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Archive for Saturday, March 10, 2012

U.S. adds 227,000 jobs

March 10, 2012

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The United States added 227,000 jobs in February, the latest display of the breadth and strength of the economic recovery. The country has put together the most impressive three months of job growth since before the Great Recession.

The unemployment rate stayed at 8.3 percent. It was the first time in six months it didn’t fall, and that was because a half-million Americans started looking for work. In the past two months, almost a million have started looking.

“I have more optimism,” said Freda Bratcher, 54, who had worked as a substance abuse counselor but has been unemployed 16 months. She had stopped searching, but showed up Friday at a Miami career center after some of her friends landed jobs.

“There’s something out there for me,” she said. “And if other people are getting hired, then why not me?”

The Labor Department, in its monthly jobs report, said Friday that December and January, already two of the best months for jobs since the recession, were even stronger than first estimated.

January job growth was revised higher by 41,000 to 284,000. December job growth was raised by 20,000 to 223,000. The overall job growth for February of 227,000 beat economists’ estimate of 210,000.

“It’s a very strong report,” said Bob Baur, chief global economist at Principal Global Investors, an asset management company. “I could hardly find anything not to like in it.”

Since the beginning of December, the country has added 734,000 jobs. The only three-month stretch that was better since the recession ended was March through May 2010, when the government was hiring tens of thousands of temporary workers for the census.

Before that, the last stretch that was better was February through April 2006. A three-month gain of 734,000 is roughly what the country was achieving in the late 1990s, although it is less impressive now because the country holds about 40 million more people.

Stocks rose after the report came out, though they lost most of their gains later in the day. The Dow Jones industrial average closed up 14 points at 12,922. Last week, it closed above 13,000 for the first time since May 2008, four months before the financial crisis.

The improving jobs picture figures to improve the re-election chances for President Barack Obama and to complicate the political strategy for the Republicans competing for the right to replace him.

Obama on Friday visited a manufacturing plant run by Rolls-Royce, a maker of aircraft engines, in Virginia, a state expected to be closely contested in November. He told workers that American manufacturing is adding jobs for the first time since the 1990s.

“The economy is getting stronger,” the president said. “When I come to places like this and I see the work that’s being done, it gives me confidence there are better days ahead. I would bet on American workers and American know-how any day of the week.”

Comments

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 2 years, 9 months ago

So, your point is that there were no new jobs added?

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 2 years, 9 months ago

Sometimes, math, when all you can squeeze out is an utterly stupid comment, maybe it's best just not to type at all. (of course, that'd mean disappearing yourself from this forum rather than waiting for admin to do it for you.)

cato_the_elder 2 years, 9 months ago

No, that real underemployment exceeds 19%. Read what Gallup says, Bozo.

tomatogrower 2 years, 9 months ago

I figured underemployment would make your business buddies happy. Isn't it all about supply and demand. There are a lot of people out there looking for a job, so you don't have to pay someone much to work, because you can always hire someone else. Supply and demand, right? Or are you suggesting a living wage? And cut into the profit! No, the CEO's need that money to keep their trophy wives happy.

cato_the_elder 2 years, 9 months ago

"No, the CEOs need that money to keep their trophy wives happy."

Perhaps you'd like to identify any CEO's "trophy wife" whose travel expenses come anywhere close to those incurred by Michelle Obama, and paid for 100% by American taxpayers, in only a three-year period.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 2 years, 9 months ago

And electing Romney will see that increase to over 20%.

voevoda 2 years, 9 months ago

Then, cato_the_elder, why not compare real (your real) underemployment rates prior to January 2008 with what's happening now. That would be honest. Your gratuitous attack on the First Lady demonstrates that you are interested only in casting aspersions on the Obama administration, not in accurate reporting of facts.

cato_the_elder 2 years, 9 months ago

Do you know what Michelle Obama's reported travel expenses have been in only three years? Do you defend that? What's "inaccurate" about pointing out that fact? Do you think that all presidential spouses should spend the taxpayers' money as profligately as she has?

tomatogrower 2 years, 9 months ago

Do you realize that unless we vote in a single man, we will be paying the spouses travel expenses anyway? No matter who it is? Get real.

cato_the_elder 2 years, 9 months ago

The issue is how much money is spent on travel, not the fact that some money invariably will be. Get real.

tomatogrower 2 years, 9 months ago

Why do you think a Republican wife wouldn't travel as much? Do you suppose she would stay in the kitchen where women are suppose to be? First ladies of both parties have always acted as ambassadors of goodwill for the US. That includes travel.

cato_the_elder 2 years, 9 months ago

Check the stats for Michelle's disclosed travel expense numbers compared with those of her predecessors.

I'll be waiting.

weeslicket 2 years, 9 months ago

so, given the link: http://www.gallup.com/poll/153161/Unemployment-February.aspx one can see that all of these trends show improvement over time. this must be an example of when good news is really bad news.

by way of comparison, consider the economy at the end of the bush 43 era: http://www.gallup.com/poll/114010/Thursday-Jobless-Claims-Likely-Down-Slightly.aspx or: http://www.gallup.com/poll/110905/Shrinking-Job-Market-Next-Crisis.aspx these are perhaps examples of when bad news is really good news.

beatrice 2 years, 9 months ago

More excellent news!

Sad to see so many upset to read that the American economy is improving. Maybe a bunch of Iranians have been posting on here all along.

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