January 27, 2023

Complete Employed Workers Fell Again in November as Cost savings and Incomes Fall

Through March 2022 to November, the number of total employed persons has only increased simply by 12, 000 people which means there are fewer employed people now than before the covid panic

Total employed workers dropped for the second month within a row in November, dropping nearly 400, 000 workers below the pre-pandemic maximum in February 2020.

Based on new employment data launched by the Bureau of Labour Statistics on Friday, the present population survey shows  employed workers fell in order to 158, 470, 000 within November , down 138, 000 from October’s complete of 158, 608, 1000. This continues a nine-month trend in which the total number associated with employed persons has relocated sideways.

From March 2022 to Nov, the number of total employed people has only increased simply by 12, 000 people, increasing from about 158. 45 million to 158. 47 million. With November’s drop, this also puts total employment in November below the peak of 158. 7 million in February 2020. In other words, the household survey shows there are fewer employed individuals now than before the covid panic.


Yet, the headlines in the business press today told us that the “ Oughout. S. gained 263, 1000 jobs ” in November and that “ complete employment” is now a million careers above the February 2020 peak.

Those people “ total jobs” figures come from the “ business survey” which differs through the household survey in that the particular establishment survey measures careers instead of workers. The household survey measures workers. Historically, the two numbers often track together, but there is a sizable distance between the two numbers in recent months. That is, since January, complete jobs have grown considerably— showing an increase of 3. 8  million jobs. Yet over that same time, the household survey has shown an increase of only 1. 3  million employed persons. In other words, the two studies together suggest much more growth in jobs than actual workers  with   jobs. Total careers in the establishment survey has grown  month-to-month in every 30 days since late 2020. Yet, total employed workers provides fallen (month over month) for four of the last eight months.  


One conclusion we can draw here is that will fewer  people are working more jobs to cover costs, and this would make sense given that disposable income, saving rates, and real wages are all falling.  

For example , according to the Bureau of Economic Analysis,   disposable income   is lower now than it was before the covid panic, coming in at $15. 1 trillion. That sum was $15. two trillion  during February of 2020. This is a sizable leaving from the trend in throw away income since 2014, plus November’s disposable income level is now  $1 trillion below the trend line.  


Meanwhile,   the personal cost savings rate   within October  fell to second . 3  percent. That’s the second-lowest level recorded going back in order to 1959. The only month with a lower saving rate had been July 2005.     Credit card debt, in contrast,   reached new highs   in November and is now well above the previous 2020 peak.

Workers and people are likely spending down what ever savings they have because income, in spite of what the allegedly “ hot” establishment-survey jobs amounts say, are not keeping up with price inflation. Since April 2021, Consumer Price Index (CPI) inflation has repeatedly outpaced year-over-year growth in average hourly earnings. In Nov, wages  grew simply by 5. 09  percent , but the CPI grew simply by 7. 7  percent (year over year) in Oct. Price inflation will have to be considerably lower in November than it was in October if there is going to be real wage development for the month. If there  does   prove to be  real wage growth in November— which is unlikely— it will be the first time within 20 months.    


With fewer employed  workers, even though, why aren’t we seeing the unemployment rate rise? After all, the unemployment price in November remained at 3. 7 percent, unchanged from October.

This can be partly explained by fact that the workforce is usually shrinking. It is well known presently, for example , that Baby Boomers are usually ageing and many are heading off and leaving the workforce. Overall labor force participation   is well lower from its peak in the late 1990s . Yet retirement  doesn’t explain all of it. Even  among workers age 25-54 ,   labor force participation is down through the late 1990s, and  can also be down from late 2020 when prime-age participation peaked during the last boom in employee demand. At the same time, the total variety of workers “ not within the labor force”   reached a 13-month high in November . This includes retirees, but also includes discouraged workers. In fact , the number of workers who also report having left the job force but also  “ want  a job now”   totals more than 5. 5 million . Altogether, it appears that declining workforce involvement is indeed keeping the joblessness rate from rising, even while the total number of employed employees is falling.  

Nor does various other economic data point to sufficient strength in the economy to keep job demand going. With  home sales plummeting , savings falling, income losing, and  gross set capital turning negative , most signs point to an economic slowdown.  

The other big factor pointing toward recession is the yield curve, which has now upside down, pointing to a coming economic downturn. In fact , inversions in the yield curve have a perfect report of predicting recessions in recent decades. As of late October,   the distribute between the ten-year and the three-month Treasurys is now negative , and it is now in much deeper negative territory than any kind of time other time since i b?rjan p? tv?tusentalet, just prior to the start of the 2001 recession.  


In spite of these signals pointing toward recession, the particular Biden administration and the management at the Federal Reserve still point toward the job development data as evidence of a strong economy. The good news here is that this could provide sufficient justification for the Federal Reserve to keep allowing interest rates to rise whilst allowing more assets in order to roll off the balance page. The Fed  should   be selling off far more than it really is from its balance sheet, naturally , but even the small decrease in Fed assets at least allows for some slight normalization in markets. That’s all towards the good.  

After all, once the jobs information does start to look indisputably bad, we can expect the Fed to immediately start looking for ways to once again return to quantitative easing and more simple money overall. More easy cash is what Wall Street is praying for, but that would only bring a new influx of price inflation— regardless of whether in assets or consumer goods— in the manner of Arthur Burns’s failed fight against inflation in the 1970s. What really needs to happen is for the Fed to lay off the easy money  long enough just for countless bubbles in stocks, real estate, tech, and countless so-far-unknown other sectors in order to deflate. We’re not even close to that period in the current boom-bust cycle.  

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