David Kirkpatrick

February 21, 2010

Truly frightening unemployment news

Filed under: Business, Politics — Tags: , , , , — David Kirkpatrick @ 3:14 am

Well, I suppose this falls more under conjecture than news, but quite frightening nonetheless.

From the link:

Even as the American economy shows tentative signs of a rebound, the human toll of the recession continues to mount, with millions of Americans remaining out of work, out of savings and nearing the end of their unemployment benefits.

Economists fear that the nascent recovery will leave more people behind than in past recessions, failing to create jobs in sufficient numbers to absorb the record-setting ranks of the long-term unemployed.

And:

Every downturn pushes some people out of the middle class before the economy resumes expanding. Most recover. Many prosper. But some economists worry that this time could be different. An unusual constellation of forces — some embedded in the modern-day economy, others unique to this wrenching recession — might make it especially difficult for those out of work to find their way back to their middle-class lives.

Labor experts say the economy needs 100,000 new jobs a month just to absorb entrants to the labor force. With more than 15 million people officially jobless, even a vigorous recovery is likely to leave an enormous number out of work for years.

We may have avoided a second Great Depression to date, but the long-term effects on the U.S. economy may be very severe. Hopefully the economists who see major downturns rebounding with equally major expansions are correct. If this recession creates a large class of the permanently unemployed and drives more of the middle class down toward, or into, poverty, the social, political and economic repercussions probably are beyond our ability to imagine right now. A sizable and battered lower class does not make for a stable society.

December 3, 2009

Modest economic improvement according to latest Beige Book

Filed under: Business, Politics — Tags: , , , , — David Kirkpatrick @ 1:44 pm

Of course unemployment remains the fly in this economic ointment.

From the link:

The US Federal Reserve has said that economic activities have improved modestly in recent months, primarily helped by better consumer spending.

However, the labour market situation continued to remain weak with rising layoffs and sluggish hiring activities, the apex bank noted.

The Federal Reserve’s Beige Book, which provides a snapshot of economic activities in the 12 districts, said “economic conditions have generally improved modestly” in recent months.

In eight districts, the activities witnessed improvement while it remained little or mixed in the remaining four.