Job market recovery still painfully slow

Employers added 155,000 jobs in December. The unemployment rate remains at 7.8%.

By Jonathan Berr Jan 4, 2013 11:02AM

Image: Student studying, PNC, Brand X Pictures, JupiterimagesThe labor market is continuing its agonizingly slow path toward recovery.

According to government figures released Friday, U.S. employers added 155,000 non-farm payroll jobs in December. Gains came in health care, manufacturing, food services and construction. This report is better than the 153,000 median forecast of economists surveyed by Bloomberg News and worse than the 160,000 forecast by Dow Jones. 


Unemployment held at 7.8%, the lowest rate of the Obama administration. November's rate was revised from 7.7% to 7.8%.  Bloomberg's and Dow Jones' forecast called for the rate to fall to 7.7%.

Economists continue to expect the economy to make slow, steady progress in 2013. Growth, though, won't be much to brag about. The International Monetary Fund, for instance, expects U.S. growth of about 2.75% this year, up from 2.2% in 2012.

The revised November report may rekindle conspiracy theories advanced by ex-General Electric (GE) CEO Jack Welch and others that the Obama administration had kept the unemployment rate artificially low to garner support for his reelection. However, unemployment is calculated based on surveys of thousands of households, making it nearly impossible to rig.  Unemployment figures are often revised to insure their accuracy.

Otherwise, the report had few surprises.

Rebuilding from  Sandy resulted in a gain of 30,000 jobs.  Manufacturing jobs showed an increase of 25,000, the industry's best showing in months. The retail sector showed little change after posting a gain of 143,000 over the past 3 months. Holiday sales were weaker than many retailers  expected as shoppers were apparently spooked by the battle in Congress over the fiscal cliff.  Government employment was also flat.

Many experts see better times ahead for the U.S. economy. But the good times are coming so slowly that many people aren't seeing much of a difference.


we will never see a recovery. The CEO's who are making $250,000,000 a year by firing $50K to $80K a year American workers and replacing them with 25 cents an hour Chinese workers will never rehire American workers.


As far as the few jobs here in America that have been created since the crash 90 percent have been minimum wage jobs at 29 hours a week (so the companies do not have to pay benefits like health care or pension plans)  So we are talking about 50 weeks at 29 hours times 7.25 an hour or a whooping $10,500 a year jobs when it takes $450,000 a year to survive in America.


Hey that $450,000 a year number is not mine but the fiscal cliff number where people making less than that are hurting so much their taxes can not go up anymore.


So the decline of the America way of life is on a fast course towards total collapse. With everyone bragging about $10,500 a year new jobs being the recovery I say what recovery???


We are doomed to have a total collapse in about 1 to 3 years folks.

Jan 4, 2013 1:54PM
There is a seasonal fudge adjustment and is not included in the jobs report.  They don't mention the 1 million plus who dropped out of the job market in Dec. either.  Anything to hide a disaster!
Jan 4, 2013 11:52AM
My guess is that most of these December job gains are seasonal. I just don't see any recovery yet.  I hope I'm wrong.
Jan 4, 2013 2:26PM
The recovery is taking long because of 2 things.  One Congress has done almost nothing and two our last recession coincided with a global slow down ie Spain, Greece, Italy etc you know what I mean.

Also, this is my personal opinion the US eventually will no longer be a super power or at least it must share this with China, India, and the rest of world.
Jan 4, 2013 2:22PM

Why this recovery is taking so long -

Jan 4, 2013 2:13PM
This reminds me of the End of the World Mayan calendar folks.

The economy is definitely recovering.  Considering where we were in 2008/2009 we are on the right track.

Now, we will probably not see bubbles like the ones of past(, housing)  and maybe that is for the best.  Things have changed and instead of the fast-lane it's about long term fundamentals.  We just have to get use to it but I prefer slow growth over fast paste craziness we were having .. like Junk Bond scandals, Saving and Loans failures, mortgage derivative trading and all these Boom Bust get rich F... the people scams... it's time for long term fundamentals
Jan 4, 2013 7:31PM

Like your comment.  Sometimes we loose perspective.  Basically there are 3 economies driving the world right now, China, US and Germany (omitting others for the sake of simplicity).  Aside from these there is a slow down of the world economies parallel to 1929 circa 2008/2009.  Although not a Great Depression, it will go down in history as The Great Recession.

The US made a 2 major  mistakes: 
1: Try to maintain via military, an expensive oversees empire while neglecting Domestic economic realities.
2. Neglecting the Economic Engine(Middle Class) over the economic elite class.

It is no coincidence that the USSR collapse right after military over expansion into Afghanistan.  We did not learn and embarked into 
Jan 4, 2013 5:35PM

The headwinds of senting millions of jobs overseasmakes it a miracle we`re this

good.34 straight months of job growth makes me proud to have brains in the WH

and have a good family who cares.Obama makes me proud to be an American.

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