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Friday, November 5, 2010

US economy adds jobs; unemployment rate stays at 9.6%

The issue of unemployment affects all areas of the country and the economy. Today the status of unemployment was reassessed, and we'd like to share this article by Mark Haden explaining what was found.

U.S. adds 151K jobs in Oct.; rate stable at 9.6%

The U.S. economy last month experienced its largest monthly jobs gain since May, but the increase wasn't enough to lower the national unemployment rate from 9.6 percent.
The U.S. Labor Department reported Friday that non-farm sectors climbed by 151,000 jobs last month, with 159,000 jobs added by private businesses and the public sector posting a small employment decline. Central Texas unemployment numbers for October will be release later this month. The rate fell to 6.8 percent in September from 7.2 percent August, the Texas Workforce Commission reported.
In news-media surveys, economists had projected a smaller rise in payrolls.
Since last December, U.S. non-farm payrolls have risen by 874,000, with a 1.1 million increase in private-sector jobs.
But 14.8 million Americans who want to work have no jobs, the new report said.
In remarks to reporters at the White House, President Barack Obama called the new job-increase numbers "encouraging news," but said that given continued high unemployment, the news is "not good enough."
"The unemployment rate is still unacceptably high and we’ve got a lot of work to do," Obama said. "This recession caused a great deal of hardship and it put millions of people out of work. So in order to repair this damage, in order to create the jobs to meet the large need, we need to accelerate our economic growth so that we are producing jobs at a faster pace."
But U.S. Rep. John Boehner, the likely speaker of the U.S. House when Republicans take control of that chamber in January, said the jobs report demonstrates the need to continue tax cuts dating from the President George W. Bush administration and to trim federal spending to pre-stimulus levels.
"Any job growth is a positive sign, but stagnant and stubbornly high unemployment makes clear why permanently stopping all the looming tax hikes should top Washington's to-do list this month," said Boehner, R-Ohio.
Paul Ashworth, senior U.S. economist for Capital Economics in Toronto, called the new jobs report "stronger than expected and, at the margin, reduces the risk we will actually see the unemployment rate edge higher over the coming months."
But he said he could see "little prospect of any meaningful decline in that unemployment rate" anytime soon.
The Labor Department's Bureau of Labor Statistics also revised its jobs figures for September, saying the economy lost 41,000 jobs that month, smaller than originally reported.
With the rise in private-sector jobs, the last few months have seen a decline in government jobs, particularly with the end of temporary Census Bureau employment.
Average hourly pay for private-sector workers rose by 5 cents last month, to $22.73, according to BLS' workplace survey. Private wages are up 1.7 percent over the last 12 months, slightly ahead of the inflation rate. The average work week increased by 0.1 hours in October.
Among the business sectors seeing the greatest rise in employment in October were temporary help services (up 35,000), retail (up 28,000), health care (up 24,000) and food service and bars (up 24,000).
On the other hand, employment in arts, entertainment and recreation was down 26,000, BLS said.
In the public sector, state and local non-school government employment fell by 14,000 and local agencies cut spending in the face of revenue declines.
In its separate household survey, BLS found that 41.8 percent of jobless Americans have been out of work for 27 weeks or more.
It also said that 9.2. million Americans are forced to work part time but would rather have fill-time jobs -- a decrease of 318,000.

Date: Friday, November 5, 2010, 3:09pm

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