "Now the debt crises in Europe are adding additional shocks to confidence."

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Thursday
May052011

Stocks Down Thursday; New Unemployment Numbers to Come Out Friday

Comstock Images/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Worries about the economy have investors on the defensive.  The Dow closed closed down 139 points, the Nasdaq dropped 14 and the S&P lost 12 Thursday.

The government reports that the number of people applying for unemployment benefits jumped to its highest level in eight months.  This is unemployment's third increase in the last month.

New monthly unemployment numbers will be released Friday.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio







ABC News Radio