The Labor Department reported this morning that nonfarm payrolls fell by 131,000 in the month of July. Even more discouraging was that June’s revised payroll number was revised downward to a negative 221,000. This is huge. Initial jobless claims estimates released Thursday was 479,000, and was an increase from the previous week’s 460,000. The two statistics, nonfarm payrolls and initial jobless claims, are suggesting the same thing–employers are not hiring, and are, in fact, laying off workers, and we may very well be headed into a “double dip” recession.
That’s the report. Here’s the analysis. As suggested some months ago, the past predicts the future. As Solomon wrote in Ecclesiastes, there is nothing new under the sun. There will be no new net growth in employment until new jobless claims fall below 400,000. Hiring cannot and will not happen until employers are confident that they have sustainable business prospects, that their expenses will be stable (like health insurance premiums) and that their taxes will be stable. Again, we’ve seen this scenario before. It was called the Carter Administration.
Right now, President Obama and his staff are crafting a spin that would suggest this is all the Bush Administration’s fault. That somehow, the last 18 months didn’t happen and they are not responsible for any of the anemic economic growth evident currently. The reality is, they could blame the Bush Administration for anything that happened in the first six months of the current administration. All economic activity since August 2009 is due to Obama Administration policies.
It’s time for the President to put his big boy pants on. No one wants to hear his whining anymore. Nor do we want to see solutions that will expand the national debt and budget deficit. And while I feel for all of the 6.6 million people that have been out of work for six months or more, it’s laughable to watch the arrogance of liberal Democrats defend their failed policies. The Democrats are imploding, again, something I predicted in November 2008. They violated economic principles. They thought they were smarter than that, and that, somehow, because the sun rose and set on Barack Obama, it would be different for them. This is a hard lesson to learn. The longer this lasts, the more seats the Republicans will gain in the November elections. By all means, they should continue their rhetoric. It’s fun to watch.