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  • normlasky normlasky Feb 5, 2011 6:15 PM Flag

    Unemployment Rate

    "I think we are still in big trouble."

    I don't. I have much more confidence in the ADP data which are based on name, rank and serial number. I think ADP payroll encompasses 26 million employees. An increase of 433,000 net employees reported by ADP in december and january is very significant ( up 1.6%).

    It would not surprise me if the department of labor february job report shows 300 to 400k private payroll increase. The department of labor has a lousy track record and perhaps the country would be better off if many of these statisticians left gov't for productive work.

    We're only going to be in big trouble if Fed and State gov't do not put the axe to spending. Look, the private sector cut 8 million jobs during the recession. Now that the private sector is recovering, the gov't sector needs to bleed 3 million job loss. At the same time the retirement age for both ss and medicare need to be increased modestly. Folks are living much longer than 50 years ago and it's not a big sacrifice to move retirement out a few years.

    That's the reality and Obama's new guy, Bill Daley will make it happen.

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    • article today in WSJ re firms are not hiring. Government payroll will not decrease without Reaganesque leadership. Long term job market is still very bad.

    • Must be careful with the DOL/BLS ‘Unemployment Rate’. That is a guess/seasonally adjusted number of folks receiving unemployment insurance benefits. Look to the BLS U-6 for a better idea. But even U-6 understates by leaving out folks who unwillingly leave the labor force or never got in it.
      I like the ADP numbers because it is an ‘indication’ of small-midsized companies hiring. Big companies have their own payroll departments and very small companies do their own: generally neither use ADP which might be the source of your discomfort with their numbers. But alas, I think mid-size companies are the engine of growth of US business. Last Summer I noted that mid sized companies on the coasts and the Mississippi valley were having trouble finding qualified welders. They were setting up training programs to teach welding. Generally welding is a very good blue collar job. I think this trend continues. These are the companies that use ADP whose results you see.
      So the long and short of it is: The gov’t is understating employment for political affect. The US economic engine is accelerating but not the BLS way. There will be setbacks to stock performance during 2011. We will end the year with SP500 above 1400.

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